Frequently Asked Questions
A. Bubbles in the crust are caused by trapped moisture that expands when the crust is baked. Small bubbles can be left alone but the pizza must be watched during the cooking process in case very large bubbles form, as this can cause the cheese and other toppings to slide off the bubble. As they are forming, pop the large bubbles with a long-handled metal poker. To prevent severe bubbling, the fresh crust and crusts formed from dough balls need to be heavily docked before the pizza is sauced and topped. The parbaked crust has already been docked but can be docked again if large bubbles typically form in your oven. Self-rising crusts do not need to be docked.
A. A dough docker is a common pizzeria tool, similar to a short rolling pin but with a handle and short spikes on the roller. It makes holes in the crust that look like the holes in a soda cracker, but the holes made by the docker do not go all the way through the crust. They staple pinch the dough together. A docker can be purchased from a food equipment and smallwares supplier that sells American Metalcraft products.
A. The docked side should be down.
A. Proofing is essentially a controlled increase in dough temperature. That activates the yeast which, in turn, develops the dough flavor and allows easier handling of the dough. Yeast fermentation allows the dough to stretch and not snap back. It also produces better browning in the oven, results in a crispier crust and a more bread-like texture.
A. It is not necessary to bake any of the crusts before you top them. However, under certain circumstances, some people do.
A. A gum line results when oils from the pizza sauce penetrate the crust. This can be prevented by brushing the crust (with docking marks down) lightly with a vegetable based oil or by using a pizza sauce with more tomato solids and less water.
A. It’s not. It is only baked enough to stop the yeast development. This allows the crust to be more shelf stable and easier to handle than a fresh crust. Once the parbaked crust is topped and baked it will be entirely cooked.
A. The best way to tell if your pizza is fully cooked is to look at the bottom of the crust. A well-browned and crispy crust will be an indication of a pizza that is done. The crust will get crispy during the last one to two minutes of baking. In addition, the cheese should be fully melted.
A. As a general answer, both the self-rise and parbake pizza crusts can be cooked directly from the freezer. We highly suggest only cooking the self-rise from the freezer while technically, a parbaked crust could be taken from the freezer, immediately topped and baked. However, in order to separate the thin parbaked crusts packed together in the bag, they need to be slightly thawed as breakage occurs when attempting to separate frozen crusts. (Our parbaked crusts are packaged so that 1/3 at a time can be removed, placed in a plastic bag and stored in the cooler.) Also, parbaked crusts brought to room temperature cook better and there is less risk of overcooking the toppings before the crust is cooked. Refrigerated shelf life of the parbaked crust is 5 days so quality should not be a concern.
A. You will see the best performance out of the self-rising crusts when they are cooked directly from the freezer. These crusts are designed to give the best rise and taste profile when given a minimal amount of time to thaw before cooking.
A. We offer a self-rising crust with a raised edge. Also, our dough balls and fresh crusts can be used to form a crust with a raised edge.
A. No. Due to the constraints of our production facility and the fact that all of our crust products are made with wheat, we could not guarantee that a gluten-free product produced in our facility would actually be 100% gluten-free.
A. Our crusts are best suited for deck and conveyor ovens. Tavern style pizza ovens also work well. Our crusts can be cooked in convection ovens but they generally do not produce a crisp crust. No matter what kind of oven is used, we recommend that the pizza be cooked on a pizza screen or directly on the oven deck or chain.
A. General guidelines are as follows:
Conveyor oven: 5 minutes at 500°
Deck oven: 7-8 minutes at 500°
Tavern style oven: 11 minutes
These are guidelines only. The optimum time and temperature varies by individual oven and experimentation is required to determine what is necessary for your equipment.
A. At the conclusion of its shelf life the product will begin to lose its ability to rise and its taste profile will change. If the crusts are not kept frozen until ready for use, these same issues will occur long before their intended shelf life is reached.
A. We have an extensive network of distributors through whom we sell our products and we prefer to support them. Also, all of our products must be picked up at our dock. We do not deliver.