Kenji Alt's Homemade Pizza Hack

20090218-pizzahack.jpgLast week, Kenji Alt of the blog Goodeater (and a writer for Cook's Illustrated) sent me a cross-section photo of a slice of pizza he had made in his kitchen with the promise that he'd soon reveal a new method of achieving brick-oven-like pizza at home.

He has now unveiled his pizza hack, and it doesn't involve the self-cleaning cycle or a super-hot iron skillet.

After taking us through the three different ways food can cook (via conduction, convection, or radiation) and explaining clearly how they each apply to pizza, Kenji reveals his plan for cooking both the top and bottom of a pizza at high enough heat to really get the job done. He says, "Of course, nobody ever said that the top and the bottom actually need to cook at the same time, right?"

He'd first have you cook the top of your pie under the broiler in your oven and then cook the bottom by creating a sort of indoor grill above the burner of your gas range.

A warning from Kenji: "... you'll have to constantly rotate and fiddle with the pizza as it cooks in order to get it to char evenly. I never said this method was particularly easy."