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Are Pizza Hacks Really Necessary?

I've long thought that you have to overcome the restraints of a non-commercial oven to make the best pizza at home. This was the premise of my post on broiling no-knead pizza, one of many techniques Slice'rs use to get their ovens above their maximum heat setting.

An experience I had last night, however, led me to rethink this paradigm. Partly to avoid the copious smoke I usually get with the broiler method, I baked some pies on a pizza stone preheated for one hour in my oven set to convect on maximum heat, 550°F. The pizzas developed deeply charred crusts and leopard-spotted undercarriages—in fact, they resembled wood-oven pies more closely than a pie I had cooked under the broiler with the same dough half an hour earlier and took only about a minute longer to cook.

Hence, the new me: a pizza obsessive devoted to using a conventional oven outfitted with nothing put a preheated pizza stone. No cast iron skillets, superheated charcoal grills, or disabled self-clean cycle locks necessary.

So what do you think? Is it better to use clever hacks or straight baking to make pizza at home?

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