Last year, we welcomed a new training and development chef, Sergio.
Sergio was born and raised in Lombardy, Italy. Coming from a family of Neapolitan chefs, which is where his passion for pizza originates. Sergio was cooking pizza from a very young age, assisting his father in their family restaurant, in which his father had for more than 20 years. So, it’s safe to say Sergio is very knowledgeable in Italian culinary arts.
Moving to the UK
Arriving in the UK 14 years ago, Sergio has brought the authentic Italian pizza techniques and expertise with him. Working as a chef and consultant in many restaurants and within the food industry across the UK, until joining White’s Foodservice Equipment last year, as a development chef as well as to explain and demonstrate equipment and share new recipes.
Scuola Italiana Pizzaioli
In January 2022, Sergio became a certified training instructor through the prestigious Scuola Italiana Pizzaioli. This means Sergio officially qualified to teach pizza making. Not only through well known traditional methods, but through modern and tested processes also.
We will have more info, on how to get involved on our website, very soon!
Even after all these years, Sergio’s favourite meal is a traditional Neapolitan pizza, he says nothing beats an excellently made margarita, with a simple tomato sauce, fior di latte mozzarella and a few well-placed basil leaves. However, Sergio sometimes loves to add a colourful mixture of anchovies, capers, and olives.
Where to find Sergio
You can also find Sergio on our socials, if you haven't already. Whether it is his helpful tutorial videos or photos of his demonstrations, you will be seeing more of him across our social platforms.
Sergio has already settled in with all the staff at Whites, as he known as quite the character, managing to put a smile on everyone’s face. We hope you are as excited as we are to learn all of Sergio's vital knowledge.
How to Make Detroit Pizza
The popularity of Detroit Pizza has boomed worldwide with everyone asking for these square, deep dish pizzas. If you’ve not heard of the trend until now you may be wondering ‘what makes them so special?’.
Well, we have put together a step by step tutorial so you can give them a go yourself – if you haven’t already! Detroit Pizza is a truly unique and well-loved contribution to the pizza industry from the American Motor City. Be warned, these pictures will make you hungry…
Although it’s a rectangle (commonly baked in sizes 8×10″ or 10×14″) it is referred to as square pizza. This may be confusing, but it’s all part of Detroit Pizza tradition!
Detroit pizza dough is light, airy and resembles focaccia or Sicilian-style dough as opposed to thick, heavy Chicago-style pizza dough.
Now, this is where it gets interesting… for authentic Detroit pizza you basically have to reverse the usual way to load pizza. Firstly, toppings go directly onto the dough, followed by cheese – true Detroit pizza uses Wisconsin Brick Cheese, not mozzarella. Finally, ladle on top your sauce – hence the nickname ‘red top pizza’!
WHAT YOU’LL NEED
For the dough:
– 1KG Strong Flour – 700ml Water – 5g Instant Dry Yeast – 25g Salt
For the toppings:
– Pizza sauce – Wisconsin Brick Cheese (we’ve used mozzarella) -Your choice of pizza toppings
How to make Detroit Pizza
We assume you’re not total pizza newbies so let’s say you’ve got your dough prepped. (If you haven’t, we have found a great video here on how to make pizza dough.) Once your dough is ready, take it from the mixer and rest it for 30 minutes in a container. After 30 minutes, pop your dough on a clean table ready to portion.
2. Make sure you oil every container that will come into contact with your dough so it doesn’t stick.
3. Measure your dough out into smaller portions. You can calculate the correct dough ball size by using your tray/pan dimensions. The following formula will help:
(TRAY LEGNTH CM x TRAY WIDTH CM) / 2 = ______
For example, this was the formula we used for our 10 x 14″ Detroit Style Pizza Pans:
(25cm x 35cm) / 2 = 437g dough ball.
4. Once you have portioned out your dough, fold it into a nice, round dough ball and place it into your (previously oiled) container.
5. Wrap the container using cling film or a lid, and leave the dough resting for another 2 hours so it can prove.
7. Generously oil the pan you are using. Then, take the dough ball and roll it out inside the pan. If it shrinks back just leave it for a couple of minutes, after which it should be easier to stretch.
8. Once the dough is rolled out in the pans and covering the whole surface, cover with the Detroit Pans lid. Give the dough one final prove before loading your masterpiece. We recommend at least 1 hour.
9. After an hour, dock your dough to get the bubbles out, or gently pinch any bubbles that have formed during your prove.
Once this is done add your toppings! We’ve gone with pepperoni – you can add anything you like (straight onto the dough!).
10. Then, add your cheese. Authentic Detroit Pizza is made with Wisconsin Brick Cheese. This is famously hard to get hold of in the UK, so we’ve gone with good old mozzarella (it was still delicious, may we add!).
To finish off, load your sauce on TOP of the cheese for that gorgeous red-top pizza look.
11. Bake in the oven at 250°C for 14-18 minutes (depending on your oven).
12. Cut into squares in true Detroit pizza style and enjoy!
New Restaurants! Franco Manca & Yard Sale Pizza Openings.
We celebrate Franco Manca's 7th store opening this year (all with Marana Forni ovens!) and Yard Sale Pizza opening their brand new store with a GENIUS® Marana Forni oven system.
Friday 20th September 2019... A busy 24 hours!
Thursday night was spent in London celebrating the opening of the latest Yard Sale Pizza store. Their new shop is in Hoxton and it is their first one with a Marana Forni 150 Genius® pizza oven system.
This innovative oven allows Yard Sale to cook their famous 18” pizzas perfectly without the need to turn them in the oven! This new Yard Sale Pizza opening is guaranteed to be a success with an oven that helps keep kitchen operations run smoothly.
Next stop was Manchester to visit the latest new Franco Manca store - this will be the 7th opening this year! All of which are kitted out with stunning Marana Forni ovens.
This store has the 130 Rotating oven with the Su&Giu® function. Opening next week it is sure to be a success, and the good people of Manchester get to sample the same delicious Sourdough pizzas that diners have enjoyed in the other 49 existing restaurants.
We are honoured to be part of their new store openings and wish both of these established and respected operators every deserved success.
If you'd like to know more about either of the ovens in these stores call us on 01527 528841 or visit the Marana Forni brands page on our website. There you can see endless images of those that are part of the Marana Forni family enjoying their ovens.
When creating your dough, you probably put a lot of time and effort into choosing the correct ingredients, as well as ensuring that you give each batch the time and love it deserves. However, that’s just not enough – in order to achieve a perfect product, the right equipment must also be used. There are two types of dough mixers available – professional and commercial. It is definitely worthwhile investing in a professional dough mixer, and here’s why:
Dough Mixers are an essential element for ensuring success – they’re not just for mixing raw ingredients, but to also push water into flour and increase absorption through mechanical action. The better the dough mixer is at achieving this, the more water will be absorbed into the flour, increasing the quality of your dough.
A professional dough mixer always has double speed, and sometimes a double engine too; the double speed oxygenates the dough very well and much faster by increasing the mechanical action of pushing water into flour, therefore increasing the hydration. In addition, professional models give a thoroughly mixed, homogeneous batch of dough with significant elasticity. Having two motors increase these capabilities even more because, when double speed is activated, it accelerates the spiral, allowing the bowl to rotate at the same speed and increase the friction between the spiral and dough. It has been found that with the commercial mixer less hydration occurs and, overall, they produce relatively inelastic dough.
Following this, professional dough mixers have rounded bowls, and commercial dough mixers often have bowls with sharp corners where dough can get stuck and become unreachable, especially when the quantity of the dough is small. The material of the bowl is also important – professional die-cast bowls are made of a material that reduces vibration and heat conduction, and thus it doesn’t heat the dough as much as a commercial mixer by a fair amount. Commercial mixer bowls often vibrate a lot, conducting heat and warming the dough which leaves the chef with difficulty when handling the product once mixed.
The size and shape of the spiral is very important also – professional mixers have spirals with a radius that is smaller at the end and with the smallest distance between the end of the spiral and the bottom of the bowl. The commercial mixers sometimes have the same shape and size spiral, but often with larger distances between the end of the spiral and the bottom of the bowl, giving a lower quality knead, sometimes unsatisfactory, compared to professional mixers.
In summary, a professional dough mixer is a definite worthwhile investment if you wish for your product to be adequately hydrated, not over-heated, and if you wish your dough to be correctly kneaded without manual intervention.
Some facts and quotes in this blog post were taken from the book ‘Let’s Start From the Flour’ by Luigi Ricchezza.
If you’d rather watch and not read, here is Davide D’Auria from Eurostar Commodities, an Italian Pizza Expert, showing why he prefers a professional mixer:
Marana Forni Traditional Ovens
Marana Forni began in the late 1980’s, thanks to the intuition of it’s owner Ferdinando Marana. The company began producing and selling wood, gas, pellet and combo-fired traditional pizza ovens for baking pizza and foods in general. Today, the company is synonymous all over the world with prestige, quality and innovation. The Marana Forni brand represents innovative technology, hand in hand with tradition. Their beautiful ovens were soon installed throughout Italy, Europe and more than 70 other countries worldwide. For the most part, this was achieved by word of mouth – the result of satisfied pizza chefs relying on products built using materials and technology of excellent quality. Marana Forni ovens have been chosen for the most important events dedicated to pizza, such as the World Pizza Chef Championships since 1995, as well as the French and Spanish championships.
A company that has won awards for it’s innovations such as the patented SU&GIU® pizza oven, with a rotating deck which can also be lifted up and down to capture the heat in the oven, and the GENIUS Fast Casual oven (an oven that can be set to cook pizza with just one turn of the pizza deck, without the manual intervention from a pizza chef); Marana Forni also keeps it’s faith in traditional pizza ovens, with the Marana Fisso 120 and the Marana Napulé ovens:
Marana Fisso 120
This static pizza oven is constructed with traditional techniques and materials combined with the technological innovation and passion unique to a Marana Forni. Cooking quality is guaranteed by the choice of materials used and the specific way in which they are mixed. There are no other pizza ovens like a Marana – the result of painstaking development and meticulous testing, strictly performed at the Verona headquarters. The cooking surface has micro-perforations for easier expulsion of moisture from the pizza, and for better, more fragrant cooking – no burning and of course no cooking of surplus flour. Special technical features ensure that this oven complies with legal requirements on quality and safety.
The wood- and gas-fired professional Static oven, certified by the AVPN (Associazione Verace Pizza Napoletana). This is the outcome of Marana Forni’s intensive cooperation and development programme undertaken in association with the master Pizzaioli of Naples. Impressive teamwork, in which the experience of the Neapolitan Pizzaioli and the technological skill of Marana’s craftsmen, together created a unique appliance certified by the AVPN, the Genuine Neapolitan Pizza Association, for both wood- and gas-fired operation. Vesuvian lava stone is included in the exclusive mix of materials used for the ovens construction.
These beautiful, innovative ovens can be covered to match your restaurant, either with a bare or coloured steel cupola, or a mosaic tiled steel cupola; the cupola can be customised with the colour of your choice, choosing from more than 2000 colours on the RAL, or metal brush colours – vibrant metal colours emphasising the hand-made brushed finish of the cupola. To see more, go to our Marana Forni gallery by clicking here or read more about Marana Forni ovens here.
The Definitive Guide to Pizza Equipment
As we all know the humble pizza is crowned one of the most popular foods consumed at restaurants across the UK. Positively, when it comes to delivery/take away services, time and time again the pizza market has proved to be one of the most resilient sectors.
It’s no secret everybody enjoys a decent pizza, and some passionate entrepreneurs transform their love of pizza into their livelihood. If you’re thinking about starting a pizza business, having the best equipment and accessories can weather the pressures of daily use so that you can attend to your customers’ every need.
So, if you’re ready to take the leap to the perfect pizza restaurateur, keep reading to find out what equipment you will need to open and get your delicious pizzas flying off the shelves in no time.
The right oven will not only transform your pizza into a gastronomic experience for your customers but will also impact the pace and production of your operation. There are a wide range of options that include but aren’t limited to: electric deck ovens, conveyor ovens, wood-fired ovens and gas-fired ovens. Your choices will all come down to the kind of pizza you will be offering. American deep pan? Thin crust? Authentic Neapolitan? Metre long pizza? You will also need to consider the volume and speed with which you will need to operate depending on footfall and location, and whether you will offer takeaway and delivery.
The perfect pizza prep fridge
Another fundamental piece of equipment every great pizza business requires is a good pizza prep fridge, also known as a prep bench. This piece of kit will enable you to top a pizza in no time at all while ensuring your ingredients are kept within safe temperature ranges. One of the errors a new pizza entrepreneur will want to avoid is purchasing the wrong type of pizza prep fridge for your business. The costs can stack up rapidly if you’re throwing food away or worse still, making pizzas with unsafe ingredients.
Identify your ideal dough mixer.
A quality dough mixer is the heart of any pizzeria and will be vital to creating the perfect dough. When you are choosing your dough mixer, you will need to consider what KG dough batches you will be mixing in order to choose the right model for you. Eliani and ItalMix are great pizza mixers on the market. The Eliani range of spiral dough mixers are extraordinarily sturdy and reliable and are known throughout the industry as THE machines to use for serious pizza makers and restaurateurs. Eliani produces spiral dough mixers with capacities from 1KG to 160KG of dough. ItalMix produce twin arm mixers that knead the dough just like real human arms. The ItalMix range offers the possibility of kneading different types of products, with different consistencies and water content percentage.
Pizza peels – turning and launching
For those not in the know, a pizza peel is a kitchen utensil which resembles a large flat shovel. Launching peels are designed to load your pizza into the oven correctly, and turning peels are used to spin your pizza to get an even bake, and then remove them from the oven. Both types of pizza peel are crucial for any pizza restaurant. Peels can be made from metal (anodised aluminium or stainless steel) or wood. They range in size to suit your pizza and are round, square, or rectangular. Handles also vary in length but we can cut them down to the space available in your kitchen.
Pizza boxes allow for the branding and logo of your service, and with today’s consumers desiring more environmentally friendly solutions, ensure your preferred packaging is recyclable. Consider the strength of the boxes versus the price trade-off and try not to be tempted with flimsy low-cost cardboard that may allow oil from your pizza to drip through.
Don’t underestimate heated bags.
It might seem easier to overlook this step but bear in mind you don’t want to risk negative feedback circulating regarding cold pizzas arriving. Delivery bags have improved immensely over the years. Keep your eyes peeled for the lining of the bag. Ideally, it should be “breathable,” allowing moisture to escape, while layers of insulation make sure the bag retains heat. Find bags which are durable and stain-proof and the right size for the quantity of pizzas you will be delivering in one trip.
Find your preferred pizza slicer.
There are many slicers available to suit your budget and volume of production. You can choose from heavy-duty pizza rocker cutters to low-cost pizza cutter wheels which have colour coded handles for meat/vegetarian/vegan/gluten-free pizzas.
Racks and shelving solutions
There are specialist racks designed to hold pizza pans, screens and disks. These racks are a great addition to any tidy and efficient pizza kitchen, used for storage and quick access. Consider the size of your kitchen, the number of pizzas you will be dishing out, and the size of your pans.
What accessories do I need for a pizza oven?
What Pizza accessories are helpful?
Here are some accessories that will ensure you are cooking your pizzas in the best way. Your pizzas will taste exceptional, your kitchen will run efficiently, and your customers will be coming back for more. In this article, we discuss the essential pizza oven accessories that you will need.
Pizza Peels – Launching & Turning
This perfect accessory makes cooking pizza so much easier and saves valuable time for all your professional pizza chefs. Pizza peels are an essential pizza oven accessory.
They are used to move your finished pizza from the counter into the oven, ensuring it looks as good as it did during preparation. They can have long handles for sliding pizzas into the oven, or short handles if your space is limited. (We can supply the correct peel dependent on the pizza oven and space you have.) The head of the pizza peel varies in size dependent on the size of the pizza you are baking.
With the right pizza turning peel, you can turn the pizza for an even bake, and use it to get the pizza out of the oven when its ready, ensuring it stays intact. Never use your launching peel for turning or removing pizza from the oven – they are two very different but very necessary accessories for your pizza oven.
Metal pizza peels are very durable and easy to clean. You can select a pizza peel that is perforated or solid dependent on your needs. A perforated pizza peel has holes for reduced friction, and to allow the flour to drop through when loading your pizza into the oven; this avoids burnt flour on the base of your dough and keeps your oven cleaner for longer.
Wooden pizza peels are also available and dependant on your personal preference we can supply either. Some pizza chefs prefer wooden peels as they are more authentic.
We have a selection of handle sizes for you to choose. We know your oven gets very hot, so to reach the back you may need a long handle dependent on your oven size, or a shorter handle if you only have a small oven chamber.
Pizza connoisseurs want pizzas to be presented at their best; to help you do this, you will need the right pizza cutter.
When the pizza is still hot out of the oven a pizza cutter will make easy work slicing up the pizza. Make sure you get a stainless-steel item, so that is it easy to clean and is durable in the long run. We can supply heavy duty versions that will last longer and withstand more use.
After all the cooking must come the cleaning to ensure the life of your pizza oven. An oven brush allows you to carefully clean all the debris and remaining food whilst not damaging your pizza oven floor.
Having an excellent long-handled brush will be handy when you want to reach into the far end of the oven to clean up the crumbs and ash.
We supply brush lengths based on your requirements.
Depending on your preference, brushes can be provided with brass bristles or natural bristles,
Pizza Bubble Popper
Once you have used this product, you will be amazed at how you coped without one. As the name itself suggests, a pizza bubble popper does precisely that – it pops out any air bubbles that form when the pizza dough cooks. These air bubbles can ruin the appearance and the texture of the pizza whilst cooking.
We all initially eat with our eyes, so this pizza bubble popper will help ensure your pizza looks as good as it tastes. The pizza bubble popper is durable, easy to clean and very affordable.
Olive Oil cans
During the preparation of your dough, drizzle your pizza with some oil to ensure colour to your crust. The most popular is Italian Extra Virgin Olive Oil, but you can use anything that matches your customers’ favourite pizzas.
Pizza Portion Tray
One of the most used accessories; saving you time and ensuring you get equal portions and sizes every time.
We hope these accessories help you in the kitchen. If you need any further help, please do get in touch with us.
What equipment do you need to make pizza?
Pizza making is not an easy task. A lot of effort goes into making the best traditional pizzas, and you can’t just whip one up on a whim on a Friday night with your kitchen utensils. Sure, you can use your home oven to create one, but if you are trying to make pizzas as a business, you will need specialist pizza equipment. It will be a serious investment - in this article we will go through the leading equipment that you will need to make pizzas.
The Main Equipment for Pizza Making
The fairly obvious item that you are going to need to make professional pizza is a dedicated pizza oven. There are many kinds of ovens available for you to choose from depending on your style of pizza and the space you have available. You will need to figure out what type of pizza you will be producing and what oven capacity you will need when deciding on your oven.
But before you cook your pizza, you will need to prepare it – the most important part! Getting your dough right is essential when making tasty pizzas. Dough mixing can be a time-consuming and tiresome activity. Making small batches by hand can be very frustrating for you and your customers who are waiting to get their pizzas. Invest in a dough mixer with a capacity of around 25KG if you want to be prepared to make a lot of pizzas fast. Dough mixers are available with capacity as little as 6KG or as huge as 160KG, depending on your needs.
For topping your pizza easily and in good time a good preparation counter is important. You will be able to prepare pizzas professionally, fast and whilst maintaining good hygiene. If you are aiming to become successful in the pizza trade, you will need to invest in the right professional-level equipment.
The Pizza Making Accessories
At the next level, there are accessories or secondary items that you will require for pizza making. These usually get overlooked initially but are just as crucial for the pizza-making process. The ones that fall into this category are items like dough trays, pizza screens, pizza racks and pizza peels.
You need trays to store dough that you have just mixed until proves, and dough trays for the balled-up dough to rest before it is ready to be put in the oven. A good set of dough trays is handy for saving space because they are stackable and useful dough box trolleys are available for easy mobility of your stack of trays. If you are operating in a small area, these become invaluable.
If you are using pizza pans to cook your pizza, pizza racks are where all of your prepped pizzas will be stored until they are put in the oven to be cooked. They are also very useful for storing pizza pans, screens and disks when not in use.
Finally, the pizza peel is the final item that you will need for the pizza cooking process. You will use a launching peel to put the pizza into the oven, and a turning peel to turn the pizza throughout the bake, and to remove the pizza from the oven. Pizza peels with their flat head and long handle will help you take the pizzas out of the oven without burning yourself.
The Things you need to Nail Your Pizza Presentation
And then there is the equipment that you will need for the pizza serving and presentation. After you have cooked your pizza, what will you use to serve it to people who have come to dine at your restaurant?
There are two options for this: Pizza Plates or the more traditional Pizza Serving Boards. Pizza serving boards tend to raise the aesthetic presentation of your pizzeria and can be used to show that you are serious about the product you make. On the flip side, you can always use pizza plates to serve your pizzas - pizza plates are easier to clean and maintain, although less aesthetically pleasing.
If you are selling pizza by the slice it is important that all of your slices are equal, so customers do not get upset by a smaller portion at the same price. You can purchase pizza cutter boards, with lines indented in them to help guide your pizza cutter and produce equal slices time after time. You can use professional pizza wheel cutters, pizza rocker cutters, or pizza scissors to ensure you give your slices a clean, cut finish without ruining the toppings or cheese.
The Items You Need for Pizza Takeaway & Delivery
If you are serving pizzas as a takeaway or home delivery, you will need the right pizza boxes as well as pizza delivery bags. Nowadays, nearly all pizza boxes are biodegradable or at least recyclable, which is good for the environment and a good impression to make on your customers, of which a growing number will be environmentally conscious.
When delivering pizzas to homes, the pizzas must arrive hot and create the feeling like it is straight out of the oven. Cold pizzas will damage the reputation of your pizzeria, so invest in some quality pizza delivery bags for your drivers to ensure that your pizzas reach your customers at the best possible quality.
In the very end, we have a wide range of items that help in the pizza-making process. There are many more such as chef aprons and heat-resistant gloves. Things like heat-resistant gloves are useful items to protect you when working with hot pizza ovens and with pizza peels and screens that tend to get very hot.
Chef Aprons help to protect you from flying embers as well the occasional stain that might otherwise ruin your clothes. Plus, a lovely chef’s apron will give you a very professional appearance while operating in the pizzeria, creating a professional appearance.