How can we keep our pizzas from sticking to the peel?
To solve this issue, start by using the correct peel. Pizza peels are made of metal or wood/composite. The wood peel is for preparation, while the metal peel is for baking. The temperature differences between the peel and the dough are less likely to cause condensation on the peel, which can cause stickiness.
Next, what do you use for peel dust? Inconsistent results with ordinary flour. If your dough is cold or sticky, it may adhere to the oven’s peel. Instead, sprinkle the peel with cornmeal. It operates like thousands of tiny ball bearings under the dough skin as a release material. The prepared dough slides right off the peel with a gentle shake.
However, cornmeal might add grit to the cooked pie’s bottom. This is desirable to some pizza makers but not to others. Excess cornmeal must be swept out of the oven constantly or it will harden and appear on the bottoms of the baked pizzas.
Some operators recommend semolina flour, which is coarser than ordinary flour and absorbs moisture slower. So it’s a fantastic compromise between ordinary flour and cornmeal for peel dust.
Others have used “exotic” ingredients including wheat bran, rice flour, cornflour, coarse-ground whole-wheat flour, and even rye flour as peel dust. These materials all work well as peel dust.
My favorite is a mix of cornmeal, semolina, and ordinary pizza flour. Don’t ask why I like it—it works. With this combination, I can confidently peel the dressed dough into the oven, knowing it will slip right off!