A frozen pizza is so easy to prepare, it costs little, and you can feed the whole family with a single one, but how do you choose the best frozen pizza from the wide selection in your supermarket? Though frozen pizzas look great in the picture, they often look different once baked, and many times they seem so small by comparison with the box. But there are ways to set apart the best pizzas from the merely pretentious ones.
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To choose the best pizza look at the ingredients list. You want to see organic or fresh produce like fresh mushrooms, spinach and tomatoes. Look for a variety of cheeses, to be sure of a rich cheesy flavor as well as an ample amount of cheese. Look for a short ingredient’s list with names that you can recognize. The best pizza ingredients should read like a recipe, not like a science experiment.
To choose the best pizza for the money, look at the baking instructions. A small pizza that requires an oven to be heated to 450°F is wasteful. You can find pizzas that can bake at 400°F or 425°F. Typically flat pizzas should have a slightly higher temperature but less baking time, to ensure that the cheese melts but the crust does not burn. The best pizza for the money will require the least amount of oven heat, even if you have to bake the pizza a little longer.
To choose the best pizza for a large family, don’t judge the size of the pizza by the square box. A pizza is round and will be smaller by a few inches than the box itself. So imagine a circle over the box, a little smaller in diameter, and you’ll have a good idea of the size of the pizza. If the frozen pizza box is wider than longer, ignore the added width. The circle inside will only be as big as the smallest dimension of the pizza box square.
To choose the best pizza don’t judge it by its cover. The picture on frozen pizzas typically over-state the beauty and size of the product. Look instead at the over-all design of the box. Is the frozen pizza presented in flashy advertising lingo? Or does everything seem straight forward? Can you easily find the ingredients list and baking instructions? Or is most of the box surface covered in a large, glossy image? The best pizza will be marketed as no more than it is.
To choose the best pizza look for the newer brand names on the market. This new trend in frozen pizzas seeks to replace the old stale flavors that were unmistakably not-fresh-baked. Pizzas from Amy’s (despite high temperature baking) and Culinary Circle have fresh ingredients and flavors. The cheese is cut into squares so as to melt at the same rate that the dough bakes. The name does not sound Italian, perhaps, but these frozen pizzas taste like good home cooking.
If you would like to try your hand at baking bread yourself, here’s a simple bread baking tutorial to teach you how to proof yeast, knead the dough by hand or with a bread machine, prepare the dough to rise and finally shape and bake it.
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