Thursday, November 6, 2014

Cookbook Review: The Pizza Bible 
Ever since I started cooking, I've sought to make the perfect pizza. I sometimes make homemade dough (I've tried a handful of recipes), have experimented with homemade sauces (of various flavors), and try to use quality toppings. We enjoy pizza night at our house, but I'm always on the lookout for new and improved recipes and tips for making delicious pizza parlor style pizza at home. 

Tony Gemignani is a big name is the Pizza World. He's like the guy. I have seen him on a bunch of cooking shows, and it's obvious he knows his pizza. So, how excited was I to review his new cookbook, The Pizza Bible!? 

Let's start out with the cookbook itself. The cover is very plain, but I like that there is no dust jacket (as it typically gets ripped/dirty if I actually cook with it), and the pictures are really nice. Although, I do wish there were more photos. This cookbook is basically a pizza making course, which Tony refers to as the Master Class. The book discusses pizza theory (basically the science behind pizza making), and the importance of using quality ingredients. Tony also provides his supply list with the brands and type of each ingredient he uses in his pizzas. There are sections on regional pizzas, both American and worldwide, such as New York, New Haven, Chicago, and Sicilian. There are recipes for many different varieties of pizza, dough, and sauces. This cookbook has a lot of good information for people who are really serious about their pizza making. 

When I review a cookbook, I try to make at least 2-3 recipes before writing my review. However, in The Pizza Bible, there were literally no recipes I could make with ingredients I had on hand, or with ingredients I could get easily.

Making the basic dough recipe from this cookbook requires 3 days (I'm serious), and specialty ingredients I've never even heard of. (Diastatic Malt?) The type of flours used in this cookbook are also very specific--as in all-purpose will NOT do. Most of the flours must be ordered online at specialty shops. In addition, the recipes are very long. For one pizza, I counted 26 ingredients, NOT counting the ingredients needed to make the dough! For the time and money I would put into making the recipes from this cookbook, I could just go order several pizzas from my local artisan pizzeria and call it a day. 

If you're looking into making pizza for a living, or want to make it a serious hobby, this book is a good read. Tony knows what he's talking about, and you will probably end up with a superior product. But, if you're just an average home cook or busy mom like me who's looking for a new take on Pizza Night, this book is not for you.

*I received a free copy of this book from the Publisher through Blogging for Books in exchange for my honest and unbiased review. All opinions are my own and have not been influenced in any way.

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