Pizza chefs vie to be ‘Best in Dough’ in Hulu competition series

'Best in Dough' - Pizza makers show their skills on Hulu

Daniele Uditi

Pizza is one of those dishes that’s accessible to all.

It’s a simple food with three main ingredients — dough, sauce and cheese — one that anybody can make with brilliant results, provided they have top quality ingredients and the right cooking technique. And that premise is abundantly apparent in “Best in Dough,” Hulu’s new cooking competition series.

Premiering Monday, Sept. 19, the 10-episode show brings in pizza-loving competitors from all walks of life to show off their pizza-making skills with their creations and hopefully impress a panel of judges consisting of head judge and pizza chef Daniele Uditi, chef Millie Peartree, comedian/food influencer Eunji Kim and baker Bryan Ford. Host Wells Adams (“Bachelor in Paradise”) also weighs in.

As one might expect, the fare here is pretty imaginative and extends far beyond the traditional pies to things like calzones, pizza cones and even pizza cupcakes. But no matter how sophisticated the creation, says chef Uditi, it all boils down to the three main ingredients that make pizza the iconic dish that it is.

“It’s such a simple food that you cannot hide behind anything,” explains Uditi, co-owner of the Los Angeles pizza restaurant Pizzana. “Whether you make a simple cheese pizza or margherita pizza, there are three things that are the main ingredients. There is the crust, there is the sauce and the cheese and a good part is the olive oil and some fresh herbs on top. So if you make a great dough and you know your crust, you can make an amazingly spectacular texture and that’s what makes the pizza. Is the texture enjoyable and fresh ingredients.”

In Monday’s opener titled “Nonnas,” three Italian American grandmothers compete, armed with recipes from the old country. One claims the water in her hometown of Brooklyn, N.Y., is what makes her crust superior but Uditi has his doubts.

“I think it’s a myth,” he says. “I think people are comfortable with what they know. But then when you grow up in Brooklyn, you always made pizza with Brooklyn water, that’s the best water for you to use. But if you know your job and you analyze what’s in the water – how hard is the water, the pH – you can adjust the recipe and you can still make great pizza wherever in the world you are.

“At the end of the day, one of the great bakeries is in San Francisco and still they make great bread,” he continues. “So I don’t understand why it’s not possible with pizza. … So water to me is just a myth.”

George Dickie

George Dickie has been a features writer for Gracenote/Tribune Media Services since 1989, when “Hee-Haw” was still on the air and George “Goober” Lindsay was his first interview. His early interviews ranged from Jim Henson and Dick Van Dyke to Phil Collins and the Dixie Chicks.

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