SALAMI AND CHORIZO PIZZA COOKED USING OONI KODA GAS-FIRED PIZZA OVEN

SALAMI PIZZA - OONI KODA - BREEZY DAY

My advice would be to steer clear of using a gas-fired pizza oven on a windy or breezy day unless you are in a sheltered spot outside for these four reasons:

  • a little gust of wind can blow the gas out without you realising.
  • the flames are more erratic and blow backwards and sideways - this prevents the stone from heating up
  • linked to the above, the stone takes a lot longer to heat up
  • the cook can be more of a challenge when the flames are whipping up at the back of the oven.

The stone heating up or not heating up due to the breeze was the biggest issue for this cook. As I was making up the pizza the gas blew out without me realising and the oven auto-cut out.  It happened only a few minutes before the cook but still reduced in temperature to 370c in the middle.  I waited another 12 minutes for the oven to warm up to 420c.  From my previous cooks that would normally have taken just a few minutes as I'd already reached 430c on the stone before the gas below out.  However, once the stone was back up and running the actual cook in the oven was fine.  The breeze subsided and even the few gusts didn't impact on the crust cook.  The forecast that day only showed a breeze of up to 12 mph so if you decide to use a gas-fired pizza oven on a day with forecasted wind of 15mph plus, it would be best to find a secluded spot for it.

CHORIZO PIZZA - OONI KODA - FULL GAS POWER COOK

For this cook I switched back to my 9" metal turning peel.  Going back to the old square peel where you turn outside the oven using fingers was not ideal.  If you are starting out with pizza making and you are currently using the square metal peel I would suggest getting a small turning peel.  It will take a bit of time to adjust and learn to use and turn but you'll pick it up in no time.  A 9" peel which I use for the Ooni Pro and Ooni 3 does not fit in the Koda so I've just ordered a 7" Roccbox turning peel and I'm looking forward to using that next week!

I kept the Ooni Koda on a high heat for this cook, something I've never done before.  This was my fifth cook with this oven.  To be honest, for me, cooking on full gas high heat was more stressful!  It took away the fun of cooking as I was on edge that the crust would singe so fast - and it can, so even though this does cook the pizza really fast and cooks the crust quicker, it doesn't really change the outcome - fast or medium, the outcome is pretty much the same for me.  It's just that with the faster cook I turn it less, play around with it less and finish the cook fast and get more stressed about the whole thing!  I will keep it on high-heat though for any future cooks just to see if my skill level improves with high-heat gas fired cooking and whether my stress levels will ultimately reduce!

I used my experimental dough for these two cooks.  Currently I am testing a new process: 

  • as standard - the dough is made in the Panasonic Bread Maker - that is a must and is the reason my dough turns out as I would like it to be!
  • I then place the dough straight into the fridge for 24 hours
  • I remove the dough from the fridge and place in a warm room for 24 hours.
  • I then either ball it up and use it or freeze it.

Next week I'm going to discuss Autolyse - something I should be doing but keep forgetting to!

See you next week!

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OONI KODA PIZZA STONE TEMPERATURE TEST PLUS A SECOND AND THIRD COOK WITH THE OVEN

What a week it's been with this oven!  I've learnt so much from the comments left on the videos that I was very prepared to cook with this oven again for a second and third time!

Thanks!

The first thing I was eager to do this week was to test the stone temperature.  I'd received so many comments about the stone and it not hitting the pizza cook temperature.  And I thought that the only way to find out is through a proper time and temperature test and this is what the first half of this video does:

 

And I did expect the results to be the same as the Ooni 3 as it's the same size oven with the same stone.  And after 15 minutes the Oven stone in the middle reached 400c and after 30 minutes it reached 470c so I was pretty happy with the outcome of that test.  So, the oven was more than ready to make a pizza.  It just needed to cool down a little first.

SECOND PIZZA COOKED IN THE OONI KODA PIZZA OVEN

I wanted to keep the toppings as simple as I could on this pizza so I opted for mozzarella and parmesan.  It was the base cook that I wanted to test here.  The centre of the stone was at 433c and it did come down to 425c as I put the pizza in.  The base cooked very nicely and it did give some char around the edges by the crust.  This was due to the oven reaching over 500c at the back and hadn't really lowered that much by the time my pizza went in.

Overall, this was a delicious pizza and I was impressed with the cook.  The gas flame at the back is a big improvement on the Ooni 3 in my opinion.  The toppings cooked really well and not once did I think the gas would burn them, as I always do with the Ooni 3 Gas Burner.

OONI KODA BBQ SMOKY SAUSAGE PIZZA - THIRD COOK

My aim was to cook the pizza as fast as I could with the medium gas flame.  I also wanted to try a bbq sauce topped pizza and I'm really pleased I did!  The smell coming from this pizza was delicious and it tasted really good too!  I tend to rotate my pizza's a lot in the oven but that's only because from past experience I have burnt the crust.  So, instead of leaving the pizza there with the crust cooking against the flame for 25 seconds, I average out leaving it there for 5 - 10 seconds and then turning.  For me it's better safe than sorry as I have ruined lots of pizza's by absolutely singeing the crusts!  The base cooked really well and I was very pleased with the way it cooked on the stone.

Anyhow, this pizza cooked very fast and it was a joy to use this oven.

So, my review of this oven after 3 cooks is that I really like it!  It's great fun to use and it can cook up a wicked pizza in minutes.  It cooks the toppings to perfection, better than the Ooni 3 gas flame and it gives the crust a hot but gentle flame cook, perfect for getting a leoparding crust!  I'm really enjoying using the Koda and I'm pleased I bought it.  I am looking forward to my next cook with it which is going to be a bit of a challenge for me as I'm going to cook a pizza on full flame as fast as I can and I have no idea what's going to happen!

See you next week!

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REVIEWING OUR FIRST COOK WITH THE OONI KODA PIZZA OVEN

I made the decision to buy the Ooni Koda this week and couldn't wait to get it straight out of its box and give it a try.  The gas pipe was already attached to the oven.  It's really quick to set up.  You just pull the three legs down and place the stone inside the oven.  Attach it to the gas - turn the ignition knob that actually works  and it's ready.  The Ooni 3 gas has an ignition knob that's only worked a few times for me and I've ended up using a match to light it

I made one of my favourite pizzas - a ham and cheese for the first cook.  I wanted to see how the gas cooked the ham.  The leaflet that came with the oven suggested that it would take 15 minutes for the stone to heat up to the recommended 400c in the middle of the stone.  And that's exactly how long it took.  The gas was on full power to heat it up.  One thing I noticed using the gas dial at the back - I couldn't see the power marker very well.   It's all black and I know that's something I'll get used to after time but it would have been more practical if they had highlighted the power level and the marker in white.

The stone was 400c when the pizza went in.  I turned the gas power to medium.  The crust cooked very quickly and it was seconds before I made the turn.  The cook was fun and I was happy with the way the gas flame cooked the crust and the top.   I had convinced myself that the oven would be too low for the flame and it would overcook the toppings before the crust.  I was very wrong - the top cooked beautifully.  The base didn't cook as well though.  The stone was 400c in the middle as recommended by Ooni but that's going to be too low to get a good cook on the base.

As this was the first and only cook I've made so far with this oven I want to try and get that stone to a much higher temperature in future to improve the base cook.  Let's see how it goes!

Overall, my first impressions with the Koda are that it's a good looking oven finished with a top quality matt black plastic case that does get hot by the way!  It's easy to carry around and store as it doesn't have a chimney to get in the way and it's quite light.  It's easy to set up and you'll be cooking pizza in 15 minutes. If you are learning to make pizza and want to use an outdoor pizza oven then this has the potential to be a great oven.  I just need to work on the heat of the stone first before I give a full review.👍

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MAKING AND BAKING CIABATTA BREAD IN A WOOD FIRED OVEN PLUS COOKING A RED PEPPER PIZZA!

MAKING AND BAKING CIABATTA BREAD

I had a bit of a mini break last week because the weather was so fantastic - completely last minute idea but I'm back now and it's all go again!

I used the same dough from the ciabatta roll cook.  So let me explain what happened during the first cook.

I'd cooked this loaf just after I'd finished cooking the ciabatta rolls.  I added a few more pieces of lump wood just to keep the oven at a higher temperature for the cook.  The Ooni Pro isn't that insulated so the inside temperature lowers quickly in between cooks.  I waited until the oven had reduced to an air temperature of 250c.  I placed the ciabatta loaf to the front of the oven - well away from the hot coals at the back.  There was no flame and I was happy to leave the loaf to cook there in that position for 5 minutes and then returned to check on it.

What a mistake!  In that very short time, the heat coming off the lump wood was so intense it burnt the one side of the loaf.  There was no flame, just heat.

 

As you can see in the video, one side was perfectly cooked and the other was rather burnt! But I did use the loaf - it tasted great!

So, in order to redeem myself I had to try again and this time I placed the ciabatta dough in the fridge for a few days to cold-proof to provide the dough with an improved taste and texture.  I wasn't disappointed  - the dough improved considerably and you can see that in the bubbling and texture - the second attempt had an even bubbling throughout, compared to the first attempt, which had large bubbling at the top with more condensed bubbles at the bottom.

From my experience of cooking ciabatta with a wood-fired oven I would say that for me the harder part of the process was making and handling the very sticky ciabatta dough.  The cook in the wood-fired oven was the easier part!

RED PEPPER PIZZA

Continuing my theme of making one colour topped pizza I made a red pizza this time.  I used some delicious small red tomatoes off the vine together with some fried red pepper.  Just those two toppings with the mozzarella and the tomato sauce was delicious enough.  You may want to add some fresh basil or black olives to complete the pizza.  Yum.

I cooked this pizza using the gas-burner option with the Ooni 3 Pizza Oven.  I use the wood-fired oven a lot so when I move over to using gas it always challenges me a bit more!  It is such a different cook and I tend to take a lot longer to cook the pizza or I burn it more often using gas!  Anyhow, I've saved up my pennies and I'm going to invest in buying either the Ooni Koda Pizza Oven or the Pizzacraft's Pronto Pizza Oven.

I think it's worth it as I spend so much time cooking pizza in the garden!

See you next week!

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SAME DAY PIZZA DOUGH AND MAKING A TUNA PIZZA

SAME DAY PIZZA DOUGH - USING GAS-FIRED PIZZA OVEN WITH MOLINO GRASSI

This week I cooked another same day dough pizza but this time using the gas-fired pizza oven.  I wanted to show how differently the dough cooks compared to pizza dough that's had either a room proof, a cold proof or both.  With fresh dough I made just 4 hours earlier I found that:

  • it's harder to stretch.  
  • it's a lot easier to create holes in your dough.  
  • it sticks more than normal to the work surface when you stretch it.
  • it doesn't taste as good
  • the dough doesn't cook as well as proofed dough, in the oven.

Remarkably, the dough cooked much better in the gas than it did in the wood last week.  I had left the dough out for 40 minutes longer and even in that short time in my quite cold room, the dough was already more bubbly.  And this came out in the cook - there were more bubbles on the crust compared to the wood cook and the dough itself had risen more during the cook.  In this video, I compare the wood cook with the gas cook to show how different the two fuels cook the dough.  Using the Molino Grassi flour it can be seen that it cooked better with the gas oven.  The crust in the wood-fired oven became very crunchy and hard with very few bubbles.  It was as though the hydration levels in the dough weren't high enough even though it was a 60% hydration recipe.

So, my thoughts and overview of the cook are that I would not recommend using dough made just a few hours earlier if you want your pizza to be the best it can be!

My preferences are as follows:

  1. 24 hour room proof and 5 day cold proof then use/or freeze
  2. 24 hour room proof and 3 day cold-proof then use/or freeze
  3. 24 hour room proof then use/or freeze

A year ago I wouldn't have made dough like this.  It's mostly down to trial and error that I'm using this process.  However, one of the viewers on my video last week mentioned that I should try cold-proofing the dough straight away and then giving it a room temperature rise before use.  I am definitely going to try this and I sort of did in my other pizza cook this week - the Tuna Pizza.

COOKING TUNA PIZZA IN THE WOOD-FIRED PIZZA OVEN

I was asked by a viewer to make a Tuna pizza and I couldn't wait to give it a try.  I honestly couldn't remember if I'd cooked tuna on pizza before - if I had it was a good while ago. Anyhow it was a really nice pizza to make and taste.  I topped this pizza with tuna, buffalo mozzarella, fried red onions, black olives, rocket and some garlic infused olive oil.  It was delicious and reminded me of a Pan Bagnat.

I have to admit that the dough I used for this pizza was one that I had treated rather badly.  I used a 24 hour room proof dough made with Blue Caputo 00 flour, that I'd cold-proofed for a few days then placed in the freezer all scrumpled up in a freezer bag.  I then part-defrosted the dough but it started to rain so I placed it back in the freezer.  A few days later I wanted to use it again and so defrosted it overnight before the cook.  I had no idea how it would turn out but I could see that there were lots of little bubbles and the consistency looked good to me so I used it.  I have to say that it stretched really well and gave a good cook on the crust too.  And this goes back to where I previously mentioned that I would reverse the dough process and cold-proof before the room-proof.  This wasn't far off that process in that the dough was cold then warmed up again.  And I would recommend giving it a try. 👍 

See you next week!

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CHORIZO AND PEPPERONI PIZZA

I'd like to start off this week with the words Article 13.  This was passed by the EU Parliament and will now be implemented across Europe and the UK within the next 2 years.  It is where information, music, pictures and videos will need to be checked and monitored for copyright before they are shared.  I'm worried about it because it has unintended consequences for creators who produce original content.  Those who passed this Article - now called Article 17 claimed it would not impact on but help small original creators.  Let's see how they think this Article can be implemented in a way that is not going to destroy all small creators.  We are listening, watching and waiting.

CHORIZO PIZZA

This cook took some time.  Probably one of the longest pizza cooks I've had.  I love using the Ooni 3 to cook pizza and I used the Gas to cook this Chorizo pizza.  The stone was a perfect temperature and everything was ready for the cook.  So, in the pizza went and immediately I could see the base cooking fast on the stone even though it was only 430c.  The top of the crust of the pizza was also getting hit by the strong flame so I turned it down to low.  The problem I had was that the side of the crust wasn't cooking fast, the base was and the flame was hitting the top of the crust.  So the mid crust part was not getting cooked.

 

So, with the gas on low and with the help of the pizza peel to protect the toppings the pizza was ready.  The peel protected the top whilst the side of the crust cooked.  Overall I'd say it took about 5 minutes in total to cook!  It tasted great, the chorizo was delicious and the base cooked really well.

PEPPERONI PIZZA

I love Pepperoni Pizza.  This video is Part 1 of 2.  I am experimenting with dough to show what the difference is between a long proofed dough and a freshly made dough.  I normally use dough that's had at least a 24 hour room proof.  The dough I used for this video was freshly made with just a 4 hour room temperature proof.

I used the Ooni Pro with real wood to make this pizza.  The dough cooked pretty well considering it hadn't had much time to work its magic and offered up a very tasty base for the pizza toppings.

The base cook was great.  I mean, if I made a base cook like that every time I made pizza I would be one very happy pizza maker!

So, what I wanted to show with this dough and the cook was that if you need to make dough on the same day as your pizza cook then go ahead.  You'll produce a lovely pizza.  But, for a better dough, try getting the dough made ahead of time.  You can do this by either freezing your longer proofed dough and defrosting it on the day you need it or make the dough 5 days, 3 days or the day before.  I think freezing your dough is the best option.  That 24 hour proof or 5 day long cold-proof does give the crust a better cook and provides a better flavour and makes it easier to stretch.

See you next week!

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Yellow Topped Pizza and Using a New Pizza Tool!

I fancied making a pizza with just one colour and for this week it was yellow.  I used some small yellow tomatoes with a sliced up yellow bell pepper.  The pepper was fried beforehand. So, this turned into a very fresh and tasty pizza that would be perfect for someone who loves yellow or just because it's a nice pizza to make.  The pizza was cooked using the Ooni 3 gas-fired pizza oven.

The Dough Recipe for this pizza was:

  • 500g Molino Grassi 00 Flour
  • 9g dissolved table salt
  • 3g yeast
  • 6 hour room temp proof
  • 5 day cold proof

I used the pizza dough option on my bread-maker

I think the Molino Grassi flour dough cooks really well under a gas flame and provides a great crust.  The stone was hot - about 460c in the middle - maybe I should have left it cool slightly down to 440c.  The base turned out well but I had to lift it off the stone a bit during the cook.

USING A NEW PIZZA TOOL!!

I had to get one of these tools.  I'd seen it on Amazon and wanted to give it a go with the dough.  I know that when I started making pizza I would have benefited from using this tool for times when things weren't going to plan.  My dough has improved since and I will continue hand-stretching with no tools.  However, back then when my dough wasn't so good I would have found this tool handy to save the day!  If you are a beginner pizza maker this tool may be useful at times but learning to stretch pizza dough by hand is definitely a better way to make great pizza!

The dough recipe for this Pizza:

  • 500g Blue Caputo Flour 00
  • 9g dissolved table salt
  • 0.2 g dissolved dry yeast
  • 300g water  (150g for the yeast, 150g for the salt)

Used the pizza dough option on the bread-maker machine.

  • 24 hour room temperature proof

The tomatoes and ham were so tasty on this cook.  The ham cooked wonderfully in the oven because the flames had given it a crispy edge.  The dough cooked really well giving the pizza a delicious crispy, bubbly crust.  The base of the pizza wasn't that great - it could have been better!  The temperature of the stone when the pizza went in was 440c in the middle which is normally good to go, but I think I should have let that increase to 450 to 460c.  The flame was very fierce at the back and yet the stone temperature right at the door was about 400c.  I kept the pizza away from the strong flames at the back but the base wasn't getting the 440c heat it needed.  If the flame at the back had been less fierce I would've moved the pizza up further into the oven and the base would have cooked just fine.

And that leads me on to one of the things I really love about the Ooni Pro - and that is the size of the oven.  You are able to move your pizza around to suit the flame cook - bring it forward - move it back.  This helps so much when you cook with real flames and gives you more control. 

See you soon!

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CIABATTA BREAD-MAKING AND PIZZA MARINARA IN A WOOD-FIRED PIZZA OVEN

I fancied making ciabatta bread rolls this week.  Only because I'd never made them before and I had some bread flour that was nearing its use by date.  I've made bread in the wood-fired pizza oven before but not ciabatta.

I found some standard wood-fired recipes off the internet.  The first thing I needed to make was "biga", the night before the bake.  It's the starter used to create those lovely big holes in the bread. That was the easy part.  It was just like making a small amount of dough and leaving it to room proof for 24 hours.

I used a US version of the dough recipe and I had to convert the Cups into Grams and this may be where I went a bit wrong!  I searched for how many Grams in a Cup and I found an answer that stated 128g for flour and 237g for water.  I'm still not sure if those measurements are correct but they are the ones I used for this recipe.  This recipe stated they used all purpose flour and I was using bread flour.  Looking back there is a difference to the Gram amount for all purpose and bread flour.  So it's 128g for All Purpose flour and 136g for Bread flour.  This explains why my dough mixture was so runny.

BIGA

  • 1/2 teaspoon yeast, 1/2 cup warm water, 1 cup all purpose flour

DOUGH

  • 2 cups water, 1 teaspoon yeast, Biga, 4 cups all purpose flour, 1 1/4 teaspoon salt

 

I placed all of the ingredients into the bread-maker and switched the dough option on.  But the consistency was so runny the blade just swished around.  There was no way the ingredients I had placed in there would form a dough.  So not to waste what I had already started I added more flour - pouring it in until it formed a very wet consistency that I'd be able to pick up.  I added at least another 1.5 Cups to the mixture.   This dough has a very high hydration level and it's very wet to handle.  It sticks to everything like glue so you'll need to get your hands floured up just to handle it!  I got flour everywhere and I had dough sticking to my sink and taps!

Whilst the dough was getting its second and final room proof for an hour  - I was busy getting the pizza oven temperature down to 250c.   I placed the dough on a metal peel covered in parchment to stop the very wet dough from sticking to the peel.  That worked and after a few turns and about 20 minutes later the rolls were ready.

What did I learn from this first cook?  

  • Try not to get flour and the sticky dough everywhere - this dough is very wet and sticks like glue to everything!
  • Biga is really easy to make and it's a fantastic starter.
  • Placing the dough balls on a metal peel/tray with parchment for the final rise is a really good idea.
  • The flour you use may affect the consistency of your dough and a bit of tweaking may be required.
  • Using parchment is a really good idea and it doesn't burst into flames in the oven!
  • Keep an eye on your bread - regular turning is needed.  Also, you will be close enough to smell it cooking or burning!

PIZZA MARINARA

Of all the pizzas I've made - this recipe frightens me the most.  I think my last attempt on video making this Pizza Marinara was a disaster and ended up in my Pizza Fail Playlist.  It's taken me at least a year to make this again.  I have bad pizza memories of the experience!  And what is my greatest fear about this recipe you may ask?  It's the olive oil.  The final set of this recipe is pouring rather a lot of olive oil onto the dough.  And if you don't get that pizza straight into the oven, the oil seeps into the dough and there you have it - a disaster in the making!

Even with this cook I didn't quite get it right.  ARGH.  My oven wasn't quite ready because I forgot to add the log 5 minutes before.  This meant I had to wait for the oven stone to increase in temperature whilst my oil was seeping into the dough!  After all of the cooks I've made I can pretty much get away with these little issues - but not with the Marinara!

The pizza cooked well and quite fast for me too which was nice.  The basil melted beautifully into the sauce and the oil prevented its delicate leaves from burning.  Those ingredients are so tasty together - a real pizza classic.  So, if you are new to making Marinara - just remember that once you pour that oil onto the dough, try and get your pizza into the oven as soon as you can.

See you next week!

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SALMON PIZZA AND LAMB PIZZA. AND I’VE MADE SOME INSTAGRAM CHANGES!

SALMON PIZZA

We made another two pizzas this week - a Salmon Pizza and a Lamb Pizza and they were both very tasty but not without their challenges!  The Salmon Pizza was undoubtedly the nicest fish pizza I've made so far.  Another white pizza, I spread some light soft cheese onto the base, added mozzarella, salmon pieces, a sprinkle of sweet chilli sauce and finished off with a garnish of rocket leaves (arugula).

This cooked quite fast (compared to the troublesome Lamb pizza cook!).  I was disappointed with the pizza base though.  The temperature on the stone was 420c in the middle and that just wasn't enough.  I should have waited a bit more for it to rise to 440c.

The dough recipe I used:

  • 500g Blue Caputo Dough 00 Flour
  • 300g water
  • 9g dissolved salt
  • 0.2g dissolved dried yeast

Process:

I used a Panasonic bread maker with the Pizza Dough option that runs for 45 minutes.  I'm not sure I've mentioned this before  -  I use 150g of the water to dissolve the salt and the other 150g to dissolve the yeast.  I keep them separate, then mix them quickly into the flour with a spoon and finally place the ingredients into the bread-maker.  The dough goes straight into the proofing bowl for a 24 hour room temperature proof.  I ball up the dough and cook it straightaway.  In the video I explain why I do a 24 hour room proof.  There are 2 main reasons: One, it comes out great - taste and texture and Two, it's handy for the unpredictable Winter weather.  

MINCED LAMB PIZZA

Wow, I messed this cook up big time!  I mean - once I got outside to the pizza oven I managed to create a mess but one that I was able to extricate myself from thankfully!  It started off with the log suddenly losing its flame as soon as I had placed the pizza into the oven.  That meant I had to add kindling to boost a flame otherwise the pizza top would have remained under-cooked.  But because the stone was very hot I had to remove the pizza from the oven whilst I put the kindling in to prevent the pizza base from burning.

Once the kindling had taken, it went back into the oven.  The stone remained hot which meant I had to lift the pizza off the stone for most of the cook.  Should I blame the windy day for the log burning out too fast and the stone getting too hot too fast?  No.  I messed up but at least I knew how to save it.  6 months ago I wouldn't have done that.  I would've just carried on with an uncooked top and a totally singed base!

And the thing is - this cook was really fun.  This is the type of challenge that inspired me to share my pizza cooking on video - to show the good and the bad and learn from them.   No matter what - it is the oven that controls me - the fire is the boss and it will put me in my place when I least expect it.  And that's a good thing - it will ensure I never get too confident around flames and fire - you can't play with fire!

INSTAGRAM STORIES AND IMPROVING MY GALLERY!

I've been using Instagram for about 2 years where I've been adding a photo of each pizza I've made to create a pizza gallery.  But there was something missing - it looked soulless to me. So last week I set out to re-vamp it.  I've learnt to add Instagram stories and I'm uploading stills from the pizza videos to the gallery:  

https://www.instagram.com/got2eatpizza/

Hopefully this will give the gallery that extra bit of personality.  There's also an "Updates" button which highlights when I've updated this Blog for example and when I upload a Video.  

Please check the gallery out on Instagram and I really do hope you like the changes!  Thank you 🙏.

See you next week!

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MEATBALL PIZZA AND BACON PIZZA COOKED IN A WOOD-FIRED PIZZA OVEN.

MEATBALL PIZZA - COMPARING A GAS COOK TO A WOOD FIRED COOK

We've been back to using the wood-fired oven this week and the dough suits it better.  I made the same Meatball Pizza as last week - using the same dough recipe and toppings.  In this video I cooked the Meatball Pizza in the wood-fired oven then added clips from the gas-fired oven Pizza to provide a visual comparison of the two cooks:

The outcome from the two differently cooked Pizzas shows that even with the same dough and toppings the gas and wood ovens do provide different results - but not huge ones.  The main difference I noticed was the top of the gas Pizza certainly had been cooked harder, whereas the wood-fired oven had cooked the top in a gentle and less vicious way (I had the gas power on full throttle to cook the crust)!

It also took a while for the gas to cook the dough on the crust and that was one of the reasons why I had to hold the peel over the toppings to protect them whilst the crust cooked.  My thoughts on this are that the dough I'm currently using has been tweaked to work well with a wood-fired flame.  For the gas I will recreate my older dough recipe using Molino Grassi and try again.

This was a delicious pizza and it cooked well.  The taste difference between the gas and wood is minimal.  There is a slight difference but it's very subtle.  I need to do a blind taste test experiment - that'll be interesting.  The wood-fired flame certainly brought the leoparding back to the crust.

BACON AND ONION PIZZA USING A WOOD-FIRED PIZZA OVEN

I made this Pizza on Friday in such a flurry because I only had 45 minutes to get the oven to temperature, make the pizza and cook it.  Why?  Rain.  The weather forecast had predicted just a 10% chance of rain.  And that was due to increase to 50% within the hour.  We've had so much bad weather - rain and strong winds practically every day that it's been impossible to get outdoors for a cook and so if there's a break in the cloud at this time of year - you've got to go for it!

It was a bit windy but overall this was a really good cook.  The bacon lardons together with the cooked and uncooked onions worked well together.

This was the first white pizza I'd cooked in a while and a nice change from a tomato based pizza.  The fried mushrooms together with the onions and bacon were perfect topping combinations.  Add some pine nuts and rocket leaves and you've made one tasty pizza!  The pine nuts roasted beautifully in the flames and provided the hidden crunch within each bite. Yum!

Back to the weather on this Pizza.  Within 5 minutes of finishing the cook, it poured down.  Big time.  I was lucky.  I'll put a video up to show what happens when it starts pouring with rain for more than an hour right onto your 600 centigrade wood-fired oven!

Hoping for better weather - see you next week!

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