If you are fortunate enough to have a pizza oven in your backyard you are gonna love making your own pizzas and eating them on your own patio. What better way to enjoy the great outdoors than to share some pizza you made yourself with friends and family?
Pizza Crust Ingredients:
- 1 cup warm water
- 4 cups bread flour
- 1 ounce brewer’s yeast or 2 tsp. active dry yeast
- 1 tbsp. olive oil
- Expect the dough to take 3 hours to be ready for use.
Make the flour into a mound with a well in the center. Add oil and salt.
Blend water and yeast and add to the flour well.
Knead till it’s smooth and elastic, and lifts easily. This will take about 10 minutes of vigorous kneading.
Form the dough into a ball. Place the ball into a lightly oiled bowl. Cover the dough with a clean kitchen towel. Put it in a warm place for 2 hours to rise.
It will double in volume. Punch it down. Knead a bit more and divide into 4 balls. Put balls of dough on a floured surface. Cover and let rise for another hour.
Start a fire in the middle of the oven floor and let burn while dough rises. The oven ceiling will climb to a temperature of about 700 degrees Fahrenheit.
You will see the soot vaporizing. A white patch will emerge and get bigger, then head toward the floor. You’ll know that things are hot enough when the soot has completely burned away.
At this point, push the coals to one side using a scraper with a long metal handle. Brush ash from the oven floor with a long-handled brush.
Add wood about 3 inches around and 18 inches long every 10 minutes to the fire.
Pizza Crust Instructions:
Shape each ball of dough into a disk. Don’t use a rolling pin, and don’t work the dough too long, to avoid making the crust too thin and tough.
Flour your hands and spread the dough from the center till it is about 8 inches around. Flip the disk and turn it. Keep stretching until the pizza is about 12 inches in diameter.
Pick Your Toppings
What goes on your pizza? Your preference, my friend. Like lots of tomato sauce? Go for it. Maybe you have a hankering for a simple pepperoni pizza with loads of mozzarella. Or how about a vegetarian pie with tomato slices, basil leaves and Parmesan? It’s your pizza, you can combine any ingredients that suit your fancy.
Slide your personalized pizza onto a floured peel, which is a type of shovel, and into the oven.
Cooking the Pizza Instructions:
After about 40 seconds, the crust will start to puff up. Slide the peel back under your pizza and turn it 180 degrees for even cooking.
Cooking time in a wood-fired oven is much shorter than in the oven in your kitchen. In fact it should only take a minute to a minute and a half. You’ll see that the crust has browned. The cheese is bubbling and melted.
Take it out with the peel. Slice it up and enjoy!
For more recipes you can cook outdoors, check out some of our other recipes
Photos via Pixabay