You’ve experienced wood-fired ovens whilst enjoying your vacations in Europe and you may even enjoy the food theatre that grilling with a timber oven creates in your local pizzeria,but how does a timber fired pizza oven work? Talk to us atWood Fired Pizza Ovens
Pizza ovens operate on the basis of applying three kinds of heat energy for grilling:
1. Direct heat from the combustion and flames
2. Radiated heat coming down from the dome,which is at its best when the fire has burned for a while until the dome has changed white and is soot-free
3. Convected heat,which comes up from the floor and from the background air
Cooking food with a wood-fired pizza oven is in reality much simpler than you may think. All you really need to do is to ignite a really good fire in the middle of the oven and then let it to heat up both the hearth of the oven and the inner dome. The heat you develop from your fire will be absorbed by the oven and that heat will then be radiated or convected,to let food to cook.
Once you have your oven dome and floor up to temp,you simply push the fire to one side,applying a metal peel,and start to cook,applying hardwood as the heat source,rather than the gas or electricity you may usually rely on.
Of course,there are no temp dials or controls,other than the fire,so the addition of hardwood is the equivalent of whacking up the temp dial. If you don’t feed the fire,you let the temp to drop.
How hot you let your oven to become really depends on what you wish to cook in your wood-fired oven. For pizza,you need a temp of around 400-450 ° C; if you wish to choose one more grilling technique,such as roasting,you need to do that at a temp of around 200-300 ° C. There are different ways to do this.
You could first get the oven up to 450 ° C and then let the temp to go down to that which you require,or Alternatively,you could just bring the oven up to the required temp by applying less hardwood.
As you are applying convected rather than radiated heat for roasting,it is not as essential to get the stones as hot. An additional way to have an effect on the amount of heat reaching the food in a very hot oven is to choose tin foil,to reflect some of the heat away.
Heat generated within a wood-fired oven should be well-retained,if your oven is made of refractory brick and has really good insulation. To cook the perfect pizza,you need to have an even temp in your oven,both top and bottom. The design of the Valoriani makes this easy,but this is also an area where the quality of the oven will have a big effect.
Some ovens may require you to leave cinders on the oven floor,to try to heat it up sufficiently. Others have very little or no insulation,so you will have to feed the fire much more. But that means it will then have too much direct heat and won’t cook top and bottom evenly.
An additional thing to watch is,if the floor of the oven isn’t storing heat,you may need to reheat if before grilling every single pizza– a real pain. The message here is to always look for an oven built from the very best refractory materials and designed by artisans,like a Valoriani.
So,taking that into consideration,we’re going to change the title of this blog. The advice above isn’t so much about how hardwood fired pizza ovens operate,but how the best wood-fired ovens operate. If you go through a few ovens before steering a course towards a Valoriani,that’s something you’ll come to appreciate.