This illustration by Donn Ross was a gift for my 33rd birthday on July 12. The number 33 has always held a special place in my heart. So when my 33rd birthday was aligned with my brother and his new fiance coming into town, I had to throw a pizza party for myself so that they could try the wood fired deliciousness that I've been cooking up lately and all my friends would have something to gather around. The only downside being that I was working my pepperonis off my whole birthday.
Have you ever gotten so excited about something that it couldn't possibly live up to your anticipation of it? That was the first pizza sunday with my new oven.
For some reason, I imagined my first wood fired experience to be nothing less than perfection from the very beginning. Let me ruin the suspense by telling you that it was indeed less than perfection. We got some delicious food, don't get me wrong. But there were definitely quite a few set-backs and burnt edges.
Firing a wood oven is something I probably should have put more time and research into before trying it on my own. Lets just say that the assumed 45 minute warm-up time was a little ambitious for a first timer! It took nearly 2 hours to get the oven to what I understood to be "temperature" (sort of a blind-leading-the-blind destination in and of itself). The position of the fire is key to properly distributing heat evenly. And burning thick bark is not good. After that all got ironed out, it was still a little rocky, but at least we made it out with the oven "working"!
Nick Gore was a corporate peon by day who just made the leap to full time pizza geek. Follow his path to world class Pizzaiolo right here on the GoreMade Pizza blog. Also, check out the facebook page.