So, you’re on the hunt for the best outdoor pizza oven and are eager to get cooking. Before you do, keep in mind that you can’t toss just any wood in there. The kind of wood and its moisture level will definitely make a difference. Here are some tips for pizza oven success.
Why the Right Wood Matters
The fact is that whether you choose to cook pizza or another delicious dish in your pizza oven, the food will be in close contact with the wood the entire time it’s cooking. Because of this, your food will be infused with the scent and flavor of the wood as it burns.
That being said, the last thing you want to use in your artisan pizza oven is any wood that’s been treated with chemicals, as they will end up right in your pizza. Make sure to stay away from pressure-treated, laminated, glued, and painted or stained wood.
Along with non-treated wood, you also want to make sure you’re using wood that is completely dry and which allows your pizza oven to get hot enough for long enough to cook your food. Okay, so now that we’ve covered the don’ts, here are the best woods to use in any pizza oven.
For pizza ovens, hardwoods are king. Ash, maple, cherry, apple, and oak are all ideal hardwoods to use in your oven because they all burn hot, last a long time, and will infuse some delicious smoky or fruity flavors and fragrances into your pizza.
However, you want to make sure your wood isn’t too moist or too dry. This depends on where you got it from. Having a friend with extra wood can be a beautiful thing, but in order for it to work in your pizza oven, the wood needs to have been harvested in the winter when smoke-causing sap hasn’t yet moved up from the roots.
Storing Your Wood
Getting wood that’s ready to burn is great, but authentic pizza ovens need wood that’s been stored in a way that keeps it dry. If kept outside, ensure that wood is two to three inches above the ground and covered with a tarp to prevent rain from entering. Go online, and you’ll find wood racks and covers for all sizes of storage.
For storage in a shed or garage, just ensure the wood is stacked in crates that are elevated a few inches from the ground to prevent any dampness from being absorbed. Of course, you can never eliminate dampness completely unless you’re storing the wood inside.
However, we’ve got a solution for that, too; when you’ve finished a cooking session in your pizza oven, place the wood you’ll be using next time in the oven while it’s still hot. This will ensure it’s completely dry for the next use.
All of Fontana Forni’s outdoor pizza ovens are built to last. We’ve combined 100% Italian construction, superior materials, and over 40 years of innovation for delicious results, every time. Call 1-877-842-9822 to learn more.