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preparing Pizza outside - when its cold! - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community

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preparing Pizza outside - when its cold!

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  • preparing Pizza outside - when its cold!

    I am planning a bonfire night Pizza Party this weekend, and would normally prepare the pizzas indoors when the outside temp dropd, however this only works when there are a handfull of guests. This time I will be cooking 20+ pizzas and want to keep the mess outside.

    Are there any special problems I need to consider when preparing pizzas at around 5 degrees C (it could be freezing or in the low 10s, never can tell here in the UK, until on the night) I will keep the dough indoors until its ready to use and can set up a dry area outside to make the individual pizzas.

    many thanks

    Brad

  • #2
    Re: preparing Pizza outside - when its cold!

    Outside temperature has no significance to the food. Just make sure the dough balls are fully warmed and proofed before taking them outside. Assuming it isn't -5 C you shouldn't have any problems other than dressing warm. The difference in temp to an 800 degree oven is negligible. But the pizza will cool off faster once out of the oven...
    Jay

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    • #3
      Re: preparing Pizza outside - when its cold!

      i agree. I do find that i need to stoke a slightly bigger fire, but I have cooked large number of pizza well at much colder temperatures. the oven doesn't seem to take significantly longer to warm up.

      PS - you also will not feel the cold as much standing right in front of the door

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: preparing Pizza outside - when its cold!

        I just had a neighborhood pizza party in moderate temps like 45-50F and found the dough has to be kept warm enough to be workable.

        Sounds like fun!
        My Build Thread

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        • #5
          Re: preparing Pizza outside - when its cold!

          Brad,
          camping in the great outdoors 'down under', everyone stands around the campfire "warming the hole of their body" (pardon the intended pun and I do know how to spell whole), I would make a brazier or find a Chiminea, gather some nice hot coals from your bonfire and have near your preparation area to make it nicer and warmer for those standing around assembling their pizzas.
          I agree with you and that is why I built my outdoor kitchen, to keep the mess out of the house, which make the other half happier but she never once complained.

          Neill
          Prevention is better than cure, - do it right the first time!

          The more I learn, the more I realise how little I know


          Neill’s Pompeiii #1
          http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/n...-1-a-2005.html
          Neill’s kitchen underway
          http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f35/...rway-4591.html

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: preparing Pizza outside - when its cold!

            I always find the difficult part of winter pizzas is keeping your woolly gloves from sticking to the dough...
            "Building a Brick oven is the most fun anyone can have by themselves." (Terry Pratchett... slightly amended)

            http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/p...pics-2610.html
            http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f9/p...nues-2991.html

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: preparing Pizza outside - when its cold!

              Oh Francis,
              you need to come 'Down Under' and you will never need to use woolly gloves again!

              Neill
              Prevention is better than cure, - do it right the first time!

              The more I learn, the more I realise how little I know


              Neill’s Pompeiii #1
              http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/n...-1-a-2005.html
              Neill’s kitchen underway
              http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f35/...rway-4591.html

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: preparing Pizza outside - when its cold!

                wow!!

                i was not expecting so many replies.

                My main concern was about the dough and managing the preparation of the pizzas.

                I have absolutely no worries about the actual oven, but i love the idea of putting another smaller fire or a chimera nearby, although there will be quite a big fire in the field behind my house.

                I probably wont wear any gloves.

                hopefully it will be quite mild here in the UK come Saturday Night.


                Brad

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                • #9
                  Re: preparing Pizza outside - when its cold!

                  Brad,

                  although there will be quite a big fire in the field behind my house.
                  To get the benefit of the infra red (heat) from a fire, you need to be close to it. nor so close to flames though, as burning embers/coals and if it is on the block adjacent to your house, yes you can see the fire but get no comfort from it!
                  Add to the pizza experience enjoyment and the bonfire by making the oven and prep area one that is comfortable and enjoyable.
                  I personally would not like to build a pizza in a cold uncomfortable environment, only getting comfort when placing in the oven, tending it and enjoying it hot.

                  Just my feelings.

                  Neill
                  Prevention is better than cure, - do it right the first time!

                  The more I learn, the more I realise how little I know


                  Neill’s Pompeiii #1
                  http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/n...-1-a-2005.html
                  Neill’s kitchen underway
                  http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f35/...rway-4591.html

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: preparing Pizza outside - when its cold!

                    Originally posted by nissanneill View Post
                    Oh Francis,
                    you need to come 'Down Under' and you will never need to use woolly gloves again!

                    Neill

                    Aww Neill, I'd love to! Maybe I'll make it back there sometime in this life...

                    Hey Brad, be sure to let us know how it goes, ok? We've got some rather nasty weather heading this way for the weekend, I really hope it'll nice nicer where you are - but I'm sure you'll have a great time anyway!
                    "Building a Brick oven is the most fun anyone can have by themselves." (Terry Pratchett... slightly amended)

                    http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f8/p...pics-2610.html
                    http://www.fornobravo.com/forum/f9/p...nues-2991.html

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: preparing Pizza outside - when its cold!

                      I was out pizza making at the weekend - the cold's not a problem when the oven is going full blast. I build the pies inside then take them out and hang around for the 1 minute it takes to cook.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: preparing Pizza outside - when its cold!

                        a big Thank-you! to everyone who answered my question.

                        It was a relatively mild night in the end. All of our previous Pizza parties have either been totally outside in the Summer, when I have cooked 30+ Pizzas, or smaller more intimate occasions when the weather is not so nice and all of the preparation is inside.

                        The girls were all indoors and us Guys managed to cook nearly 40 Pizzas in about 1 hour - all outside in a kind of production line. Someone even made some stuffed crust Pizzas with thinly sliced Chorizo Iberico de Bellota and crushed pepper corns, that was well received.

                        Now its time to think about my TURKEY!!!


                        Brad

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: preparing Pizza outside - when its cold!

                          If you truely want answers about cold weather outdoor cooking, you have to ask Canadians! A cold day down under is pretty warm to us.
                          I cooked about 20 pizzas for a little party we had Wednesday night. About 30 people, with the temperature was hovering between -8 and -10 C. Warm for this time of year for us actually. At this time of year, it gets dark very early as well, just around 6 pm.
                          I heated the oven slowly by starting a smaller fire and building it slowly. Got the oven really hot, let the fire die down and scraped the coals to the side. Just in case you have not cooked in the dark, when you get your oven really hot, the bricks under the fire are glowing when you scrape the coals to the side. This explains why many burn thier first pizza!
                          I found that the first few pizzas cooked quickly but the oven started to cool a lot faster than when the outside air temp is warmer. I kept a low fire going on the side and still found the cook time for the pizzas slowing. The crust was cooking fine on the bottom but the cheeze was slower melting. To speed the process up, I had to build the fire up a little more.
                          Time was also a factor, I have not cooked this many pizzas at one time, so the oven was open for a longer period. With colder outside temperatures, especially if there is a little bit of a breeze, the oven tends to cool much quicker.
                          Just for info, I have 4-8 inches of vemiculite around the oven for insulation and a 4" insulated slab under the firebrick hearth.

                          Rick

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