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Mobile Pizza Tips - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community

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Mobile Pizza Tips

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  • Mobile Pizza Tips

    Hi All

    I am on the verge of setting up my Own Pizza Business. Still finalizing oven options.
    I'll most probably be at a daily farmers market.

    Since there wont be any electricity provided I will be using a Wood Fired Pizza Oven.

    So I guess you can say it would be a Mobile Pizza Business.

    I am currently doing a check list to see what equipment I would require and I need some assistance
    Can you advise me on the equipment needed to run such a business, for E.g Pizza Peel, Cutter, Roller and so on.

    My second question is since there won't be any electricity, how would you suggest I store my doughs.
    I am still contemplating on using either Pappa Johns Style dough or NY Style Dough

    Thirdly is my ingredients. How should I store it keeping in mind accessibility when preparing the pizza's. Also anyone has any pics of ingredient storage containers preferably metal. I would like to see the design and find one similar to it. Also while I am on the ingredients, my main concern is the cheese. I need to keep it from melting out in its storage container.

    My fourth point is regarding the preparation of the pizza. If I get a busy rush coming in, and say I have 2 Pizza's in the oven, the max the oven can hold, and 2 topped and waiting as well as busy preparing a further 2. The pizza's waiting as well as the ones being prepared would probably be sitting on the table or whatever surface, anywhere from 3-10 minutes before placing it in the oven. My worry is the dough must not stick to the surface/table. What do I need to look out for to avoid such disasters

    Also if you have any other tips for me that I may have not discussed, please feel free to let me know.
    I look forward to any advice.

    Regards
    Oven_Man

  • #2
    Re: Mobile Pizza Tips

    Try having one person tending the oven and another preparing the pizzas. You'll get faster with more experience. I usually find the hold up is not the cooking of the pizzas but how fast they can be prepared.
    Kindled with zeal and fired with passion.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Mobile Pizza Tips

      Howdy OM

      Wow.. In all honesty, you'll need to learn to walk before you can run.

      Operating a wood fired oven and cooking / baking food competently is an accomplishment in itself. If you elect to utilize that type of oven, you will need to be very familiar with it. If not, you will be very disappointed to discover that your big investment in a mobile wood oven is not what you had in mind. A grand piano in your house evokes a certain level of sophistication and looks really cool. But, can you play it? As with these types of ovens, no matter how long you have used them, you should learn something each time. So, you will answer your first question as you learn what it takes to source out, produce and serve. If you can't practice on your family and friends, what good are they?
      Number 2. Once you learn everything about number one, it will be quite evident that NY style doughs are not formulated for high temperatures. Dough storage is another matter. You will be surprised to find that your dough is living science experiment. It will need careful attention to keep it at a happy humidity and temperature level.
      Number 3 is related to 2. All food ingredients need to be held a certain temperature. Refrigeration is ideal. Nose around the internet and check out the mobile guys. You'll see everything from insulated coolers to electric refrigerated prep tables. It would be very helpful if you could find a basic cooking class. They introduce you to the all important and fundamental things, like safe food handling and sanitation.
      Your 4th query will be answered according by your skill set and the number of workers you have.

      There are many variations of Mobile Pizza Ovens. Have you considered propane? Recently, I saw a 4 stack, mobile gas oven on ebay for about $1000. This setup is far more simpler than the woofers. You can purchase all you dough frozen from GFS or their ilk. The ovens are slower so it affords you the time to keep a close eye on the pizzas until you become accomplished. A four stacker has plenty of room for several pizzas.

      Lastly, Oven Man you'll need some passion for this type of endeavor.
      Passionate and inquisitive people are the ones who need to ask WHY? at every turn. If you have a thirst for the answers, it will come easily. If not, each day will be like a warm Spring afternoon during the last week of school. The windows are open and the breeze is blowing in. .......
      Make it your business to know all things pizza. Because it is your business.

      Good luck!
      PizzaPolice

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Mobile Pizza Tips

        Hi Guys
        Thanks so much for the responses
        Always good to hear other peoples opinion

        David I will be looking at employing some people.
        1 to roll out the dough, 1 to top it and 1 put it in the oven.
        Hopefully this would create a flow and not hold up anywhere in the chain.

        PP: Howdy M8. Good to hear from you. Thanks for bringing to my attention the fact that a wood fired oven is not as easy as one thinks. To tell you the truth I thought it would be childs play to operate one, but I guess I was greatly mistaken. I love the comparison with the Piano. It makes so much of sense. What I have decided to do is purchase a fairly small WFO for now. I would then practice on it first before going out into the field so to say. I would also take your advice and invite friends and family over once I am confident I know what I am doing. This way, any mishaps that occur when there is a crowd of people, awaiting the main course meal, wont be too much of a problem and disappointment since no one can complain for free food.

        With regards to dough storage, I was thinking of having a cooler box, and place the dough in plastic packets and put them in the cooler box. This way they would stay cool all the time. My one concern is whether the cooler box might be too cold for the dough. Do you think that would be a problem.
        Regarding NY Style dough, what temp can it be cooked under. Also while you are at it, what pizza style can you recommend that would bake well under fairly high temp.

        Just a question popped in my head right now. Can WFO temp me set at a constant temp or will it always vary. I was told that the oven I wish to purchase reaches a max of 950 Degrees F. Is it possible to keep it steady at say 700 Degrees F?

        Regarding your response to no 4, I don't think refrigeration is an option. Unfortunately electricity wont be easily accessible. Any other suggestions. By the way you mentioned refrigerated Prep Table. Do you know of any online. I would just love to learn a bit more on them. Also in these prep tables, are there compartments for the ingredients.

        Regarding your final response, You are 100% right. I'm learning something new every day and I can tend to pester people with questions so do excuse me if you find me doing that. It's just that I like to know what I am getting myself into before I get into it. No use doing something and then regretting months later after spending so much of effort, time and money.

        I really look forward to hearing more from you guys.
        PP: Your response has really broadened my whole perspective on this idea I have going and I have to say on one hand it is a bit frightening going into something totally new to me but on the other hand it's exciting since pizza making has just become a hobby in the last year or so and yes I know 1 year is not much experience but I am taking each step at a time.

        Regards
        Oven_Man

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Mobile Pizza Tips

          Originally posted by Oven_Man View Post
          To tell you the truth I thought it would be childs play to operate one, but I guess I was greatly mistaken.
          LOL... My oven has been up and running for 2 summers now. After the last 2-3 bakes I started thinking "Hmmm... This stuff is almost good enough to sell".

          I'm a slow learner so it took me longer than most to figure out my oven . That being said, once you get the hang of it, you can get very predictable, repeatable results. Maintaining your favorite pizza temps for extended periods isn't a problem either once you learn your oven.

          After you buy/build a portable, set it up in your back yard and start torturing your family, friends and neighbors with plenty of pizza. After you do it solo for a while, you'll know exactly what human resources you'll need to staff it for profit.

          Good luck!
          Ken H. - Kentucky
          42" Pompeii

          Pompeii Oven Construction Video Updated!

          Oven Thread ... Enclosure Thread
          Cost Spreadsheet ... Picasa Web Album

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Mobile Pizza Tips

            You always have 12v or gas for refrigeration options.
            -or-
            the obvious.... a small generator????
            -------------------------------------------
            My 2nd Build:
            Is here

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Mobile Pizza Tips

              buy the book here Portable Brick Pizza Oven and talk with your local heath department. They will tell you what it will take to store your stuff. Also, honda makes a great suitcase generator.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Mobile Pizza Tips

                Hi Guys
                Thanks so much for the comments.

                Ken524: By the time I finish with my family and friends, they won't want to see pizza's for the next couple of decades. My plan is to entertain them and hear their view-points as well as have a fair idea of what man power it would need to run this business. Thanks for the advise.

                Mitchamus: Just researching now on your advise. Hopefully something would pop up

                Jraducha: Thanks.

                Other than the major equipment like Oven and Fridges, what other smaller equipment do I need to look out for like Pizza Spades, Cutters, Dough Dockers, etc.

                Thanks so much for all the help
                Regards
                Oven_man

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Mobile Pizza Tips

                  For smaller stuff, you need a wire brush, a nice metal peel, maybe a couple wooden peels (though we rarely use ours anymore), definitely a pizza cutter. You probably don't need a docker; depends on what sort of pizza you are making.

                  Good luck and keep us informed of your progress!
                  Ken H. - Kentucky
                  42" Pompeii

                  Pompeii Oven Construction Video Updated!

                  Oven Thread ... Enclosure Thread
                  Cost Spreadsheet ... Picasa Web Album

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Mobile Pizza Tips

                    Just like a rolling pin...I think a docker is another way to spoil good pizza... IMO....
                    -------------------------------------------
                    My 2nd Build:
                    Is here

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Mobile Pizza Tips

                      You really need to get with the health department before you start to consider any type of equipment. I can tell you it took me over a month or two in dealing with my health department before they would license me with my oven as they had never seen anything like it before. Talking with them is going to answer many of your questions because they are going to want to see certain things in your setup. You will need to look at refrigeration or cold storage in coolers, you will need to look at handwashing stations as well as other things for an onsite event and that doesn't even touch on the fact that you will need to work with a commissary or a licensed food facility to make, prep or store any pizza ingredients. I can't stress enough that you need to get with your local health department before you progress much farther. After you talk to them and decide you want to move forward, please feel free to email me or give me a call and I can help you with some more of the logistics. I do not consider myself an authority on this at all, but have been doing it for over a year and have made a some mistakes and also done some things right during that time and would be glad to pass on whatever info I can.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Mobile Pizza Tips

                        Hi Guys

                        I am heading in the direction of American Style Pizza. Considering two types. Either NY Style or Pappa Johns Style. I am planning on getting a Aluminum peal together with a few stainless steel peels.

                        Mitchamus: Could you elaborate more on how Dough Docker Spoil Good Pizza.

                        What's the wire brush for, may I ask?

                        Any other equipment that comes to mind, guys?

                        Will definitely keep you posted.
                        Regards
                        Oven_Man

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Mobile Pizza Tips

                          Hi telehort
                          Just viewed your post now.

                          I am based in South Africa.
                          I know a lot of people that have mobile food stores setup here. Some products are freshly made. None have any real problems. If I have to tell you about other parts of South Africa where the food would literally make you puke because of the environment and way it is prepared, I think my setup would Ace any health department rating.

                          I really look forward to hearing your tips and advice. My main concern right now is where to keep the dough and the ingredients. The rest of the stuff is fairly under control and in order. Maybe you could enlighten me on how you operate from start to end, as well as the type of equipment you have, the type of pizza you make right to the time you put a freshly baked pizza in it's box and hand it over to the customer.

                          It's good to find someone that already does what I plan to do.
                          Thanks so much for taking the time to help me.
                          I really appreciate it.

                          Look forward to hearing from you.
                          Regards
                          Oven_Man

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Mobile Pizza Tips

                            I think with the food cost of South Africa...your going to have a hard time.

                            Go buy a book. Read it, make some pies. Get your bearing straight. Do you enjoy making pizzas? Have you ever? Nice entrepreneurial thoughts.....

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Mobile Pizza Tips

                              Hi Jraducha

                              I think with the food cost of South Africa...your going to have a hard time.
                              I guess by your comment, you mean the food cost here in SA are high.
                              May I ask where you get that notion from?

                              Regards
                              Oven_Man

                              Comment

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