How do you light a pizza oven?
How do you light a pizza oven? I’ve been asked this question so many times. So, I’ve decided to outline how I light my wood fired pizza oven. However, it’s worth mentioning that there’s no perfect way to do it. Lighting a gas fired pizza oven is as simple as rotating a knob. So these are just my guidelines for lighting a wood fired pizza oven…
How to light a pizza oven:
- Build a tower of kindling in the middle of the refractory stone, towards the front of the oven. You can put a natural firelighter in the centre of the kindling too (NEVER use lighter fluid to light your pizza oven)
- Next, set light to the kindling and firelighter, making sure the kindling lights as the fire builds
- Keep adding kindling pieces to the fire every couple of minutes to help the fire gain size and heat. After a few minutes the fire will build to a reasonable size and the heat will become intense
- Over the next 5 minutes, allow the fire to keep building and keep feeding it more kindling. The fire should then be ready to be pushed to the back of the oven
- Once the fire has been pushed back, add 3 or 4 pieces of hardwood. I’d recommend pieces of around 6″ x 1″ / 15 x 2.5 cm
- You should now have a good bed of red embers along with a healthy flame and are now ready to start cooking!
- While you’re cooking, every 15 minutes or so add 3-4 more 6″ / 15 cm logs of hardwood directly onto the embers . This will maintain a healthy fire and heat. If you don’t add the logs of hardwood, the flame can start to die
- Control the air flow into and out of the pizza oven by adjusting the air vents.
- Get cooking delicious pizza! Check out my delicious Neapolitan pizza dough recipe here.
So, I hope I’ve managed to give a good overview of how to light a pizza oven. If you want to find out more about my thoughts on wood fired pizza ovens, check out my review of my wood fired pizza oven here.