Jump to content


participating member
  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Contact Methods

  • Website URL
  1. We have just published a community-supported map of Vera Pizza Napoletana pizzerias and Artisan pizzerias around the world. The map lets you add comments and photos to pizzerias that have already been posted, and if you register, you can add your own pizzerias to the map. It's based on Google maps. At this point we have about 50 pizzerias, including all the VPN pizzerias in the states, and my favorites in Florence and Naples. I thought it would be a good thing to post the map here, and to see if you find it interesting. Let me know what you think. You can find the map here: http://www.fornobravo.com/maps/artisan_pizza.html Regards, FB
  2. There is a lot of information and mis-information out there. For example, Italian wood-fired ovens are round, though the enclosure around them may square or rectangle. But this isn't really the right place to go into that sort of detail. If you are interested in exploring brick ovens further, there is a user goup, much like this one, dedicated to brick oven building and cooking. You can find it at http://www.fornobravo.com/forum. James
  3. FornoBravo

    Pizza--Cook-Off 8

    What about the brick oven? No one has mentioned the last essential ingredient -- a wood-fired oven. You can build one with bricks in your back yard. James
  4. My memory is no "L" before the "Y". I had to talk myself out of using it. Pie ay yah.
  5. One more thing. In villages around Valencia, you can see the older ladies carrying their paellas to the bakeries to cook on Saturday -- while the ovens are cooling off. Very charming. Also, I have been baking Paella in a brick oven (without a fire in the oven), which is lots of fun.
  6. There is a little restaurant outside of Valencia, on an in-land fresh water lagoon near the natural springs where the rice grows -- that claims to have invented Paella Valenciana. At least that's their story. Still, there are a bunch of little restaurants in the same village that make incredible Paella. The ingredients all orginiate from there -- rice, safron, sea food, rabbit, pork, chicken, tomatoes and beans. Great ingredient and a great dish. Worth the flight. :-) The smokey flavor might come from the rice at the bottom getting a little too browned and the flavor coming up through the rice. I've made a lot of mistakes, and have done that. The rice should be pretty brown on the bottom, and crunchy. You should need a steel spoon to get it all up. Put the pan right on the table -- Paella can't be moved. They say you should let it rest, covered with a towel for a couple of minutes after it comes off the heat. Have you seen the Paella rings the Spanish have? The come in a range of sizes, from a single round burner to three (or more) concrentric rings. They are propane fired, and sit on a tripod stand. You can hook them up (with a little work) to a U.S. LP tank. Don't know if you can get them on the Internet, but they're great if you can find one. I also like that the Paella pans we have are measured by the number of people they serve, not the diameter. Very practial -- get me the 9 personne. FB
  7. If you love fire, you will love a pizza oven. The Pizza Napoletana specification says you should cook pizza at 900F for no more than 90 seconds. It really does work. Most of us settle for about 725F, and a three minute pizza. The oven gets to pizza heat in about 45 minutes, which isn't much longer than Kingsford charcoal. We translated the Italian Ministry of Agriculture's VPN spec they presented to the EU. It is good to read. http://www.fornobravo.com/vera_pizza_napol...napoletana.html James
  8. I asked Alf about alternative fuels and bread ovens, and here is his input. Also, his ovens have a fire chamber below, where a pizza oven is fired in the oven. +++++ I have several ovens running on alternative fuels other than timber. We have one running on pelletized wood waste; however, this is a commercial oven using a sophisticated control system to deliver forced draft to the combustion chamber. The other fuel we have in use and works very well are hardwood shaving and sawdust made into briquettes. This fuel delivers a very good heat and is much improved if you can mix it with a little amount of softwood sticks. The sticks seam to have the effect of drawing more oxygen through the briquettes and increasing the heat of the fire. Briquettes unfortunately are very expensive and very a great deal in quality so if you need to use them make surd they are made from wood rather than paper / cardboard waste
  9. I would second the idea of the butter and stock right at the end. It really helps with texture -- I like my Risotto on the runny side. FB I always add a knob of butter and perhaps a little more stock into the risotto right after I take it off the heat... (per reading Marcella Hazan). When I was looking up the link to different risotto rices I came across this link--there's actually an Italian phrase for adding butter in at the end! link ←
  10. I can recommend a couple, patterned after dishes I have found in restaurants. One is shrimp. Poach or saute bay shrimp, and then liquify them with the stock or olive oil using a stick blender. Add the prawns toward the end. I sometimes add 1 tsp good tomato paste for color and a little flavor. Top with two grilled prawns. Second, is risi e bisi. It is a pretty basic pea risotto, but very moist -- almost a soup. It depends on great stock, and can be great. Really soupy. Third, just saffron, with a vegetable stock, and only topped with cheese. It's bright yellow, and also needs great stock. I'm sure you've heard this, but mix dried porcini with regular mushrooms to get a nice porcini risotte, without all of the expense. The other mushrooms seem to absorb the flavor. Or, pancetta and pea. I'm not sure this is the right way, but I saute pancetta, pour off the fat, add olive oil, diced onion and garlic, then add the rice. Our kids like that one. Eat risotto at least once a week! FB
  11. Jackal, Great posting. Alf Armstrong helped restore that oven, and built the one for Betty and Taylor's of Harrogate. We have a picture of that oven on our site: http://www.fornobravo.com/FornoBravoUK/Intro.html I think in a way this underscores the difference between bread and pizza ovens. Pizza ovens need a good fire in the oven to bounce heat down on your food and pizza for high heat cooking. As you say, continuous bake bread ovens cook with retained heat in the refractory. Horses for courses.
  12. Fun. How high did the flame go into the dome? Did it do a good job of getting the dome hot and burning off the carbon? I'll bet your charcoal cost almost as much as your food that night.:-)
  13. You can't get the heat you need from charcoal -- but there are bunch of classic ovens in NY and CT that burn real coal. I'm not that familiar with them, but I'm sure that some folks on this forum are, and maybe that can add more. All the Italian ovens here burn wood. Also, one builder has fitted an LP burner for starting and backing up the fire -- sacrilege to Verace Pizza Napoletana, but convenient. :-) You don't need hardwood. The ovens are pretty flexible on what they can use for fuel -- just not pine or fir. In fact, very hard woods tend to give you too much coals and not enough flame to heat the dome. Any know about the coal ovens in CT? FB
  14. Hi McDuff, I enjoy seeing the ovens being built and loved, and its fun answering questions.
  • Create New...