Tag Archives: wood burning oven

For the Love of Pizza

New Jersey is know for pizza, with six of the country’s Top 100 Pizzerias located in the Garden State, but our favorite pie shop is our own back yard, courtesy of a stout brick oven built 15 summers ago.  

The oven was born from Diane’s passion for cooking and her interest in artisinal bread, which led her to Alan Scott’s classic book The Bread BuildersScott died in 2008, but his book helped launched   the construction of thousands of DIY brick ovens all across the world.

The Bread Builders: Hearth Loaves and Masonry Ovens by [Alan Scott, Daniel Wing]

Our oven took a summer to build. It was heavy work and gave us both newfound respect for masons and bakers too. In the end, it was worth the effort, especially on nights when family and friends gather around a glowing hearth to enjoy one of life’s simple pleasures –  gourmet pizza, scented with wood smoke, accompanied by icy cold craft beer and good conversation.

All four of our kids were home this weekend, and it took about six hours and 20 pieces of firewood to heat up old smokey.   With the exception of a passing shower, the rain held off and a waxing gibbous moon gave off just enough light. 

In total, we cooked 16 pizzas, 8 frocassias and a roast chicken.  We also managed to finish growlers from our two favorite local breweries: High Rail Brewing in High Bridge and Sunken Silo in Lebanon.

If you don’t have time to build your own oven, you can still enjoy bread from one of the Alan Scott inspired oven’s that offer bread for sale, by visiting Bobo Link Dairy & Bakehouse in Milford, NJ.  Be sure to pick up some of their artisinial cheeses that are amazingly good.