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There is a technique to lighting a traditional pizza oven (such as the Igneus pizza oven) which, once you have mastered it will only take about 10-15 minutes to get the oven up to a reasonable cooking temperature.
Key things to note are;
- Try not to use paper as this causes a fine ash to blow around the oven.
- Always use log wood and kindling – not tanalised or treated wood
- Use very small kindling when first trying to light the oven (1cm diameter)
- Use medium sized kindling once the fire has established (2-3 cm diameter)
- Do not use large logs – very fat kindling is preferable once the oven is ready (5-6 cm diameter)
- WARNING: Do not use any form of accelerants such as petrol, kerosene or paraffin as it is extremely dangerous.
- Build a small tower of fine kindling in the centre of your oven. Use an organic firelighter or some fine dry grass or leaves in to help get the fire going, but do not use paper if you can help it.
- Light it. The kindling should begin to set alight from the flames. (blow if required)
- As the fire builds, add more small kindling to establish the fire. (blow if required)
- Begin to introduce medium sized kindling to the fire as it becomes established. (blow if required)
- As the embers build into a red glow, begin to introduce the large kindling to the fire. (blow if required)
- You should now begin to see a healthy red glow from the significant pile of embers, with a healthy yellow flame coming from the large kindling as it burns.
- Using a coal rake, push the embers and the fire to the very back of the oven and scrape and small embers to the back, so that the centre and front areas of the oven are cleared.
- Your pizza oven is now ready to use.
- Using a pizza peel, introduce your pizza into the oven
See our section entitled how to cook great pizzas for details on cooking technique.
If you are looking to buy the Uuni pizza oven, this oven burns bio mass wood pellets, which can be lit using a natural firelighter or bbq fuel, and which will be up to heat in just 10 minutes.
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