Pizza oven: which one to choose?

The old generation electric domestic ovens, with temperatures similar to those for baking cakes and biscuits, can achieve measurable results in baking pizza, but the pizzas baked have nothing to do with the products sold in the pizzerias.

Today, there has been a sort of upgrade: a part of home pizza makers, thanks to the web (with specialized forums and thanks to the high availability of information on the techniques of doughing) and the marketing of professional flours, began to bake pizzas closer to professional standards. The study of methods in industry forums, combined with the availability of raw materials finally accessible, has made this qualitative step possible outside the professional world.

But in addition to flours and mixing techniques, it also took the help of fundamental cooking tools such as a high-performance and suitable pizza oven that could optimize the results.

The best pizza oven for professional home cooking

Having to change your home oven can be a small trauma, especially if it is an oven whose merits and defects are already known. Turning an oven means learning about a new one and, above all, the new product must replace the old furnace in the best possible way (and not the worst). It is certainly not easy to understand which is the best oven for domestic pizza among all those on the market today, but by analyzing the characteristics and properties of each product category, the choice for the user will be less stressful.

Mixing techniques, quality raw materials but not only: for a good pizza baking, the home pizza maker must have a hot oven but, among the home ovens suitable for baking the pizza which to choose?

Domestic electric and gas ovens

These are the standard built-in ovens, capable of cooking delicious pizzas, provided you follow precise rules to optimize the cooking. Nowadays, almost all electric ovens reach 250°C, with some models reaching 300°C (on paper). The various functions dedicated to pizza, unless they are linked to significant increases in temperature, are not much use: to cook a pizza requires a lot of latent heat, so it is better not to consider the ventilated function that will only serve to dry excessively the dough in cooking.

The best pizza baked in your home oven will be the one baked in the pan; the oven must be preheated for a maximum of at least 40 minutes and baking must be done by placing the container directly on the floor of the oven to get the maximum possible heat boost: this area will have a higher temperature than the baking chamber and the metal of the base will transmit direct heat to the pan.

Flush-mounted gas ovens require some care when cooking the pizza: the presence of the flame under the base of the stove makes cooking more difficult; the baked pizzas should be placed on the grill in the first lower position so as not to risk burning the bottom.

Portable electric pizza ovens

Called in jargon ovens, they were the first pizza ovens to enter the home market several years ago and are still subject to unbridled changes by fans of the industry who have often enhanced and improved these cooking tools to make them 100% performing.

These circular pizza ovens, with an aluminum shell structure, can cook exclusively round pizzas on refractory stone thanks to two resistances connected to a single thermostat. Temperatures reach 400°C. This type of oven has a light and not bulky structure so as to be moved, placed, and placed quickly anywhere. The results are appreciable, and the pizzas that can be obtained are noteworthy.

Gas ovens for pizza

Not to be confused with traditional built-in ovens, these domestic pizza ovens are powered by gas burners that replicate the heat of the living flame obtained with wood. The gas pizza ovens have the same structure as the wood-fired domestic ovens and can be supplied with either wood or gas using a unique burner connected to the gas network or a cylinder. They do not require a flue for the drains but only a window to ventilate the room if they are used in closed environments such as taverns and kitchens. The cooking of pizzas in these ovens merely is surprising to the point that it becomes difficult to distinguish a pizza cooked in wood from a gas cooker.

Semi-professional electric household ovens

These instruments are dedicated to the sector of extreme domestic pizza makers, a category that is becoming increasingly widespread: the public that buys this type of furnace is represented by advanced amateur pizza makers who want to have a high-performance tool in the kitchen that can simulate professional cooking without blowing up the counter for excessive electrical absorption. These ovens, as deep as a built-in oven but smaller in size in width and especially in the height of the cooking chamber, are designed specifically for cooking pizzas and focaccia.

The base is made of refractory material and the temperatures reachable up to 450°C thanks to the resistances controlled independently by two adjustable thermostats. These are miniature professional ovens that can be used in the enthusiast’s kitchen. The temperatures reached, and the structure allows cooking of any pizza with exceptional results. The market for these products is almost entirely networked.

Domestic wood-fired ovens

This is the sector that has had its most significant expansion in the last ten years: the manufacturing companies have sensed the desire of consumers for a small wood-burning oven to be placed in the garden or on the terrace and have therefore studied small ovens that could have limited weight and a structure not too cumbersome. The problem of the refractory has always been that of the preheating, which requires ignition several hours in advance to reach the right cooking temperatures. The pizzerias do not have these disadvantages, given the continuous daily work of their ovens that, once turned off, continue to maintain temperatures around 200 ° C from one day to the next.

The domestic pizza maker, instead, preparing the pizza once a week must preheat the oven off several hours before, to remove moisture and reach right baking temperature. This problem has been solved thanks to some companies that have created pizza ovens with a steel vault and refractory base. The partially metal structure heats up very quickly and absorbs less moisture from the environment than a classic oven made entirely of refractory. Thanks to the open flame and the refractory base, the pizzas are perfectly cooked.

Indirectly fired wood-fired ovens

These ovens have the cooking chamber separated from the combustion chamber: the wood burns in a separate compartment, transmitting the heat to the cooking chamber, which has a refractory base. Despite their wood-fired nature, these ovens do not perform as well as the pizza ovens themselves, but they are a useful cooking tool, especially for baked and peeled pizzas, which require constant and not too lively heat. As they need a flue for the drains, they can also be placed outside, for example in the garden or on the terrace.

To each of you, your own…Oven!

Ultimately, the pizza oven is an important and above all final part of a long manufacturing process. However, not everyone can afford expensive and sophisticated equipment such as those used in laboratories. However, speaking of cooking, there are many brands and models of ovens, suitable for every taste and need.

As we have seen, in addition to the standard built-in ovens, the market offers a wide range of domestic ovens suitable for optimal pizza cooking and finding the perfect one for your kitchen can be complicated, especially if you do not already have bright ideas. Much depends on the type of pizza that the fan of white art wants to get. Another determining factor in the choice of the oven is to understand where it will be placed in the kitchen, how large it must be and what use it is intended to make of it: it is clear that if the oven is used for a few simple occasions, electric portable pizza ovens will be more appropriate.

The wood-fired oven remains, without a shadow of a doubt, ideal but is very little used in homes, even if some lucky ones have it. In the pizzerias, however, this type of oven is the master, for tradition and charm. The most prepared and demanding domestic pizza makers who focus on details, programs, accessories, and functions, will undoubtedly opt for semi-professional home ovens. If you choose for round pizzas, these require higher temperatures and therefore more performing ovens: in this regard, the professional seeds from home are among the most versatile and suitable ovens. The latest generation ovens are, without doubt, more technological and some have features that were unimaginable until a few years ago. The severe sentence to the domestic pizza chef!

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