Friday 14 June 2019

Our Ooni Koda outdoor pizza oven

Today I'm sharing a short review of our recent fantastic purchase - a Ooni Koda Pizza Oven. If you follow me on Instagram you may have noticed me sharing a few delicious pizza photos, and we've enjoyed using our new outdoor pizza oven so much that I wanted to share it with any other pizza aficionados! I'll warn you that this isn't a particularly technical review, I'll be chatting about how we have been using it, sharing a few tips that we've picked up, and generally showing off our pizza making skills!

We eat a lot of pizza, and have been making our own pizzas at home for years. We started with pre-made bases, then began making our own dough using a mix before moving on to making the dough from scratch. It's been quite a journey, and over the last few years we've tried various different ways to create the perfect pizza. The most successful by far were cooking pizza on the barbecue using a pizza stone, and purchasing an indoor pizza oven which still receives regular use.

This summer we decided to take things even further, and we purchased a Ooni Koda Gas-Powered Outdoor Pizza Oven (affiliate link). Ooni make a variety of different pizza ovens, some are gas fired, some are wood fired, and some are a combination of the two. We chose the gas fired oven which was definitely the best choice for us as it's so easy and quick to get up and running. It's also very portable if you want to take it out and about with you, especially if you are visiting someone that has a gas cylinder.

Ooni Koda outdoor pizza oven review

We have been using our Ooni Koda on a wooden garden table and it's been absolutely fine as the temperature underneath the oven doesn't get that high. You definitely do need a raised surface for it to stand on. Because you need to constantly check and turn the pizza while it's in the oven it would be very awkward to have it placed at floor level. 

Ooni Koda outdoor pizza oven

Once you have turned the pizza oven on it takes about ten minutes to fully heat up. We bought an Infrared laser thermometer (affiliate link) which makes it really easy to check the temperature of the pizza stone inside the oven (and it's also quite fun to play with in general!). We've found that the Ooni takes longer to heat up if it's windy, and if the wind is very strong you need to keep an eye on it to make sure that the flame hasn't been blown out, so it's best to find a sheltered spot for the oven if you can.

When you have prepared your pizza and it's ready to cook, you just need to slide it into the pizza oven onto the hot stone inside, and the flames will cook the pizza from the back and the top. During cooking you need to turn the pizza to make sure that it is cooked evenly all the way around, and so for this you need a pizza peel. When we started using the oven we used the short wooden pizza peels that we use with our indoor pizza oven, but we quickly upgraded to a Ooni branded metal peel which is much easier to use. We still prepare the pizzas in advance on the wooden peels to put into the oven (we have four so we can make all the pizzas for our family together in advance) then turn them during cooking using the metal peel.

Putting pizza into the outdoor Ooni Koda pizza oven

We've found that a sprinkling of semolina flour on the peels underneath the pizza really helps with a smooth transfer to the pizza oven. Once the pizza is in the oven it will cook very quickly (it usually takes just over a minute to cook the pizza completely) so you need to be stood there keeping an eye on it and turning it every 15-20 seconds or so. Some heatproof gloves are really handy for moving the pizza around on the peel!

Cooking pizza in the Ooni Koda pizza oven

It takes a bit of practice to learn how quickly the pizza will cook. At the moment we are still using a timer while cooking, but it won't take long for us to get used to the oven and realise when the pizza needs to be rotated. 

Ooni Koda outdoor pizza oven

We have been so impressed by the quality of the pizzas produced by the Ooni Koda. It's definitely worth taking some time to research how to make a good quality dough - there are plenty of apps to help with recipes, and videos demonstrating how to roll and form the dough into bases. We've also invested in some good quality ingredients - we use Caputo flour and have recently started buying Fior Di Latte mozzarella. They need to be bought from Italian food stores or online, but they really do make such a difference to the taste of the pizza. 

We are so pleased with our purchase and now have our fingers crossed for a lovely, long and hot summer like last year, filled with plenty of delicious pizza!

Delicious pizza from the Ooni Koda pizza oven outdoors

If you want to see the Ooni Koda pizza oven in action I can thoroughly recommend this YouTube channel - Got2EatPizza - for plenty of Ooni pizza making demonstrations and recipes.

 Related post - The G3 Ferrari Delizia Pizza Oven review

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