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Extraordinary Wood Fired Pizza

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Extraordinary Wood Fired Pizza

I read an article first thing this morning by celebrity chef Todd Fisher, Fire up a Meal for your Inner Caveman. He declares,

“Wood fired cooking is unique unto each oven and each chef. It is the chef who creates stimulating and inspired creations, who must perfectly execute the technique, but it is the oven that exquisitely cooks and accentuates the chosen ingredients.”

I couldn’t explain this dynamic more perfectly. Todd then writes,

“I believe there is no greater style of cooking that so wonderfully combines the heritage of food with the present day palate of the experiential diner. Whether you have a wood-burning oven at home or a kettle grill, cooking with wood can make the ordinary, extraordinary.”

This is the truth about wood fired cooking. Every time we fire up our Le Panyol oven, something extraordinary happens. As we all take our turn cooking for our colleagues here at Maine Wood Heat, from the craftsmen, to the girls in sales, to the CFO, it’s amazing what everyone comes up with – leg of lamb, homemade macaroni and cheese, cinnamon bread, succulent pizzas, and steaks on the hearth from a local grass-fed beef farm. We carefully collect our ingredients, and the wood fire coaxes out the very best of their flavor.

Today, for example, was another day extraordinary day here at the office. Cheryl Barden, CFO of Maine Wood Heat Co., brought in ingredients for her own lobster pizza recipe which she designed from scratch. She prepped the dough early, cooked the lobsters, sauteed the asparagus, mixed the olive oil with freshly diced and ground tarragon, and melted 1 1/2 sticks of butter. I fired up the oven for her, and the cooking began. Cheryl was the chef with an inspired creation, as Todd explains above, who executed her technique perfectly.

drizzle taragon and olive oil on doughStep 1

Stretch & roll the dough (Cheryl uses a King Arthur Flour recipe to make the dough from scratch)

Step 2

Drizzle the olive oil and fresh tarragon

ricotta on lobster pizzaStep 3

Add dollops of fresh whole milk Ricotta – if you’re in Maine you can find it a Crooked Face Creamery

Step 4

Layer the asparagus

lobster on pizzaStep 5

Mix the lobster in with the melted butter then place the lobster on the pizza

Step 6

Add a little salt and pepper to finish off the toppings

pizza in wood fired oven cookingStep 7

Slide the pizza into the wood fired oven

Step 8

Rotate the pizza every 30 seconds or so to cook each side evenly

wood fired pizzaStep 9

Pull the pizza out and let it rest for a minute

Step 10

Slice the pizza, and devour (I didn’t take a picture at this step because I was too busy eating, I apologize).

Click here to read a more detailed description of this wood fired lobster and asparagus pizza recipe, and visit our gallery to see the entire photo series.

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