One of the things we’ve come to grow and love is out camp ovens. They enable us to eat like absolute kings in the middle of nowhere. With young kids one of our favourite meals is Pizza in the oven. Where time permits we would go to the effort of making the bases fresh, but here’s a low effort way that’s a killer.
Step by Step
Prepare your Pizza
As mentioned already, sometimes we’ll go to the effort to make our own Pizza bases. I’m not going to cover that off here because often when we are travelling and pull up at the end of a day, we are looking for a relatively quick mean that is easy to make and clean up. To cheat we use pre-packaged pizza bases that are in sealed bags. These are good because they pack nicely into our food containers and will last a few days without a problem. We’ve also used a pita bread before – they work well too!
We always make our pizza’s on a large sheet of baking paper so that it’s easy to put them in and out of the camping oven.
To save space we buy a small disposal tub of tomato paste to save room in the fridge. Apply tomato paste to the base and other toppings to your liking.
Cooking in the Oven
As discussed in article Camp Ovens – Spun vs. Cast and Techniques, I prefer to use heat beads when cooking with my ovens, mostly because it’s quick and easy. If you’ve got time to build a fire and use coals go for it.
I use the same number of heat beads when cooking a Pizza as I do when cooking a roast – 28. How many go on the bottom depends on whether you have a home made base that needs cooking or you have a pre-purchased one. With the pre-purchased ones, they are mostly cooked and need warming. So don’t put too much heat under the oven. I find about 5-6 heat beads is perfect. All the rest go on the lid to cook the top and make the cheese brown off nicely.
Depending on how hot it is on the day, wind etc will vary the cooking time of your pizza. In order to know after the first one put the head beads on the oven and let it warm up for about 5 minutes. After wards, you’re good to go. This is where the baking paper comes in handy – lowering it into the oven.
Pop the lid back on and wait. If you’ve got the heat beads going well, it should only take 7-9 minutes per pizza. Check after 7 and allow the cheese to go golden brown or to your liking. If you like your pizza really well cooked it’s important to make sure you don’t put too much heat on the bottom because it will burn the base.
That’s it. If you warmed the oven up for the first pizza each one after should take the same time.