All across the world, you can ask anyone what their top 5 favorite foods are, and there is a great chance that nearly all of the people asked, will have pizza on their list.
Pizza is a great tasting, very delicious, hunger-satisfying, Italian food.It is the go-to food for parties, studying, lunches, brunches, and dinners.Everyday pizza companies deliver thousands of boxes of pizza, to very satisfied customers.But what about those pizza lovers who love to cook their favorite foods themselves?
What are there options?
Well some of them not only want to cook their pizza, but they also want to do it in their very own outdoor pizza oven. So to help out all of those pizza-loving cooks, today we're going to discuss how to build an outdoor pizza oven step by step, so you will be able to cook pizzas in the comfort of your own yard.
Step 1: Build the Foundation
Like the building of any structure, the most important part is the foundation - The base. It is of great importance that you build a strong, secure, base, to hold up your pizza oven. Without having a strong sturdy base, your structure will not last very long.
If you live in an area that has snows or rains, you will want to wait for a day to begin, where sunshine is in the forecast (or until spring or summer).
Next will have to make a decision whether you will want to go with a stone base or a concrete base (Both are very sturdy, and this will decision will come down to personal preference).
Third, you will have to decide how big you will want your pizza oven to be so that you can create the right size base (This is an extremely important decision because you will not be able to undo it once the oven is built).
If you choose to go with concrete, then you will measure out the width of the base that you would like, and then you will place four 4x4 pieces of wood, to outline the area you laid out. You would then pour the concrete in this area.
You will want to make sure that you smooth the concrete out after pouring it between the 4x4s. If you decide to go with a stone base then after outlining and measuring the area that you want your base to be, you would just lay out the stones in that area.
For this base, in order to guarantee that it has dried, you will want to give it "at least" 24 hours, before you move on to the next step. It is also very important that you keep it covered from the rain.
When you come back for the next step, the next day, you will want to remove the 4x4s (Note: If the cement inside the 4x4s moves when you move them, then you will want to allow the cement more time to dry).
Step 2: Setup with Cinder Blocks & Concrete
For this next step, you will need cinder blocks and concrete.Depending on the size that you measured out for your base, will determine how many cinder blocks you are going to need during this stage.
You will place evenly, your first level of cinder blocks, on top of, but towards the edges of, the base. The shape that you will be going for is that of a square or a rectangle, with an opening (Think of how a chimney looks).
Depending on the size of pizza oven you are going for, will determine on whether each "built-up" wall is 12 cinder blocks or more (each side of your wall, will need to be in to be a perfect square, to securely hold the rest of the pizza oven up, securely).
If you go with 12 cinder blocks, it will be 3 cinder blocks across, and 4 high, for each sidewall.
For these side walls, in order to guarantee that they have dried and are tight, you will want to give it "at least" 36 hours, before you move on to the next step (without these walls being nicely dried and tight, it can become a safety hazard when you move on to the next step).
It is also very important that you keep it covered from the rain.
Step 3: Setup Another Level with Cement Board
Once the cinder blocks are dry, it is time to go up a level, and specifically work on the base of the area, where your food will actually go into.
For this step here, you will follow a similar technique as you did in step 1, with a few slight variations. You will need a cement board for this step here. Between your, now dried, cinder blocks, once again you will use your 4x4s.
You put the skeletal shape of a table, between the dried cinder blocks (these 4x4s, in the shape of a table, are only there until the next level above is finished and dried, and then they will be removed).
Next, you will lay your cement board across the top of your dried cinder blocks.
Then you will use 3 of your 4x4s to make the shape of a rectangle with a triangle front (Think of the shape that kids generally draw their houses).
Inside the triangle front, you will put a thin flexible piece of wood, or think plastic (The reason for this will be explained).
Once this is done, you will place some rebars (vertically) within this area (you will want to line the up, with about 6 - 8 inches of space between them). Next, you will want to place rebars in the square exposed holes, at the top of the rebars, so that 1 rebar is in each hole (this will assist in making the structure sturdier).
Then you will place some rebars (horizontally) across the first layer of rebars, with the same 6 - 8 inches of space between them (this will make the final structure, more steady).
Next, you will need to tie little steel twisties around each area, where the overlay of bars are - Like how you twist the little metal twisty,
around your loaves of bread (Within the 4x4s, the rebars, will then look like a checkerboard, without the varied colors). For this step, your next move will be to pour your wet cement over top of the rebars, within the outlined 4x4s.
You will then start to smooth the cement out, making sure the service is even. It is very important that your rebars are completely covered by 2- 4 inches of cement above them.
For this slate, prep, table, in order to guarantee that it has dried and is sturdy, you will want to give it "at least" 24 hours, before you move on to the next step. It is also very important that you keep it covered from the rain.
When you come back for the next step, the next day, you will want to remove the 4x4s
Step 4:Dried, Slate, Prep, Table
In this step, your work will be minimal.
You will want to pour in your wet concrete so that it is around 3 inches above the slate, prep, table (This extra layer of concrete, will act as a type of insulation when your pizza cooks).
For this insulation layer, in order to guarantee that it has dried, you will want to give it "at least" 12 hours, before you move on to the next step.
It is also very important that you keep it covered from the rain.
Step 5: Install Fire Bricks
Here, you will want to get your fire bricks and lay them over the layer of concrete insulation that you put down 12 hours earlier. These fire bricks will be the actual oven floor (where you will put your pizza on) of your outdoor pizza oven.
Before adding any type of cement, here you will want to do a dry run (a test setup) of the entire area of your oven where your pizza will go into. This dry run will save you from a future headache (by preventing errors).
You will make an oval shape with the fire bricks.
While doing a dry run, within the center of the oven you will draw a circle outline, of the inner area (as far back within the inside of the dry run, oven setup, as you could go, and this will be will you will then cut the fire bricks, so that they make the perfect shape of a circle.
You will then stack the fire bricks (vertically) around this center, circular-cut section, of fire bricks. As you do this, you will add cement between the fire bricks, on the outside of them, and on top of them as well.
Before adding a second layer of bricks, you will want to add (inside the oven) cardboard foam, cut out in the shape of a dome (you will be removing this once your dome oven is completely finished).
You will put tape around the top of the cardboard foam so that it doesn't move around as your adding more, and more layers of fire bricks.
After this cardboard, foam, cut out, in the shape of a dome, is taped, and sturdy, in the center of the open dome, you will continue to add the fire bricks on the outside of it.
Once you have all the bricks in place, you will add around 2 - 4 layers of cement around the fire bricked dome oven (smoothing it out as you go along). When it has the ideal look and shape that you want you, will then stop there.
For this dome-shaped part of the oven, in order to guarantee that it has dried, and is stiff, and sturdy, you will want to give it "at least" 48 hours, before you move on to the next step. It is also very important that you keep it covered from the rain.
Step 6: Remove Cardboard and burn the Wood
For this step, you will go and remove the dome-shaped cardboard foam cut out, from within the completed pizza oven.You will then put a small pile of wood inside the pizza oven (on some kind of metal or steel plate), for curing it. You will let the wood burn for at least an hour. After the wood burns out you will be done for that day.
Step 7: Decoration
The next day, once the pizza oven has cooled down from the previous days, wood-burning, you can go and paint the outside of it, with any type of colors or designs that you choose.
After you paint the oven (if you choose to paint it), you will wait another 24 hours, and then you will be able to slide your pizza inside and enjoy your new outdoor pizza oven.
Article written by wilfred Chong.