pizza party - outdoor kitchen


There's a temptation to feel a bit flat the day after Christmas so my idea is always to keep up the level of activity, surprise and fun. Let the flopping around with new books and novelty toys, begin the day after.

Good tips for easy pizza party;

  • Light your fire with kiln dried wood in good time. For a cob oven a minimum of 2hrs is needed to get it up to temperature for pizzas. For thin pizzas 450 degrees.

  • We had the dough prepared before hand and in the deep freeze. I took it out the night before and in the morning put it in the airing cupboard. It did a nice bit of rising each in it's own plastic bag.

  • I had a stew in the deep freeze and whipped that out the night before . That all went into a Kotlich over a fire about 45 mins before everyone arrived.

  • Set out your pizza toppings in small bowls with a spoon in each and make sure one adult is on duty at the oven at any one time. Even the 3 and 4 year olds can make their own pizza.

  • Ensure the weather will be dry or set up a pergola for guests. We had a dry, cold, sunny day for our party so all we needed were a few tables and camp chairs scattered around.

  • Make the base for your mulled cider. At least 2 hours before you need to drink it, empty 1-2 cartons of apple juice into your saucepan in your indoor cooker and add any of the following. Honey, bay leaves, pepper corns, cinnamon sticks, star anise, coriander and chopped ginger with slices of lemon and orange. Simmer for a couple of hours. 30 mins before you need to drink it add the cider and tip the whole lot into your Kotlich. Test for taste and bring to the boil over the wood fire.

  • Make hay box to keep either your Kotlich with the soup or the mulled cider, hot. The hay box is a cardboard box larger than your saucepan and filled with dry hay or straw made into the shape of a nest.

The day was bright and cold so there was not much hanging around. The sun soon slipped over the hedge and the temperature dropped noticeably. I knew most of the guests wanted to go for a walk anyway so we chivvied them away quite quickly. Mulled cider, making your own pizza and a large bowl of hearty soup was just right for the happy occasion and so easy.


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