Outback Gourmet: Camp oven pizza
Camp oven Pizza, you ask? Yes! It is totally possible to make a pizza in a camp oven, and as I have as yet to meet anyone who doesn’t like the humble meal it is a winner with everyone.
From the Rug Rats to the Grandfolk, from vegetarians to dedicated carnivores, from pineapple people to anchovy tragics – this camp oven pizza recipe is one for all. There are a couple of ways camp oven pizza can be constructed and it is entirely up to you which method you pursue.
Words: Jo Clews
The first is probably a little easier and quicker as you use pre-made flat breads or pre-made bases. These can readily be purchased from the supermarket or you might like to have a go at making your own at home (from bread mix) before you leave. As flat breads are dead easy to make when you are on the road and don’t need to be cooked in an oven (just a large frypan), they can be made anywhere. The second way requires you to make bases from scratch from bread mix. It takes a little more time but the results are delicious.
Of course the choice of toppings is entirely up to the individual and this could be a great opportunity for a group to all get together and bring a selection of different toppings for some amazing creations. The secret to a good pizza is to only have about four toppings; cut everything small; and don’t overload the pizza as it will take longer to cook. Fantastic way to get the kids involved, too. To perfectly cook a pizza you need a hot camp oven of at least 200ºC (with most of the heat on the lid) and, for once, all over the lid… not just around the outer edge.
A cast iron camp oven will need a bit more time to heat up than a Steel Hillbilly although the cast iron one will maintain its heat longer. If you are unsure of the temperature in your camp oven, invest in a BBQ temperature gauge that can be placed into the camp oven five minutes before you are ready to cook – it will tell you exactly how hot it is, and then you have time to cool it down by taking away some of the coals or heat it up by adding more coals (or even some small pieces of wood) to the lid. Always, no matter what you are cooking, have less coals underneath and more on top as they are easier to manage and the food is less likely to burn on the bottom.
I have found that the small pizza trays available from homewares stores are great, and they fit easily in my large Hillbilly. If your camp oven is smaller, a sheet of baking paper on top of a trivet that fits inside the camp oven works a treat. Just make sure your pizza is a couple of centimetres smaller than the inside of your camp oven – so it’s easy to lift in and out. If your camp oven is hot enough, it should only take about 15 minutes before you are dining on your very own delicious creation.
Now you have all the instructions, it’s your turn to use your imagination and have a go at a Camp oven Pizza. Enjoy!