Balmy Autumn Pizza Night

The evening before Kiwi Big Brother and his lovely wife flew out across the ocean, we grabbed the chance and fired up Big Bill the clay oven and ‘played pizzas’ again. It was a very warm and balmy night, making it all the more pleasant to be enjoying pizzas and hanging out in the back garden with Big Bill.

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Big Brother got really good at shoving pizzas in and out of Big Bill, and down the mouth. Somehow that did not seem to have any impact on how much he talked 😉

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Diego the puss in boots watched the pizzas with very hopeful gaze, despite the vegetarian selection for the night. Continue reading

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Big Bill Pizza Time for Ma and Pa

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When Mom and Dad were staying with me over Chinese New Year, we fired up Big Bill the clay oven and had many long-time Taiwanese family friends over. The weather wasn’t the most cooperative, but we got a chance to set up the new gazebo in the back garden. Thankfully the on-and-off drizzle never amounted to much, and everyone got really into the whole pizza making business.

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Little Riley had a good time with Diego, and Diego was also very happy to keep by Riley’s side – kids are his best bets at getting food from, both intentionally and unintentionally by dropping food onto the ground 😉

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After the party retired into the house after dark, I started baking all the bread I prepared. Most of them were sourdough loaves I started in the morning. Continue reading

Big Bill gets Hot for Chinese New Year

On the weekend, I got Big Bill the clay oven fired up and piped out 6Kg of bread and 3 big pots of stew ready for my family visiting over Chinese New Year.

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I fired up Big Bill around 11am, and made some pizzas for Kiwi Bird and I for lunch. We kept the pizzas simple, just topping them with home grown tomatoes and basil, with some grated cheese and feta.

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We had a leisurely lunch followed by a little dessert pizza made with cherry jam, rum and raisin chocolates, cashews and bananas.

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I made 4 different kinds of dough around noon on the previous day. I let them rise until nearly double, then put them into the fridge over night. Continue reading

Epic Pizza Time

It’s been very hot and dry ever since Christmas. Thankfully the urban fire ban does not include pizza ovens, so we could still have awesome Big Bill pizzas.

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Jenny took this little clip of the fire dancing in Big Bill – isn’t it cool?

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We had quite a few friends turning up on this hot and sunny day.

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We started off making a classy smoked salmon pizzas with dill and red onions. Continue reading

Sunny Wintery Baking Day

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On a glorious mid winter sunny day, I decided it’s been too long since we had wood fired pizzas from Big Bill my clay oven.

We had Anna over and enjoyed a nice long catchup in the sun. Apart from pizzas, I also quickly grilled a few mackerels found at the fish mongers that morning. Diego my puss in boots happily finished off the special treats of mackerels heads, after having his littles paws smacked over the pizzas.

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Even though it was a sunny day, the temperature was low, and it had been hard to keep the oven as hot as usual. So after we finished the pizzas, Continue reading

Burning Away Autumn Gloom

After over a week of gloomy drizzle (which was very unusual for Christchurch), it was infinitely nice to wake up to sunshine on Easter Saturday! I had made some sourdough bread dough on the previous night, originally intended for baking in the indoor electric oven. With the sudden arrival of sunshine, I promptly changed the plan and fired up Big Bill the clay oven in the afternoon.

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Kiwi Bird and I enjoyed an early and leisurely dinner in the late afternoon sun until it set.

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One pizza really puffed up in Big Bill!

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Diego puss in boots was particularly keen on the smoked salmon pizza with cashews and brie. Continue reading