If you are the lucky owner of a wood-fired pizza oven it is time to think beyond the Italian pie aka pizza.
It’s time to get stocked up on bags of firewood for the coming winter and start thinking about new recipes – maybe it’s time to even experiment with smoking your dishes with flavoured fruitwoods!
Residents of the countries surrounding the Mediterranean Sea are reportedly less prone to heart diseases and certain cancers. Research has even found a link between Mediterranean food and lower diabetes risk and blood pressure.
Daily exercise is one of the reasons, but the secret to better health is their balanced diet, which is largely based on plant foods, whole grains and healthy fats like olive oil.
If you want to have a taste of delicious Mediterranean cuisine that is even healthy, we have put together a couple of recipes for you to try out in your wood-fired pizza oven and devour with friends and family.
Baked Feta Mediterranean Style
Baked to perfection this feta with fresh herbs, tomatoes and olives is an appetizer that is sure loved by everyone.
Ingredients: 2 slices of feta, 1½ cups halved cherry tomatoes, 2 minced cloves of garlic, 1 small thinly sliced red onion, 1 thinly sliced red capsicum, 10 pitted and halved Kalamata olives, 1 handful of mixed chopped parsley, oregano and basil, cracked black pepper and salt to taste, 2 swigs olive oil
Heat your pizza oven to 200C using a blend of hardwood such as ironbark and fruitwood like apple chunks to get the sweet perfume of the embers flavour the dish. Except for the feta, mix all ingredients together and place the cheese in an ovenproof dish. Pile the tomato mixture over the cheese and bake in the oven until the vegetables have a nice char and the feta has softened for about 15 minutes.
Wood Fired Lamb Cutlets With Roasted Vegetables
The use of fresh herbs characterizes Mediterranean cuisine and due to the rocky terrain meat options are limited to smaller animals like goats, sheep and pigs. This dish combines delicious fresh vegetables with tender lamb meat.
Ingredients: 2 deseeded capsicum any colour cut into chunks, 1 large peeled sweet potato cut into chunks, 2 zucchini cut into chunks, 1 wedged red onion, 2 swigs olive oil, 8 lamb cutlets, 1 tbsp chopped thyme leaves, 2 tbsp chopped mint leaves, cracked black pepper and salt to taste
Heat the oven to 200C. Mix all vegetables together in an ovenproof dish and drizzle with olive oil. Season the mixture with black pepper and salt and roast in the oven for about 20 mins. Meanwhile mix the herbs with black pepper, salt and season the lamb. Take the vegetables out of the oven, push to one side and place the lamb cutlets in the dish Return the dish in the oven for another 20 min, turning the meat over after about 10 mins until everything is cooked through and has a light char.
These chicken kebabs are super quick and easy to make and go perfectly with a salad for a healthy low carb summer dinner.
Ingredients: ½kg chicken breast cut in chunks, 1 small zucchini cut in chunks, 1 deseeded red capsicum cut into chunks, 1 deseeded orange capsicum deseeded and cut in chunks, 8 cherry tomatoes, 2 tbsp fresh chopped parsley, 1 tbsp chopped fresh thyme, 1 tbsp chopped fresh oregano, 1 minced clove of garlic, juice of one lemon, black pepper and salt to taste, olive oil, 8 wooden skewers
Heat the oven to 220C and soak the skewers in water to prevent them from burning. Make the marinade by mixing the herbs, lemon juice, salt and pepper and olive oil together and toss in all vegetables and the chicken meat until evenly coated. Allow to sit for about 20 minutes. Thread the chicken and the vegetables alternately onto the skewers and place on the grill to roast for about 25 mins, turning the kebabs every 10 mins to cook through evenly.
Baked Figs With Spicy Mascarpone
This simple dessert with a little twist is the perfect way to end a meal. The delicious sweetness of the baked figs will give your family dinner a nice closing note.
Ingredients: 8 halved fresh figs, 2 tbsp butter, 2 tbsp clear honey, 2 tbsp brown sugar, 1 tbsp cinnamon, 4 tbsp orange juice, 4 tbsp ginger syrup, 250g mascarpone, 8 fingers shortbread
Heat the oven to 200C. Lay the figs cut side up on a baking tray, scatter the butter over and drizzle with honey. Sprinkle with the sugar and cinnamon, pour the juice over the fruit and nestle the star anise amongst it. Bake in the oven for about 15 minutes. Meanwhile, mix the ginger syrup with the mascarpone and let sit. To serve place 2 fig halves onto a plate, garnish with a dollop of mascarpone and 2 shortbread fingers.