From washing dishes in Auckland to becoming head chef at an exclusive Michelin-starred restaurant in the UK and winning a prestigious award never won before by a New Zealander, acclaimed Kiwi chef, Alan Brown finally returned home to follow his passion of cooking with fire.
He was inspired to write his first book, The Complete Kiwi Pizza Oven, when everyone he talked to had a wood-fired oven, was building one or planning to build one. The book has currently sold over 8000 copies and has been reprinted three times. Due to its widespread success, Alan has gone on to present workshops and master-classes throughout New Zealand based around cooking in a wood-fire oven.
Now Alan brings us Recipes from the Kiwi Pizza Oven, which features over 50 pizza oven recipes, all photographed in sumptuous colour by the talented Todd Eyre.
Recipes from the Kiwi Pizza Oven is first and foremost a recipe book, which features all sorts of recipes, from simple recipes, such as tinned corn baked as bread in a can, to more refined recipes, such as salmon pithivier. There are recipes with pastry both sweet and savoury, and of course an amazing repertoire of pizza recipes.
The book shows readers how to cook in a variety of ways, from slow cooking to char-grilling to roasting, covering vegetarian, seafood and meat dishes, and salads and desserts. Alan has invited some of New Zealand’s most acclaimed chefs to share their own favourite recipe for the wood-fire oven. Together with Alan, their recipes for snapper baked in a salt crust with sorrel sauce, salted caramel chocolate brownie, sticky beef short ribs, and miso eggplant show just how versatile a pizza oven can be.
Recipes from the Kiwi Pizza Oven is inspired by feedback, questions and continuing interest shown by those who have contacted Alan or attended his oven workshops.
Most gratifying for Alan is hearing his first book is a go-to cookbook — even for people who don’t own a pizza oven! In honour of them, a feature of Recipes from the Kiwi Pizza Oven is to give exact times and temperatures, rather than a rough guide, so readers can cook the recipes in their home ovens or on their stovetops.
Recipes from the Kiwi Pizza Oven also features information on cooking at different temperatures, indispensable oven tools and kitchen equipment, as well as the Pizza Primer section on successful dough-and pizza-making, and a sample oven-planning session to help readers get the hang of entertaining over an extended period.