5 steps for pizza perfection

For this episode in the series of “fives”, we wanted to find out how to create pizzas that’ll have you crying, “Mamma mia!”

Luckily, the team at Eastwood, who’ve become quite famous around here for their wood-fired pizzas, were happy to give us the lowdown.

Step One

All important is the dough-making technique using quality 00 flour. We keep the temperature between 18 and 20 degrees Celsius so the yeast doesn’t activate too quickly and we have an inferior product that doesn’t carry the pizza as a base. The dough is rested, rolled and rested again before service.


Step Two

We use a mixture of tawa and manuka woods in the oven to balance the heat and smoke. The wood is sourced from fallen trees, not cut down specifically for Eastwood.


Step Three

We pull the dough by hand, not with rolling with a pin, so the air stays in the edges. The dough is again stretched out on the paddle before the pizza goes into our oven. The oven is ideal at 380 degrees Celsius for a quick bake at just under two minutes. We keep a close eye on the baking process, using various zones within the oven to evenly bake and colour the pizza.


Step Four

Quality ingredients are key for a tasty pizza, of course. Preparation involves pre-roasting chicken, mushrooms and onions in the pizza oven on a low temperature. We ensure that only embers remain and are smoking to give the toppings that extra flavour. Sauces are made on site with fresh herbs and bold flavours to ensure pizzas are not bland. Our breakfast pizza uses “circular” free range eggs, a company from Whakatāne who also take our food waste from Eastwood and Terrace Catering, lessening our contribution to landfill waste.

Step Five

To accompany our Eastwood pizzas we serve a lovely range of Volcanic Hills wine, Croucher and Sunshine beers, and Atomic coffee. With summer approaching we look forward to seeing locals and New Zealand travellers alike in our “neck of the woods.”


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