Customer of the Month: Amber Kennedy
There is no denying the quality and eloquent craftsmanship of Authentic Pizza Ovens. For decades, our woodfired ovens have delighted many families from all around the world. The authentic experience of creating beautiful dishes with family and friends perpetuates the spirit of simplicity that we embellished during our past generations.
In our current times of a more fast-paced lifestyle, now more than ever, people are coveting unique ways to spend quality time together. Our team at Authentic Pizza Ovens understands how monumental our ovens have become, and we value the fundamental purpose they encompass in the lives of all ourcustomers.
Whether it be in commercial settings or homesteads throughout the world, we pride ourselves not just on the quality of our ovens but just as importantly, our standard of customer service.
Meet Amber Kennedy, the General Manager of Authentic Pizza Ovens. Amber is passionate about her role in our company and is, especially, committed to building solid customer relationships for longevity. Her investment in expanding her knowledge and providing the best quality ovens and care to ourcustomers, continually, raises the standard for exceptional customer service with our ever growing popularity in the world today.
Read more from our interview with Amber and how her Maximus Arena Portable Oven has become a staple in her own family.
Where are you from and a little background information about you?
Hi, my name is Amber Kennedy and I am the General Manager of Authentic Pizza Ovens. I currently live in the suburbs of Charlotte, NC. I was born in Starkville, MS but spent most of my childhood growing up in a small town in North Carolina. As a young adult, I moved to Savannah, GA where I met my wonderful husband of thirteen years and counting. Together we have two sons, a daughter, a daughter-in-law, and a precious one-year-old grandson.
We are a very close family and we spend a lot of our time together outdoors. Some of our favorite things to do are swimming, boating, ATV riding, walking around our local downtown, and playing outdoor games like darts, corn hole, and giant Jinga. We also love to travel and one of my favorite places to go is the Blue Ridge Mountains.
Being a red-wine enthusiast, I especially like to visit their local wineries. Of the many joys we have, one of our absolute favorite ways to spend quality time together is cooking in our woodfired pizza oven! Nothing compares to the sounds of joy and laughter from our children and guests as we fire up our oven and bond cooking together, creating new memories and decompressing from our busy lives.
Next to my love for my family, anyone that knows me can tell you, that I am truly passionate about working. I have a background in logistics and warehouse distribution, which is how I met Penny, the owner of Authentic Pizza Ovens. I started out managing the distribution of her account and it did not take long before I became obsessed!
I was most intrigued by the "traditional ovens" and the impeccable details that are hand-crafted into them, giving each one its own unique characteristics. I spent a lot of time handling the ovens and was fascinated by the authenticity of even the smallest details that set each oven apart. It is true that while all the ovens are, essentially, constructed the same, not one oven is just alike! I was ecstatic when the opportunity presented itself and Penny offered for me to join the Authentic Pizza Ovens team.
In the last several years, I have met some amazing people from all around the world and developed wonderful customer relationships. I love working with our customers from choosing the perfect oven model for their needs to educating them about our ovens in all regards. I learn something new every day, but I credit most of my knowledge to our very own customers. A lot of times, what someone may feel is a silly inquiry, is usually when I learn the most and it is extremely rewarding.
One of the most fulfilling parts of my job is opening emails with beautiful photos shared by our very own happy customers! I feel a huge sense of pride when months and even years down the track I hear from our customers with photos from a memorable weekend of using their oven.
Which oven did you choose and why did you choose an Authentic Pizza Oven?
As many of my customers will tell you, I am not biased toward any of the ovens! I am extremely open and love helping them choose the perfect oven that compliments their setups and vision. It is one of my favorite things to do and I truly live vicariously through all our customers! I am invested throughout the entire process from ordering and shipping to the delivery and setup! I kid you not, I feel like a kid at Christmas whenever I receive photos from our satisfied customers!
I am, however, particularly fond of the Lisboa oven models because they have a taller opening and the ambiance from the fire gives a whole vibe. If I had to choose one traditional oven that I love the most, it would be the Lisboa Rustic Arch Premium Oven. It reminds me of Savannah with the deep hues of red brick and overall rustic appeal! We are already scoping out our forever home and I find myself looking for homes that it will be complimentary with, ha!
Since we are not in our forever home just yet, we have the Maximus Arena Mobile Pizza Oven in RED! Penny actually surprised me with it shortly after we relocated because she knew that I loved the red the most! It is a beautiful tone of red and is a perfect pop of color that stands out! I will still use it even when I get a traditional oven model, especially during family camping trips in the mountains! We will also take it to my husband's work and treat the local work community to a pizza lunch!
Did you build your setup or have someone else do it?
We use the Maximus Arena Mobile Pizza Oven Stand "Woody" for our oven. I love it! It has wooden sides that are conveniently removable, a drawer under the oven, and the perfect space for firewood underneath! It also has wheels, so for the time being, we keep it in our garage and when we want to use it, we can wheel it anywhere we want!
During the Summer we take it to our pad by the swimming pool to cook while the kids are swimming, and during the Fall, my favorite time of the year, we take it to the backyard where we can cook and sit around an open fire. If I am in a fancy mood and want to cook in it on the fly, then we just wheel it out of the garage, ha!
I am so excited to get into our forever home and embark on my vision of our outdoor kitchen!
What is your favorite thing to cook in your oven, and have you tried any recipes besides pizza?
Being that we are a larger family, we love cooking pizza the most! Cooking pizza is so easy and fun to do, especially, since the kids get involved in the assembly of adding their own toppings, etc.
We love family pizza nights! Not to mention, the woodfired taste is second to none. However, if I am being completely honest, my husband is mostly the cook while I prepare the food. I love making pizza but, he adds the perfect touch, he calls it his secret recipe, for any meat and recipes I give him!
We have cooked maple-glazed ham, cast-iron steak, chicken, apple pie, and other desserts, veggies, potatoes - You name it!
Authentic Pizza Oven Recipes by Amber
Leftover Pizza Dough Cinnamon Rolls
Being a bigger family, maximizing our food, and avoiding waste is important to our bottom dollar. We strive to find innovative ways to avoid waste, taking up unnecessary space in our fridge, and my kids’ nightmare chore- excessive dishwashing!
This recipe is perfect for using your leftover pizza dough for either a dessert or even for breakfast the next day. The best part is that you can cook it as your oven cools down after making pizza! Not to mention, it is super easy and quick, which we can all appreciate.
The versatility of rolls is endless, so you are not limited to cinnamon. You can simply use any kind of filler and toppings that you have in your pantry like Nutella, banana, berries, maple syrup- anything! I am a cinnamon and raisin fanatic so we always have them on hand, but you can change it up or add to it in any way that you like!
Left-over pizza dough
1. Be sure that your oven is at least 175 degrees Celsius
2. Next, sprinkle some flour and powdered sugar on the surface of where you are making the rolls. (I use our wood peel- It is perfect for almost anything). Roll out your leftover dough onto the flour and sugar mixture until you form it into a rectangle.
Any size will do, remember, it is dependent on how much dough you have remaining. After you have formed your rectangle, then brush it with your melted butter.
3. After you have brushed your dough with the melted sugar, then sprinkle it with more powdered sugar, cinnamon, and raisins. (Again, you can use whatever fillings you have or prefer) Next, roll up your dough like a Swiss roll
4. Once rolled up, cut into 1”-1 1/2” slices and stand them up on a greased pan (I use a cast iron skillet)
5. Place the pan in your oven and cook for approximately 12 minutes or until golden brown
Serve warm with some ice cream for the perfect dessert! You can leave them as-is or even drizzle some caramel, maple syrup, or icing! Enjoy!
Chicken Pesto Pizza
Pizza dough, your favorite dough recipe, or even pre-made dough is fine
1. First, you want to boil your chicken. When the chicken is done, then shred it with forks as desired.
2. Fire up your oven to 250 degrees Celsius
3. Roll out your dough to 12” in diameter
4. Spoon your basil pesto onto the dough
5. Sprinkle the provolone cheese on top of the pesto, then add the Roma tomatoes, sundried tomatoes, and chicken
6. Place your pizza in the oven. Be sure to rotate your pizza approximately every 30 seconds so that the edges cook evenly next to the fire until the pizza is done.
Pizza dough, your favorite dough recipe, or even pre-made dough is fine
¼ cup of Salted Butter, melted
Fresh Oregano, minced
6 cloves Garlic, minced
*You can also use any kind of Italian and Garlic seasoning that you have on hand
1. Be sure your oven is heated to 250 degrees Celsius
2. Roll out your pizza dough into a 14” rectangle
3. Brush on your melted butter
4. Add the minced oregano and garlic *Or, any Italian and Garlic seasoning of your choice*
5. Place your breadsticks in your oven and cook until they are a golden-brown color.
IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN BEING FEATURED AS CUSTOMER OF THE MONTH - please email Amber@authenticpizzaovens.com
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