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AfriCan Oven - Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community

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I'm Peter Reinhart! Ask Me Anything! Monday, February 15, 2016 7:00-8:00 pm EST

To kick off our AMA feature, we have invited author, chef and master bread maker and host of Pizza Quest, Peter Reinhart, to be our first host! Peter will be in the Forum on Monday, February 15th, from 7:00 - 8:00 pm EST. If you are unable to be online during the live session, you can post your questions in the sticky post. Peter will answer those questions during the live session on February 15th. You can view Peter's answers to your questions as well as what happened during the live session in the session thread.

Ask Me Anything New Forum Feature

You will notice a new forum at the top of the main page called, "Ask Me Anything". This forum will be used for live one hour "Ask Me Anything" (AMA) sessions hosted by people who are knowledgeable in different areas pertaining to wood fired ovens. How it works:
- Each AMA will have a "sticky" thread where the community can post questions they would like answered during the live session. This will allow everyone to participate even if you can't be online for the live session. These questions will not be answered by the host until the live AMA; if you need an answer quickly, you should post it in the appropriate Forum area for the community to respond.
- Another thread will be posted for the live AMA. Registered users who are logged in during the live session can interact with the host by asking questions and receiving responses.
- The live thread will remain in the AMA forum to view after the session.

We hope you enjoy this new feature! Please let us know if there is a topic that you'd like to have as an AMA and we'll look for a host!

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AfriCan Oven

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  • AfriCan Oven

    Oven the weekend, I went over to a friends house - we grew up together in Africa many years ago (makes me sound so old).

    As he's leaving the country, he dug up an old pizza oven to celebrate; these were the ovens that we used as kids in Africa.

    They are made out of recycled metal (usually oil drums or calcium carbonate cans); and cook a pizza in about 3 minutes.

    So while not really a brick oven - I thought it may serve of interest to some here.

    The concept is very simple so I'll let the pictures do the talking.
    (note that we are using trays only because we had people who were vegetarian and were freaking out at the idea of cooking meat pizza and veggie pizza on the same floor. Normally, the pizza would go straight onto the hot metal which would form a nice crust)



    M.

  • #2
    Re: AfriCan Oven

    and some more pictures







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    • #3
      Re: AfriCan Oven

      Spinal, Thanks for posting. That's an interesting oven.
      A few questions:

      Is the actual cooking surface a plate of steel or a sheet with rolled over edges? Looks like a a circle of plate steel maybe 1/4 inch or better thick, but you said recycled oil barrels etc. and so I thought I would ask.

      Also, I'm guessing that in Africa the oven burned charcoal. This looks pretty sophisticated. Were these for an individual family or for an extended multifamily situation? Was this something that a middle class family might have...sort of like the average family in the US or UK might have a BBQ grill?

      Was there a common daily food that was cooked in these ovens? I mean when one thinks African meals, pizza isn't the food that first comes to mind.

      Bests,
      Wiley

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: AfriCan Oven

        Hello Spinal,

        Thank you so much for sharing these pictures on our forum. It is always great seeing the different kind of ovens out there in the world. Happy Cooking!

        Amber

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: AfriCan Oven

          Originally posted by moderator View Post
          Hello Spinal,

          Thank you so much for sharing these pictures on our forum. It is always great seeing the different kind of ovens out there in the world. Happy Cooking!

          Amber
          Thanks - but it's not mine Mine is a more conventional (fire) bricks and mortar build that's slowly coming along... waiting for the vermicrete to dry now...

          Originally posted by Wiley View Post
          Spinal, Thanks for posting. That's an interesting oven.
          A few questions:

          Is the actual cooking surface a plate of steel or a sheet with rolled over edges? Looks like a a circle of plate steel maybe 1/4 inch or better thick, but you said recycled oil barrels etc. and so I thought I would ask.
          Not totally sure... I presume it is a oil drum side that's been cut out and had its edges rolled, but tbh I don't know! That said, it's definetely NOT a piece of solid steel - the whole contraption, empty is quite light and can be lifted by a geek like me with one hand. The cooking surfaces are thin (potentially a little thicker than the sides, but not more than a few microns thicker)

          Originally posted by Wiley View Post
          Also, I'm guessing that in Africa the oven burned charcoal. This looks pretty sophisticated. Were these for an individual family or for an extended multifamily situation? Was this something that a middle class family might have...sort of like the average family in the US or UK might have a BBQ grill?
          Charcoal or wood - you start the fire on the top burner, and as it turns to embers, you move them down to the pits below. Being in a smoke control zone, we ended up using "smokeless" stuff.

          To be honest, I don't think that the "design" is African; it's something that I've only ever seen amongst Indian families in Africa. My friend is of Indian/Kenyan origin, so that explains why he has one.

          Just about all the Indian-origin friends I had at the time had one of these.

          Originally posted by Wiley View Post

          Was there a common daily food that was cooked in these ovens? I mean when one thinks African meals, pizza isn't the food that first comes to mind.

          Bests,
          Wiley
          Not really, it was treated much like a BBQ in the UK. You use it on a weekend when it's sunny and have a few friends over. I've never used the top pan area.

          M.
          Last edited by Spinal; 08-20-2012, 10:39 PM.

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          • #6
            Re: AfriCan Oven

            Love it. Very cool.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: AfriCan Oven

              Spinal,

              Please post pictures of your oven when completed! :-) We all would love to see it.

              Amber

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              • #8
                Re: AfriCan Oven

                I've got a thread somewhere with the build... need to update it actually!

                Comment

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