#21  
Old 11-16-2005, 04:58 PM
james's Avatar
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Hi Paul,

Peter and I cooked at a customer's oven today and played around with our Infrared thermometer -- so it's all still fresh in my (often failing) mind.

I was watching the flame in the dome, and I still think that the flame works best when it reaches more than half way across the dome. I think the reflecting heat really helps you fuse the olive oil on the top of the pizza. The oven had been fired for a little over an hour with so-so wood and the dome was easily into the 800's, and the boost from the flame was nice.

My view is that keeping the hearth hot is always the biggest challenge. Our recent experience is that a good fire on the side also drives heat across the cooking floor. At a really big party (75 pizzas in a little over an hour), I watched the floor fall in heat, only to get re-charged by bringing the fire up a little hotter. The Infrared showed the heat moving across the floor and the floor heat would come back up.

Do you think your hearth is really fully cured? How many big nights of cooking have you had in it? Is there a chance your oven floor will get better with more use?

It's the trouble keeping the floor up to heat that makes me think about the island hearth. It's harder to install, but I think it makes the floor more responsive. It isn't for everyone, but if you really want to push the oven -- it can make sense.

James
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  #22  
Old 11-16-2005, 05:17 PM
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it's possible that it's still not fully cured yet---concrete really does take a long t time to fully cure---but i have fired it fairly regularly (except for a few rainy weeks there before i got the roof up) since august.

could you clarify again: by half way across the dome, do you mean that flame is covering half of the entire surface area of the dome? that's about what works best for me, and i have experienced similar results in terms of watching floor temperatures relative to the size of the fire.

if i end up opening a place and building another oven, i will certainly use the island design. how did the subfloor of firebricks work out for you?

75 pizzas in an hour! that's good time. i can crank out pizzas pretty fast, in terms of tossing and topping, but i haven't quite mastered the rhythm of cooking multiple pizzas in the oven with 90 second cook times. rotating is crucial, but complicates rotating multiple pies in and out. logistically, i am very hampered by the location of my oven to my make table as well.
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  #23  
Old 11-06-2006, 12:44 AM
Peasant
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Santol. Boac, Marinduque, RP
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Default Weather and Rain

Here we have had two CAT 3 Typhoons this year, one in May and one in September. I am wondering how folks keep the rain and water out of the
outdoor ovens.
JJ
Philippines
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  #24  
Old 11-06-2006, 12:58 AM
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Water and wood-fired cooking do not go together. So, you should do everything you can to keep water out of the oven and the insulation, which should include making sure the oven enclosure is waterproof, having a cap on your chimney to keep water from coming down onto the vent landing, and using a door. You might want to put together some form of roof over the oven and the opening.
James
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