#21  
Old 02-22-2008, 07:48 PM
gjbingham's Avatar
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Default Re: Hello from Texas

JC,
I still can't help but scrub off the soot after the smoke gets out of hand.

John, just curious, did you read Denzo's "Build Your Own Earth Oven". That was the first of my books on WFOs.

George
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  #22  
Old 02-22-2008, 10:31 PM
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Default Re: Hello from Texas

Wet Newspaper...what a great idea!

....I was wondering how you kept the form sand from falling onto your pizzas over the next 10 years or so!
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  #23  
Old 02-22-2008, 10:38 PM
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Default Re: Hello from Texas

This straw/clay mixture sounds like the field oven I saw at Colonial Williamsburg.

What's the function of the clay and sawdust? I've made pottery and wonder what would happen to your pots with some straw or sawdust in the mix...and what happens with your oven in the long term? does it just become voids?

You must be following some kind of recipe here??
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  #24  
Old 02-23-2008, 12:00 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Texas
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Default Re: Hello from Texas

GJ, yes, this is straight out of Denzo's book. Great book.

Jim, the clay/sawdust mixture is used in the insulation layers, under the oven subfloor and cladding the dome. The clay/straw mix is for strength. I don't know how the sawdust acts as an insulator, but Denzo assures us it does. I'll let you know if it works once we get the cladding on. I'm tolerably certain that it's not going to insulate as well as high-tech materials, but it is, I guess, more of a purist approach.
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  #25  
Old 02-24-2008, 01:03 AM
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Default Re: Hello from Texas

Well, with it being relatively easy to build and not that expensive, the idea is probably that you rebuild it every five or ten years - or whenever it falls down.

Way cool! What are the nexts steps, then? How long till you start cooking in it?
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  #26  
Old 02-25-2008, 09:56 AM
Peasant
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Texas
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Default Re: Hello from Texas

Glad you asked. We cooked Saturday, 2 weeks and one day after we broke ground. The oven is not done, but we cooked in it as the final curing before we put on the insulation dome. Because the adobe shrinks so drastically as it dries, it has to be 100% dry before you put on the next layer to ensure a good joint.

Even without insulation, though, it made great two minute pizzas, and a single bake of breads before it got too cold to bake. (It was down to about 350f after five hours).

As you can see from the photos, we used two different doughs for both the bread and the pizza. All the doughs were natural leaven, with a double leaven sponge, the second sponge being retarded for about a week, so they were very flavorful. The smoother pizza dough and the flatter bread loaf were made from 80% unbleached white, 10% semolina, 10% rye, with 64% hydration and 2% salt. The stiffer pizzas and the taller loaves were made from 40% unbleached white, 40% white whole wheat, 10% semolina, 10% rye, 55% hydration, 2% salt. The higher hydration dough was much easier to work with for pizza, and gave a better spring on the pizza crust. The lower hydration made a more flavorful bread, and had a better oven spring, but as you might imagine it was quite a bit more dense, with a tigher crumb, than the higher hydration dough. I attribute that partly to the hydration, and partly to the whole wheat.
Attached Thumbnails
Hello from Texas-pizzabread001.jpg   Hello from Texas-pizzabread004.jpg   Hello from Texas-pizzabread010.jpg   Hello from Texas-pizzabread011.jpg   Hello from Texas-pizzabread012.jpg  

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  #27  
Old 02-25-2008, 09:59 AM
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Default Re: Hello from Texas

Looks like it performs wonderfully!

Nice to have another option for builders.

How was the pizza? It looks scrumptious!
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  #28  
Old 02-25-2008, 10:00 AM
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Default Re: Hello from Texas

A few more pics from Saturday.
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  #29  
Old 02-25-2008, 10:01 AM
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Default Re: Hello from Texas

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Fahle View Post
A few more pics from Saturday.
Stop it already.
It's lunch time. My tummy is growling even more now!!

YUM!

I gotta fire my oven tonite.....

Dave
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  #30  
Old 02-25-2008, 10:08 AM
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Default Re: Hello from Texas

Quote:
Originally Posted by asudavew View Post

How was the pizza? It looks scrumptious!
Oh, it was edible, I suppose. And by edible I mean it was the best pizza I've ever had in my life.
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