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asimenia 04-06-2010 06:06 AM

Hi from Preveza, Greece
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Hi there.
My name's Jayne (I'm British) and I'm married to a Greek and we live in Greece. As of last week we've added a WBO to our BBQ area - although my husband believes himself to be an expert on BBQ - we are both complete novices on the oven we've bought - I will add a photo and please give your input as to what we can cook in it -etc all info REALLY appreciated!!!! As I said - we managed to get the oven in place within a few hours - just in time for Easter BUT we were scared to use it for anything other than roast potatoes in case we poisoned everyone lol
I will slowly read through the forum - although I must admit I find all the 'jargon' a bit confusing!
Thanks for looking

Raffy 04-06-2010 11:35 AM

Re: Hi from Preveza, Greece
Hi Jayne,

Welcome to the forum! :) There are a multitude of things you can cook in the oven. Maybe you can start out with baking some bread then move onto other things. It's good to start with familiar dishes like the roasted potatoes and vegetables but learning new dishes and experimenting with your oven is where all the fun is.

Is your oven properly cured already? If it is, I suggest getting it up to temperature and then cooking with the retained heat. When the dome whitens, it's a good indication that you have reached the right temp. Beer chicken seems to be a favorite first dish with most of the members here.

Here is a link to a video of James cooking a Beer Can Chicken

Here are other various videos of cooking in the oven.

Here is a link to other resources that you will find useful like articles, PDF files and the such. Just click here

Hope this helps.

Remember have fun experimenting but be sure that you have cured your oven first before lighting the BIG ONE!


P.S. Nice setup! Delicious looking food. Yum! :D

texassourdough 04-06-2010 12:49 PM

Re: Hi from Preveza, Greece
Welcome aboard, Jayne!

Looks like you have a good setup! I am sure a number of us would be more than willing to come to Greece to help you learn to use your oven! :o)

I am guessing from your comments that your oven was prebuilt and installed at your house. But no matter how built, it would probably benefit from having a series of progressively larger fires to dry it out and get it into working mode.

Searching the archives should give you a number of ideas. I would urge you to buy a cast iron ("Tuscan") grill to use in the oven. It will do steaks better than ANY grill for by pulling the coals forward and setting the grill on top the coals will be about 2 inches from the steak and by keeping a good fire going in the rear the top of the dome will be in the 1200 degree range so you cook from both sides at once. Very fast. Don't use thick cuts - 3/4 inch is ideal, 1 inch max. Otherwise it will be charred on the outside and raw on the inside.

Good Luck!

ThisOldGarageNJ 04-07-2010 04:15 AM

Re: Hi from Preveza, Greece
Hi Jayne,, Great setup you have.. Besides pizza and bread,,, The most obvious,, U can cook anything in there you would cook in the house oven,, Last night at 10pm I put in a pork butt to slow cook overnight and this morninat 6:30 I had a fantastic breakfast..
Some of my favorites
Pork butt (pulled pork)
Dirty Streak
Beer can chicken
Etc, etc,,
Here's a few pics to wet your appetite,,
Enjoy your oven...

John K 04-07-2010 04:49 AM

Re: Hi from Preveza, Greece
Welcome Jayne.

I was in Greece a few years back and relatives of mine had a similar set-up that I believe were pre-made units bought and ready to go!! I assume yours are also the same?

The units I came across worked very well and are great additions to any outdoor setting you may have and Preveza if I am not mistaken being a coastal town would be fantastic to dine outdoors by your WFO.


GianniFocaccia 04-07-2010 05:04 PM

Re: Hi from Preveza, Greece
4 Attachment(s)
Hi Jayne,

Welcome to the FB Forum. What a wonderful cooking facility you have there!

As new as you are to your oven, it should not take you both very long to figure out how to apply the oven's wonderful radiant heat to your favorite dishes.

Below are some images from the Forno Bravo Expo I attended in February of this year. The dishes are: Salmon with artichoke hearts in white wine and brandy (heavenly); Pork loin (wonderfully handled); Paella with shrimp, olives and peas (good smokey notes); and chicken with garlic, sausage and potatoes (delicious!). Each of these dishes (and endless pizzas) was cooked in a FB oven of differing temperatures.

Have fun with your new oven!


asimenia 04-07-2010 09:45 PM

Re: Hi from Preveza, Greece
Thanks for everyone's welcome and comments - The last photos are similar to our oven (John). Looking forward to being able to use the oven - first we have to construct the HIGHEST chimney you can imagine to avoid the neighbours' wrath. It has to be as high as a block of 2 apartments - we lit it Easter Sunday with a approx 5m of chimney and the first smoke went straight into the neighbours above us bedroom - so hubby is going to put another 3metres on - thankfully the block next door is owned by a outdoor chef as well and has allowed us to attach the chimney to their unbricked top floor balcony (in exchange for the use of the oven!)
Told hubby - people will see the pic on the lamb on the spit etc and think what a messy lot we are - he disagreed and said 'apart from the lack of decoration - people will only see I have things handy and will not see an untidy mess' (like I do).

I am slowly educating hubby on the oven - even though he already thinks he knows everything!!!! Will try to cook pork in it because hubby slaughtered a pig a couple of weeks ago and is bullying me to cook it! He thinks he's a farmer! Greeks out of cities still live the simple life when it comes to food - no freezer ready meals available here!
Thanks again for the replies

asimenia 04-07-2010 09:48 PM

Re: Hi from Preveza, Greece
Forgot to say - you are welcome to come over and teach us - we have a spare apartment! LOL

Dino_Pizza 04-07-2010 10:24 PM

Re: Hi from Preveza, Greece
Jayne! The picture of the lamb on the rotisserie spit with the thin spit under it is great :p.

From my travels to Greece, I gather that thin spit is the sweetbreads and gizzards wrapped in intestines and highly spiced-salted and lemon'd. It's so good. I visited a cousin in Greece a few years ago who had a "taverna" with a similar setup as you have. I noticed those brick ovens in the brick stores and really wished we had them here in the States. That's what made me find this web site.

Actually, it was that trip to Greece, seeing my relatives homes in the country (we are talking pump your own water, slaughter your own goat, make your own wine) that got me fascinated with wood-fired-ovens since most country homes had one. My last trip to Italy and Naples finalized my desire to build my own pizza oven.

I think it's great to live in Greece and make pizza in your own oven. (It really annoys the Greeks when you make Italian food :D). The Greek kaseri cheese is possibly better and more interesting than Parmesan for pizza's. And those ovens are perfect for classic Greek roasted chicken and potatoes. Remember: that rotisserie to the right is great for meats so think of the oven as and oven: it's ideal for breads and anything that needs roasting.

Also, Greeks are creatures of habit and tradition. They have their foods and cooking methods that rarely change over time. Go ahead and change that: Wow our friends by wrapping chunks of feta cheese in freshly picked grape leaves or fig leaves, skewer them with a large tooth pic and roast them in the pizza oven and serve with locale white wine and crusty bread while the animal cooks on the rotisserie.

Are you going to roast the pig in the oven? I'm so jealous. Looks like your enjoying the good life. Yassou! (cheers!) -Dino

asimenia 04-08-2010 04:01 AM

Re: Hi from Preveza, Greece
Hi Dino,
You know a lot about Greeks! I took the liberty of looking at your photo link to see if there's any evidence of Greek blood - I came across a Yiayia and a Thea - so I now know why you know so much!!! LOL Congratulations on the wedding btw - you both looked really lovely!
As you said Greeks do not like people messing with their food! I once made a sweet and sour pork with pineapple - my guests were horrified by the fruit in their meal ! I will try to cook the pork - depending on the size of the piece - hubby and his friend cut the meat into pieces - without prior knowledge of cuts! (hence the fillet part has been lost).
I am dying to try out the oven - and cannot wait around for hubby to get his act together - so I am teaching myself how to use it - he can be the 'spit and BBQ' master!!!
You'd be surprised at the amount of wood pizza ovens in use at the local pizzerias in preveza. Will take a photo of our chimney so you can all have a laugh!

Actually I tend to enjoy life a bit too much when it comes to wine and food!!!!

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