Old 11-21-2007, 10:22 AM
jahysea's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Saint Helena California
Posts: 116
Default Re: Saint Helena Oven

Thanks everyone, none of it would have been possible without the example ovens built and documented by others. I'm noticing many of the ovens being built now display far better brick crafting, with bricks shaped to eliminate mortar both inside and outside, etc.

I love explaining the building of the oven to people. They kind of shake their heads not knowing why you would need or want a wood oven, much less build one yourself.

I've done a lot of home improvement projects but the oven has to be #1 most interesting and rewarding.

James, it cooks like a champ. I mostly cook with fire in the oven, but it retains heat pretty well also. I've never made real bread, I'd like to tackle that sometime. Mainly we cook chicken, roast, veggies, some tuscan grilling, and pizza of course.

I've learned that wood efficiency is actually counter-intuitive. I use the least wood when I use a lot of wood in the beginning, slide the coals over and just use minimal wood to maintain. Ideally I get a couple sticks lit to warm the thing for 20 mins or so, then just turn it into a furnace.

Fun fun. Tackling a small Turkey tomorrow. Brining it overnight in salt/maple/water solution. Stuffing it, then double foiling it and placing it in a medium hot oven with small fire. Probably leave the door open. Need the small fire because as the Turkey finishes we will be cooking brussel sprouts, squash, probably some flatbreads.
- JC
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Old 11-26-2007, 01:08 PM
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Somers, New York
Posts: 74
Default Re: Saint Helena Oven

Very nice. I just have this itch to start also but here in NY I have to also placate the powers that be. So I'm stuck in permit hell while they chew my plans to confetti.

Would it be possible to post some pictures of the entire outdoor setup?
I just love looking at these things.

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