Go Back   Forno Bravo Forum: The Wood-Fired Oven Community > Pizza Quest with Peter Reinhart > Pizza

Like Tree3Likes

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 10-11-2010, 04:56 PM
Serf
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: MA
Posts: 4
Default cleaning ash before cooking

Hello,

I've just tried cooking pizza in my new brick oven, and, considering it was my first time, nothing turned out completely disastrous, but I did have some problems with black ash on the floor making the bottom of my pizzas dirty. How do I clean the floor after the burning woods have been moved to the side and right before the pizzas go in so that the center of the oven will be clean enough? Some of my woods today were turning white, but I still had some black ashes that got smudged onto the floor...

Thanks in advance!!
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 10-12-2010, 01:57 PM
Alter ego's Avatar
Apprentice
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Newcastle, Australia
Posts: 186
Default Re: cleaning ash before cooking

After I have moved all the coals to the sides I blow the ash of the floor. I use a 2m long 10mm aluminium tube with one end slightly flattened. Start at the front and blow the ash towards the fire. This way I can even get all ash out of the corner at the sides.

The tube is also usefull for blowing on the fire if it is slow to get going and you don't get your eyebrows singed or a face full of smoke.
david s likes this.
__________________
Paul

Deficio est nusquam tamen vicis ut satus iterum
(Failure is nothing but the opportunity to start again)
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 10-12-2010, 02:15 PM
Jed Jed is offline
Journeyman
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Bend, Oregon; West Coast USA
Posts: 428
Default Re: cleaning ash before cooking

I use two tools to clean the floor for pizza.

The local 'Cash and Carry' store sells brass bristle brushes that are intended to brush the floor of pizza ovens. You can get similar tools from Forno Bravo to brush the floor clean.

Like Alter Ego, I built a tube to concentrate air and blow the ash off the floor, after the brushing. Although built from different materials (search this forum for 'blow hard bellows') the air through the tube is a great tool for helping with the fire, and cleaning the floor of the oven.

JED
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 10-12-2010, 06:35 PM
dmun's Avatar
Moderator
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: New Jersey USA
Posts: 4,216
Default Re: cleaning ash before cooking

I'm wondering about the "black" cinders that the OP is having trouble with. If your oven is anywhere near the temperatures you need, there shouldn't be any exposed carbon that doesn't burn away in a hurry.

I generally move my fire off to the side about twenty minutes before I'm ready to cook. If there is a stray black streak from moving the fire over (it's mostly bright coals and white ash by that point) it's long gone by the time I come out to do my final brush.

Pianotehj: are you firing your oven until all the carbon is burnt off the interior of the dome? A lot of new ovens are still somewhat damp, and don't come to the temperatures you need right away. Also, a lot of new oven owners are hesitant to build the "scary" big fires needed to get your oven up to temperature.
__________________
My geodesic oven project:
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
,
To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 10-12-2010, 08:18 PM
Serf
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: MA
Posts: 4
Default Re: cleaning ash before cooking

alter ego & jed: sounds like a costless yet effective solution! I will be making a tube tomorrow.

dmun: I have been curing my oven for the past week, and I had gotten the temperature up to about 700 when I tried baking pizza for the first time. but you are right--I am new to both building and handling huge fires. how much wood do you suggest I use to get the oven up to 800 degrees?

thank you everyone!

Last edited by pianotehj; 10-12-2010 at 08:26 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 10-13-2010, 04:11 AM
nissanneill's Avatar
Il Pizzaiolo
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Adelaide, South Australia
Posts: 1,847
Thumbs up Re: cleaning ash before cooking

Make sure that your wood is dry and preferably seasoned.
Just keep adding the wood maintaining a fairly aggressive fire. Keep the fire fiercer until the dome and the sides are white, ie. the carbon has burned off and the oven is then ready for your pizzas. I push the coals to the back and one side, brush the hearth with a bristle brush (not a nylon one) and bake. I also put on the coals more wood to keep the flames running around the oven dome, so you will use possibly a wheelbarrow load of wood to get it up to 500˚C and then cooking 20-30 pizzas. Get yourself a well insulted door and use that stored heat and cook for 2 days.

Cheers.

Neill
__________________
Prevention is better than cure, - do it right the first time!

The more I learn, the more I realise how little I know


Neillís Pompeiii #1

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.

Neillís kitchen underway

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 10-13-2010, 10:24 AM
Serf
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: chicago, il. u.s.a
Posts: 11
Default Re: cleaning ash before cooking

Hi all,
Does anyone use a damp cloth to clean the ashes before placing the pizzas on the hearth? If so, are there any problems doing so? The tube to blow the ashes sounds good but aren't those ashes going to fall back on the floor again???
Thanks
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 10-13-2010, 11:26 AM
Serf
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: MA
Posts: 4
Default Re: cleaning ash before cooking

I am taking an artisan breads course at the french culinary institute, and my chef (who has worked at a bakery that uses only wood-fired brick ovens for all of their products) told me that they would quickly sweep with a brush (brass bristles), then wet a mop (not dripping wet, just lightly dampen) and wipe the floor after the woods have been moved.
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 10-13-2010, 02:59 PM
Grimaldi's Avatar
Apprentice
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Texas
Posts: 106
Default Re: cleaning ash before cooking

After I have the oven up to temp and push the fire to the side (and hold it back with my homemade iron log holder), I brass brush the available cooking floor, and then give it a quick wipe with a damp towel wrapped around a hoe...and then I'm ready to get after it.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 10-13-2010, 04:11 PM
Dino_Pizza's Avatar
Il Pizzaiolo
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Northridge, CA
Posts: 1,013
Default Re: cleaning ash before cooking

I do similar and use the brass brush to move wood back/side then keep brushing back 3 or 4 times to push the ashes back and get the floor 'cleaner'.

THEN I DO A LIGHT DAMP MOP: I get the cotton "replacement" mop heads available most anywhere, cut in half, trim the length a bit and wrap thin wire around the mop head and 2" tip of a short pole. I dip this in a bucket of water, squeeze, then just the lightest mopping.

I really don't mind the bit of ash though. The brass bristle brush get's enough for pizza, but for bread, mopping is essential. (well, highly recommended )
__________________
"Life is a banquet and most poor sons-of-bitches are starving to death." -Auntie Mame

View My Picasa Web Album UPDATED oct

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


My Oven Costs Spreadsheet

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.


My Oven Thread

To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 0 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
ash, cleaning, pizza

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Cleaning the Oven Dome & Cooking Floor southpaw Pompeii Oven Construction 14 03-01-2013 03:10 PM
Driving heat across the cooking floor james Heat Management 123 06-04-2012 11:54 AM
Raising cooking floor Freddie Getting Started 4 07-25-2009 04:37 PM
New Cooking Classes in Sonoma County james Get Cooking 1 04-10-2009 06:14 PM
Cooking Classes at Ramekins in Sonoma james Get Cooking 5 08-06-2006 07:38 PM


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 05:32 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Search Engine Friendly URLs by vBSEO 3.6.0
© 2006/10 Forno Bravo, LLC