Final Stucco Coat

The Finished Oven
The final step was to cover the oven body and stand with a thin layer of external white stucco. The final coat covered rough spots in the stucco undercoat and easily hid the seams in the block stand -- including the places where I had broken the blocks using a hammer.

The final product is traditional Mediterranean Igloo that fits nicely with the surrounding stone walls and olive orchards. The oven not only looks good, it cooks wonderfully -- exceeding our expectations.

At the time of this writing, the oven has been used for scores of loaves of bread, Schiaciatta, focaccia, multiple dinner parties and even a 16lb Thanksgiving turkey. It heat up in less than an hour, and does a great job of retaining heat for bread and roasting. The fact that we did not coat the dome with additional refractory material does not seem to be a drawback, and we have not had any trouble driving enough heat into the cooking floor.

Perhaps one of the best compliments is that all of the Italians who see it, and help us cook in the oven, think that it looks perfectly in place -- just what it should be.