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Barrel-Style Outdoor Oven Heats Up Fast
Max and Eva Edleson are firing up wood-fired barrel ovens for cooking and entertaining. The hybrid ovens combine the best qualities of steel barrel stoves with traditional earthen or brick ovens. They heat up fast with relatively little wood and hold the heat for extended baking.
  “With a barrel oven, you can start your fire and be ready to bake in 15 min., while a brick oven can take hours to heat,” says Eva. “The oven has two racks and can bake 10 to 12 loaves of bread at a time or hold four cookie sheets or four large pizzas. Take the upper rack out, and you can roast a very large piece of meat or even an entire animal or cook a huge pot of stew.”
  The secret to the fast heat is the firebox beneath the metal oven with heat rising through an air chamber surrounding the barrel. The secret to the extended heat is the brick, stone or cob jacket that surrounds the fire chamber. Excess heat not absorbed by the oven is absorbed by the jacket mass. By the time the fuel is burning down, the jacket is radiating stored heat back at the barrel oven, extending the baking process.
  “It takes a small amount of wood, thanks to the heat jacket design and mass,” says Eva. “We build them for homeowners to use in backyards for entertaining and baking for their own families. We just built one as a wedding gift from parents for a newlyweds’ home.”
  In addition to building the ovens, they also sell the hardware to people interested in building their own. The barrel with insulated face, hinged door and oven racks is available for $400. Add the firebox door, ash grate and ash drawer (which doubles as an air register), and the price is $800 plus S&H.
  All parts except the barrels are made in the couple’s metal shop from raw steel. The door is an insulated sandwich of metal and ceramic wool insulation. Barrels are of the thickest gauge available, kiln-burned and sandblasted to eliminate any paint or other residue. Exposed parts are coated with high temperature paint to prevent rust and extend durable life.
  Contact:  FARM SHOW Followup, Firespeaking, 91040 Nelson Mountain Rd., Deadwood, Ore. 97430 (ph 541 964-3536; info@firespeaking.com; www.firespeaking.com).

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2012 - Volume #36, Issue #6