For bread baking (not pizza making) an oven door is required. You could cobble something very simple together like a piece of plywood with a wet towel to protect the wood while baking, or you could have a door custom made.
Very nice, solid stone base. Note the metal rim around the oven opening for protection. There's a fairly large crack in the dome, but this is absolutely normal when working with mud. Even with many, many cracks, earth ovens can usually maintain their integrity. I always enjoy seeing the soot deposits on the dome. For outdoor use you generally don't need a chimney.
In my opinion (since I wrote it) Earth Oven Adventure provides you with a clear template of all you need to know about constructing your own outdoor earth oven. Even those without building experience will soon be eating the very best breads and pizzas. Preview the book here: http://stores.lulu.com/store.php?fAcctID=775822
For as long as I can remember, I've known of the term wattle and daub construction, but it never occurred to me that ovens were often constructed this way. The above photos show the reconstruction of a medieval oven in England. The construction of earth ovens in Quebec also use the wattle and daub method (at least in the past they did), but I often wonder why a sand mold wasn't used instead. Certainly a sand mold would have been much easier to form than a wattle mold.
Here are a pair of Zuni hornos. Often hornos are built in clusters of two or more. Although these ovens appear to be beat up, I suspect they produce lots of bread. The large oven openings make them very inefficient, but the Native Americans have been creating this style oven for a long time. I've been told that when the hornos cool down, dogs frequently crawl inside to keep warm. That is a picture I would love to have.
Bread First is a book for beginners. Everything a beginner needs to know can be found here. You can expect to bake great bread the first time. The process is simple, and the ingredients are readily available. "No knead" baking is for everyone. No experience is required. Clear instructions with photos make everything extra easy.
Bread Earth And Fire: Earth Ovens And Artisan Breads
For the past couple of years I've been revising my book, Bread Earth And Fire. I've added the subtitle Earth Ovens And Artisan Breads because I feel this more fully explains what the book is about. Along with the photos, you'll now find drawings that better illustrate the oven building process, new ovens to build as well a history of bread from the "beginning of time."
Bread Earth And Fire: Earth Ovens And Artisan Breads is available as an ebook or print copy from Lulu.
I write about bread and wood-fired bread ovens. Sourdough bread baking is my specialty. While the dough is rising I have time to make art, lots of art. Each winter I travel to Guatemala to build energy efficient stoves for the Mayas.