Saturday, December 26, 2009

Bake Door Update

On Nov. 28, I posted information and photos about my new bake door. Yes, I felt pretty good about it, and I thought I was done with door construction until I built a new oven.
A few weeks later…

After having made some flat breads, there were just a few coals left in the oven that were all the way to the back. I stuffed the oven with some large chunks of wood to dry out, inserted my bake door, and I was done.
Surprise. The next morning I looked out at the oven from my studio window, and the door was gone. No big deal I thought. Probably it just fell off on to the ground, I wish. As it turned out, there was enough residual heat in the oven to ignite the logs and totally destroy my bake door. Never again will I incorporate wood into a bake door design. I am going to try making a door with mineral wool sandwiched by two layers of metal. When I have this worked out and functioning, I’ll post a photo.

Hemp For Fuel

Any way you look at (and we all need to), burning wood creates a lot of air pollution and contributes to deforestation. I love my outdoor wood-burning oven as much as anybody loves theirs, but every time I see the smoke it produces, not only do I feel a little sense of guilt, but I also wonder about fuel alternatives.
Perhaps hemp is one of the answers. I don't know how many BTU's it puts out, and I don't know how much air pollution it produces, but I do know that it's well past the time we started to look beyond firing our ovens with wood.
There is a company in England that sells Rastafire Logs, and that's no joke.
"All the Hemp is grown by UK farmers (in their attics). So light up, sit back and enjoy a relaxing cosy real fire, whilst waiting for the neighbours to call round the Gendarmes. Rastafire burns well on its own or mixed in with other wood briquettes."
And don't worry, the hemp used for fuel and fiber is quite different than the weed that's smoked, so we won't have to be concerned with corrupting our youth.
Is there anybody out there who has had some experience burning fuel other than wood in a bakeoven?