Woodfired oven – Bess

Meet Bess.  She’s squat, round, hot, smelly and bloody heavy!  BUT she sure can cook and she’s my new best friend 😆 !  Yesterday we took delivery of my belated birthday present…A wood fired oven that is on a stand and therefore mobile.  For us the mobile aspect is very important because we are a very mobile family so everything we own has to be able to fit into a removal container at some stage or another.

One day, when we settle down, Bess will be built into an outdoor kitchen but for the moment she’ll be living on her stand.  Last night after curing her we cooked pizza.  Tonight, motivated to learn more about controlling the temperature, we cooked more pizza, a rolled shoulder of lamb, baked stuffed apples and jacket potatoes.  The potatoes are still in the oven as I’m writing this because I’ve decided to let the embers cook them in foil.

The biggest challenge about cooking in a wood fired oven is temperature regulation…

it get’s darn hot.

I have plans to set up a temporary outdoor kitchen outside so that cooking with the wood fire oven is as comfortable as cooking in the indoor kitchen. 

My night photographic skills leave a lot to be desired!  Next time I take night pictures I’ll use a tripod.  Last night I cooked a very large loaf of ciabatta in the oven, but i burned the bottom a little.  On the bright side the loaf tasted awesome! (after the burned base was cut off LOL)

Yesterday, as I was about to put the pizza on the testo base, I realised that I didn’t have a natural bristle hearth brush or any other wood fire hearth tools.  So, today my mission was to get a reasonably priced hearth tool set.  I didn’t have to go far!  My first and only stop was my favourite local antique store.  They had two, each costing $50.  The owner, a fabulously lovely woman reduced the price immediately to $30, so I walked out a very happy woman with a cast iron hearth tool set that looks perfectly at home in our backyard! 

So dear readers, in light of the prospect that I’ll be eating a lot of different variety of pizza in the coming months, what is your favourite topping and crust choices?  I’m a humble pizza lover.  Give me a margaritta with fresh basil any day of the week! 

6 thoughts on “Woodfired oven – Bess

  1. hello mrslaurawright,
    thanks for stopping by again; especially since i haven’t posted much. Well, our oven is still a fabulous edition to our lifestyle. We’ve cooked pizza, roasts and desserts galore. She does live out in the weather; wrapped in her big black cover to protect her. If our gal doesn’t give me at least a decade of wonderful use i’ll be very unhappy. I expect upkeep and maintenance along the way to keep her in top notch condition. Things like respray painting the black paint on the doors or re-bonding the inside bricks of the oven. We need to do both of those things atm and once the weather gets better we’ll be cooking and eating outdoors again. I can whole heartedly recommend the Koala brand outdoor ovens…not so sure about the quality of the ones i’ve seen in places like Bunnings etc; they were much flimsier than the Koala brand. Go ahead and ask away for a Koala oven for your birthday; you’ll be one happy gal!

  2. It’s been over a year since you got this beautiful oven – I was wondering if you could give us an update? Does she live out in the whether? I’m thinking of asking for one for my birthday but want to be sure it’s going to last.

  3. Thanx for the b’d wishes Little Red Hen…I think it’s safe to say that the oven rates as the best birthday pressie EVER but given that everybody in the family gets something good out of it by way of a full tummy, it’s not surprising LOL

  4. Holy cow! I am SO jealous of your oven. I covet this oven. What a fantastic birthday present. Oh, wood-fired sourdough. Sigh. Did I mention that I’m jealous? (But also very happy for you:) Belated birthday wishes to you too.)

  5. Hi Glenn,
    Yum your bruchetta pizza sound fabulous. I’ll give it a go & blog it. I realised today after joining the teacher’s network that I already know your wife Rachel from uni…can Adelaide get ANY smaller??? LOL Say hi to Rachel for me & tell her congrats on becoming a mum. cheers su

  6. I love a Bruchetta tomatoe(bazil olive oil, tomatoe & Garlic) on a thin base with Bocconocini added in the last five minuts. Similar to a marahritta but the flavers are pre infused into othe tommatoe and the Boconcini is not brockeen down to much.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *