Thursday, August 28, 2008

New Project: Cob Oven

As regular readers of this blog probably know I take bread baking seriously [because] baking causes me serious joy. So it may not surprise you to read that when I first began working with Trent Hendricks back in November of 2007, we talked about building a cob oven to bake bread, pizza and whatever. Well today, almost one year later, we started to build one.

The base of the oven (see slide show) is a little over seven feet long, six feet wide and, when the firebrick deck is laid up tomorrow, three feet high. We are filling the base with sand, which we will cover with thick galvanized mesh and mortar, before laying up the fire brick. The oven is going to be made from a mixture of clay, sand and straw and will sit on top of the firebrick deck. I'm hoping to get the deck laid up tomorrow, and build the oven on Saturday.

Work does not get much cooler than this folks -not in my world anyway.


Ben said...

Jeez, Bob, you didn't even call me for pointers! Then again I get mean when I get a trowel in my hand.

Cameron S. said...

I have a plan to do the same one day. I am envious. I helped a friend make a cob cabin a few years back, amazing structure.

Dan said...

Does this differ significantly from a 'regular' brick oven in form/function/results, or is it just another way of going about it?

(For the record, the wife and I are redoing our back patio area next summer, and we've both tossed around the idea of building in a small brick oven.)

blondee47 said...

is there anything you Can't do?

Bob del Grosso said...

Sorry, Since I've no idea what I'm doing, I did not know I needed pointers.

A cob cabin sounds like an unattainable dream. Wow.

In theory a well-made cob oven and a well-made brick oven should perform as well. However, the brick oven will cost a lot more and last a lot longer.

If you have the money, do a brick oven.

Yes, lots. Alas.

Ben said...

By "pointers" I meant tips, not a type of trowel. If those pics I saw on your site of all the walls that were built at your home were done by you, then I think you know a good deal about masonry.
First tip for blockwork:build your corners first and then fill in. You will be amazed how quickly it gets done. Second tip: wear gloves!

Maura said...

Bob, you need to come visit me. My oven's been broken for a month, and I have no idea when it's going to be fixed. No brownies, no pound cake, NO BREAD! I'm dying here.

Anyway, what a cool project. Big props to you.

Linda said...

I am so envious. I guess it's about time I just did these things. You are inspirational.