My mild obsession with earth ovens has now reached the point where we may be the only family in the land to have 2 ovens. This spring I've built another in our garden for the use of ourselves and any keen guests - as far as the actual oven's concerned, the only difference is a change in chimney and door design, so that when the oven door is closed, the chimney is blocked off, and heat can't escape so quickly. That's the theory, anyway, though it's still drying out, and we haven't yet quite proved it in the cooking experiments. The oven also boasts a temperature guage set into the door, and a sedum roof....
Cbeebies spent a couple of days here filming a Christmas Special episode of 'Mr. Bloom's Nursery', to be screened Xmas 2012.
August 29th 2011
A picture by the river sent by some guests....
16th December 2010
Cabin ready for Christmas!
6th December 2010
Found 2 wooden sledges for the cabin a couple of weeks ago, just in time for the freeze - they're East German, wonderful curled runners, each made from a single piece of softwood. They're from a shop in York called Anteriors (if you get in touch with them, please mention our name).
25th October 2010
I should have got around to this ages ago, but here's a picture of the earth oven, taken in the frost this morning. As the cabin's been pretty continuously full of guests, it's taken a while to finish, and we haven't had too many opportunities to cook with it. The first occasion was a few weeks back, Sunday lunchtime, with a group of guests - very successful, fantastic pizzas cooked in around 3 minutes. Then last week the cabin was empty for a night, and we fired up the oven with the neighbours. 2 lessons learnt, 1) don't cook in the dark, it's too easy to burn pizzas, tables, extremities etc. 2) don't try thick crusts - the oven is so hot (probably about 500 degrees) that the outside of the dough starts to burn while the inside is still in that springy, elastic kind of state. The quest for the ultimate pizza continues.
11th October 2010
For the last few weeks there's been evidence of a badger making regular visits across the field from the river to our neighbour's orchard behind the cabin, I think probably on hunts for windfalls. A week or so ago, a guest wrote: 'at about 3:30 Monday morning I was woken up by a loud scratching noise. As it went on and on I ventured to look out of the door in the main bedroom just in time to see the rump of something large disappearing around the corner from the decking area out side. I then looked out of the window at the back to see the culprit, a badger scraping away at the bottom of the cabin where it met the solid base. Oblivious to my self it worked it's way down the back of the cabin and then wandered off.'