Friday, May 23, 2014

Wood-Fired Brick Oven Baking & Rosemary Focaccia

One year after finishing the oven for Pietree Orchard (, I look forward to witnessing a second season of fruit, vegetables, baked goods, and brick oven firing.

The stone building enclosing the oven
This link will take you to the baker's review and excitement in anticipating a season of baking.  It will also give you a recipie for focaccia, the Italian herbed bread famous for flavor.

the very beginning
Living nearby, I was able to stop by the orchard throughout the season and order amazing pizzas as well as walk away with all kinds of farm products.

I'll be heading up there next weekend for a visit with my Pietree friends and the oven.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Brick Oven Collaborators

Each year I bring an oven to the Northern New England Home and Garden Show
This year I brought two ovens: my oldest and my newest.  The 'Audrix Oven', featured in previous posts, performed beautifully.  It is a 45" interior diameter oven with a very large open face and workshelf.  I first saw this style in Audrix, France near where friends have a place.

Cafe Miranda's Lobster dish and Fiore's Olive Oils

mushroom flatbread
Jumbo Oyster
This year's show offered some unique collaborations.  The previous post noted Kerry Altiero of Cafe Miranda.  Other chefs involved in using the oven were, Jean Kerr editor of FLAVOR magazine  or, Eric Milligan of
Pat O’Brien of Fiore Olive Oils in Bar Harbor, ME – Rockland, ME – Freeport, ME, and Sourdough Artisan Bread, baked by me but made by Moutainside Bakery in Brownfield, Maine.

Mountainside Sourdough
A surprise addition to the mix were the Himalayan salt cutting and cooking blocks from Salt Cellar, Portsmouth, NH. These slabs of pink salt allowed us to slice the vegetables for roasting and simultaneously salt them.

And while the Audrix Oven was busy on Sunday, I apple-smoked a natural chicken in the original Pompeii style oven.

Thanks to all the collaborators and to the show organizers, Karla Ficker and Lauren Hawkins.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Cafe Miranda and the French Oven

My weekend at the Northern New England Home and Garden Show was a blast.

On Saturday, May 17th,  I was joined by four chefs over the course of the day.
The first, Chef Kerry Altiero, Chef/Owner of Cafe Miranda in Rockland, ME prepared:
Maine Wedding Special - Wood Roasted Lobster, Chorico & Mussels with saffron, tomato & orange.
Maine Wedding Special Recipe

What these photos don't show is Kerry's humorous and engaging personality.
Thanks to Chef Kerry for inaugurating my new oven with such a sumptuous meal.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Brick Oven: French style

The 'Audrix' model is going on the road today (posts from Meet the Chefs later).

Here are the final photos.  I encase the brick dome with refractory mortar reenforced with stainless steel threads prior to laying the ceramic fiber blanket to a 6-8" depth.

angle iron below frames hood

Oak lintel fireproofed beneath and behind with steel