June 28, 2021
Holzbackofen, Valoriani Baby
#1 Burn-in: Home Story Valoriani Baby
Burning in a Valoriani baby oven
With a baby in the garden, a new era begins. With us it is now. A black Baby 75cm with wood firing has moved in. We have built a worthy place for it on a substructure of gabions and a granite slab. Now we are beside ourselves with joy. In the truest sense of the word, most of the family life is taking place around our new baby. And because the children couldn't wait, we moved the embers to the side during the baking phase at 200 degrees and baked a few baguettes. That works. Yummy!
Finally we can bake our own bread. And pizza like in Bella Italia.
But first: burn in the oven. That is very important. Prepare some small pieces of wood, Valoriani writes in the instructions for wood with a length of 20 cm and a diameter of about 4 cm. When you first light the stove, it should be around 100 degrees. A small fire is enough for this, because the Baby is perfectly balanced so that the heat can spread throughout the whole stove. Keep the fire burning at a moderate temperature for a few hours. When there are only embers left, close the oven door. The baby will keep the heat until the next day. You will see condensation dripping from the dome.
The next day, light another small fire and start it at 150 degrees. After a while, add a little more wood so that you reach around 200 degrees and keep it for a few hours. Then increase another 50 degrees to 250 degrees and hold the temperature again. Small drops of condensation will drip out of the dome again. This has to be because the ovens are mostly handmade and the dome parts have a certain amount of residual moisture that escapes during the baking process. Also on day two, close the door after a few hours when there are only embers left in the oven. The heat dries the oven.
On day three, fire again at 200-250 degrees for a few hours. After some time, put more wood in again and heat up to 300 degrees. On day three, four or five, the stove stops dripping. Then it is ready for temperatures above 300 degrees. You will notice that as soon as the residual moisture has escaped, the baby increases its heat intensity again. The heat moves from the fire up through the oven and directly under the dome into the smoke tube. The food does not come into contact with the smoke, particles are not deposited. So when there is no more dripping water, you can start making Neapolitan pizza.
You can read more reports, adventures and recipes about the Valoriani Baby in the next few weeks here in our home story.
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