The New Oven Arrives

This has been a busy year. Apologies for just now catching the new site up to date… took a year, but here we go!

The oven arrives in a great big crate. Forno Bravo oven, they place it off the truck with a lift gate. He did have a pallet jack and was able to move it up the driveway.

Finally back on the wood-free pizza scene, my Forno Bravo oven arrived on January 30, 2020, just before the pandemic shut down the world; I haven’t been able to share it the way I would like, but did get to know it over the past year.

Every oven is a bit different, and it does take some time to understand how it heats and cooks.

Sitting on the driveway. I have movers on standby to come and get it around to the backyard that same afternoon. At this point they are on the way.
It’s about 600+ pounds of oven, and it took a crew of 5 to get it back around to the backyard. We took the crate apart and used it as a “road” across the grass, the oven itself is on a dolly used to move heavy appliances. Sort of like moving a grand piano.

I had prepped the area by building up four pads for placement. I had a drawing of the oven and spaced them correctly. Measure twice! I’m renting this house, if I had owned it I would have poured the pads and built something more permanent.

And here it is! In position and ready for the breaking in!

One of THE most important tasks when receiving a new wood-fired oven is the small fires that help dry out the materials from which it is cast or built… slowly. Since the temps at cooking are frequently 1000 degrees F, there’s a series of five small fires for long periods to burn, each one a little hotter, to prevent the oven from cracking at full temps.

My burns went well, but I used wood. Tough to regulate the lower temperatures. Only after I was done did I discover the tip to use charcoal. Much easier to regulate temp based on how many you use. Plus it burns slower. Doh! Next time I’ll know.

First fire!

Brand spanking new oven. It will never look this clean again! This is the first fire lit, small and regulated. Kept it burning for about 5-6 hours. As I took the temperatures higher, you could see water running down the legs of the oven. There was a LOT of moisture still in the casting material that needed to come out before taking it to full temperature.

After about a week of these increasingly larger fires, the oven was ready for the first use!