Baba Ghanouj on the Firedome (and some additional notes on the continuing saga of the Firedome development)

I'm happy with the use of this thing, but I need more experience.  A big problem I'm having is dome temps.  They're all over the place.  It may not be a problem, it just has to do with whether there is a live fire or if the fuel is smoldering.  

The objective I set out to acheive at the beginning of this project was evenness of cooking, crucial for a pizza.  With this rig, the only thing that will burn the bottom of a pizza is placing the fuel beneath the stone and not on the perimeter.  I've observed this several times.  

What keeps tugging at me is using wood for fuel.  After briquettes are started, this thing is pretty damn hot and new fuel catches fast - and burns fast.  Also, since so much of the perimeter is accessible with the hinged grate, removing the dome, charging fuel and regaining temps isn't such a big deal.  I do it routinely.  Now, I want to try to recharge with two logs on either side.  Once they catch, I'm curious about the temperature and the burn time.  So, that experiment's on tap.  I also have a few friends queued up who need some samples for tolerating my babbling about this thing.


Andrew said...

Dave-I gave the firedome a run for the first time the other night. I made two mistakes: 1) no fuel in the front, so I had to spin the pizza halfway through to get it to cook evently, and 2) not enough fuel (by the time my third pizza was on, it was too cool). I thought I used 8 lbs. of matchlight, but it was more like 5.

Despite this, the first pizza turned out awesome, absolutely perfect. Even though the temp dropped too fast due to lack of fuel, I still was able to make a loaf of ciabbatta bread after the run.

Can't wait to try it again; you've brought pizza making to the masses!

CMH Gourmand said...

Um Dave - you can't really test the thing unless you have an objective observer present who also eats the food when you are done. Scientific Method must be observed.

Dave said...

Andrew, my heart sunk until I saw the result of the first pie. That should be enough to get you back. I'm glad. I'm hopeful on the wood. I have to get a pack of dried logs at the supermarket and then, ugh, saw a few to size to see if it works. Doing this, I'd light a chimney, dump half on each side and then toss on a log on each side (or all 4 sides). I wish I wasn't so busy, life is truly interfering with what's important.

Also, about the front coals. If you push the cooking clay disc away from the door, and have the fuel stacked on either side, it might not be necessary to have fuel all around. Another expt.

Jim! You're on speed dial when I get to the wood runs.

Jon in Albany said...

I put together a version of the Firedome over the weekend. Hope to fire it later this week.

Jon in Albany said...

I used lump charcoal and some small pieces of wood to fire my version of the Firedome. My cooking surface is heavier than yours and with a little more time fuel I think I could have gotten it over 700 degrees. The hand held thermometer was reading in the low 600s when I cooked a few pizzas. Definitely enjoyed it. I'm looking forward to the time I can use it. Thanks again for the idea.