Living More with Less

We’ve been attending a local fellowship consisting of an interesting mix of Mennonite families (almost all of whom have left agriculture for more “professional” pursuits), as well as baptists, quakers, and a bunch of folks I won’t try to categorize. Many of them are self-employed, live fairly simply, and try …

Dan Wing on Trailers for Mobile Ovens

Much as I try to discourage them (see pp 98-101 of Build Your Own Earth Oven, 3d ed.), lots of people want to put their oven on a trailer and tow it long distances at high speed. Dan Wing, co-author of The Bread Builders and builder of fine gypsy trailers, as well as the maker of a well-travelled oven, kindly wrote up a thoughtful and practical set of notes on the safe and proper construction of hi-speed auto-trailers suitable for heavy ovens. It’s a downloadable word file that you can get by clicking here: Oven trailers. If you want to read the 2004 NY Times articl


Michael Pollan, a Cob Oven, & the NY Times

how to build an upsidedown fire
“Communal table: A 36 Hour Dinner Party”

The NY Times Magazine recently published this article by Michael Pollan about a 36 hour dinner party cooked in a mud oven. Best, for me, was how he explained the purpose of the oven:

The idea is to make the most efficient use of precious firewood and to keep the heat (and the danger) of the cook fire some distance from everybody’s homes. But what appeals to me about the tradition is how the communal oven also becomes a focus for social life (“focus” is Latin for “hearth”), a place to…


carved from green wood: roughed out with a hatchet and/or a northwestern style adze, then shaped and finished with crooked knives and a straight blades (click on the thumbnail for an uncropped view of the entire photo). Some of the detail work is done w/little burins. The bowls I carved …