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Baking bread in a woodburner (Jotul 600)!

 After a nudge from Leo I finally got round to baking bread in the woodburner. I hadn't done it before because I thought it would be a disaster, the stove is only little! Luckily for us, kind friends of ours (Trisha and Chris) gave us a gift of some lovely Shipton Mill spelt flour and I had some out of date Doves Farm yeast lying around from ages ago. So there really was no excuse!


I used a basic recipe for a spelt loaf from the Doves Farm website as that's the first one I came across online. Here it is:
500 gWhite Spelt Flour or Wholegrain Spelt Flour
½ tspSalt
1 tspQuick Yeast
1 tspSugar
300 mlWarm Water
1 tbspVegetable Oil

Make sure everything (bowl, flour, you) isn't cold. We mostly have the woodburner going all day during the winter so the yurt is comfortably warm, which helped!

Chuck the flour, salt, yeast & sugar in the bowl and give it all a good mix. Add the water and mix until you feel like it's coming together but still looks rough. Then add the oil and start to knead. I kneaded mine for about 5 mins.

Prove it!

I then put it in an oiled heavy stonewear casserole dish and put the lid on, so it could prove in a protected environment (we're constantly in and out the yurt & I was paranoid the cold air was going to get it!). 

I then went out to get the rams in, checked them over and did their feet for a couple of hours and came back to this wonder of wonders! The yeast was alive, it rose!

I gave the dough another beating for 5 mins and then put it on oiled greaseproof paper in the enameled metal baking dish I was going to be cooking it in. I covered it with another bit of oiled greaseproof paper to stop it drying out and protect it from draughts and left it for another hour or so (I didn't have to leave it that long. It was risen enough after 30 minutes).

Prepare the fire! 

The burner was down to light embers and so I kicked off some big old logs. When they were roaring I shut the stove right down for about 20mins (don't open the door to check!). That turned the logs into a sort of charcoal perfect for baking on.

Leo bent an old oven shelf to fit inside the burner. I took off the greaseproof paper covering the dough (but didn't remove the greaseproof paper that the dough was sitting on!) and very gently popped it in the burner. You can see in the picture that I've put some crinkled up recycled tin foil over the embers.

To cook the bread close the door gently and shut the burner right down (just like you did when you were charcoaling the logs) and cook for 35 minutes or so. I checked mine after 15 mins and that's when I realised I should have put in the crinkled up tin foil from the beginning!

Slightly blackened bum!

I couldn't wait for it to cool before I scoffed some! The bread is absolutely delicious and had a slightly smoky taste to it! To minimise that make sure you keep the stove shut right down all the way through cooking.

If you give it a go in your woodburner I'd love to hear how you got on and hear some of your hints n tips!


hen xx


  1. Your bread looks yummy, I might give it a try one day.. I'll let you know when I do.. Just need to find an old oven shelf..

    1. Look forward to hearing alllllll about it! It's SO worth it! I'm about to put another loaf in :))

  2. Nice! Wish I could have tasted!
    Best regards,
    Marius Torjusen
    VP Brands Jøtul

    1. Lovely to hear from you Marius!
      Jotul are by far my favourite wood burners, amazing design and simplicity!

      Thanks :)

  3. Brilliant :)
    On a related note, have you tried pizza in a dutch oven? Possibly the shape of the future (for those who eat grains, of course)

    Thanks for sharing this, Hen.

  4. Fantastic, will give it a go and let you know!

  5. I have fallen in love at first sight with your beautiful weblog. We have cooked bread over an open fire before, and been amazed at how well it turned out.

  6. That looks flippin lovely - so tasty and fresh - well done for achieving that!

  7. This all reminds me of a summer about 40 years ago when my wife, Becky and I hitch-hiked up to Iona from the south of England, camping all the way. On Iona we slept on the west coast beach, and discovered something about islands; the inhabitants do not go to the trouble of taking broken or unwanted items back to the mainland for disposal. The island dump had some real treasures. Among them was an antique wooden ice-box, the stock and walnut butt of a shotgun, and a cast-iron casserole, with its' lid!
    I had learned how to make soda bread in a 'bastibal' cooking pot in Ireland on a peat fire some years before, and now determined to make bread on the beach, Iona style.
    I cannot remember having carried flour 450 miles for this purse, so I presume we visited the village shop to get ingredients , and returned to the beach.
    I lit a fire from driftwood, and mixed the dough, using sodium bicarbonate as leaven,in the casserole. No oil, but set the pot near the fire for the dough to rise. When risen, scrape the embers aside, place pot in the ashes and heap live embers and charcoal on top of the lid. The bread was fine, and so are we, but now we bake bread in a wood-fired Rayburn. Washing up on Iona was done using sea water... no detergent. It was fun to improvise. David Whatley.


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