Cooking on a woodstove

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mudbug

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When Handy Husband retires, he would love for us to live out in the boonies in a cabin so he could go hunting and we could live like Tarzan and Jane. I'm of a mind to humor himon this because he is such a nice man, but what about cooking on the woodstove? I have zero experience and need some pointers.
 

Raine

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Probably be some of the best eating you've ever had.


Biggest thing is learn fire control.
 

Psiguyy

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I've cooked on a wood fired stove and it's not as hard as you would think so long as you realize that you control the temperature by moving the pot or pan to another part of the stove where it's either hotter or cooler.

If you want even hotter heat, you remove the cast iron insert and expose the pan to direct fire. If the fire isn't strong enough, you can either feed more wood into the box through the door or directly through the top, if the wood is small enough.

The hardest thing to deal with is trying to decide if you're going to let the fire go out until the next time you want too cook something which means starting the fire and waiting for the stove to come to operating temperature or are you going to keep the fire going all day long?
 

mudbug

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Psiguyy said:
I've cooked on a wood fired stove and it's not as hard as you would think so long as you realize that you control the temperature by moving the pot or pan to another part of the stove where it's either hotter or cooler.

If you want even hotter heat, you remove the cast iron insert and expose the pan to direct fire. If the fire isn't strong enough, you can either feed more wood into the box through the door or directly through the top, if the wood is small enough.

The hardest thing to deal with is trying to decide if you're going to let the fire go out until the next time you want too cook something which means starting the fire and waiting for the stove to come to operating temperature or are you going to keep the fire going all day long?

Makes sense to me, psiguyy. Probably the best thing would be to keep some coals banked until mealtime rolls around again. And make sure there's plenty of chopped wood handy at the right moment.
 

crewsk

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I grew up with a cast iron wood stove. When it would snow our power always went out. My mom would always cook a big pot of chili or beans on top of it. The smell was awesome! She also made hot chocolate on it!
 

mudbug

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crewsk said:
I grew up with a cast iron wood stove. When it would snow our power always went out. My mom would always cook a big pot of chili or beans on top of it. The smell was awesome! She also made hot chocolate on it!

That sounds neat. I've often thought that most of us would be lost if the power went permanently out. We are so dependent on things that plug into the wall...................
 

crewsk

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It was great, I used to sit next to the vents & dry my hair during the winter. The only downfall was that I went to school smelling like burnt wood! They got rid of it about 8 yrs. ago & got gas logs. They were afraid one of the grandkids would fall on it & get hurt or burnt.
 

Psiguyy

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crewsk said:
I grew up with a cast iron wood stove. When it would snow our power always went out. My mom would always cook a big pot of chili or beans on top of it. The smell was awesome! She also made hot chocolate on it!

The stove I've used was in a cabin where it got COLD at night. The cabin, being a cabin, didn't have any insulation. The only source of heat was the cast iron stove. The big and funny problem was that the stove couldn't make it through the night without adding wood to it. Invariably, around 2 AM, somebody would have to wake up and add wood. The funny part is, we'd all wake up from the cold, but nobody would want to actually get out of the bunk and add wood.

It was always a challenge to stay in bed and shiver and see who would finally give in to the cold and add wood to the fire. The really funny thing is we'd never ever admit to waking up because of the cold.

Lucky thing it was all guys. If my mother was there, she would have been screaming at all us low-lifes for not getting up to stoke the fire.
 

crewsk

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Psiguyy, I know what you mean, sort of. We lived in a 2 story house w/ central heat & my room was upstairs. It was the last one to get heat, I know that heat rises, but it was the coldest room in the house. When our power would go out, my brother & I would sleep downstairs in front of the stove & it was our job to keep it burning. Which meant one of us going outside to get the wood(my mom refused to keep the wood in the house because of spiders & wood scoripons), it usually wound up being me which really stunk!
 

Psiguyy

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crewsk, I don't know about you, but I look back at those memories with fondness.

Anybody want to exchange outhouse stories? :shock:
 

crewsk

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I do too Psiguyy! I miss that wood stove very much. We never cooked in it(except for the occasional bag of marshmallows) but we did a lot of soups, stews, popcorn, hot chocolate, & coffee on top of it! It brought us closer as a family.
 

Otter

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crewsk, no wonder those cute little cheerleader girls didn't like you, what with you coming to school smelling like a smoked ham hock, hehehe. My grandmother cooked on a wood stove and everything she made was fabulous. I don't know how she did it because she died when I was quite young. She also washed clothes on a wash board and had a washer with a hand wringer. She hung the clothes on a clothesline even in the dead of winter. We all have it too easy now.
 

Michael in FtW

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There are a couple of sources for information ... one is the local library. Another information source is using a search engine on the internet - I did a search of "wood stove cooking" on google and got these results: http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&ie=UTF-8&q=wood+stove+cooking

Now, something Tarzan might need to be made aware of (unless your cabin is going to be well air conditioned in the summer) is that Jane will need a summer kitchen (aka: outdoors). While the heat from a wood fired stove might be a comfort on a cold night ... it's not much fun on a hot summer day.
 

mudbug

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Michael, you are so right. If I dig hard enough, now that I think of it, I could probably find my old "Foxfire" books, which would have some good info as well.

Jane thinks she will probably hire a couple of hunky servants to chop the wood and so forth.
 

Michael in FtW

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Actually, I was thinking about the "Foxfire" books and "Mother Earth News" the other day. I just didn't know if you were an old hippy that might know what I was talking about. :LOL:

"Mother" has a website and if you go the archive page http://www.motherearthnews.com/index.php?page=archive and search on "wood stove" you'll get 84 articles from past issues. They cover all wood stoves so you'll have to weed through them to find the ones talking about cooking stoves. One you might especially enjoy is the one by Ole Wik http://www.motherearthnews.com/index.php?page=arc&id=4076

I used to have the first 6 volumes of "Foxfire" and I think I remember one of them having something about wood burning stoves in one of them. I went to their website http://www.foxfire.org/prodFFbooks.html and read the brief description of what was in them but couldn't figure out which one it might have been in. One Foxfiew book I know you will be interest in is "The Foxfiew Book of Appalachian Cookery" - just go their website and scroll down to the bottom of the page. I think I had this book too, but I don't remember. My youngest son and his wife came over one night about 5 years ago and "borrowed" all my Foxfire books and old issues of "Mother" (about 10 years worth) from my hippy days.
 

mudbug

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Michael, I still HAVE my Whole Earth Catalog buried somewhere in the basement. Served many years as a card-carrying citizen of the Woodstock Nation during the Age of Aquarius. I remember one of the Foxfire books explaining step by step how to build a log cabin, starting with felling the tree.....Thanks for the links!
 

pst1can

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Cooking on a wood stove...

I had a freind that had a hunting cabin in the Canadian north. He used to cook all kinds of thins ontop of the stove. He told me until he got the hang of how it worked he used to use an old grill thermometer. They are like a little coil that you set on the surface...the hotter it is the more it cause the coil to shrink or expand and it had a face that gave an idication of the temp. From my grilling days when the thermometer broke I used to use my hand over the grill....hold you hand in one spot till the count of 5.....it is low....hold your hand there for only 2-3 seconds...it is high heat. Either way you will makes some awesome meals. :)
 

meekasu

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Ok, here is my story(and I'm stickin to it!) I was born and raised in South Los Angeles. Met my (ex) and followed him anywhere. Which meant back to his homestate of Minnesota and Northern Washington and Alaska. We had some very wonderful woodstoves, which I,by myself re-furbished as we say in the CITY. These stoves were a secondary stove. I hauled my SEARS double oven(oven on top and on bottom) gas stove every where. Summers are too hot for wood stoves. But me being the adaptor to all life stiles at the time, I did as I was told. Yes I thought it was unique at the time. I also tried to make sure that all the chopped wood was cut down to the size for the stove. Much smaller than the pot bellied stove or other wood burners we had for the other rooms. Now let me tell you..........many a time I had to get the ax out and chop my wood to size!!!!!!!!!!!!!Not my favorite subject. Oops this is not what you asked was it?. Ok as long as you have the right size wood pieces and you are willing to start it up when hubby is not around then it will work. I loved it for making home made flour tortillas. Just slap those babies on that hot surface and walla!! my gramma would have been proud of me. The oven was great! Just had to cook by feel and smell. Also an oven thermometer worked too. SUmmers.....NOT good. Have fun :LOL:
 

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