Do you cook on your woodstove?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by joyfulmama, Jul 26, 2006.

  1. joyfulmama

    joyfulmama Well-Known Member

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    Last winter I made lots of stews and soups on our woodstove. I also used it for heating up leftovers. This winter I would love to learn how to cook more things using the woodheat. Since we are burning the wood for heat already, it makes sense to use it for cooking also to save on electricity.

    What kind of things do you make on your woodstove?

    A neighbor was telling me that she used to have a foil covered box that sat on top of her woodstove that she used for baking cakes and such. She couldn't remember the details of how to make it or how it worked. Do any of you use something like this?
     
  2. Lynne

    Lynne Well-Known Member

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    Other than the soups and stews like you make I only make pot roast or pork loins in a heavy dutch oven on the wood stove. Gravy is made on the kitchen stove. It sure is nice to stoke up the stove in the morning, put a pot of food on and have it almost done when I come home from work. Like to see what others do and get some ideas too.
     

  3. wendys_goats

    wendys_goats wendys_goats

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    I have a wood cook stove. That is what I use in the winter. I've seen some of the Amish I know have some type of metal box they use on their kerosene stoves that they use for an oven. Maybe you can find something at a sporting goods store in the camping dept. I think they have some thing you can use on camp fires. :shrug: You could also use like a cast iron dutch oven with a lid to make like biscuits or corn bread.
    Good Luck
     
  4. jnap31

    jnap31 garden guy

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    cooked soups all winter on ours when I was home, and cooked sweet potatoes inside it. Need to get a wood cook stove though.
     
  5. Cabin Fever

    Cabin Fever Life NRA Member since 1976 Supporter

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    I've never tried to "bake" in a dutch oven that sits on top of a woodstove. I've done considerable baking in a dutch oven outside when I could put hot coals on top of the oven. I assume if you bake in a DO on top of the woodstove, you're bread, rolls, johnny cake, etc will not have a "golden crust."

    What people have used to bake on top of stoves is called a "Shepherd's Oven." It's a metal box with trays on the inside. Generally they come with a glass window and a thermometer.

    IMHO, you don't any special recipes or ideas for woodstove cooking. You can cook anything on a woodstove that you can cook on a range top stove. Our woodstove has a "two step" top. The two different heights provide a cooking surface with two different temps.
     
  6. katlupe

    katlupe Off-The-Grid Homesteader Supporter

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    I use one of those ovens. Mine came from a junk shop and was made by Griswold. They are available from camping stores.

    But as Cabin Fever says, you can bake with your cast iron dutch oven. I cook whole chickens or roasts right in one of those graniteware oven roasting pans. You can bake bread or biscuits or just about anything like you do over a campfire. (without the little oven) I cook meats, eggs, everything I can think of, on the woodstove in my cast iron skillets. It's my "microwave" because it is usually hot and ready to cook.

    We make toast by putting the buttered bread on hot tin foil - but you have to keep a close eye on it. The top of my woodstove is pretty big, so I can do the whole meal real easy on it.



    katlupe
     
  7. Cindy in NY

    Cindy in NY Well-Known Member Supporter

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    You can use your three legged dutch oven to bake with inside the house. We line a large cast iron skillet with foil and fill it with hot coals. Put our dutch oven on top of this with the goodies inside and hot coals on the rimmed lid. Putting it in the skillet helps to keep the coals from getting loose and makes clean up easier.
     
  8. PutteringAround

    PutteringAround Active Member

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  9. SquashNut

    SquashNut Well-Known Member

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    I have 2 wood stoves, one in the living room and the other is in a canning kitchen that we set up in the work shed.
    I cook on both, But I still haven't come up with a bread that is very good , except pancakes.
    Beans, soup, rice and pasta are easy though. as well as any breakfast food. We have been doing this to stretch our propane. propane is about $2 a gallon here.
     
  10. Ravenlost

    Ravenlost Well-Known Member Supporter

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    My mother has been cooking on a wood stove for 40 years now...same wood stove too (the grate has been replaced a couple times). She cooks everything on her wood stove and in the oven of the wood stove...cookies, cakes, biscuits, cornbread, the Thanksgiving turkey, etc. Food tastes better cooked on the wood stove. I cooked my first solo meal on the wood stove when I was 11 (including baking cornbread) and am planning to install one here at my house this winter.

    I'm confused. Why wouldn't you be able to bake any and everything in the oven of the wood stove, or is the stove being referred to here a wood heater?

    The only "trick" to baking in the wood stove's oven is knowing how to regulate the fire temp and remembering to turn your item around in the middle of baking so both sides bake evenly.
     
  11. katlupe

    katlupe Off-The-Grid Homesteader Supporter

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    I believe she is asking about the wood heating stove, not the cookstove.


    katlupe
     
  12. neolady

    neolady Well-Known Member

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    I have been cooking on top of my woodstove for several decades - and several different stoves at that!.

    I do any type of meat that can be roasted including turkey, prime rib roasts, pot roasts, pork loins, hams, smoked picnics, meat loaf, chickens, pot roasts, soups, chilis, stews, etc.

    I have baked in a pinch as well using a large roasting pan that I left on top for quite a while to heat up - removed the lid and dropped the baking pan in on top of a rack and put the lid back on quickly. Not great, and very little browning, but it does work to some extent. You can toast bread on top of a small baking rack.

    We've also barbecued inside the airtight. Put two bricks inside, one on each side of the stove, and put a rack over the coals sitting on the bricks and throw on your burgers or steak.

    I have been looking for one of the old "ovens" to sit on top (my great aunt used one decades ago as she didn't have an oven on her cookstove), but so far I haven't seen one - hubby has been talking about making one for me.

    Don't be afraid to try! I do my jams, preserves, pickles and canning on top of my airtight too. A bit hot in the warmer weather, but later in the season it is great. You can use it as a dehydrator too if you have decent control of the temperature.
     
  13. stars01

    stars01 Well-Known Member

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    I love to cook on the woodstove! Soup, pancakes, steak, roasts, grilled cheese, toast, eggs, coffee,mashed potatoes, biscuits, pizza, heat up leftovers....all on cast iron griddles or dutch oven. Heat is determined by the height of my trivets. Propane here is $6 (for cooking). I do not turn on the oven at all during woodstove season.

    Paula
     
  14. SouthWesteader

    SouthWesteader Gardener

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    My woodstove isn't hot enough to cook much. I cook potatoes in the firebox, and rice on top, though.
     
  15. Beltane

    Beltane Enjoying Four Seasons

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    We love our wood cook stove! We use cast iron for anything we cook ~ there is nothing like bread from the wood stove! :) DH is really the 'real' cook though...for the most part I just read and relax while he prepares dinner. In the winter the first thing we do is start the cook stove - it really warms the entire house. :)
     
  16. KindredSpirit

    KindredSpirit Well-Known Member

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    I wondered about that too. When I cooked on my wood stove I had a thermometer on there and kept the temperature at about 450 degrees by refueling or banking, whichever was needed. I would think that would be the same as putting the oven listed above on a burner at medium temp, but I don't know. Anyone tried it?
     
  17. joyfulmama

    joyfulmama Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the ideas!

    Yes, I'm talking about a wood heating stove, not a cookstove. We have an Old Timer that we use to heat our log home. I would love to make better use of it for cooking this winter so that I use the electric stove/oven less (or none!)
     
  18. Ravenlost

    Ravenlost Well-Known Member Supporter

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    LOL...thanks for clearing that up! The terminology had me confused. Where I come from there are wood stoves and wood heaters. We had potbellied wood heaters at school and my Mama cooked on a wood stove.
     
  19. Tabitha

    Tabitha greenheart

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    so I take it you have a wood cookstove? If it has an oven then you can bake with it. it takes experience and you get that by practice and burning a few cakes. you can cook everything on the woodstove. I take the lids off and put my cast iron skillets directly over the fire to get them hot quickly. we also make toast on top of the stove. Now that it is summer i miss my woodstove. I do not like the gas stove as much. you can really simmer things for hrs on the woodstove, just pull the pot to a cooler spot. I make roasts in the oven, but I could not fit a big turkey in it. to get the heat up high and quickfor baking, like for biscuits, you need thin sticks of stove wood. my adopted nieces call them biscuit sticks. wishing you success and many good meals :)