We are now adding bread-making and pizza-making courses to our French Baking offer, here at Little Trewern.
This is because we have a new baby in the family – our own outdoor wood-fired oven, which is now sitting pretty in the farm’s courtyard.
Now it’s true to say that the arrival of this little monster was the cause of some significant domestic strife! Simon’s proven speciality is wood, and he was not a happy bunny taking responsibility for a huge lump of brick, concrete and iron, which weighs over 600kg, and which had to be delivered down our lane, moved across the courtyard, and then hauled up on to a high stone plinth. Suffice it to say, that after many expletives, white elephant metaphors, the help of two Poles and some smaller poles, sundry iron levers, and a lot of shoving, it was manoevered into position. Certainly by the end, we felt that we had an insight into the building of the Egyptian pyramids!
Of course we have never had a baby like this before, and we have been very keen to see if all the pushing and shoving was worth the effort.
Amazing! Not just because we are now able to bake bread, cakes and indeed meat in the reducing heat of the oven, but also because we have discovered just how delicious a home made pizza tastes when baked in the heat of a flaming wood fire! (This was the clinching argument for Simon – he now proclaims that the wood-fired oven was one of his best ever ideas!)
So not surprisingly, we have added pizza-making to our bread-making course, and because you will want to eat the pizza whilst it’s still fresh and bubbling from the embers of the oven, you can enjoy a wonderful pizza lunch on the day of the course!
So what difference does a wood-fired oven make to the baking?
Apart from the sense of being connected to 10,000 years of human history by cooking in a wood-fired enclosure, the burning ash imparts its own unique flavour to the food, produced by the aroma and burn characteristics of different types of wood. At present we are burning seasoned oak logs from our own woodland, although we will also be experimenting with alder next year, as alder grows in profusion along the streams and riverbanks near Little Trewern.
So why not come and learn to make and bake at Little Trewern? Because you can really taste the difference when you bake your loaves, cakes and pizzas in our wood-fired oven!