It takes hours to build up the heat in the wood-fired oven to the required 475-525 degrees. Baking in the brick oven is an all-day process. To begin, waste pallets and urban downed wood are burned in the center of the oven for a couple hours. Then the ashes of the fire are scraped out. The heat has slowly been absorbed into the bricks that make up the oven, where it is stored all day, allowing for baking of many different batches of bakery products. The temperature slowly drops as the bricks cool off. The hottest temps are used for breads; then pies, granola, and other items follow to bake at lower temperatures.
Bakers work hard at the Co-op Bakery. There's the woodcutting and fire-building that brings a shine to the brow and leaves smudges of soot. Then there's the mixing and shaping hundreds of pounds of dough, and loading the loaves into and out of the oven, each baking day. It sends our bakers home in a dusting of flour. Co-op bakers feel — and look! — like equal parts blacksmiths and bakers!
Learn more about wood-fired brick ovens: www.ovencrafters.net