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Cooking on a wood stove: I have some tips, and a question
#1
Well I've been cooking solely on my wood stove ever since it got cold outside. It's the first time I've ever had experience cooking on a wood stove, so I'm learning as I go. I am by no means an experienced chef, and this is all just experimentation, so take my word with a grain of salt (bad pun, I know). Anyway, I have a few tips and tricks, and I also have something that I need help with. For starters, I'm going to list certain things that work for me. Of course, YMMV.

1. Cooking frozen pizzas:
I've found two ways that work. The first way is faster, but the second way makes for a better pizza. The first way is to take the frozen pizza, throw out all the packaging including any cardboard or that shiny silver stuff that's made for the microwave. Wrap the pizza in tin foil, with the non-stick side inwards (obviously). Try not to wrap it too tight, or all the cheese will stick to the tin foil. Throw it directly on top of the wood stove, crust side down, and let it cook, checking on it every 5-10 minutes or so. The cook time will vary depending on how big and thick the pizza is, and how hot your stove is. I've found that I can cook a frozen pizza at just about any stove temperature, it's just a matter of how long it takes. When you are checking on it, you'll notice that the crust will start to get crispy before the cheese is melted. When you get to this point, flip the pizza so it's cheese side down and let it sit for maybe 3 minutes to melt the cheese, and it will be done. Like I said, this method is the fastest, but the results are slightly less consistent than the second method, and sometimes you'll get a little bit of cheese stuck to the tin foil.

Oh, and before I forget, those rising-crust pizzas don't cook well on a wood stove. Save those for the oven.

The second and more consistent way to cook a frozen pizza is to completely unwrap it, put it on a cooling rack with a layer of foil, and then put the whole thing on the stove. Simply let it cook until the cheese is melted. At that point, you can either eat it, or remove the cooling rack for a few minutes to get the crust more crispy. This method takes a LOT longer than the first method though.

Cooking a small portion of chicken:
Take a sheet of tin foil, non-stick side up, and coat it with some oil. I like olive oil. Then throw a chicken breast or whatever and rub it with your favorite spices, salt, and pepper. Don't be stingy with the spices either, or dare I say, be LIBERAL with them. Tongue Wrap it up TIGHT and place directly on the stove. Flip it every few minutes and check for doneness either by seeing how firm it is, or preferably checking the internal temperature with a meat thermometer. I would avoid cutting it to check. You don't want to open the foil too often because you'll just let out all that moisture. This method will make a perfect, juicy, tender, tasty chicken that would even make a vegetarian consider eating it.

Cooking a larger portion of chicken:
I like to quarter a whole chicken roaster, and throw it in a cast iron pot or pan with about 1/4" of water or chicken broth in the bottom. Douse the thing with your favorite McCormick spice (such as rotisserie chicken) and cover, cooking it LOW and SLOW. You can also add some vegetables with it such as carrots and onions for even more flavor. The chicken will come out just as moist and delicious as the method above, but there will be a lot more of it!

Cooking Hamburger Helper
Use a cast iron pot and simply follow the directions on the box. Nothing special to do, but for some reason it always seems to taste better when you use wood to heat it. Call me crazy, but it's true.

I've learned that you can make almost literally anything on a wood stove. Heck, I even use it to make toast. Just throw two pieces of bread on a clean cast iron pot, and you are saving electricity. Cook your canned soup on there instead of wasting propane or electricity cooking it on your regular stove. My last electric bill was $23, I wonder why?

Oh yeah, and I do have a question. For some reason, it takes almost FOREVER to boil water on my wood stove. I can get the surface temperature up to 600 degrees, and I know water boils at 212, but my water never seems to boil. Well, eventually it does, but seems to take over twice as long as boiling water on a conventional stove. Anyone have any tricks to speed up this process?

Also, I'd love you hear your ideas and recipes for how you cook on your wood stove.
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#2
BTW, one more tip about cooking over a wood stove you failed to mention. Make sure you always wear pants while standing near the stove, otherwise you might end up with toasted weenie.
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#3
For boiling water, are you using a tea kettle? If not, you should be.
Vampire pig man since September 2012
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#4
BTW, I just want to say, even though I made a joke earlier, I think this is actually pretty cool. Cooking on a surface that's difficult to control temperature is a skill in of itself.

As for boiling water, if you're watching the pot, it won't boil. Wink Or you could just put a lid on it, that'll make it boil faster. If you have the pot on a trivet, then it won't boil quickly, right on the flattop it should boil fast.
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#5
A trick I learned about cooking biscuits, buns, pizza and other such things on my gas grill that applies here too:
Use two of the same size pie pans, cookie sheets, pizza pans, bread pans or whatever. As mentioned, the pizza crust will be crispy before the cheese is melted, and with biscuits the bottoms will get black before the tops are golden.
You can even out the heat and get more even cooking by putting one pan/sheet on top of or inside of another, add the item(s) to be cooked, then cover with foil. That little bit of air space works wonders to keep the bottom from cooking too fast while while letting the top cook properly.


I've had great results with this method.
There are three types of people in the world:
Those who make things happen,
Those who watch things happen,
And those who wonder what happened.
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#6
We have cooked pizza in one of the ovens that sit atop of the wood stove. With the stove burning at its normal rate the oven gets to about 350. I think the oven was $20 at a flea market. A griddle works well for bacon, eggs and pancakes.
I have cooked a pizza in the stove when it was just coals on a grate i made. It was good but had a very smokey taste.

Not ours but very similar.
[Image: stove2.JPG]


[Image: stove3.JPG]
"The greatest danger to American freedom is a government that ignores the Constitution."
Thomas Jefferson
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#7
What is this "wooden stove" you speak of?
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#8
Camper;61072 Wrote:For boiling water, are you using a tea kettle? If not, you should be.

Actually no. When I boil water it's usually to cook pasta, so I put it in a cast iron pot or pan, and covered. Should I use the tea kettle to get it to boiling, then pour it into the pot?

streaker69;61143 Wrote:As for boiling water, if you're watching the pot, it won't boil. Wink Or you could just put a lid on it, that'll make it boil faster. If you have the pot on a trivet, then it won't boil quickly, right on the flattop it should boil fast.

See above, and I don't use a trivet. Just a cast iron pot with a lid. I've even tried starting it will the hottest water from my sink, and it still takes forever.
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#9
bac0nfat;61201 Wrote:
streaker69;61143 Wrote:As for boiling water, if you're watching the pot, it won't boil. Wink Or you could just put a lid on it, that'll make it boil faster. If you have the pot on a trivet, then it won't boil quickly, right on the flattop it should boil fast.

See above, and I don't use a trivet. Just a cast iron pot with a lid. I've even tried starting it will the hottest water from my sink, and it still takes forever.

There's your problem.

[Image: mythbusters-jamie-hyneman-1-625x450_thumb.jpg]

The cast iron pot is absorbing all your heat and not transferring it into the water. Use an aluminum pot instead.
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#10
streaker69;61205 Wrote:
bac0nfat;61201 Wrote:See above, and I don't use a trivet. Just a cast iron pot with a lid. I've even tried starting it will the hottest water from my sink, and it still takes forever.

There's your problem.

[Image: mythbusters-jamie-hyneman-1-625x450_thumb.jpg]

The cast iron pot is absorbing all your heat and not transferring it into the water. Use an aluminum pot instead.

I would use steel, not aluminum. Something substantial, maybe even thin cast iron?

I think the surface temp of a stove or cook stove warrants the use of cast iron, that is what you have to look into.

I don't have a woodstove, my knowledge comes from reading about them because we want one for the reason bacon fat is using his for. I do know that they recommend cast iron for safety of the cook and the pot and the stove.

Does the manufacturer of the stove have a website with an FAQ?
Vampire pig man since September 2012
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