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An enthusiasts view of wood fired hearth oven baking and building!

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Welcome to the BlackOven web site. This site is run by Dirk & Tina Howard (that's us!) to share our experiences and enthusiasm about wood fired hearth ovens and the wonderful bread that can result.

Tina is the major baker in the family, but since I was introduced to artisan breads, I fancy myself an advanced baker. (Tina says that I'm a legend in my own mind.) Anyway, the easiest way for Tina to get an oven is for me to think of myself as the chief fire watcher. I am looking forward to building and managing the oven for her. I even like the workout that I get in kneading the dough by hand.

We are looking into building our oven on a trailer very much like the oven that Dan Wing has for his own use. Our first hands on exposure to hearth ovens was Dan's masonry masterpiece. I hope to use the web site to log our journey to hearth oven ownership.

Like much in life, this web site is a work in progress. Please take a look around and if you see something that you like, please let us know. If you know of something that you think that should be here, let us know as well.

May your bread always spring up to feed you!

Dirk & Tina

On May 30th, 31st and June 1st of 2003, I attended a class on "Building a Wood Fired Bread Oven" taught by Alan Scott. Alan is the co-author of the book "The Bread Builders: Hearth Loaves and Masonry Ovens". Alan owns and operates a bread oven consulting company called Oven Crafters. The class was held in Grand Marias, Minnesota at the North House Fold School.

To learn more about my experience at North House, follow the Wood Fired Oven Building link.


On June 28th and 29th of 2002, Tina and I attended a work shop on "Hearth Loaves & Masonry Ovens" taught by Dan Wing. Dan is the co-author of the book "The Bread Builders: Hearth Loaves and Masonry Ovens". The work shop was held in Norwich, Vermont at the King Arthur Flour Baking Education Center.

To learn more about our experience at the work shop, follow the Vermont Work Shop link.

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Last Updated: August 26 2005
© 2003-2008, Dirk Howard
Smithfield, UT 84335