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Making slab behind existing retaining wall

I finished my Swishy oven last year and have been using it fairly regularly since. I’d be happy to email you a few high quality / full size images – just let me know which ones you want. Or I could even send you a CD/DVD of all of them.

We cook pizza mostly, and generally mix up lots more dough than we will need.: The rest gets formed into a loaf and is baked once the oven has cooled to 250°C or so. I have recently got a good recipe/technique for ciabatta bread and I bake some of that also at each firing. It doesn’t seem to last very long, even though I keep doubling the quantities!

I have also been doing stews in a big cast iron pot that goes into the oven when the temperature is down to 160°C or lower. A slow-cooked pork and beans casserole has been the most popular so far, but I’ve also done beef, pork, lamb and venison dishes. But the freezer is now so full of portions I haven’t done a stew the last couple of firings.

Oven in England

I have been following and participating in the UK Wood-fired Oven Forums – I’ve found this to be a great source of useful information on refractory and building suppliers in UK, techniques, recipes, etc. Quite a few forum participants have built barrel vault ovens from your designs, yours in majority, while others go for Forno Bravo style dome ovens. It’s worth a look and perhaps you could put a link to it on your site somewhere?

Few pizza paddles cut out from plywood
Few pizza paddles cut out from plywood

Thanks for your CD – I genuinely amazed myself by managing to complete the build, it’s something I never would have thought I was capable of.

sitting area before the oven was built Making the slab behind a retaining wall The oven from the back

Mark S from England

Respond to the Making slab behind existing retaining wall article:


  1. Wonderful oven. Well done for having made it yourself.

    Could you provide further details about how you went about building it?


    By Sajid

  2. Looks awesome.

    I’d love to build an oven like this, I’m also in the UK. Any chance of getting sent the plans please?


    By Dan

  3. G’day Dan,
    these plans were used for building these ovens

    By Michael

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