Friday, August 20, 2010

The Fire Pit Free Weekend

We have a living history event this weekend. It's going to be terribly hot. And possibly stormy. And neither one of these things makes me want to cook over a large fire, which is our usual plan--we dig a rectangular trench and build a fire, then hang iron tools over it to provide cooking surfaces (Dutch ovens set in the coals, pots hung from spits, that sort of thing). But the rain doesn't help with this much. And you can imagine the heat.

It's at times like this that I thank my lucky stars we have a brazier. Braziers have existed since ancient times--portable boxes or cylinders that can burn wood, charcoal, or other fuel and provide a small cooking space without the hassle of a full fire. In the eighteenth century, they were a natty campaign accessory for officers.

Reproduction brazier--ours looks a lot like this. However, most originals I've seen follow the cylindrical pattern below. The repro doesn't include the ash recepticle the two below have beneath the containers, and has a grill as a cooking surface, whereas the others require a cooking surface placed over them.

We set one up with charcoal under the shelter of a dining fly, and can cook up sausages, fry eggs, heat washwater--it's all we need unless we're planning for very large dishes like huge kettles of stew or a roast. And with this heat, who wants stew anyway?


Josh Healy said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
sharmon said...

Interesting. You're a tough cookie, is all I can say. Hope you don't melt!
BTW, any idea where Corra is? Her site has vanished, poof! Did I miss something?

Lua said...

Hot and stormy? I love your dedication :) I hope you have a great weekend!

Rowenna said...

Hi Sharmon--I'm not sure where Corra is...her blog occasionally goes private and then pops back up though, so maybe it will return.

Lua--Thanks! We did have a great time!