Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Solar Oven Bread Recipe

Over the past couple of years, we've been experimenting with nuclear power.  We're not trying to take over the world, though.  We just want to bake delicious food without using a conventional oven.  Jason built a solar oven last summer and we experimented with it a bit.  We're now on to Solar Oven 2.0.

Lake Powell is the perfect place to do a little cooking with the sun.  After our trip there last week, Jason already has some plans in mind for version 3.0.

 My dad and I both brought a few different recipes to try.  Our most successful yeast bread attempt occurred on this trip.  I still can't believe the such a delicious bread-- very tasty with a fantastic texture and crumb--was cooked by the sun.

Solar Oven Bread

2 Cups Flour
1 t yeast
3/4 t salt
3/4 C to 1 C water

Knead all ingredients together. Place in oiled pan, cover and let rise. (Because the oven can't get quite as hot as a conventional oven, the dough will cook slower than at home.  To compensate for the longer cooking time, don't let the dough rise as long as you would if cooking bread in a conventional oven.)  

Expose to thermo-nuclear radiation until golden brown. :)

If cooking with yeast makes you nervous (it's definitely a little tricky in this kind of oven).  We've also had success with quick breads and packaged cinnamon rolls.  We don't normally buy food that pops out of a scary tube (please tell me I'm not the only one that's terrified to open one of those things...) but we made an exception for this trip, and they turned out really well.

Our oven reaches temperatures of 300+ degrees F consistently.  The hottest I saw was around 340F.  Jason has plans to alter the box in the hopes that he can raise the temperature a little more.  He designed and built the oven himself after doing a lot of research.  Once we have the plans just right, we'd like to share them with you.  Are you interested in cooking with the sun?

In the meantime, here are a couple of resources to get you started.


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