Nice moments in the countryside

AstroNuclPhysics ® Nuclear Physics - Astrophysics - Cosmology - Philosophy
Cottage for cultural recreation Pergola, fireplace + smokehouse Japanese garden



at a cottage in Borenovice

At the cottage in  Bořenovice, we built an original fireplace + smokehouse system according to our own design as part of the space for sitting under the pergola .


Brief description of the outdoor fireplace in the cottage in Bořenovice

The outdoor fireplace is mainly characterized by the following features:

Motor to drive the rotation of the spit - is attached to the side wall of the fireplace

On the control panel it is possible to set the speed of rotation of the spit, or start fast rotation


The procedure for grilling in the fireplace depends on the type of grilled items (food) and on the fuel used.

Grilling on grids (grate)
It is suitable to grill smaller pieces on grids, which can be inserted to different heights above the fireplace (15, 30, 45 and 85 cm) using the built-in guide rails. In addition to rectangular grids over the entire cross-section of the fireplace, it is also possible to use smaller shaped grids (eg for fish), which we place on an empty frame inserted in the guide rail instead of the classic grid. For faster preparation we will use a lower position of the grid (but beware of burning!), For slower and smoother preparation a higher distance of the grid from the fireplace. We will use the highest position behind the arched cover of the fireplace either for very slow preparation, or for heating already prepared food, or to keep previously grilled pieces warm.

Grilling on rotating skewers and needles
On rotating skewers, we usually roast several smaller pieces pierced side by side (eg pieces of meat or bacon alternating with pieces of vegetables). When roasting larger portions (such as whole chicken or rabbit), use a spit: thicker needles are provided with sliding holders, between the tips of which we fasten the toasted object well.
   For rotating needles and skewers, three pairs of handles in different heights (20, 35 and 80 cm) from the grate of the fireplace are built into the walls of the fireplace. After fitting into the appropriate handle, the needle starts to rotate, while the speed of rotation is set on the motor panel on the right.   
   For faster preparation we use a lower position of the needle (but beware of burning!), For slower and smoother preparation a higher distance of the needle from the fireplace. We will use the highest position of the spit behind the arched cover of the fireplace either for very slow preparation ("something between roasting and smoking") or for heating already finished food.

Evening barbecue and smoking (there was no pergola yet)

Grilling over charcoal
Place a piece of paper, a few chips and small chips of dry wood and a few pieces of charcoal on the grate of the fireplace, light it, open the drawer of the ashtray a little and wait for it to burn. Sprinkle more charcoal until it starts to glow, close the ashtray. Only then we insert the grids or needles with grilled objects. When grilling over charcoal, we usually use the lowest position of the needle or grid, a grill dish is suitable.   

Roasting over burning wood
For roasting over a flame, we will use clean and dry wood, from which we will start a fire on the grate of the fireplace in the usual way. We keep the burning slower, we place the grids and needles (skewers) with toasted objects a little higher above the fireplace so that the flame does not burn the food.

Slow roasting and warming up
in the LMI slow roasting, respectively. heating or keeping already finished toasted pieces in a warm state, we can do in the highest positions in the fireplace, away from the fireplace. After lifting the front plate in the top of the fireplace can be used for this purpose either spit 3, or gird cuttings inserted on one of the upper rails.


Brief description of the smokehouse at the cottage in Borenovice

Fireplace + smokehouse in the winter evening - and in the morning (there was no pergola yet)

Another part of the fireplace + smokehouse system as part of the space for sitting under the pergola is the smokehouse. Our smokehouse is mainly characterized by the following features :


A rotating shaft with booms for hanging smoked pieces passes through the interior of the smokehouse.

The unit with motor, gearbox and friction clutch ensures slow rotation of the shaft.



Preparation of the material for smoking
Meat and bacon
are " varnished " about 14 days before smoking: spread with a mixture of grated garlic and salt and placed in a suitable container (larger enamel or plastic bowl); may be weight. It is stored in a cool place. Before the actual smoking, the individual pieces are cleaned and pierced with pointed hooks , or tied tightly to the strings with which they are hung in the smokehouse.
Smoked cheese
Harder Emmental cheese (approx. 40-45% fat in dry matter) is best suited for smoking . Cut it into slices about 2-4 mm thick. We cut squares of pure thick gauze approx. 30x30cm. Gradually sprinkle the individual slices of cheese with spices (mixture of pepper, new spices, sweet and chili peppers, ..., salt) and we fold them into gauze into borders (pits) about 7-10 cm high. Then we tie the tips of the gauze at the top, which creates a "nodule" with the cheese. We then hang it on a hook in the smokehouse.

Preheating the smokehouse
About 2 hours before the start of our own smoking we can start preheating the smokehouse. Close the chimney flap and turn on the electric heating .
Electric preheating has two advantages:
- With a small consumption of electricity (approx. 4 kWh) we save a certain amount of quality wood and during this time we do not have to worry about the burning process.
- The smokehouse is preheated by "dry" heat, so there is no excessive dewing and tarring of the walls and metal parts (as would be the case when preheating with smoke from the furnace).
We can also already turn on the electric rotation of the center shaft;if the motor does not spin at the bottom, press the flashing “start-up” button (at a lower temperature the oil in the gearbox may solidify).

Preparation of wood in the furnace
While the smokehouse is preheating, we will prepare wood in the furnace. Straighten the grate gradually: a piece of clean paper, wood chips or veneer, smaller blocks of wood and finally a few longer slats or chips. Not any chemical ignition , petrol and so on.! For smoking, quality and dry hardwood is used , eg beech, preferably plum at the end of smoking. Soft wood is not suitable (may contain bitter resin). Chemically treated, varnished, impregnated, soiled , etc. wood must not be used !

Start of smoking
After about 2 hours, when the smokehouse is preheated to about 70 ° C, open the chimney flap and flood in the fireplace. Leave the air vent in the furnace door open at first to light the fire properly, then close it. We turn off the electric heating. After a while, when the temperature reaches about 80 - 100 ° C, we can hang it on hooks on the smokehouse or place food ready for smoking on the grids. Electric lighting is installed in the smokehouse ; the "lighting" switch can be left on permanently, the light is switched on using the switch only when the door is opened. During smoking leave permanently switched electrical é rotation center shaft.
   In the  first stages we can heat the smoke more heavily so that the smoked pieces heat up faster and so that a "crust" forms on the surface, preventing excessive dripping of juice and fat. When adding to the fireplace, it is advisable to open the chimney flap to prevent increased smoking from the door.

Slow smoking
Smoking is a slow, long-lasting process - it takes about 8-10 hours for tempted meat or bacon without prior heat treatment, sausages about 6-8 hours, shorter cheese smoking or overeating of previously heat-treated foods (such as purchased sausages).
   During smoking, it is necessary to heat relatively slowly , with the fireplace door practically closed. We monitor a constant temperature - it can be higher at the beginning (approx. 100 °C), then around 80 °C. When checking the smoking process , the chimney flap must be fully opened before opening the smokehouse door to prevent excessive smoking of the door. When the door is opened, the light inside the smokehouse comes on to better see the smoking state.

End of smoking
In the final stages of smoking, we should heat slowly and with the highest quality wood , such as plum. Before the end of smoking, we stop adding wood to the fireplace, switch the chimney flap to the “SLOW SMOKING” position and let the smoking spontaneously “come on”; at the end we can add a few juniper twigs (or other coniferous twigs) to the hot coals for the "smell".
   After smoking close, the chimney flap and the door of the fireplace completely (for slow gradual cooling) and we can carefully remove the used food *). We turn off all switches - lighting, rotation, electric heating.   
*) In the winter, however, we can advantageously leave the used pieces hanging in the smokehouse, they will last here for several weeks. If we completely close the chimney flap and the fireplace door at the end of smoking, the smokehouse space will be almost hermetically sealed.

After smoking, turn off all switches and close the control panel door.

After complete cooling (the next day), we just clean the fireplace, or. Use a wire brush to clean the tube for dripping fat from the smokehouse and clean the appropriate container.

Smoking contenment
Smoking is an activity from early in the morning to the whole day, when it is necessary to heat, monitor the temperature and the course of smoking. However, it has its own special charm and "atmosphere". It usually occurs in the winter, starting in the morning even after dark. In the cold, we warm ourselves with a pinch of plum brandy ... Around noon and at the end of smoking, the "ends" are cut off and tasted as far as it's done. Warm pieces straight from the smokehouse have a fantastic taste ..! ..

The lower part of the fireplace, smokehouse (including flue) and wells are lined with slate


Brief description of the pergola at the cottage in Borenovice

The fireplace + smokehouse system is part of the space for recreational sitting in the atrium of the cottage. In order to protect this space (as well as the fireplace itself with the smokehouse, especially their electrical and mechanical parts) from bad weather and to be used for growing vines and ornamental plants, a pergola was built above it - a solid structure of solid wooden beams with a transparent roofing. The procedure of building a pergola can be seen in the following pictures :

Before the actual construction of the pergola,
I made a mock-up
in a scale of 1:50

Building a pergola .... - and painting it ...
Pergola in winter (there was no front gate yet)
Pergola - gate in front Pergola - back wall
A masquerade carnival parade during refreshments under the pergola

Carnival under the pergola at the smokehouse
After the construction of the smokehouse, fireplace and pergola, a nice tradition of the main stop of the carnival procession in Borenovice was established within a few years . Already about 14 days before the carnival we buy cheese, bacon, meat, sausages, wine for cooking, etc., we prepare everything, season it, entice it. On the day of the carnival, I have been drowning in the smokehouse since 6 am and gradually putting meat, bacon, cheese and sausages there. It happens all day, until about three or four o'clock in the afternoon, when the masquerades arrive.
   Meanwhile, we boil about 3 liters of quality red wine, well seasoned and prepared (see below). We prepare cutlery, chopped peppers and cucumbers (fresh and pickled), sliced ??bread, mustard and other side dishes on the tables under the pergola. We will prepare wine glasses and plum brandy.
   When the masquerade carnival parade, led by a bear , comes, we pull warm meat, bacon, sausages and especially smoked cheese from the smokehouse (it tastes best to everyone!). The pergola is flooded with the pleasant smell of those goodies, masquerades and musicians cut and drink it with jerky plums or glasses of wine. Glasses of fragrant strong mulled wine are excellent for warming up .
   In cheerful fun and friendly debate, we talk about smoking, burning plum brandy, village life, various events ...

Mulled spicy wine
This own proven recipe has developed over many years of preparation of mulled wine at a cottage in Borřenovice :
   Red wine 
- 1 liter
- 2 - 3 tables poons
   Star anise
- 5 stars
- 5 fragments about 3 cm long
- 1 teaspoon
   Orange peel
- 1 teaspoon pieces of dried peel
- 1 teaspoon
- 1 teaspoon crushed dried rosehip
- dried pieces of apple or peel
-1 dcl 40-50% quality brandy or liqueur (apricot, rum, griotka, etc.)
   Let the wine with the ingredients boil briefly in a container under the lid. Finally, we add brandy to improve the fullness and strength of the drink. Served cold refreshing hot pleasantly warm in the harsh autumn and cold winter days.
   The recipe is broken down for 1 liter, but usually we prepare a larger quantity, 3-5 liters.

In addition to the thorough connection of the pergola beams with metal screws and bolts, I also recommend strengthening with metal angles.

- add

Pergola, fireplace + smokehouse Japanese garden Cottage for cultural recreation
Music: Indian Chinese Tibetan Japanese Orthodox Catholic Islamic
Anthropic principle or cosmic God | Gravity, black holes and space-time physics
AstroNuclPhysics ® Nuclear Physics - Astrophysics - Cosmology - Philosophy

Vojtech Ullmann