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Fire Logs and starters

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Post by itsme Sat Dec 28, 2013 8:29 am

Someone asked on TOB where fire logs can be bought. Nobody answered the question, rather they discussed where to buy firewood. I am also interested in buying these or the little fire starters made by the same company. Can anyone help? TIA

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Post by David Sat Dec 28, 2013 8:34 am

SuperLake, Walmart
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Post by Pedro Sat Dec 28, 2013 8:43 am

we get the rosin sticks at the chapala mercado[2nd floor] to start our bbq. those sticks are enormously expensive at wally world.
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Post by brigitte Sat Dec 28, 2013 9:06 am

If you talking about the ocote sticks ? You can buy it at the tianguis in Ajijic as well but they are only good for lighting a fire you still have to buy logs to burn. By the way there is nothing like the dried pods from the flame treets to get a fire going..

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Post by CHILLIN Sat Dec 28, 2013 9:55 am

We buy Pine Mountain wax fire logs from Costco, via Lakeside Delivery, and then cut the logs into thirds to start firewood. Mesquite wood is tough to get going, so we use Catalpa as well. Lakeside is closed right now and be aware they have a minimum order, and a small surcharge for a heavier item like six firelogs.

Brigitte - you have to see/borrow the Thai BBQ I ordered . It is in Mexican customs right now. Thai street vendor food -yum

http://importfood.com/dao_cooker.html
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Post by brigitte Sat Dec 28, 2013 10:43 am

Thanks for the link, it looks like something like my friends in Chiapas can duplicate. Meanwhile down there we can find hibatchi type metal bbq s.The indigenous use them to warm up their feet but we use them for cooking on the back patio.

I like the ocotte stick best and combine with the pods they will get anything started. We have a large flame tree so way too many pods anyways, it is a good use for them.

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Post by Pedro Sat Dec 28, 2013 11:29 am

i brought down my weber which smokes as well as bbq's and i have never cleaned it in 18 years except the grill. the starter pictured, was made for me by al young after my other burned out. you put paper under it then the sticks and then the mesquite charcoal. no chemicals needed. dump the coals out of the starter when ready-voila!
you can buy webers here.
Fire Logs and starters Charco11
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Post by brigitte Sat Dec 28, 2013 11:51 am

I have a webber but I want a small bbq. I cook a lot of Thai and Vietnamese meals and for two people the webber is a big waste of energy. In CHiapas I do not have any space to store a webber but that little clay thing would be perfect.
I have a Japanese friend who also is a great French chef and cooked a whole leg of lamb on a small hibatchi once, he impressed the heck out of me. It was delicious and he did not need anything big to cook the leg.

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Post by CHILLIN Sat Dec 28, 2013 12:12 pm

The Tao can function as a nice little grill, but it is great for healthy stir fry because it can get real hot, which together with spices makes a lot of smoke - best used outside. If the people of Chiapas can get this into production, I think there is an excellent market for them - especially on the beaches. In Northern Mexico there is a popular pan very similar to a wok - it is made from a circular plow share blade.

I am growing a lot of oriental vegetables as well.

By the way the 'dirt and sand' he is tamping into the bucket is probably what we call river sand in Mexico. You would probably be best to find someone who makes metal buckets in Mexico, and then adapt the terracotta insert to it.
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Post by Rolly Sat Dec 28, 2013 12:37 pm

In Northern Mexico there is a popular pan very similar to a wok - it is made from a circular plow share blade.

It's call a discada.  Discada is the name of both a meat dish and the pan traditionally used to cook it over an open camp fire.

Fire Logs and starters Puncha-disc-1
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Post by brigitte Sat Dec 28, 2013 1:07 pm

Ihave a friend who is a metal worker and there are also people making the buckets, braseros etc at the local market so that would not be a problem.
The indigenous there use some type of dirt or sand in their kitchen to cook on , in some areas. They have large sandboxes with legs and they build fires in their house to cook so they will know what will work..
 
If I get the metal guys and the clay people together and have them work on it together, they will understand it in no time as they are very practical people and can make just about anything.
 
I do work with many artisans down there and know a lot of them so it is very easy for me to pick a couple of them and have them work on it, If they like the product it can be sold in the villages if it works for them, sold to the tourists and as many of them go to the yucatan beaches to sell their products , it will be simple for them to test the market. I personally will bring back one here for our use.

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Post by brigitte Sat Dec 28, 2013 1:51 pm

https://i.servimg.com/u/f56/18/24/05/93/jocely13.jpg

This are the little metal braseros used to warm up feet while working...

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Post by Pedro Sat Dec 28, 2013 2:39 pm

brigitte wrote:I have a webber but I want a small bbq. I cook a lot of Thai and Vietnamese meals and for two people the webber is a big waste of energy. In CHiapas I do not have any space to store a webber but that little clay thing would be perfect.
I have a Japanese friend who also is a great French chef and cooked a whole leg of lamb on a small hibatchi once, he impressed the heck out of me. It was delicious and he did not need anything big to cook the leg.
my weber is not gas. look at the foto again. i cook for 2 on it 90% of the time[we share 1 steak] but have cooked for 50 on it as well. i even re-use whatever mezquite is left and not burned to help start the next cooking whenever that may be. at least 1/4 is saved because having the lid puts it out before it becomes ash.
i will never ever ever cook on a gaz bbq. heresy!
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Post by itsme Sat Dec 28, 2013 2:47 pm

David wrote:SuperLake, Walmart

Tried Walmart, no luck. I didn't see any the other day at SL but they are always getting new stuff in, maybe they have it now. Will let you know if I find any.


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Post by brigitte Sat Dec 28, 2013 3:13 pm

When I said a waste of energy I meant chacoal which is energy not gas. My webber looks just like yours and I am sick of that big thing.

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Post by CHILLIN Sat Dec 28, 2013 3:17 pm

Brigitte - the sand is for insulation, the metal bucket is to protect the ceramic because it is probably wood fired. That's why this unit (should!) work so well - the heat is concentrated - like a volcanes. The other concrete is hold the sand in. You could also use a cement and perlite mixture - perlite is abundant in Mexico, I saw a huge bag for 100 pesos at the garden center. Here's a website on the recipe

http://www.flyingconcrete.com/manual.htm

I could see a good business just renting them out on the beach with charcoal - the families would just bring their coolers.
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Post by brigitte Sat Dec 28, 2013 5:46 pm

Yes I understand the principal. The sand will also protect the clay from being hit and break and againt sudden temperature variations.
I have never seen perlite in San Cristobal but then I never looked for it.
I think it is going to be a fun prject , we will learn by trial and error but I can see getting a couple just for fun .Omce they work I will talk to the group about making them in larger quantities. I think the actual cost wil be pretty low so that is good news.
 
By the way it is interesting to see the change of design between the 65 dolars one and oval 50 and 60 dollars, it looks like the bottom was changed ad that there is not as much dirt on the sides or the stove is much skinnier underneath. The finish is cleaner at the top on the newer version.  I wonder if the changes were only esthetic or if they improved something.
 
What do you think?

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Post by CHILLIN Sun Dec 29, 2013 8:12 am

I think the first tao, and the second one I bought, have more lower airspace than is needed - and the later versions made up for that. My main purpose is wok, 13 inch wok is the standard, with the round bottom (I also bought the wok stand which adapts to flat burners. If it doesn't get as hot as I want - I have seen (somewhere) a 12 volt heat resistant fan. Put that on the air intake and you will have enough heat to melt metal!

I still think the later designs were to match local galvanized buckets and tubs. I think they are harder to produce than you think - they are hot dipped in zinc metal. Maybe the galvanized feature is not needed - but I know that steel that has been near heat seems to rust faster. Here is a company from the U.S. which sells a wide variety of tubs - all are supposed to be from Mexico. The ex-factory pricing in Mexico would be much, much lower.

http://www.pigeonmountaintrading.com/Category/1-22689-galvanized.aspx

Here is an Australian blog on using the Thai Oven.
http://bruceteakle.blogspot.mx/p/cooking-on-thai-charcoal-stove.html

When the coals start to burn away, I plan to burn some insect repelling dried herbs like Holy Basil and Lemon Eucalyptus. I don't know if they work as they say, but at least they are not foul smelling. This is getting even more off track - but do they burn a bug repelling 'smudge' in Chiapas? The oven is easily moved to 'upwind'.
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Post by brigitte Sun Dec 29, 2013 10:10 am

No I have not heard of any repellent in Chiapas but I live in the highlands were we do not have much bugs. I do not know what they do in the jungle, I will have to ask .
My friend the metal man uses charcoal for his forge so I can get it from the same supplier no problem there.

I would love to see your Tao when you get it, I will bring back the one they come up with. I have a couple of wok but either someone washed the one I have in Chiapas and did not dry it or the climate got to it as it rusted..I was sick about it. They are easy to find as we have many Chinese who live in Tapachula so I will have to replace it and meanwhile I will bring the one from Ajijic which is old and well seasonned.
The Tao will be great in San Cristobal as it is hard to have a very hot wok because of the altitude.
I know a couple of Thai people there and one of them has a restaurant so they may be able to point me in the right direction as well.



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Post by CHILLIN Sun Dec 29, 2013 11:22 am

It was Copal that I was thinking of. Have you seen the raw stuff in the markets there? I am looking for about a .5 kilo, what is the cost? I want to make some insect repellent incense.
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Post by brigitte Sun Dec 29, 2013 11:53 am

copal is everywhere in Chiapas or Oaxaca for that matter. I have no idea of the price as I do not buy it but it has to be cheap.. I am sure any of the indigenous ladies from Oaxaca can tell you where to get some, I bet you could find it at San Juan de Dios as well.

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Post by CHILLIN Sun Dec 29, 2013 2:17 pm

Found Copal on Mercadolibre.com.mx - 299 pesos per kilo, plus delivery.
Can't wait to see what you come up with - even Martha Stewart has a Tao! A very funny book, though a lot of inside America jokes - The Tao of Martha.
http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/15808650-the-tao-of-martha
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Post by brigitte Sun Dec 29, 2013 5:14 pm

I bumped in one of the Oaxaca vendors this afternoon, she told me you can buy copal in Guadalajara un the medecinal stores and that you maybe able to find some at the church where they sell the candles. She may have been thinking of the churches in Oaxaca because here I think they use another type of incense but it is worth checking if you are looking for it.

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Post by itsme Mon Dec 30, 2013 8:53 pm

itsme wrote:
David wrote:SuperLake, Walmart

Tried Walmart, no luck. I didn't see any the other day at SL but they are always getting new stuff in, maybe they have it now. Will let you know if I find any.


SL has the logs, is charging $60 per log. Someone was going to Costco today, went with them, they had logs, 6 in box for $259.

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Post by ShanConshue Tue Dec 31, 2013 4:27 am

you can make simple firestarters.. egg cartons, dryer lint and wax...  but im lazy and i buy loose eggs..   cotton balls dipped in wax works for me :)
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