Bridge Beach Model 888 Vintage Stove

This Bridge Beach Model 888  Stove is an exceptional example of  vintage craftsmanship.

We list vintage cast iron in many forms to help the novice collector.  See details below the image.

Read the full article at this link – Bridge Beach Model 888

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BREAD Artisan Flax Seed & Beer

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BREAD Artisan Flax Seed & Beer (No Knead)
This is a no knead yeast bread. It does require allowing it to self rise overnight on the counter.
  1. In a large dough mixing bowl. Add Salt, Yeast, and ground Flax Seed to Flour
  2. Add Beer to the combined dry ingredients. Stir together until completely mixed into a rough ball.
  3. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit on counter 6-18 hours.
  4. Sometime after the initial 8 hours when dough has at least doubled, turn the "proofed" dough out onto a floured board. Pat the dough out flat. Fold over on itself 4 or 5 times. (No Kneading)
  5. Oil the inside of your Dutch Oven. Place the dough into the oiled Dutch Oven. Oil the top of the dough. Cover with plastic wrap once again. Allow to raise 1 1/2 to 3 hours. Gently peel the plastic off when time to bake to avoid deflating the dough. Using a 8 inch Dutch Oven you will bake with the lid off. Using a 10 in Dutch Oven you can bake with the lid on or off. If baking with the lid on be sure to coat the lid with oil. The dough will most likely push up to the lid and recreate the lid pattern. It also may actually push the lid up higher, until you get more familiar with this baking technique and perhaps not adding all the dough based on your baking vessel size.
  6. Preheat oven to 450°F Bake about 30 minutes or until golden brown. If you tap on the crust you should hear the distinctive hollow sound of properly baked bread.
  7. Shake out the loaf to cool on a rack. For soft crust, brush all surfaces with butter once out of the Pan/Dutch Oven, and still hot.
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Dutch Oven Bagels

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Bagels (Dutch Oven)
Insanely simple way to enjoy bagels while camping. A 10, 12, or 14 Inch Dutch Oven will work. Be sure to have some parchment paper or foil along. You will need enough coals for 350° Heat and a few extra to raise the top temperature at the end. We steal coals from the bottom. This recipe and technique was shown to me by my friend Kathleen LeBlanc on a recent camping outing. We are not sure where this originated from. But it is easy, simple, and requires only a few common ingredients.
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 22 minutes
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 22 minutes
  1. Combine dry ingredients. Mix in the Yogurt and combine until a wet biscuit dough consistency.
  2. On a floured board, knead the dough until it is just beyond the sticky stage.
  3. Divide dough into 4 equal pieces. Roll between hands to form a snake. Take the rolled out snake of dough and form a loop and pinch the ends together to create a circle. Repeat for the other 3 pieces of dough.
  4. On the bottom of a Dutch Oven place a piece of spray oiled parchment paper. Place the 4 bagel dough circles on the parchment paper and brush with egg wash. Sprinkle with favorite topping(s).
  5. Cover Dutch Oven and place coals for 350°F Heat. Bake for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes heap coals on top to quickly raise the top heat. Bake with high top heat 2-5 minutes or until tops brown nicely.
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I was pleasantly surprised today when my new skillet, the SKT-105-01A , was delivered.

My intent is to document  its arrival, my opinion of the product, how well it seasons, and how well it cooks.

The cost was a bit pricey but it is USA made and I really wanted to check out the smooth interior surface.  The outer surface is more rough but still smoother than most cast iron being produced today.  The interior appears to be milled smooth on the bottom, sides and upper edge.

The exterior bottom appears to have the writing cast or engraved.  With the bottom then  partially machined, or it is a very smooth casting.  The exterior sides and top and bottom of the handle are a fairly smooth cast surface.

The cost was $80.00, minus a $12.00 veterans discount, then tacked on shipping of $10 for a total cost delivered of $78.00.

The only negative so far is the wait time between ordering, shipping, and delivery.  I placed my order on line and it was confirmed 12/13/2017.  Delivery was today 1/20/2018.

Regarding the lag in shipping.  Stargazer was up front when ordering and made it clear delivery would be delayed due to back orders and the Christmas season.  They communicated well and advised once shipped, and advised again the day it was out for delivery.

The skillet came packed well and secured well in the shipment box.  A lesson some of the eBayer’s selling cast iron need to follow.  It would be difficult for it to arrive damaged unless the delivery service miss handled it.

In the box it was wrapped and securely taped tight.  The cast iron had a liberal coating of food grade mineral oil.

Following the enclosed directions I scrubbed the piece with soapy water and heated it to dry.

A thin layer of seasoning has been applied and the skillet is now in the oven getting its first coating of seasoning baked on.

Check back for follow-up on this Stargazer skillet.

Normally I am a “Crisco” seasoning person.  I have used it for decades with excellent results.  I use it because it is always on hand at home or when camping

I have some Crisbee product that I used on a griddle with great results.  So I thought the seasoning on my Stargazer would be done with Crisbee.

Whatever your preferred product, apply it to warm cast iron (not hot).   You can do this preheating the oven to 200°.  Use a lint free cloth to apply product.  Some paper towels are awful for this process.   They leave behind fibers.

Coat all surfaces very lightly with seasoning product.  Wipe away any excess.  Place back in the warm (about 200°F) oven.  Not in a hot oven.

Once the piece is in the oven adjust the temp up to your desired seasoning temperature.  Set a timer for your seasoning bake time.  I prefer 90 minutes.

Once the bake time is over shut the oven off.  Do not open the door even to peek.  Set your timer for 90 minutes and allow the oven and cast iron inside of it to cool down naturally together.

Update: 1/20/2018

My first coat I was a little disappointed.  The surface did not come out uniform.  Even though the raw iron, as arrived with a layer of protective mineral oil, was well cleaned with hot soapy water several times.  In hindsight I wished I had used #0 steel wool during my soapy hot water cleaning.

Mineral oil (which Stargazer’s inserted leaflet indicates) verses a Vegetable oil coating may make a difference?  I have even dealt with other cast iron that comes new with a paraffin coating that needed burned off.

Doing the initial  cleaning, if I was doing it again, I would do two 2 hot soapy scrub baths.  Changing the water completely between the two, and using a scrub brush, then #0 Steel wool during the initial cleaning.

Something to consider should you be reading this and plan on seasoning something smooth or something with mineral oil on it.

I kind of expected it on this smooth surface though.  I have had lots of experience seasoning and have seen this happen before.

I have noticed this same effect on other vintage cast iron that has a super smooth finish.  Regardless of the seasoning product being used.   So I am not overly concerned. The brown color on the first coat is normal   None of this uneven seasoning can be felt with a finger.  My solution from past experiences when dealing with extremely smooth surfaces, is to this is to use #0 steel wool.

Worst case scenario might be after evaluating the second coat.  I might have to strip this bare again and start over.  In hindsight, I am not so sure I did a good job of getting the factory protective coating of mineral oil off?  Or if this is a smooth surface issue.  I will know soon enough.  Stripping it is no big deal if it comes to that.

Evaluate your initial seasoned coating.

First your initial baked on coat of seasoning should be hard.  Not sticky or gummy even to the slightest degree.

If this layer of seasoning isn’t hard and firmly adhered you need to go through the baking stage again at perhaps a higher heat, or for a longer period (without applying additional seasoning product).

If you start using steel wool lightly and it starts loading up with residue, stop and repeat the bake cycle.  That is an indicator of seasoning that has not been heated to the proper heat polymerization point.

If you have “pooling” (puddles of concentrated seasoning.  These normally are  sticky or gummy to some degree, you have applied too much seasoning.  I would consider stripping it and starting over.  A bad base coat will give you problems.

Update 1/21/2018

I had no problem with the first coat on this, not being hard and well adhered.  On the smooth interior surface I can take the #0 Steelwool  and hand/finger buff with almost as much pressure as I can muster, and still not cut through the seasoning unless I stay in one spot for a long time.  I concentrate a little more on the spots I call “alligatoring”.   Then lightly buff the entire surface to uniformly rough it up.  This buffing is nothing you can see.  I can not see scratches with my naked eye.  This is all done by feel.  It provides something for the next coat to grab.

While I am at it, I hit the whole exterior surface lightly, just to knock off anything thing there.  Lint is the most common thing.

The piece is then washed a couple of times in hot soapy water.  Rinsed and dried.  I immediately place it in a 200°F prewarmed oven for several minutes.  When it is warm and completely dry I remove it and spread a very thin layer of seasoning on all surfaces of the skillet.

It is put back into the 200°F oven, upside down.  I crank my oven temp up to my desired seasoning temperature (This temperature varies product to  product, and your actual oven output – read about Polymerization Temperature).   I then set my timer for 90 minutes and bake at that temperature.

Once the bake cycle is complete I turn the oven off, leave the door shut, and reset the timer for and addition 90 minute natural slow cool down cycle.   Once that is complete this seasoning coat should be complete.


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WHITE BREAD (Agave Coconut) Tastes like Old Fashion White Bread

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WHITE BREAD (Agave Coconut) Tastes like Old Fashion White Bread
The taste of this bread is that of old fashioned white bread. There is no coconut taste in the finished bread. Organic Blue Agave is used since it is a low Glycemic organic sweetener. I often bake this in a Dutch Oven. Free form loaves could be used. Or small loaf pans. Use a large, tall, Dutch Oven and coals for 375°. I prefer to use one standard bread loaf pan. I place a wire rack in the Dutch Oven to elevate the loaf pan slightly. This recipe assumes you know the basics of raised bread dough techniques.
Prep Time 1 1/2 Hours
Cook Time 30 Minutes
Prep Time 1 1/2 Hours
Cook Time 30 Minutes
  1. SET BREAD MACHINE to “Quick”, “Dough” Start so pre-heat is going. PLACE Flour in bread machine. Make a little depression in the flour and add the salt in the depression. Cover the salt with some of the flour.
  2. COMBINE in a separate bowl the Warm Coconut Milk, warm Agave, and yeast. Whisk and allow to "grow" 5 to 15 minutes.
  3. Crack egg into a clean bowl and whisk until uniform. Whisk the egg into the milk and yeast mixture, Then whisk in the melted butter.
  4. POUR combined liquid mixture into bread machine with the flour and covered salt. Let the bread machine starting running through Quick, Dough, cycle (Mix & First Rise 45 Minutes) This is normally a manual override setting on most bread machines. Monitor the initial mixing stage until the dough just begins to clump together and form a ball. Adjust flour mixture to correction consistency. If liquid is required add small amounts of warm water a little at a time.
  5. PREHEAT oven to 375 degrees F. Grease Bread Pans. The warmed stove top will become your warm place 45 minutes later to raise your dough the second time. The bread machine will provide the raise the first time. ( If you are using a mixer/dough hook or hand method to create your dough, both raises will occur on the stove top or other warm place)
  6. TURN DOUGH OUT (dough that has raised one time) on floured surface and roll out into a 12X8 inch rectangle. Roll as a jelly roll 8 inches wide. Pinch seam, tuck ends under and pinch seams, coat with light coat of oil, and place in greased bread pan, seam side down.
  7. COVER Dough AND let RAISE, on warm stove 30-45 minutes. This is your second rise.
  8. BAKE at 375 for 25-30 minutes (Until golden Brown and sounds somewhat hollow when tapped.
  9. Remove from pan and rub all surfaces with butter for a softer crust. Cover with towel until cooled
Recipe Notes

Liquids should be warm not hot. Rather than getting all technical and breaking out the thermometers. Test on inside of wrist as you would baby bottle milk. Proper temperature aids in the dough rising quickly. Overly hot will kill the yeast. Cold temperatures, and the yeast will not rise. On both Raise cycles the dough should double in volume. Your flour and other ingredients should all be at least room temperature. Make sure to oil the dough, and oil your rising bowl, or container. Cover and raise dough in a warm draft free location.

We use a bread machine to speed mixing the dough and the first rise. The benefit of a bread machine is consistent results. When baking multiple loaves you can keep producing a ready batch every 45 minutes, ready for the second rise in your bread pan.

This dough can be made using any traditional method including the old fashioned by hand method, or a mixer with a dough hook. By hand, the more you knead, the better the bread. Many people that get poor results when baking bread fail at the temperature, and or not enough kneading. Other yeast killers are combining your yeast and salt in the liquids. The salt will kill the yeast. Mix your yeast with warm liquids and allow it to "grow". Combined ingredients as recipe indicates. With any tried and tested recipe you might be following pay particular attention to how and when the salt is added.

Just prior to placing in bowl or bread pan to raise, lightly coat all surfaces of the dough with olive or or vegetable oil.  Loosely cover it with a light cloth towel and place in a warm place.

Rising works best in a warm moist environment. I use (2) stainless steamer trays. The 6 inch deep, half size steamer tray 10x12 inch.

Or full size if doing English muffins or multiple loaves. In the bottom tray, add a 1/2 inch of very hot tap water. A wire rack placed in that hot water (Rack should be slightly above the water level). Then place the bread pan with the oiled dough in it, on top of the rack. The second stainless tray placed inverted as a domed cover. This is placed on the top of the warm stove with the oven preheating. This warm, moist environment raises your dough quickly, usually in 30 minutes so. Standard size loaves have plenty of room to raise.

Full size steamer tray shown with English Muffins being raised.
Top inverted tray is removed to photograph the bottom.

There is a wire rack under the muffins (English Muffin Photo) that is foiled covered for this English muffin technique.

Trays and properly sized racks are available at restaurant supply places

Other options are foil type trays, Dutch Oven with a trivet inside, then set in the sun, etc. I have also used an ice chest with hot water and pans to lift the loaf pans above the ice 🙂 Anything you have around the house that can trap the warmth and moisture. Also before starting the "raise" process, remember to coat the dough with vegetable oil or olive oil. Spray Pam works great and is easy to apply with no waste.

After removing the baked bread from the oven, and still hot, rub all surfaces with butter for a soft crust.

Note: Dough can be made ahead of time and stored in the fridge. See the link below for more details.

No...this bread does not taste like coconut.

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