Today, we’re sharing some of our top 10 favourite bits of fire cookery equipment! There are all sorts of outdoor cookery gadgets out there, but these are the ones that get used the most in our woodland kitchen. Over the years, we have had the pleasure of cooking over lots of different bits of kit – Fire Made UK, Gozney and Big Green Egg to name a few!
Cooking over fire is at the core of what we do here at The Salt Box, we’re firm believers that feasts taste far better cooked over the flames! Since we founded in 2017, our fires have been the engine room of our outdoor feasts, cookery courses and woodland events. We embrace traditional, nomadic fire cooking techniques which add a unique complexity of flavour and texture to our dishes.
It’s worth noting that you really don’t need any fancy equipment to cook fantastic meals over the fire. As a minimum, you’ll need an outdoor space where you can build a fire, such as a spot on the ground with some bricks – or a fire pit / kettle bbq or similar.
We love to support fellow small businesses where we can – therefore you’ll also find a number of hand crafted fire tools made by local friends, featured within the below.
Please note we only recommend products we have extensively tried and tested and all opinions expressed here are our own. A handful of the products listed below contain affiliate links that at no additional cost to you, we may earn a small commission from.
We’ve been cooking on the Fire Made UK hanging frames since 2019, and have recently upgraded our cookery course equipment to Fire Made UK frames too, providing an incredibly versatile fire kitchen which we can’t wait to share with our guests.
You can absolutely use any pots and pans from your kitchen, but bear in mind that the fire can be brutal on equipment that isn’t designed for cooking over fire.
We recommend having a separate set for fire cooking ideally made out of cast iron. Cast iron conducts a really nice, even heat throughout but importantly they are 100% metal which means nothing can melt off of the handles or lids. These pans don’t need to be fancy or overly expensive, just perfectly functional.
A set of three skillets can be picked up for as little as £30 (for example, this set), Kadai do a great set for £55 (view here), or if you’re looking to treat yourself to a little something special, the range of pans from Netherton Foundry are stunning.
For the ultimate fire management tool, our Fire Rake and Blower is always by our side helping to stoke and control the flames for our feasts, forged by a talented young blacksmith here in Surrey.
This bit of kit allows you to move hot embers to exactly where you need them. The length of the blow poker lets you blow through the pipe keeping your face away from the heat whilst introducing more oxygen, to help stoke the fire when it gets a bit smokey or needs a little helping hand. A bestseller on all our cookery courses – they really do make nurturing your fires a doddle!
Most kitchen utensils made from metal are great for cooking over the fire – just be aware that anything near the flames will be HOT. We generally advise that you have a long pair of tongs like these ones to keep your hands a little further away from the heat and a sturdy pair of fire gloves for moving grills and hot pans.
Another really important piece of equipment we wouldn’t be without is an instant read thermometer or temperature probe.
The elements play a big part in changing the temperature of the fire, so to remove any guess work, a thermometer gives you accurate results – feast after feast.
To get your fires lit we always encourage our guests to use spark based ignition. We always use these hand-carved Wooden Handled Ferro Rods and Strikers, made by our good friend James in West Sussex.
Lighting a fire, even in the pouring rain, is a skill every adventurer should have. If you cook over fire, either in the comfort of your own garden or out on adventures, these ferro rods and strikers are a must – look after them and they’ll last a lifetime.
The Roccbox is a brilliant little bit of kit! A restaurant-grade portable outdoor pizza oven that reaches an incredible 950°F/500°C. It is built using the same design, engineering and grade of materials as Gozney’s professional ovens, used by some of the world’s best restaurants.
We’ve had a brilliant time using our Roccbox, of course there have been plenty of pizzas consumed but there’s so much more to the Roccbox than just pizzas. We’ve baked bread, cooked veggies and cooked up plenty of meat dishes too.
A firm favourite here at The Salt Box – it often makes an appearance on our cookery courses, and our weekend feasting when we’ve got a little downtime!
When skewering ingredients, a flat stainless steel skewer is an absolute must – they stop meat from spinning whilst cooking, whilst also ensuring heat is passed through the middle so your dishes cook evenly.
They’re particularly essential if you’re campfire cooking up a bacon-fuelled breakfast. Cooking the bacon on a skewer not only means you won’t lose any rashers through the grills, but it’s also a great space saver – as cooking enough bacon over the fire even just for a few people takes up a huge amount of space! Concertina-ing the bacon onto a flat metal skewer helps to reduce the space needed to cook it and allows us to cook over a smaller fire, meaning we can use less fuel.
Introduced in 1974, the Big Green Egg is a ceramic grill based on clay cookers from Japan called kamados, with thick glazed ceramic that insulates this outdoor oven from the elements, creating optimal conditions for cooking a variety of foods. This versatility has helped the Big Green Egg gain a loyal following, and we couldn’t have been happier to become an associate reseller in early 2022.
Our eggs will be making an appearance on our cookery courses – if you’re tempted by one yourself, but wish to see one in action – join us for a day in the woods and we’ll be sure to showcase their multiple capabilities.
The ProQ Cold Smoke Generator can turn almost any box or BBQ into a cold smoker – perfect for fresh fish, wild game and seasonal vegetables. You can use a cold smoke generator in almost any cabinet or food chamber provided that there is ventilation top and bottom to create an air flow. It gives off no heat, is easy to light and burns evenly for around 10 hours, giving a gentle constant smoke for your food. Just fill the generator with your chosen smoking wood dust, and unlock loads of new flavour to your dishes.
We couldn’t help adding a few of our favourite fire cookbooks: