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Build and Bake

Build and Bake
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Product Details

Our wood fired oven has become an integral part of our kitchen. We not only use it for baking artisan breads, but also for roasting our meat and grilling our fish. 

Since our results have been so fantastic, we wanted to show you how to build your own clay oven. Be prepared to work hard with this very interactive course, as you dig the mud, mould the clay, and knead the dough!


Tractor ride down to the farm

Meet your tutor Steve Lamb in the fantastic setting of River Cottage. Enjoy a morning tea or coffee and tasty River Cottage treats.

Practical session one: 
Dough making – learn how to make bread dough for your clay ovens.

Practical session two:
Next it's a short walk to find and dig clay, explaining consistency and ratios and where to find and source it. Then everyone will mix the building materials and following this you will create a sand former.

Practical session three:
 Learn how to build the clay oven wall.

Practical session four:
Have a go at pizza making using delicious local and seasonal toppings, which will form part of your lunch.

  A sumptuous lunch, including your homemade pizzas and local seasonal fare prepared by the River Cottage team.

Practical session five:
Knocking back the bread dough, shaping into loaves and then leaving to prove.

Practical session six:
At this point you complete the construction of your clay oven by building a brick archway, insulating the walls and hollowing out.

Practical session seven:
Bake your delicious homemade loaves in the clay ovens (not the one you have just constructed!).

Marvel at the many individually created loaves before heading up the hill with your own, still warm creation!

This is a guide to the activities that will make up your course at River Cottage. This is by no means set in stone and will depend on the season as well as the group’s interest. 


This course is run from River Cottage HQ on the Dorset/Devon borders. Full address details of HQ will be provided once you have booked.

: We are a licensed venue. We have a wide selection of the finest organic wines available to purchase.

If you need local accommodation please click here.

We would advise that this course is only really suitable for 12 years of age and upwards. Under 16s must be accompanied by an adult. We put these guidelines in place for the safety, comfort and enjoyment of all our guests.

10.00am - 5.00pm

On occasion cookery schools will use equipment that includes induction hobs. It is recommended that people with pace makers should not work on these units. If you are concerned or would like to check whether or not induction hobs will be used on the school you are interested in, please call us on 01297 630302.

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Build and Bake

Price From : £185.00

Rating: 5.0/5.0

4 reviews


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Customer Reviews Write a Review
Superb day!
Rating: 5/5

Having just returned from a glorious spell in sunny Devon & Dorset, I just had to write to say how fantastic the course was. Steve and Gideon were extremely attentive and engaging thoughout the day, and a great time was had by all. River Cottage HQ was stunning and beautifully complimented by the backdrop of the clear blue sky that we were fortunate enough to have on the day. To say we were well fed is a gross understatement - the neverending flow of food was superb so hats off to the chefs who worked diligently thoughout the day. Oh yes - we also did some baking and built a clay oven. I am now planning my own clay oven in my garden and hope to have it up and running by the summer - much to my wife's dread!

Added on by simonjordan

Build & Bake Mega Day
Rating: 5/5

Last Monday with my other half and friends undertook the B&B course. It was much better than I ever imagined it would be (and I already had high expectations in my sight!) It was run very well with both courses interspersing with each other. Steve & Gideon were great "Task Masters". You will learn much more than you ever expect to in one day. Do it!!

Added on by jenhwilliams

One word...brilliant!
Rating: 5/5

A thoroughly enjoyable day! A great big thank you to Steve and Ollie for making it such a wonderful experience. The day definitely exceeded our expectations...beautiful sunshine, stunning place, delicious food and excellent teaching! My bread makes an excellent doorstop (Only joking! It could have turned out much worse if I did use elderflower cordial instead of water!). The pizzas were the best I have ever tasted! I would definitely recommend this course. Leah and Alwyn

Added on by user747811

Mostly Making
Bread day in April
Rating: 5/5

Hi I wrote a review for the bread course I did in april but wanted to update you. I have not bought a supermarket loaf since! Every two days I make a sponge starter in the morning and bake a loaf in the evening. It' the best bread I have ever made and the family all loves it too. deborah Greatrex

Added on by Mostly Making