We sell the Kadai fire bowl range as we are sold on it ourselves and believe that anyone who enjoys being outdoors – the garden, camping or anywhere else you have access – should have his or her own firebowl. Stylish, sturdy and totally functional, what more could you want, whether for cooking, socialising or both.
We use our own fire bowls all the time and can give you plenty of hints on how to get the most out of yours. Think of the Kadai bowl as a mobile fireplace. It needs some thought and TLC, especially if you want it to last well and still look good, but not that much!
The fantastic thing about Kadais is that you can burn wood rather than the hassle and expense of charcoal. You can even burn your garden prunings in it – I love a hint of rosemary, lavender or bay in the mix – but, with a stove, the better quality the fuel, the better the results. Good seasoned hardwood like ash is desirable. For maximum slow burn, I recommend some oak or hawthorn if you can get hold of it.
Another wonderful thing about your Kadai is that you can easily move it wherever you want even when in use. Just one note of caution – beware of unstable or uneven ground. Always make sure that the stand is level and firm. I use 3 loose tiles for footings whenever I use my bowls on earth/grass.
Regarding maintenance, do read the instructions supplied with your bowl. If neglected, like any steel tool, it will rust. As far as possible I always keep my bowls out of the rain (of course, it doesn’t matter when you are using it as the heat will do the drying!) and I never douse it. After use we simply move it back under cover and let it burn itself out. Obviously, to do this you need to have somewhere safe where there is no fire risk. I only empty it once a year (apart from maybe trowelling off some ash from the top if it is getting too full) and then do my annual maintenance. This involves a good brush (with the wire brush supplied) to get any surface rust off and then oil it with cooking oil (any non-toxic oil will do), just enough to make sure it is well covered inside and out without actually dripping all over the place. This takes me about an hour and leaves me with a bowl looking pretty much as good as new.
If you do need to douse your bowl after use, I would recommend you then empty it as soon as possible afterwards and brush it reasonably clean. Then a quick run over with an oily rag if you think it needs it before covering it. If you leave a wet cadge in your bowl you will regret it, especially when you next want to light it!
Choice of Fire Bowls
If you fancy yourself as a barbecue chef, you want the biggest bowl possible. With the 80cm fire bowl and appropriate accessories you can satisfactorily cook at least four different dishes simultaneously. You can also manage the heat in the bowl so that some things are cooking faster than others at the same time. Conversely the 60cm fire bowl is more than adequate if you only want to use your bowl for social purposes. At least 6 people can share the warmth sitting round in comfort. The 70cm fire bowl is a good compromise, with one major advantage over the 80cm in that one able-bodied person can easily lift/move it by himself or herself without it touching their front.
Essential Kadai Fire Bowls Kit
I consider the pair of grill lifters ESSENTIAL. If you have a pair re-fuelling is so easy. If not, what do you do? I also strongly recommend the blow poker. There is nothing more annoying than the heat dropping too low just a little earlier than you want. With the blow poker you can pep it up and get a final burst of heat, without having to put more logs on.
Nearly essential for barbecuers
Set of trays & Zhara pan
Our cooking equipment options present limitless possibilities of outdoor haute cuisine – kebabs, paella, daal in a tripod cooking bowl or even crepes on the stone griddle plate. However, for sheer practicality, versatility and convenience we love the perforated grill trays. These are just so quick and easy for bacon, sausages, chicken drumsticks, chops, sweetcorn, chopped veg. All with a wonderful wood-smoked flavour and you don’t lose anything falling into the fire.
Equally easy, but not necessarily quite so quick, is the zhara roasting pan. Using the pan with its lid enables you to cook joints of meat. Our absolute favourite is roasting chicken. Just open up the bird to flatten it a bit and then allow a couple of hours to slow roast, turning it every now and again.