The weather’s getting cooler as winter get’s nearer, but why not make the most of the weather now with this interesting way to cook outdoors, a Swedish torch.
A Swedish torch is also known as a Canadian candle and is a great way to enjoy the last of the warm weather and cook something up on an open fire. It’s a simple design and can be made using just a few things that you probably already have.
What you’ll need:
1 log (flat on both ends)
Tinder (birch bark is ideal)
A cooking pan
First, you’ll need to find a log, this log should be between 1 and 2 feet tall (0.3-0.6 meters) and should be flat on both ends. This will ensure it can stand and has a sturdy surface to cook on.
Next you’ll need a saw, a chainsaw would be great for this however not everyone has one at their disposal. Alternatively, a hand saw would take longer, but should achieve similar results. Using your saw, cut 3 grooves into your log. These groves should stop about 5 inches (13cm) before the bottom of the log, being deeper at the edges of the log and shallower in the centre for improved ventilation. These three grooves should intersect in the centre, making the log look like a pie that’s been cut into 6 pieces.
The next step is to get some tinder, this can be purchased, you can use old newspaper, or you can peel the bark off of a birch tree. These thin peels are perfect for starting a fire, provided they’re fairly dry. Now you can stuff this tinder into the cuts of your log. This will help to get the fire going as it can be easily lit, unlike the log itself. The fire will then spread from the tinder to the log.
It’s almost time to light the torch, but first you should clear the area around the log of flammable items, as coal can fall from the log after a couple of hours. To make the log more stable you can easily dig it into the ground a could of inches.
Now you can light your log, use a match (or other fire starting tool) to strike a flame and light the tinder at the top of the log. If all goes correctly then you should see a small flame on the top, this will then disappear and the log should start smoking, this is because the torch burns from the inside.
The Swedish torch is now ready for cooking, place a pan or pot on top and use it to cook a meal. The log should burn for around 2-3 hours.
Remember to always be careful with fire, and have fun with your cooking!