: Three Stone Fire, Losæter [June, 2014]

Three stone fire for baking flatbread. Photo: Erik Sjödin

[Three-Stone Fire for baking flatbread. Losæter, 2014. ]

During the Full Moon Celebration arranged by Flatbread Society in Losæter / Slow Space Bjørvika in Oslo Erik Sjödin built and tended three so called “three-stone fires”. One for cooking soup, one for baking bread, and one for cooking potatoes.

Three stone fire for cooking potatoes. Photo: Erik Sjödin

[Three-Stone Fire for cooking potatoes. Losæter, 2014.]

A three-stone fire is one of the most simple arrangements for cooking food over fire. Unfortunately three-stone fires are very inefficient. As little as 10 percent of the heat a three-stone fire produces is transferred to the cooking pot. In this case the three-stone fires worked well for warming soup and baking flatbread but it took a very long time to cook a large pot of potatoes.

It is estimated that three billion people worldwide still cook over open fire, such as three-stone fires, or using rudimentary cookstoves. Inefficient biomass burning stoves used for cooking are major contributors to global warming, pollution, and deforestation. Every year millions of people die prematurely and fall sick from having breathed in smoke while cooking. Inefficient cookstoves are also a source of inequality since it is mainly women who gather fuel and cook, at the expense of studying or pursuing income generating work.

Three stone fire for cooking potatoes. Photo: Erik Sjödin

[Three-Stone Fire for cooking soup. Losæter, 2014.]

NOTE: It is generally not permitted to make fires in densely populated areas or during hot and dry summer months. Before making a fire: 1. Check with the fire department if it is allowed to make fire. 2. Don’t make fires if it’s dry and windy. Fire can spread rapidly. 3. Always have fire extinguishing equipment close by. 4. Always be at least two persons, in case something should happen. 5. Make sure you can call for help if there is an accident.