Introduction: Compact Clay Pot Tandoor Oven

Picture of Compact Clay Pot Tandoor Oven

This is my attempt at making my own Tandoor Oven. I browsed a few designs and came up with this setup. Its low cost, fairly compact, lightweight and portable.

Its charcoal fuelled, with an air intake and sweep out hole at the bottom.

Step 1: What You Need...

Picture of What You Need...

Parts:
* Oil container drum 20l+ (free)
* 2 clay pots which fit above (£10)
* vermiculite (10 litres £4)
* 2 bricks (free)

Optional:
* broken tiles/rubble (free)
* 3 metal knobs
* sand/cement

Tool/Skills:
* Angle grinder with stone cutting disc
* Hammer
* Flat blade screwdriver or chisel
* Drill and masonry and hss bits

Step 2: Cut Open Lid of Can

Picture of Cut Open Lid of Can

I used an old blunt screwdriver which i hammered continuous holes around the top edge.

Remove cut lid. Use a hammer to flatten round the sharp edges.

Its a good idea to tape over this rough edge to prevent cuts to your hands as you will be working inside it.

Remove any remaining oil using a dry cloth.

Step 3: Cut Air Holes

Picture of Cut Air Holes

Similar technique as lid to cut can air hole.

I beat a and tapered edge outwards using a ball pein hammer and a wooden stump as a beating base.

Pot already had a drain hole. I drilled 4 extra air holes around it.

Step 4: Base Pot & Handles

Picture of Base Pot & Handles

I fitted 2 side metal knobs i had lying around.

The bottom pot was placed on broken tiles. I also dded some sand to the tile base. Lower pot was inserted and side filled with vermiculite for insulation. I made a paper funnel to get vermiculite in through the narrow border edge. Fill it up to the rim of the pot.

Step 5: Top Pot & Lid

Picture of Top Pot & Lid

Pencil mark depth of lid cut. I cut using an angle grinder with a stone cutting disc and eye protection
Other people have used a hand tenon saw for the job.

Smooth off the base and lid for a level finish. I added a metal knob with washers for convenience.

Step 6: Stack It Up!

Picture of Stack It Up!

Position the top pot, with wide mouth of top pot touching the rim of lower pot.

I was running low on vermiculite so wedged in some extra broken concrete pieces to fill up the void. Its not the best of insulators but it does help hold the top half in situ.

Fill remaining edge voids with vermiculite.

Step 7: Cap It Off!

Picture of Cap It Off!

This step is optional.

I decided to cap off the vermiculite using sand cement and broken tiles.

This will prevent vermiculite from blowing away, getting wet and keep it weatherproof should it get left outside.

I added broken tiles to minimize cracking and the mosaic finish looks hip. Lets see how well it lasts.

Sponge wipe the cemented tiles for a clean crisp finish, ensuring no sharp tile edges are protruding.

Leave to dry.

Step 8: Finished Product

Picture of Finished Product

Loads of cooking space in there. Should be able to do 3 naans at a time or several skewered kebabs.

Its a shame the tin wasnt a bit taller for the extra insulation.

Stack it up on 3 or 4 half bricks to keep the air hole clear and leave some space for an ash collection tray.

Step 9: Lets Get Cooking!

Picture of Lets Get Cooking!

Place coals with firelighter at bottom and light it. I placed 5 lumps of charcoals (hindsight 3-4 would have been enough)

Leave the lid slightly open for air circulation and give it 30-40 mins to get up to temperature. I dont leave the lid fully open as the charcoal could burn too fast.

Wait for coals to go white hot.

I skewered some marinated chicken breast pieces on a hanging skewer and placed in oven. I left lid slightly ajar and left to cook for half hour.

For cleanup, pick out any large lumps and sweep cold ashes down the air hole into an ash collection tray. Beats cleaning a barbecue grill!

Step 10: Conclusion

Picture of Conclusion

Tandoori Chicken had the authentic tandoori taste. A little crispy on bottom of skewer end. Need to adjust height of my skewers.
Lamb seekh kebabs came out a treat.

Worked well even with exposed chimney.
Final verdict is waiting for thr naan bread test.

Any improvements?
Yes, add a charcoal tray to prevent charcoal lumps from blocking air intake holes. I made this from external plaster beading hammered into shape. To remove galvanizing i left it to sit on hot coal lumps (or you can use acid)

Also recommend making larger or make more surrounding satelite air intake holes.

The metal lid knob gets hot, so use a wooden one.

If you intend to leave it outside, I would seal the exterior of the clay pot with several coats of varnish. This should prevent it soaking moisture or water. Heating up wet Claypots are prone to crack, so ensure they are dry before use.

Comments

Mugsy Knuckles (author)2017-02-01

That angle grinder would be faster than the screwdriver and hammer for cutting off the top. Just do plunge cuts first to avoid breaking the cut off disks, then grind the remaining arcs off with the wheel.

Stark Ideas (author)2015-07-02

what a fantastic idea!

Mindmapper1 (author)2015-07-02

Excellent. Love it

wynkin (author)2015-06-28

Interesting idea - now you have to learn to slap the dough on the wall without burning yourself!

krichardson7 (author)2015-06-16

So how did the Naan turn out?!

Reema121 (author)2015-06-11

I'm so impressed by your tandoori I love it just wanted to know how big is your flower pots thanks

solara70 (author)Reema1212015-06-11

My pots were 26cm. I would measure your container and pots to ensure they will fit. Mines was 26 versus 32. Pretty snug, but maximised on cooking volume.

Jobar007 (author)2015-06-08

This is pretty cool (hot?). I need to try this out.

Edbed (author)2015-06-08

Great idea!

BeachsideHank (author)2015-06-07

Congratulations, this looks like it was a lot of work, but the special cooking results should be worth it.

solara70 (author)BeachsideHank2015-06-07

Thanks, about 4:hours to make it.

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