Public Bakeovens



Cooking with Fire in Public Parks


Tandoor Ovens

Thorncliffe Tandoor Oven Project

What is Tandoor? An enhanced cooking fire

It is an open air cooking device traditionally used in many cultures ranging from the Middle East to Central and South Asia. In a tall clay pot with a fire at the bottom, insulated to keep the heat in, various foods such as bread, grilled/roasted meat and vegetables are made.

The tandoor oven was installed at R.V.Burgess Park in 2013 and first used regularly in 2014.

Here is a short Youtube video showing naan bread being made at the park in September 2014.


Feb.17, 2023 15th annual winter festival

It was a bitter wind and -6 at about 2 pm. So there were no games going on, but people were lined up at the shipping container cafe. There was a sign in the cafe window, saying there would be parathas for sale, along with samosas and pakoras but also pizza, chicken hot dogs, fries, poutine, and spring rolls -- a wide selection!

There was a little campfire in a small metal fire bowl, but no benches around it, and it stood in a very windy location. Getting the campfire permit at all was a last-minute cliffhanger.

cafe menu

shipping container cafe

new fire bowl, no benches

The tandoor was roped off with caution tape but the baker was gracious about allowing a curious celos photographer to get in the way.

-6 C and windy:at the tandoor



plain naan







At one point some free gifts were passed out -- little Harry Potter dolls among them. Metrolinx had a stand that was giving out cardboard train cars that could be put together. And there was hot chocolate, free for volunteers (as usual there seemed to be many youth ready to help). There were two city rec staff as well. But everybody looked a bit cold. Or more than a bit.




June 22, 2018

tandoor was at the perfect heat

the last bit of Golden Temple durum dough, 8.30 p.m.

volunteers and Foodshare staff

Anna Hill from Together Project came by to pick up some sweets for tomorrow's picnic at Dufferin Grove Park. There will be Syrian families coming to meet with their friends. The next day Anna sent some pictures of the picnic.



Oct.9 2015, visit to tandoor with former guest baker Yo Utano. Photos by Michael Monastyrskyj

Yo Utano, who carried out the CELOS guest baker project in 2010 and 2011, moved back to her home in Japan three years ago. In order to do a follow-up on public ovens in Toronto, CELOS was able to bring Yo back for three weeks in October. On a chilly Friday in early October, our friends from the Thorncliffe Park Women's Committee lit the fire in their park tandoor and had a show-and-tell bake session with us. Our friends are: Zakia Rasa, Sabina Ali, and Asiya Sohail. They brought another cook as well.

spreading the dough on the pillow

Yo presses the dough against the hot tandoor wall

discussing different kinds of dough

bubbles form right away

tasty naans

the cooking crew

Portable Tandoor

June 26, 2011 CELOS purchased a portable Tandoor. The tandoor spent several years at Thorncliffe Park's R.V.Burgess Park, until the park got its own tandoor. Then CELOS brought the tandoor back to Dufferin Grove and continued lending it out from there. Read more...

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Content last modified on July 19, 2023, at 01:31 AM EST