Making a Homemade Thermal Oven

Because of my speeches, demonstrations, and classes, many of you have asked me for information about how to make a homemade thermal oven that will do both small and large batches of homemade natural yeast bread or rolls.

Making or purchasing a thermal oven (no electricity or gas) allows you to raise one loaf of bread or more, up to ten loaves! Or 48 cinnamon rolls or dinner rolls. Or make homemade yogurt, cook thousands of recipes for dinner or lunch, or you can use your thermal oven as a chiller or travel freezer. Use it everyday, in emergencies, for preparedness, or for traveling.

Modern Use, Ancient Technology
A thermal oven is the cheapest, fastest, easiest and most reliable way to raise bread dough using natural yeast. Thermal ovens are the way bread dough had been raised for centuries! In fact, the word “oven” is a misnomer because thermal ovens also act as freezers and coolers, as you will see in a moment.

The basic concept of thermal oven cooking, chilling, or bread-dough raising is to trap heat. Centuries ago, thermal cooking was done by heating a pan over a fire and then wrapping the pan overnight in a feather or straw mattress. The mattress retained the heat, allowing the food to cook away from the fire once the pan was heated.

There are endless ways to design a modern thermal cooker, but I have created a booklet that will introduce you to Caleb Warnock’s Thermal Dough Proofer, which is the only design which allows you to inexpensively create a homemade thermal oven that will proof one loaf, two loaves, up to eight loaves of bread at one time, or two trays of cinnamon rolls or dinner rolls! This design was born of necessity. There is nothing else like it available! So I had to invent it :) It costs less than $20 to make, as of this writing.

For the best price on polystyrene filler beads, click here:

Two Cubic Foot Bean Bag Chair Single Refill Pack Pure Bead Stuffing (Free Shipping) Packaged and Shipped in a Bag

So, How’s that Whole Killing-Your-Children Thing Going Today?

Hello America. Brace yourselves to be cussed out.

As parents and grandparents, we have a few clear-cut duties. One of them is to know the answer to this question: “My child is mostly likely to die of what?”

The medical condition that is most likely to torture and then kill you and your children as you age is Type 2 Diabetes. This clear and present danger is ignored at your peril.

The way to prevent Type 2 Diabetes is with fiber -- vegetables and naturally prepared grains.

"My husband doesn't like vegetables," you will whinge as you turn away. "Natural yeast might be hard. I'm busy."

Oh! Why didn't you say so earlier?! Run off on your merry way to the prepackaged foods aisle, then, little poppet. You are absolved of personal responsibility, and no natural consequences will hound you.


Aligning ourselves with reality, we have to admit that Americans are not likely to give up sugar, white flour, and soda, which are causing this plague. Even cutting down is difficult -- every office in this country is flooded with donuts and treats. There is more shelf space dedicated to candy and soda in your local grocery store than there is space for fresh vegetables -- by far. Why? Because the stores give space to what people want to buy.

Type 2 Diabetes is why today’s children are expected to be the first generation in history with a shorter lifespan than their parents -- read that twice.

We are choosing this disease. We are voting with our mouths.

Shockingly few Americans have any knowledge of how to stop the disease that is doing the most harm to our own children. Fiber is the answer.

Starches (white flour, rice, potatoes) are digested by the body exactly like sugar, meaning they spike the body’s glycemic index exactly like sugar. Over years, spikes in the glycemic index destroy the ability of our pancreas to produce insulin. The body must produce insulin to digest glucose (sugar).

Fiber slows the body’s digestion. Fiber is prebiotic, meaning it is the place where the good and necessary probiotic bacteria and fungi in our bodies live. Without both soluble and insoluble fiber, natural probiotics (bacteria and fungi) cannot colonize in our guts. Without fiber, our digestive system struggles and slowly breaks down. Our weakened bodies then become victim to all manner of auto-immune deficiencies which are normally staved off by healthy people. (For most people, being genetically predisposed to an autoimmune disorder simply means you will get the disease only if you are not healthy).

Making matters worse, we use “shock and awe” antibiotics which kill both what is bad for us and what is good for us -- and then we do not replenish our natural probiotics with cultured foods. In addition, when we do bother to put down our sodas to drink a glass of water, our water is chlorinated. Chlorine is put in water to kill flora and fauna. It does the same thing in our bodies. If you have any doubt about this, you can grow natural yeast side-by-side in purified water and tap water and see the difference for yourself.

To recap, a healthy gut is a busy metropolis of beneficial probiotic bacteria and fungi thriving on prebiotic soluble and insoluble fiber. Sugars, protein and carbohydrates are digested slowly, making us feel full while allowing the body to take what it needs. Because we digest slowly, there are no glycemic spikes. Our pancreas functions normally throughout life. We do not get Type 2 Diabetes. We are happy, healthy, and not morbidly obese. (Caution: Skinny people get Type 2 Diabetes at exactly the rate of fat people. It’s all about the gut. You can run 10 miles every day and still get Type 2 Diabetes.)

Our guts are not healthy. This is proven by the huge surge in Type 2 Diabetes.

Our guts are ghost towns. There are few good bacteria and yeasts, and little fiber for them to call home. Our fake-food diets move through us fast, not slow. This causes us to feel hungry instead of full, which in turn causes us to eat more fake food. We scorch our empty gut with glycemic-spiking sugar and starches, chlorinated water, and antibiotics. Then we develop Type 2 Diabetes, suffer, and die early.

Odds are, this is your future.

This is what awaits our children.

Vegetables can stop all this. Raw, cooked and cultured, vegetables are the answer.  Grains prepared with natural yeast are the answer.

Now that you know the answer, there is just one question left -- will you be like most people and decide not to change your vote (by mouth) until after you or someone you love has been diagnosed? Or will you change now, so the diagnoses never appears and you and your children live happily ever after?

Vegetables and natural yeast. Or Type 2 Diabetes. Truth is easy. Truth is simple.

Gardening with Cold Frames

Yesterday I got this comment from a student of mine on Facebook:
“I have to put a plug in for a winter garden... Early to mid-August is the time to plant lettuce for a winter garden. Basically, you plant a fall garden and then around the end of October, you put a cold frame on top. The lettuce in the photo is growing under the cold frame pictured and covered with snow. I ate it in the fall, during the winter, and then it grew huge in the spring, and I had more than I could eat until mid-June when it went to seed. I will never plant lettuce in the spring again--just in my winter garden.”


This year’s Cold Frames Gardening Workshop will be available in my backyard, or online, just like last year. Also, you may purchase twin-wall polycarbonate for building cold frames at the bulk discount rate for a short time. Here are the details:

In Alpine, Utah:
Saturday, Aug. 16 2014 at 707 West 800 South Alpine 84004.
$99 by Aug. 1, $140 after Aug. 1
Sign up by Aug. 1 and get the $39 Fall Gardening Special FOR FREE. (Egyptian Walking Onions may be limited) Everyone will take home a cold frame (4-feet by 2-feet)

-- or --

Class will begin Aug. 16.
$99 by Aug. 1, $140 after Aug. 1
Sign up by Aug. 1 and get the $39 Fall Gardening Special FOR FREE. (Egyptian Walking Onions may be limited) Everyone will be mailed twin-wall polycarbonate to make a 2-foot by 4-foot cold frame.

This year’s classes, both online and in Alpine, include:
- No Nonsense Household Tips for Saving Money (This class will be emailed to you).
How to make the best, easiest bulk powder laundry soap, enough for more than 1,000 loads in 20 minutes at 1.8 cents a load! Save hundreds of dollars on shaving razors, dishwashing machine soap and much, much more!

- Backyard Herbal Infusions for Cold, Flu, Sinus & Asthma. (This class will be emailed to you)In this hands-on class, Caleb will teach you the best backyard herbal treatments. We will make and sample the herbal treatments, starting from scratch, and discuss which herbs to use to help which conditions. This class covers prevention and treatment.

- Forgotten Prepper: 15+ Essential, Simple Skills You Don’t Have. (This class will be emailed to you) Easy homemade garden hand soap, sanitation, and many other things every family should know for emergency preparedness and everyday use.

- Four Best Wild Edibles. (This class will be emailed to you). Each student will certify with Caleb their ability to individually recognize, harvest and prepare the four best backyard wild edibles.

- Fall and Winter Gardening With Cold Frame (This class will be emailed to you) Each participant will go home with at least $40 in seed for fall and winter gardening, with the latest information about the best autumn and winter varieties. Cold Frames -- Each student will go home with a cold frame that we will make in class, with information on how to use it and the seed you need to get started immediately.

- Q and A with Caleb
Caleb takes your questions via email.

This cold frame plastic can be purchased for pick up or mailing.
For pick up details, go to

For mailing, go to

For Months Our Family has been Keeping Private Some Pain.

For months our family has been keeping private some pain. In gratitude, I want to share here, with the “hive mind” of Facebook and the internet, parts of a private message I shared with my family today.
In the night after the 2014 New Year arrived, I felt the strongest impression to write a letter, addressed to each of my six step-daughters and son-in-laws. Charmayne and I have had a very happy life in the past few years. But as the New Year arrived, I felt clearly “given to know” that that was about to change. I wrote the letter that follows, and over the next few weeks my wife and I discussed it. We decided to prepare ourselves, but not to share the letter with the kids at that time. Today, it feels clear to me that now is the time to share this letter. Here is what I wrote:

January 1, 2014

Dear Phronsie & John, Cassie, Mysti & Manny, Chelsie & Johnny, Amberlee & Rob, and Ariel & Trent,

I have something pressing on my mind. This letter is important to me.
When I married Charmayne, I had to figure out for myself how to fit into a family that had existed long before our marriage. Today, our family is stronger than it has ever been. But our family is changing, and so is the world. We are going to need each other more in 2014 than ever before. We are going to be called on to help each other. The world is going to continue to darken. We will need one another.
Defining a family is hard when a family is simple. Our family is not simple :) Each of you has a father, a mother, a Caleb, a Lorien. There are in-laws, religion, politics. I cleaned up Ariel’s throw-up in the middle of the night when she was a child, and helped Amberlee with her middle-school homework. Others of you were moved away to college by the time I showed up.
To me, there is no “step” between me and my grandchildren. I won’t have biological children. What a thrill it has been to have a role with these six grandkids.
Let me share a personal story.
When Xander was about three, he found in my truck a copy of Madonna’s “Erotica” album. The cover shows a man sucking Madonna’s toe. Xander looks it over and says simply, “Why is this man sucking on her toe?”
When we got home, I threw it in the outside trash can, with other things from a former life. I realized why I needed to change. I did not want to be responsible for introducing that morality to Xander.
Change is the purpose of life. All of us are working hard to be better people. At the end of life, only two things matter. 1) Were you honest? 2) Did you do good, or do harm, to those around you?
We have six and soon seven young people (and eventually many more) who will one day want to know, and deserve to know, the facts about some of the “questions” that accompany our complex family. We have three divorces to account for. Two of us stole cars before we had licenses. We have smokers in the extended family, drinkers, we have a marriage in the temple and many more out of the temple. We have Mormons, non-Mormons, and former Mormons. We have had drugs and pornography. We have diversity of race, religion, and politics. We have an ancestor who was a dance hall girl, another who shot someone. We have a Salem witch -- my personal favorite :)
Each of us has made decisions that will need and deserve to be explained one day to the rising generation. More importantly, all of us are changing.
I mention this as preamble to this question: As a family, what are we?
Are we a “broken” family? A “blended” family? The “remains” of a family following divorce?
I want to be clear that Charmayne and I did not know each other during our divorces but we were lucky to meet each other soon after. However we got to be “family” matters less than the fact that we are family. We need to circle around Xander, Conrad, Dominick, Ada, Zack, Cora, and Lott child #1, as well as those coming. Around each other, all the adults, too. The world is dark.
Each of us has known grief. Some of us have caused grief. I have my own knowledge of remorse and pain. I try now to prevent grief, not cause it. Can I make some suggestions?

-- Don’t keep secrets from your spouse. Secrets always come to light as grief. We have seen this in our family. We can choose to never see it again.

-- Our actions affect the people around us. We can lift or wound. Think, then act.

-- We are human and sometimes we will wound each other. Let’s forgive and be peaceable.

-- Where do you get advice? When a decision is important, talk. Husband and wife. Daughter and mother. You will make better decisions -- have fewer regrets -- if you talk to your loved one.

-- The little kids are watching, listening, and learning. We need to show these little kids how to be good people.

-- Figure out discernment, and use it. Study it. It means to develop strong judgement skills -- what is right, what is wrong, when to act, intervene, speak, spend, scold, or wait. We have seen examples, even recently, of people in our family who felt a decision was wrong and said and did nothing, only to regret it later. When you feel something is wrong -- take action!

-- Get out of debt. Financial turmoil is coming. Get out of debt. Get out of debt.

-- To the six girls -- never keep a secret from your mother. She is your best protection against the world. She has earned wisdom. How she prays for you! You have no idea how powerful her prayers are, and how often they are answered. Whatever your problems may be, talk to her.

-- Finally, forgive. Create peace. I’ve had run-ins with some of you. I’m sorry. I apologize. I am changing, Thank you for letting me change. Let us be peaceable and happy.

Charmayne and I are here to help. Let’s circle around each other. We love you.

Love, Caleb

So, today is July 13, 2014. Very soon after I wrote this Jan. 1 letter, we learned that Lott Baby #1 was in dire straits. No amniotic fluid was being produced. Experts said the baby had no kidneys. We were told to prepare for the baby to soon die in the womb. We were told the baby’s heart was severely enlarged. We contacted a funeral home about buying an infant casket, and discussed where to bury the baby. Dark days. Many, many tears. The little kids, who were so excited about Ariel’s baby, had to be told they were never going to be see the baby alive. More tears and difficult questions.
We had a family fast and we specifically did not try to counsel the Lord, but prayed for counsel, and for the Lord’s will to be done. We made clear that we hoped for a happy, healthy baby, and asked that we would be comforted. And we were.
Since the day of that fast, there has been nothing but good news for the baby.
Suddenly the baby had kidneys. The heart enlargement vanished. Amniotic fluid filled the womb. This morning Ariel delivered her baby, as yet to be named. How thrilling to seeing the baby breathing, crying, and eating in the hospital today! The word miracle is almost never used in its correct spiritual sense in 2014, but can we deny we have been given a miracle today?
Our prayers have been heard and answered.
Not all the darkness has been drained from our lives, but light has prevailed today, as it will in the end. I have personal spiritual work to do. We all do.
The suggestions I included in my Jan. 1 letter are more relevant today than they were seven months ago. Today I invite our family to ponder what I wrote in January, and what it means today. After meeting Ariel and Trent’s baby, do we need any more evidence of where to turn for light? 
Be slow to doubt what has happened today. Be slow to doubt that prayers have been answered by a living God.
This will not be our last darkness. There is clear and present darkness brewing on the horizon surrounding our family which need not be named in public. Let me suggest anew -- no secrets from spouses, or your mother. Lift, don’t wound. Forgive. Examine the advice you seek and take. Ask yourself who inspired your thoughts. Show the little kids the light, not the dark. Eschew debt. Study discernment. Decide to be accountable. Do not lie to yourself. Choose the light. I am working to change. We all can change. And be grateful for what we have been given.

Love, Caleb

From My July Garden :)

An animation of echinacea being pollinated.

Egyptian Walking Onions set bulbs at the top of the plant.

Corn :)

Dwarf Blue Siberian Kale, which self-seeds and produces two crops a year. Seed at 

 Raspberries are in season!
Today I have been harvesting the winter wheat.  

Medicinal yarrow.

  Fragrant roses. 

The summer apples are ripe.

Blackberries in bloom. 

Vernal Red Orach going to seed.

Rare white strawberries. 

 Medicinal calendula.

Cilantro in bloom. 

Lettuce starting to flower.

Pioneer Pink Eye Beans in flower.

Straw-method potatoes.

Medicinal comfrey.

Perennial Tripled Wheat tillering itself out beautifully :)

My 25 Planets Have Aligned

So, big news, again :)

On Monday night as we stayed up to watch the eclipse of the blood moon (the alignment of sun, moon, and earth) my wife and I were also celebrating a rare day of our own. I have signed a contract with a new publisher for 25 new books. This is the culmination of an idea I have been working on for more than a year. “Books” in this case is a bit of a misnomer, because what me and Familius Publishing are doing is creating an imprint of natural living guides, tentatively titled “Backyard Renaissance Guides”. These will be booklets that focus deeply on a single topic, such as thermal oven baking, Swedish yogurt making, no-till gardening, etc. I am so excited (!). The intention is to grow this line into several hundred books in the coming years, all authored or co-authored by me.

I will also be doing a full-scale stevia cookbook with Familius. In addition, the publisher will be creating a mobile app of Backyard Renaissance content. The new contract is extremely fair to me -- the publisher gave me every single thing I asked for. This is the stuff of dreams.

All added up, I have seven more manuscripts due before December. My company,, has grown tremendously. And I will soon begin giving live nationwide classes. All of this will require my full-time attention. Because of this, on Monday I resigned my position at the Provo Daily Herald. I have loved being a journalist. But newspapers are on an uncharted course, and my future is at and Familius Publishing. I already miss writing for the newspaper. What a ride!

Huge thanks to my wife for believing in me. And to all of you, my readers and students. My goal is to be a useful person. Thank you for making this possible for me and my family. -Caleb

Edible weedkiller, lotion bars, seed potatoes

Hello all :)
This is Caleb Warnock, “Forgotten Skills/ Natural
Yeast author and owner of SeedRenaissance.
Thank you for being on my email list. New this
month: cucumber seed and more culinary
herbs, including lime basil, cinnamon basil,
sweet mace, and more!

Four things this month:

1. Many of you have purchased my edible
homemade weedkiller recipe. I’m excited
to offer a new, improved version,
which you can get for free if you ordered the
original recipe. For full details, please visit
2. After the “Forgotten Skills” class last month,
many of you asked me to start carrying Amberlee’s
fantastic all-natural lotion bars, and so I have. You
can find them by clicking here.

3. Many, many of you have asked me to get
Mountain Rose seed potatoes -- the fastest-maturing
potato I have been able to find. These are red on the
inside, and stay red when cooked. Delicious,
medium-sized potatoes. These are hard to find, and
I sell them at the lowest price in the nation: 2.5 pounds
for $16 including shipping, or $10 for 2.5 pounds pick-up.

4. Finally, THE BIG NEWS :) At last, me and Melissa
Richardson, my Baking With Natural Yeast co-author,
get to make our big announcement! Based on the
fantastic results of their own patients and even staff,
Dr. Diane Farley-Jones and her team at the Alpine Clinic
in Utah are working on a clinical trial of the ability of
natural yeast to stop gluten intolerance in its tracks!!
We know what the results will be, and so do thousands
of you from experience, but we are so excited to have a
clinical trial to bring more attention to this important
natural food! If you are in the West, you can hear from
clinic staff directly, and much more, at our
Natural Yeast & Grains for Health Summit on May 3.
We expect this to sell out. Tickets are first-come, first-serve.
For full information, visit

Thanks! -Caleb

Natural Yeast & Grains for Health Summit

Natural Yeast & Grains for Health Summit
9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, May 3, Highland Community Center, 5378 W. 10400 N. Highland, Utah

$39 admit one OR $49 admit two through April 25 ($99 admit one after April 25)

8:30 Welcome and registration check-in

9-9:15 Creating a Natural Yeast Start from Nature:
Caleb will teach you how to create a natural yeast start for bread-rising using only what is available in the back yard. Students will go home with the materials needed to start their own yeast from scratch!

9:15-9:30 The Water Secret
Caleb will teach you a simple trick for making your yeast happier, healthier, and most importantly, more vigorous by changing the way you use water with your natural yeast starter -- and what it means for our health the rest of the time too.

9:30-9:45 How to Keep a Starter in the Fridge:
Melissa will teach you how to convert your starter to living in the fridge, the benefits of keeping a cold start, how to tell if your cold start conversion is successful, how to use a cold start for baking, and more.

9:45-10 Help! My Yeast Doesn’t Double!
Concerned because your yeast is not doubling, either on the counter or in the fridge? Melissa will teach you a simple secret for knowing when your yeast is perfect for baking -- and when it needs more time. Melissa will demonstrate how to feed natural yeast at home.

10-10:15 The Health Benefits of Natural Yeast
Believe it! Caleb will tell you how natural yeast can help you lose weight, get rid of your acid reflux forever, heal your gluten intolerance, create probiotic and prebiotic health in your gut, and smooth spikes in your glycemic index.

10:15-10:30 Simple and Fluffy Bread, Rolls & Cinnamon Rolls Using a Thermal Oven
Thermal ovening is a simple technique for raising bread that requires no fuel or electricity and makes a HUGE difference in the way natural yeast bread rises. Thermal ovens have been practiced for centuries!

10:30-10:45 BREAK

10:45-11 Gluten-free Doesn’t Mean Harmless
Melissa and Caleb will tell you about the hidden dangers of the gluten-free diet, including short-term and long-term consequences that are little discussed about the current gluten-free fad.

11-11:30 Natural Yeast as a Phytic Acid Fighter
Melissa will teach us how phytic acid harms our health when grains are not prepared properly for eating, and how natural yeast is Mother Nature’s answer for neutralizing phytic acid to make wheat, oats, and other grains healthy and not harmful.

11:30-11:45 Spelt, Teff & Buckwheat
Melissa will teach us why she is so passionate about using a variety of grains in her family’s diet, and she will introduce us to a variety of grains that are little used in the U.S. but are super healthy and delicious.

11:45-Noon How to Make Bread With Natural Yeast
Melissa and Caleb will demonstrate how to make bread using natural yeast.


12:45-1:30 Why I Recommend Natural Yeast to My Patients
Dr. McClean is a chiropractor who began teaching the benefits of Natural Yeast to patients and community members with his wife several years ago. He found in his practice that if structural adjustments were not working in his patients, the problem was usually dietary. He utilizes natural yeast fermentation of a variation of grains in his treatment of these patients. Dr. McClean will share with us what he has learned about how consuming unprepared grains affects the human body through his own research and treatment of patients in his practice.

1:30-2:15 Natural Yeast Testing at Alpine Clinic
Natural Yeast Testing at Alpine Clinic Patty Jake is the Health Coach and Lifestyle Educator at Dr. Diane Farley Jones’ Alpine Medical Clinic in Highland. She will tell us the exciting news about the protocol and informal clinic study that Dr. Farley-Jones is developing for natural yeast after seeing testing and results from Patty herself and other patients. Patty will talk about the importance of natural yeast in nutrition and frankly discuss the full spectrum of results seen at the clinic

2:15-3:15 Question & Answer Panel -- Ask your questions to Dr. McClean, Patty, Melissa or Caleb!