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Stewart getting his EcoZoom Versa startedNow here is a little bit more about Stewart Maclachlan, our UK Distributor: Where do you currently live? I'm in London at present where our EcoZoom UK office is based. I regularly get out of town to Wales and Scotland for the mountains, and down to the coast to balance out the big city. This means I can enjoy wild cooking in many locations across the UK So far we've had interest in our rocket stoves from rural places out in Scotland, to people deep in the big cities. Where did you first hear about EcoZoom? Having watched the EcoZoom stoves develop over the last few years I could see they were a well-designed, well-engineered and robust product. But I just couldn’t get my hands on one for a reasonable price due to shipping. When I got a Versa I was seriously impressed by its performance which exceeded my expectations. I’ve spent much of the last summer cooking most days on my Versa which has saved me a packet on gas bottles! What do you like best about cooking on an EcoZoom Versa? I love food preparation and cooking, and I love being outside so the Versa really tunes into these pursuits. But if I’m being truly honest I think I just love a real fire with the smells & sound of the burn. The EcoZoom Versa makes it easy to cook on a fire and gives a safe contained cooking fire which you can closely control. Anybody who has burnt food on a barbecue will appreciate this! Why did you want to become the UK distributor for EcoZoom? The EcoZoom cookstoves are fantastic product and I know that there is demand here amongst campers, patio cooks and alfresco chefs wherever they may be. I’m from an energy efficiency background and the real joy for me is being involved with a product that wins for efficiency, wins for convenience and wins for clean air. Simply put, I love the practical efficiency and design of the stoves and I think they are a real winner. We are going to see more and more of these stoves around the UK, especially as they have such a long life (13,000 hours cooking time) they will still be cooking when your gas stove has long ago fallen to bits To this I must add that EcoZoom innovation is helping low income people in developing nations reduce the environmental and health impacts that come from cooking over an open fire or less-efficient stove. This is a big draw for me to be involved and a win for those people in the long term. Where have you recently taken your EcoZoom Versa? I just got back from a family sea swimming trip in south Brittany, France. We camped for a fortnight and I used the Versa every night. I sometimes took it to the beach for a cook out. Sea breezes can help fire the rocket and it burns hot and fast. Mostly I take it out to the park and get the kids to feed sticks to it. They love it and I don’t need to supervise them like I would a barbecue. It’s very difficult to burn yourself with the stove as the fire chamber is so well isolated and the body so stable. It’s a great way for children to learn about fire. What are your favourite things to cook on your EcoZoom Versa? I could go on all night! Personally I like fried food (I’m from the North!), especially after exercise and I've been making onion bhajis, falafels and even chips (yes chips). The beauty of cooking outside is that the frying smells disperse readily. Sausages cook up a dream, but sea food and fish really benefit from a real wood fire under them. Get a Versa, gets some flapping fresh mackerel and sizzle the skin right off them. Lemon and hot pepper sauce to season and you’re on the way to wild food heaven.
A little fried appetizer courtesy of Stewart and EcoZoomIf you could add an attachment or accessory to the EcoZoom product line, what would it be? I think the EcoZoom rocket stoves are a fantastic host for all kinds of ancillary accessories. I'm thinking though the possibilities of adding a pizza oven function. If anybody can think this one through with me we could get something started, imagine it ...stick wood fired bush pizza! I'd also like to add a basic power generating function like a low watt USB type charger. This would be so useful it would hurt. There are so many possibilities for EcoZoom rocket stoves in the UK and I’m really looking forward to sharing the possibilities with people throughout the land.