Larger, bi-level ovens have been unearthed which would have been more suitable for baking commercial quantities.They have a top rack to hold the loaves, while the fire below is stoked with "the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven..." (Mt. These baking techniques and others were known to the Romans, whose own commercial bakeries were not established unitl a relatively late date (171-168 B. Once Roman administrative genius was applied to even so commonplace a task as breadmaking, the results would be impressive." ---The Bible Cookbook, Daniel S. 371) About ancient Roman ovens "Many kitchens had an oven, furnus, sometimes called a fornax...The Jews also had fixed ovens in some of their houses, frequently in the main rooms.These ovens or hearths took the form of clay-covered hollows in the floor which were heated with burning wood.
619-620) "It seems that the discovery of ale was stimulated by the process of bread-making.
When the heat was sufficient the embers were raked out and the pieces of dough placed in the hollows and covered over.
In Jerusalem there was a bakers' quarter where bread was baked in tiers of stone-built ovens, or furnaces as they were called in the Bible.
In Ancient Rome bread ovens in the public bakeries were originally hewn from solid rock.
These ovens were heated by the familiar method of burning wood in the baking chamber, raking out the ashes and putting in the dough to bake.