This summer we undertook the project of rebuilding our kitchen hearth. Here is what it used to look like — a fairly shallow original brick portion plus a tile over cement board apron that I added for our woodstove. [This is an older photo taken before we added a granite surround and changed the color scheme.]
The original hearth was brick laid over dry mortar. After removing it, we shored up the support in the cellar with a couple of beams and lally columns, and extended the floorboard cut out.
We then poured a 3-inch concrete slab and laid some greenish flagstone with reddish mortar. We think that it turned out quite fine along with the marble we have recently had installed around the firebox. It’ll be woodstove season here before you know it.
[Update: We later replaced the living room hearth and have a more detailed post up about that project.]