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Wal-mart Pizza pan vs Stone for diffuser?


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Guru's,

 

I have read a few things on the Akorn FB pages that says that a stone is way better than the cheap-0 pizza pan as a diffuser.  Should a diffuser just block heat/flames or should it actually retain heat (i.e. stone)?   I haven't done an overnight so I can't really say how well the pizza pan works for that but it has been fine for my indirect's so far.   Do I need to invest in a stone for diffusing, I just bought one for pizza but I don't want to use it as a diffuser (plus it's square).

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I've used the Akorn stone for a while now. Have not had any problems with it. You won't find it in stores, must buy online. I quite like it, I think having that big chunk of ceramic in there helps regulate the internal temperature. it takes a bit to warm up, but you need to be taking your time, anyway. Honestly though, I've never tried the pizza pan method. It might work just as well.

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I have a pizza stone and the smoker stone but I have sort of tried the pizza pan technique with cast iron and just plain aluminum foil.

 

I think the stone(s) are better at maintaining even temperature. Sometimes I even place my pizza stone on top of the Akorn smoker stone creating even more thermal mass and less airflow.

 

Ironically I never use my pizza stone for making pizza. Instead I do the ole "Bobby Flay":

 

  1. Get the grill hot (600) with no deflector
  2. Roll the dough out and lightly oil one side. I recommend oval or rectangular shaped as round is hard to do for this technique.
  3. Throw the dough directly on the grates with the oil side down.
  4. Quickly lightly oil the other (top) side
  5. Close lid for like a minute
  6. And flip and close lid for another minute
  7. Take the cooked dough off the grill
  8. Put your pizza stone in the grill or whatever heat deflector you like and close the dampers to like 1 or 2.
  9. Put your toppings on the cooked dough
  10. Now put the pizzas back on the grill to melt cheese and cook some more for like 3-5 or so minutes.

I have been tempted to add wood chunks at times as dough seems to rapidly absorb smoke. I'm curious how that might taste. I will say with this technique you will get a far more unique grill tasting pizza than cooking directly on the stone.

 

post-5682-0-68726200-1407940811_thumb.jp

 

 

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I have a pizza stone and the smoker stone but I have sort of tried the pizza pan technique with cast iron and just plain aluminum foil.

 

I think the stone(s) are better at maintaining even temperature. Sometimes I even place my pizza stone on top of the Akorn smoker stone creating even more thermal mass and less airflow.

 

Ironically I never use my pizza stone for making pizza. Instead I do the ole "Bobby Flay":

 

  1. Get the grill hot (600) with no deflector
  2. Roll the dough out and lightly oil one side. I recommend oval or rectangular shaped as round is hard to do for this technique.
  3. Throw the dough directly on the grates with the oil side down.
  4. Quickly lightly oil the other (top) side
  5. Close lid for like a minute
  6. And flip and close lid for another minute
  7. Take the cooked dough off the grill
  8. Put your pizza stone in the grill or whatever heat deflector you like and close the dampers to like 1 or 2.
  9. Put your toppings on the cooked dough
  10. Now put the pizzas back on the grill to melt cheese and cook some more for like 3-5 or so minutes.

I have been tempted to add wood chunks at times as dough seems to rapidly absorb smoke. I'm curious how that might taste. I will say with this technique you will get a far more unique grill tasting pizza than cooking directly on the stone.

 

attachicon.gifflay_pizzas.jpg

Love the idea and will try!  Now I need to find a cheap stone for deflection, not interested in buying the smoking stone and already have the weber grate.  Currently I have the 16" pizza pan, what is the recommend size for the diffuser stone? 15"?

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I have done a couple of low and slow's with the cheap pizza pan and it was a pain to keep the temp locked in. I just got my smokin stone today as I have read it does better at keeping the temp on those. 

 

the smokin stone is almost a full inch thick, where other stones are like 1/4 inch thick. I opted to spend the extra due to the thickness to help control the temp better. i will let it rest on the Weber grate though 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Just a follow up, the smokin stone does make a difference on temp control, especially on low and slow cooks. It was hard to keep the temp under 250 with the cheap aluminum pan.

I agree, I have not been able to hold 225 yet.  I can hold 250 like a champ.

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For what my experience here is worth, I'll share it.

 

1.   A heat deflector is just that.  It's a tool that puts a barrier between the direct flame and your food.  

 

2.  A heat deflector doesn't need to have any heat retention properties.  When you are cooking low and slow or even roasting indirect, your dome lid should stay closed and no heat retention other than that provided by the grill itself even matters.

 

3.  A cheap pizza pan is just as effective as a heat deflector as a stone or ceramic deflector.

 

4.  A heat deflector is not a deciding factor in whether or not the grill will hold a steady temperature.  The temperature inside your grill is decided by airflow.  

 

The best way to keep a steady temp in the grill is to keep the lid closed, especially on a grill like the Akorn.  Don't sweat a difference between 225 and 250 degrees.  It's an insignificant difference.  

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For what my experience here is worth, I'll share it.

 

1.   A heat deflector is just that.  It's a tool that puts a barrier between the direct flame and your food.  

 

2.  A heat deflector doesn't need to have any heat retention properties.  When you are cooking low and slow or even roasting indirect, your dome lid should stay closed and no heat retention other than that provided by the grill itself even matters.

 

3.  A cheap pizza pan is just as effective as a heat deflector as a stone or ceramic deflector.

 

4.  A heat deflector is not a deciding factor in whether or not the grill will hold a steady temperature.  The temperature inside your grill is decided by airflow.  

 

The best way to keep a steady temp in the grill is to keep the lid closed, especially on a grill like the Akorn.  Don't sweat a difference between 225 and 250 degrees.  It's an insignificant difference.

I hate to disagree, but i can tell a big difference in holding temp on low and slows with the thick smokin stone compared to the thin pizza pan i was using. It may be that the heat is distributed more even, or something of that nature, but it really made a difference in mine.

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I hate to disagree, but i can tell a big difference in holding temp on low and slows with the thick smokin stone compared to the thin pizza pan i was using. It may be that the heat is distributed more even, or something of that nature, but it really made a difference in mine.

 

 

It must have something to do with a stone's ability to let the grill warm up more slowly.  I can't imagine any other reason it would have an impact.

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