Jump to content

gander2112

New toy - Baking Steel

Recommended Posts

I got a bonus at work (a lot more than I expected, woot!) and I ordered me a Baking Steel. It is about 1/4" thick plate steel, and it is supposed to be great for making pizza. Tonight I put it to the test.

 

Grill: Kamado Joe Classic III

Charcoal: Lazzari Fuel Lump Mesquite (I used to use this when I was a professional chef, cooks clean and HOT)

Dough: Ken Forbish's Overnight Pizza, from Flour, Water, Salt and Yeast.

Sauce: fresh Maranzano tomatoes, some EVOO, with salt, pepper, and some basil and oregano.

 

Topping - Pizza 1: Whole Milk Mozz, Sausage and Pepperoni

Topping  - Pizza 2: Buffalo Mozz, Proscuitto

 

Cook temp 650F

 

The first pizza burnt a bit on the bottom. The steel cooks hotter than a pizza stone, so I am chastised. As a pro, I used to cook in a pizza oven at 625, but it was a standard pizza oven with a refractory brick baking surface. Not ruined, but not perfect.

 

The second pizza was perfect. After a minute or two on the grill, I added a pizza pan under it to prevent the heat of the steel burning the bottom.

 

Both pizza's: The crust was chewy, with great open crumb. Cheese melty and delicious, and awesome.

 

Dinner: Success. 

IMG_6229_2578.JPG

IMG_6231_2580.JPG

IMG_6232_2581.JPG

IMG_6233_2582.JPG

IMG_6234_2583.JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nice dough and toppings.  I would be interested to hear from a thermal/materials engineer(is there such a thing?) to understand the difference in heat absorption and retention of ceramic pizza stones vs steel.  My instinct tells me the steel is getting hotter faster and the ceramic releases its' heat at a different rate.  Pure speculation - engineers/scientists?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, Family_cook said:

Nice dough and toppings.  I would be interested to hear from a thermal/materials engineer(is there such a thing?) to understand the difference in heat absorption and retention of ceramic pizza stones vs steel.  My instinct tells me the steel is getting hotter faster and the ceramic releases its' heat at a different rate.  Pure speculation - engineers/scientists?

 

My days of being able to solve the 3d diffusion equation to model and map heat distribution and the radiative heat from the materials are long gone (I did pull my degree in physics), but looking at the heat conductivity of the two materials is not too difficult to get at.

 

I presume that the ceramics of a pizza stone are probably lowish thermal conductivity, and that their benefit is in the mass of the stone being a reservoir of heat. Add to that the porosity, and moisture is wicked out of the dough when it is first placed on the hot stone, leading to a "drier" bottom crust. (note: this is the same thermal properties as refractory bricks, hence the presumption of the pizza stone as a modest conductor of thermal energy.)

 

The steel is a much better conductor of heat, and it weights considerably more than my pizza stone. (note I only have a large rectangular pizza stone, so I have no experience with it in my kamado) The tables I checked showed that an Alumina ceramic (and since I assume that pizza stones are similar in composition to refractory bricks, or about 30% alumina) is about 1/4 the thermal conductivity of steel.

 

One of the challenges in cooking in my ordinary oven is that even with the stone, opening the door, and placing the pizza on the stone, there is a significant drop in oven temperature. The stone helps with this but it is still a factor. The much more massive steel will hold more heat, and then impart it onto the pie when it is placed. Additionally, since the heat conduction is tied to the mobility of free electrons in the metal, the steel will impart more of its heat to the dough.

 

Side note: I was asked once how come those stove top griddles don't make pancakes as good as you get at Denny's or IHOP. The truth is two fold. First the batter is different, it is made in larger batches, and can rest. Home cooks don't have that luxury. But the real reason is the commercial griddle with 1.5" (or greater) thick steel that has a huge amount of BTU's pumped into it, and a well seasoned surface. Can't compete with that.

 

What I do need is an IR temperature gauge so that I can tell what the surface temperature of the steel is before I slide the pie on it. I guess a trip to the local Harbor Freight is in store for me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...

  • Similar Content

    • By Nnank76
      hey guys,
       
      Ive had a few pizza sessions on my kj classic 2. Although the last time i warped the steel firebox ring so not sure that should count as successful! I thought it aould be good to ask a kj specific question.  
       
      My set up is deflectors on the grill in top position. Spacers on top of that with pizza stone then on top.
       
      So my question/s is when doing high heat cooks:
      1. How long do u let the kj heat sink for? I have just opened the vents and let it ride. When up to 650/700 put pizzas on.
      2. Where do people set their vents? How open is the bottom and top? As above i nlrmally just open them up and stick the pizza on at above the 650/700 mark.
      3. How long should this sort of temp last or is safe for the kj? If i had a pizza party how long could this keep up for eg.
       
      Any advice or thoughts is welcome?
       
      Cheers
      Nathan
       
    • By gordo2212
      Best one to date. Pictures of just taken off the grill and then added some arugula and sprinkle of EVOO and pecorino romano. 


    • By HokieOC
      Saturday pizza has become a regular thing at our house, per my son’s request. I had a good thing going with the KJ Classic and a 15” stone setup, down to a science. But a few weeks ago decided to change it up and try pizzas on the Akorn Jr, half to use less charcoal on the high temp and half cause I had a steel I’d never used. And half just for the challenge....okay that’s three halves. But I digress....first couple weeks went okay, a little learning curve with the AkJ getting to temp MUCH faster and the possibility of overshooting temp, coupled with the steel getting and retaining heat much easier than the stone. 
       
      Last weekend I burnt the crap out of the bottom of three of four pies (finally got it to cool down a bit by the last one...should have given more time after I charred the first). Having to wait a week for redemption is killing me, but I ordered the canning rack I’ve seen many use on here for the Junior setup, so fingers crossed tonight goes better. And I’ll definitely be watching my temps and shooting the steel with an IR thermometer. I’m hoping more separation of the steel and deflector in addition to getting the stew up higher in the dome makes the difference. 
    • By paddywide
      I have an Akorn. I cook pizza like other people. Place deflector on the grill grate, put stone on top of it and make sure there is around 1-2 cm gap between them. I am still new in cooking pizza. After 6 times tries, I want to share some idea.
       
      1. The temp is between 300-350°C is all right. When someone say, the best temp is 300, whereas the other says 350. They may not consider the stone temp. See below.
       
      2. If you just cook one pizza, that's fine. Tonight I cook 4 pizzas for my family. I see a problem, when I cook the first pizza, the kamado reaches 300°C, in theory, it is a good temp to cook, but the base is white, the second is perfect, the base is lightly smoke, the third one is terrible, the base is burned. The fourth one I close both vents, it still in between 300-350. the base still burns, but not as heavier as the third one. Because the stone's temp doesn't climb as fast as kamado's temp, the base cooking is faster than the topping cooking, that's why the first base is undercook and the last 2 are overcook.
       
      I make a dough with 500 grams flour and split into 4 pizzas. I cook them one by one. To next time when kamado reaches 300°C I will wait a couple of minutes until the stone temp goes up. For the rest of the pizza, I may check the base during the cooking, once the base looks perfect but the top doesn't, I will place something flat like cast iron crepe pan in between stone and pizza until the pizza fully cooked.
       
      Does anyone cook more than 1 pizza and have the same problem? What's your solution?
    • By Daz
      Have been busy with my other toy projects so the pellet Akorn has been cold for a while. Today kids want to eat pizza so I fired up the pellets akorn. It heats up to 500+ degrees in less than 10 min and the pizza was perfect. I fitted a WiFi PID controller and was going to tweak the algorithm but...too many projects! 
      Right now the temperature overshoots 50-80 degrees if set below 300 degrees, but gets better as it goes higher. 
      Anyway here is the pizza and the good looking grill haha.



×
×
  • Create New...