Author Topic: The perfect pizza stone?  (Read 4086 times)

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Offline Villas

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The perfect pizza stone?
« on: February 12, 2013, 12:14:29 PM »
Hello everyone!
I'm quite new into the making of pizzas, but I've managed some fine doughs and I've managed to get my pizzas okay in my electrical oven. (285*C or 545 fahrenheit)
I have decided to invest in a pizza stone or pan, but I have not a single idea of what to buy! It is so many different things too choose between. Stone, cement, tiles, steel.
I wondered what you guys would recommend me..? I have read nice things about Fibrament (costs about 100$ shipped to Oslo) and Emile Henry, but what do you experts think? It is mainly or only thin, Italian, Neapolitan pizza I'm going to make.

Thank you so much! :)


Offline 2stone

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Re: The perfect pizza stone?
« Reply #1 on: February 12, 2013, 03:03:09 PM »
Hvordan går det,

Så fint at du vil lære og lage god pizza!

I think a lot of people are switching to a thicker steel plate for their pizza baking in lower temperature home ovens. Stones work well at higher temps. You should be able to go to a local steel fabricator and have them cut you a piece around 1 cm thick.....and save some kroner. Here is a in depth review on it at slice.
http://slice.seriouseats.com/archives/2012/09/the-pizza-lab-the-baking-steel-delivers.html

Ha det bra,
Willard
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Offline Villas

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Re: The perfect pizza stone?
« Reply #2 on: February 12, 2013, 03:47:40 PM »
Det går bare bra, takk! Så morsomt at du kunne norsk! Har du norske forfedre?

Thank you for the page and tips! I will for sure check at the steel works around here. Sounds like a great idea, both cheap and well working in my oven! Thank you so much for the page with the comparison also, it really helped me understanding these things.

Offline JD

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Re: The perfect pizza stone?
« Reply #3 on: February 12, 2013, 04:49:13 PM »

You may want to wait for this new thread to develop:
http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,23362.0.html



Hello everyone!
I'm quite new into the making of pizzas, but I've managed some fine doughs and I've managed to get my pizzas okay in my electrical oven. (285*C or 545 fahrenheit)
I have decided to invest in a pizza stone or pan, but I have not a single idea of what to buy! It is so many different things too choose between. Stone, cement, tiles, steel.
I wondered what you guys would recommend me..? I have read nice things about Fibrament (costs about 100$ shipped to Oslo) and Emile Henry, but what do you experts think? It is mainly or only thin, Italian, Neapolitan pizza I'm going to make.

Thank you so much! :)
Josh

Offline 2stone

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Re: The perfect pizza stone?
« Reply #4 on: February 13, 2013, 07:23:45 AM »
Ja begge to bor i Norge.....da jeg var på din alder
gikk jeg på skole der. -wg
2Stone blog: www.2stoneblog.com

Offline Villas

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Re: The perfect pizza stone?
« Reply #5 on: February 14, 2013, 03:01:31 PM »
What type of still is the best type to use? Is it corrosion resistant steel or plain steel? Someone talked about the US' A36 standard, Wikipedia explained it as carbon steel..?
I would be glad if someone linked me to the right thread to read. I would also be glad to read the cons and pros about the different types.

Thank you!

Offline TXCraig1

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Re: The perfect pizza stone?
« Reply #6 on: February 14, 2013, 03:34:30 PM »
What type of still is the best type to use? Is it corrosion resistant steel or plain steel? Someone talked about the US' A36 standard, Wikipedia explained it as carbon steel..?
I would be glad if someone linked me to the right thread to read. I would also be glad to read the cons and pros about the different types.

Thank you!

A36 is what you need. If you buy a more expensive alloy, you're not only wasting your money, you will likely get LOWER performance. A36 is a very mild (low carbon) steel which is exactly what you want as it is going to have the highest thermal conductivity. It's nice that it is also probably the least expensive.
Pizza is not bread.

Offline Pizza Quixote

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Re: The perfect pizza stone?
« Reply #7 on: February 21, 2013, 09:56:21 AM »
I bought the Baking Steel and so far I'm very pleased. I got OK results with pizza in a rectangle pan, and somewhat better results baking on a perforated pizza round.  I have a stone, but it's only about 12-14 inches across and hence too small for the bigger pies I like to make.

I spent the $72 for the Baking Steel.  Pricey, but it comes pre-seasoned.  I'm not yet very skilled in dough making or transferring the pie from peel to steel, but pies cook up crisp on the steel at 550 degrees F.

Kenji says his cook in 7-9 minutes (check his review on Slice - Seriouseats) but mine take 10-12, even with a very thin crust and a fairly conservative approach to toppings.

You can see my results here: http://mainlinepizzaquest.blogspot.com/2013/02/review-baking-steel-yields-five-sigma.html

No tip sag!

Offline Camaro10

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Re: The perfect pizza stone?
« Reply #8 on: April 21, 2013, 02:35:19 PM »
Doesnt steel take longer to heat up? Also those that have been using steel does it bend your over racks over time?

I guess steel mimics that of a commercial pizza oven.

What's a good online retailer who sells them at a decent price?

Offline dmcavanagh

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Re: The perfect pizza stone?
« Reply #9 on: April 21, 2013, 02:50:53 PM »


Offline Kralle

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Re: The perfect pizza stone?
« Reply #10 on: May 02, 2013, 01:34:10 PM »
But the problem with buying a baking steel from europe is that the postage is 100 dollars. I'm in Denmark and im too looking for a good stone/steel, since i just cracked 2 baking stones in 2 weeks :) I've tried asking for A36, but no one has it and i have even been told that it's not recommended for using in cooking as it releases hazardous fumes.

Since everyone says that steel is superior heat conductor than stones and cast iron, i looked at the thermal conductivies of metals (Wikipedia).

 Thermal conductivities:
Steel, carbon: 54
Cast iron:   55
Brass Cu63%: 125
Aluminium, pure: 204.3-250
Diamond (:)): 3,320-41,000

So why is it that steel is preferred? Wouldn't it be way better to use for example Aluminium? Would also be nicer, since it weighs less.
How important is the thermal conductivity of the plate really?

Offline Chicago Bob

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Re: The perfect pizza stone?
« Reply #11 on: May 02, 2013, 05:37:14 PM »
But the problem with buying a baking steel from europe is that the postage is 100 dollars. I'm in Denmark and im too looking for a good stone/steel, since i just cracked 2 baking stones in 2 weeks :) I've tried asking for A36, but no one has it and i have even been told that it's not recommended for using in cooking as it releases hazardous fumes.

Since everyone says that steel is superior heat conductor than stones and cast iron, i looked at the thermal conductivies of metals (Wikipedia).

 Thermal conductivities:
Steel, carbon: 54
Cast iron:   55
Brass Cu63%: 125
Aluminium, pure: 204.3-250
Diamond (:)): 3,320-41,000

So why is it that steel is preferred? Wouldn't it be way better to use for example Aluminium? Would also be nicer, since it weighs less.
How important is the thermal conductivity of the plate really?
Aluminum doesn't hold/saturate heat...passes right through it. Steel holds heat and is also a big aid if you are doing multiple pizzas.
"Care Free Highway...let me slip away on you"

Offline Kralle

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Re: The perfect pizza stone?
« Reply #12 on: May 03, 2013, 11:24:04 AM »
Aluminum doesn't hold/saturate heat...passes right through it. Steel holds heat and is also a big aid if you are doing multiple pizzas.

Nope, that isn't true.

Heat capacity:
Iron: 0.450
Steel: 0.466
Aluminium: 0.897
Brick: 0.840

A higher number means that it will take longer to heat up and to cool down.

EDIT:
A problem with using aluminium is that it has a lower density than iron/steel, so it would have to be bigger to have the same mass.
Please correct me if im wrong, i haven't looked at physics since high school :)
« Last Edit: May 03, 2013, 11:32:26 AM by Kralle »

Offline TXCraig1

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Re: The perfect pizza stone?
« Reply #13 on: May 03, 2013, 11:57:12 AM »
Nope, that isn't true.

Heat capacity:
Iron: 0.450
Steel: 0.466
Aluminium: 0.897
Brick: 0.840

A higher number means that it will take longer to heat up and to cool down.

EDIT:
A problem with using aluminium is that it has a lower density than iron/steel, so it would have to be bigger to have the same mass.
Please correct me if im wrong, i haven't looked at physics since high school :)

You're right. The units for the quantities you cited is J/(g*K). The heat capacity of Al is almost double Fe, so you would only need ~50% of the mass to hold the same amount of heat.
Pizza is not bread.

Offline Kralle

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Re: The perfect pizza stone?
« Reply #14 on: May 03, 2013, 12:11:15 PM »
You're right. The units for the quantities you cited is J/(g*K). The heat capacity of Al is almost double Fe, so you would only need ~50% of the mass to hold the same amount of heat.
Interesting right?

The mass of the modernist cuisine baking plate is 10 kg, to get a plate in aluminum of half the mass, but with superior thermal conductivity, you would
need a plate of the dimensions 41x36x1.2 giving it a weight of ~5kg

Offline Chicago Bob

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Re: The perfect pizza stone?
« Reply #15 on: May 03, 2013, 03:36:31 PM »
Interesting right?

The mass of the modernist cuisine baking plate is 10 kg, to get a plate in aluminum of half the mass, but with superior thermal conductivity, you would
need a plate of the dimensions 41x36x1.2 giving it a weight of ~5kg
Dang, that is very interesting. And I thought aluminum heat sinks were used in electronics because they can wick away and then lose their heat fast.

So, a 1/4 in. alum. plate should cook as good as a 1/2in. steel plate?  Hmmm.....
"Care Free Highway...let me slip away on you"

Offline TXCraig1

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Re: The perfect pizza stone?
« Reply #16 on: May 03, 2013, 03:59:18 PM »
Dang, that is very interesting. And I thought aluminum heat sinks were used in electronics because they can wick away and then lose their heat fast.

Heat sinks are all about conductivity - and they are often copper which is 2X as conductive as aluminum. Remember the physics of heat transfer work the same in both directions. If an material can quickly conduct heat into it, it can just as quickly get rid of it, AOTBE. You're right, this is why you would use something like copper or aluminum and not steel for a heat sink. What you originally wrote is kinda-sorta correct. In the presence of a temperature differential, aluminum will transfer heat faster than steel. The use of the word saturate was clearly incorrect, and the overall point that the lower conductivity of steel is better for multiple pies is only correct if you can show that the heat transfer rate of aluminium is inefficient and wasteful when baking pizza.

Quote
So, a 1/4 in. alum. plate should cook as good as a 1/2in. steel plate?  Hmmm.....

Maybe maybe not. It would hold the same amount of heat, but I don't see how the amount of stored heat necessarily determined how well something cooks. How fast it dumps the heat into the pie also matters. You could make a pizza stone thick enough to have the same heat capacity as a 1/2" steel plate, but would that make it as good as 1/2" steel? Probably not as it wouldn't transfer the heat as quickly (lower conductivity) likewise, a material may be too conductive and burn the bottom before the top can cook. We've been discussing this with respect to WFO's lately with differences in conductivity from 0.3 to 1.1. With steel and aluminium, your're talking about 50 vs. 200. I don't know if aluminium is better, the same, or not as good as steel. The point is that it's not as simple as just how much heat the material can hold.
Pizza is not bread.

Offline Chicago Bob

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Re: The perfect pizza stone?
« Reply #17 on: May 03, 2013, 04:19:06 PM »
OK thanks Craig; think I'm starting to understand this a little better.

Is there a simple way of explaining "heat capacity" and "saturation" ?
"Care Free Highway...let me slip away on you"

Offline TXCraig1

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Re: The perfect pizza stone?
« Reply #18 on: May 03, 2013, 04:23:27 PM »
Nope, that isn't true.

Heat capacity:
Iron: 0.450
Steel: 0.466
Aluminium: 0.897
Brick: 0.840

A higher number means that it will take longer to heat up and to cool down.

I should have noted that this comment is also not exactly true either. The rate at which the material heats (and cools) is also a function of conductivity. Aluminum and brick may have a similar heat capacity, but they certainly don't heat as the same rate. Aluminum is on the order of 200X faster.

Heat capacity speaks to how much heat (energy) is needed to increase a certain mass by a certain temperature. The units are J/(g*K). A joule is a measure of energy.

Thermal conductivity speaks to the rate that heat is conducted across a certain temperature differential. The units are W/(m*K). A watt is a measure of power. 1 watt is 1 joule per second.

You need both to figure out how quickly something heats up.
Pizza is not bread.

Offline TXCraig1

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Re: The perfect pizza stone?
« Reply #19 on: May 03, 2013, 04:37:33 PM »
OK thanks Craig; think I'm starting to understand this a little better.

Is there a simple way of explaining "heat capacity" and "saturation" ?

The heat capacity is how much heat (energy - in joules) do you have to put into 1 gram of something to raise the temperature 1C (or K - same thing). It does not speak to how fast the heat goes in and out. That's conductivity.

I don't think "saturation" is a technical term, but I take it to mean "full of heat." It doesn't matter what you put in the oven, at some point it's going to have as much heat as it can hold - a function of the mass, temperature, and heat capacity of the material. With respect to the quantity of heat when fully "saturated," the type material doesn't matter; you just may need more or less mass.
Pizza is not bread.