Hi Omid. I agree the use of screens is not necessary. It's just more of a curiosity thing since I have used them before in deck ovens. I find my best ideas come fromjust experimenting with processes .
At home sometimes my floor does get too hot or uneven because most the time I am going from completely cold oven to hot in a matter of a few hours and the floor temp gets affected the most in this environment. The floor and heat sink need much more time for my oven to fully absorb the heat. In a commercial setting I think the ovens would cook more evenly with much more retention of heat in the floor in particular since they never are allowed to fully cool down.
since my oven is a 120 and takes quite a bit of wood to get up to temp I tend to get discouraged to fire up for a small batch of say 5-10 pies. Instead I do less firing of my oven throughout the year but when I do its 30-60 pies. The. most I have done has been about 175 which was a great experience to push the limits of capacity and high volume management.
I could use help in finding a solution to firing up more easily/effectively. Maybe Craig has dealt with this already with his oven.
As for the pebbles on the floor for sangak.... That is just awesome. Sangak is my favorite persian bread by far. I gotta try that. How did it come out compared to the commercial bakeries that do sangak?
I could use help in figuring out how to get more use of my oven for small batches so can try more variations of dough. Any thoughts?
Ps the rocks you put in the oven for sangak bread is awesome. How did it come out? I would love to try that. Sangak is my favorite flat bread by far.
Dear Omid, a solution is to preheat your oven for few hours the day before. I normally preheat my Forno Piccolo for about 3 hours the day before I actually bake my pizzas or breads. If I preheat my oven with my torch
(not firewood), then after preheating I put the door on inside the entrance, right passed the chimney, in order to minimize heat escape. Then, I put on another door on the outside, with the chimney clogged up.
The Sangak flatbreads that I baked came out pretty good, way better than the ones sold at Sangak bakeries here. I have never seen any of the Sangak bakeries in the U.S. use sourdough
in making Sangak breads; they all use dry or fresh yeast—which is quite wrong
. Sangak dough ought to
be prepared with sourdough culture, there is no other way. In addition, they use sugar and sometimes oil in their Sangak doughs—which is a NO NO
. Moreover, they add white wheat flour, as much as 50 to 60%, (and sometimes barley flour) to their doughs. Sangak dough must contain wholewheat flour (of a particular extraction rate) only
. At last, Sangak must
be baked on river rocks/pebbles, which they do not use for obvious reasons. Without baking them on river pebbles, the flavor and texture that essentially characterize Sangak bread will be lost. Next time you buy a Sangak from any of the bakeries in your area, notice that it has a leather-like texture, which indicates that (1) the dough was not prepared properly and (2) they used wrong surface (usually cast iron) to bake the dough on. Check out the picture of Sangak breads below. Those are the real thing! They are from a Sangak bakery in Tehran, Iran. In terms of visual representation, there is a world of difference between the Sangaks in the picture and the ones made here in the U.S.
My main problem in making Sangak flatbreads at home is that the interior space of my oven is too small for me to be able to properly launch the dough on the pebbles. Hence I have to use a very small peel which results in small size Sangaks, almost the same size as Indian Naan. Have a great day!