Author Topic: Kenji likes the baking steel  (Read 18881 times)

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Offline scott123

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Re: Kenji likes the baking steel
« Reply #60 on: August 31, 2012, 09:07:23 AM »
Brian, I'm always a little reticent to post recipes, because the protein content/brand of flour will dictate the necessary hydration, and everyone's environmental variables will dictate the yeast quantity. My recipes are also heavily geared towards the equipment I use and my personal skills.  Once you start trying to compensate for other flours and for varying equipment, it can be especially difficult.

That being said, here's where I'm at. I pulled this recipe from an older recipe I posted a while back that was directed towards a beginner.  Since it's here, I'm leaving it, but Brian, you can ignore the beginner's tips at the bottom.

For three 17" skins:

Spring King Flour (bleached bromated 13.2% protein)   855g (100%)   
Tap (hard) water room temp (68 deg.)   544g (63.6%)
IDY   1.5 t. (0.56%)
Salt (Great Value brand non Iodide)   15g (1.75%)
Soybean oil   25g (2.98%)
Sugar   9g   1.05%

Measure dry (no yeast). Measure wet (+ yeast). Mix to dissolve yeast. Dry into wet. Stir with a metal spoon until it's too stiff to stir, then knead, by hand, until very well mixed, but no further (3-4 minutes total).  Dough should be somewhere between cottage cheese-y and smooth. (Window paning is too far). Scale. Ball and place in dough pans. Refrigerate 1 day. Re-ball and return to lightly oiled pan. Refrigerate 1 more day.  Remove from fridge 3 hours before baking (shorter if containers are thin and less insulating).

Bake on 1/2" x 17" x 17" steel plate (or larger if your oven can fit it). Pre-heat plate for 60 minutes at 515.  Plate should be positioned on an oven shelf that's about 7" from the broiler.

Dust wooden peel with 50/50 flour/semolina
Stretch skin to 17" and place on peel
Quickly dress the pizza, shaking between each topping to make sure the skin doesn't stick
Launch
Wait 1.25 minutes
Turn on broiler
Wait 1 minute
Rotate pizza 180 deg. with metal peel
Wait .75 minute, watching for cheese to bubble and darken
Retrieve onto cooling rack
Allow to cool 10 minutes
Transfer to 18" metal pizza pan
Slice and serve

On a 17" pie, I put 7 ounces of sauce and 11 ounces of whole milk low moisture brick mozzarella.  If the sauce is the right consistency (on the thick side), the cheese won't slide too much, but if the sauce is thin, the cheese will have a tendency to migrate and boil over the rim.  Even with relatively thick sauce, keep the cheese away from the outer 2" of the skin (sauce to 1", cheese to 2").

My tap water has a lot of chlorine, so I have to boil it and then let it cool first.  I've tried bottled water, but I find tap gives me a little better oven spring.

The yeast quantity is going to be a rough ballpark. This dough is like clockwork for me and ferments in 2 days.  With your yeast, fridge temp, flour age, water, etc., it could be 1 day or even 3.  You're going to want to shoot for a doubling of the dough, but what's really critical is how the underside of the dough looks.  Ideally, if you have a large wide round clear proofing container, you can take photos of the underside and post them here.

If you've never opened a pizza skin before, you'll have a really hard time stretching this to 17". Stretching skills are something that neither a book nor this forum can help you master.  You just have to do it over and over again. Here's a video to get you started (ignore the rolling pin stuff and the tossing- my dough is too extensible to toss).

<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SjYqw1CLZsA" target="_blank" class="aeva_link bbc_link new_win">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SjYqw1CLZsA</a>


Launching skins off a peel is another area where practice is essential.  The nice thing about launching, though, is that you can launch the undressed skin onto the counter, put it back on the peel and launch it again, repeating it over and over.

Spring King flour can be hard to find.  If you have trouble, you can use bromated All Trumps and blend it with 33% all purpose.  In order to make a 'true' NY slice, though, you're going to want to track down bromated flour. Full Strength should be substitutable for Spring King, possibly with a slight reduction in water (I'd give 62% a shot).

Also, for anyone interested, I'll be changing this within the next 6 months to do a room temp bulk, rather than the re-ball.  Right now, when I take the partially fermented dough balls out of the containers to re-ball, the containers are a bit gummy, and it's kind of a hassle to wipe them out. If I bulk, I save myself this trouble.  It's just a matter of dialing in the right amount of yeast for a room temp bulk and deciding on a time frame.


Offline pizzaneer

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Re: Kenji likes the baking steel
« Reply #61 on: August 31, 2012, 09:26:05 AM »
I'm sure your recipe produces great results, Scott... but are you confident that Mike can follow this recipe and get consistent results that will help us determine the differences between:
1. kiln stone
2. steel
3. stacked stone & steel

Or should he just go out and get a few dough balls from his neighborhood pizzeria?   We need to eliminate variables, not introduce them.
I'd rather eat one good meal a day than 3 squares of garbage.

Offline MightyPizzaOven

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Re: Kenji likes the baking steel
« Reply #62 on: August 31, 2012, 09:26:35 AM »
Steel plate gets no hotter than any other hearth material. It just has the ability to store more heat, because of it's mass, and transfer that heat more quickly than most materials, because of it's conductivity, producing shorter bake times.

It depends on the oven, but I'd say that most 1/2" steel plate owners preheat their plates in under 70 minutes.


Scott, Aluminum is more conductive than steel (http://www.engineeringtoolbox.com/thermal-conductivity-metals-d_858.html) it will not store as much heat as much as steel but it can transfer it faster, it is also cheaper and much lighter, a combination of aluminum and ceramic might works even better.

Chekout Rutland product to bond metal to ceramic for example http://www.rutland.com/productinfo/stove--gasket-cement.html
Bert,

Offline pizzaneer

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Re: Kenji likes the baking steel
« Reply #63 on: August 31, 2012, 09:31:59 AM »
Scott, Aluminum is more conductive than steel (http://www.engineeringtoolbox.com/thermal-conductivity-metals-d_858.html) it will not store as much heat as much as steel but it can transfer it faster, it is also cheaper and much lighter, a combination of aluminum and ceramic might works even better.

Chekout Rutland product to bond metal to ceramic for example http://www.rutland.com/productinfo/stove--gasket-cement.html



I will give this a try.  I have some scrap aluminum sheets laying around.  They are very thin, about the same as a cookie sheet. 
  However, in the larger perspective, I'm not sure that adding a layer of aluminum to a stone is going to give different results than preforming on a cookie sheet and putting it on a stone, given thin aluminum's near-instant transmission rate. 
I'd rather eat one good meal a day than 3 squares of garbage.

Offline MightyPizzaOven

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Re: Kenji likes the baking steel
« Reply #64 on: August 31, 2012, 09:37:40 AM »
Brian, as Scott metioned before, you really need to bond the two together, it will be worth a try... you should be able to get rutland product at your local hardware store.
Bert,

Offline scott123

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Re: Kenji likes the baking steel
« Reply #65 on: August 31, 2012, 09:45:39 AM »
I'm sure your recipe produces great results, Scott... but are you confident that Mike can follow this recipe

Sorry, Brian, I think I might have misread your post.  Mike has a recipe that's he's pretty ecstatic about, as he should be.  If he wants to do stacking testing using his recipe, I think we could benefit from the data, but, from the conversation above, I think I talked him out of stacking. FWIW, he's also using a special cordierite-mullite kiln shelf that holds up really well on it's own, but, because of the price point, I'm not sure I'd recommend it for stacking.  Still, if he (or anyone else wants to stack), it would be invaluable to our quest.

Mike's steel plate is 34 lb. and his kiln shelf is probably 16 lb.  That's 50 lb. It really depends on the oven, but 50 might be pushing it. If Mike's willing, great, but if someone else wants to join in, even better.

Offline scott123

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Re: Kenji likes the baking steel
« Reply #66 on: August 31, 2012, 09:57:06 AM »
Scott, Aluminum is more conductive than steel (http://www.engineeringtoolbox.com/thermal-conductivity-metals-d_858.html) it will not store as much heat as much as steel but it can transfer it faster, it is also cheaper and much lighter, a combination of aluminum and ceramic might works even better.


Bert, to match the heat capacity of 1/2" steel, you need 3/4" aluminum plate. At that thickness, it gets pretty expensive.

I don't know... with it's extreme conductivity, I'm not that hopeful for aluminum on it's own, but as a bottom stone in a stacking scenario... perhaps.  It has one huge advantage over silicon carbide- it can be cut.  SiC pretty much limits you to whatever sizes the manufacturer produces.

Offline scott123

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Re: Kenji likes the baking steel
« Reply #67 on: August 31, 2012, 09:59:49 AM »
Brian, as Scott metioned before, you really need to bond the two together, it will be worth a try... you should be able to get rutland product at your local hardware store.

Actually, Bert, I'm not looking for bonding.  I'm looking for a material that will sit between the two stones, but still allow them to be removed from the oven separately.

Offline pizzaneer

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Re: Kenji likes the baking steel
« Reply #68 on: August 31, 2012, 10:01:39 AM »
Bert, to match the heat capacity of 1/2" steel, you need 3/4" aluminum plate. At that thickness, it gets pretty expensive.

I don't know... with it's extreme conductivity, I'm not that hopeful for aluminum on it's own, but as a bottom stone in a stacking scenario... perhaps.  It has one huge advantage over silicon carbide- it can be cut.  SiC pretty much limits you to whatever sizes the manufacturer produces.

All right, I think we're talking about two ends of the same camel here.  
    My impression is that the metal should be on TOP of the stone to more effectively transmit heat from the heat sink to the pie.  
  Thus the metal thickness should not LIMIT that transmission by being a heat sink itself.
I'd rather eat one good meal a day than 3 squares of garbage.

Offline scott123

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Re: Kenji likes the baking steel
« Reply #69 on: August 31, 2012, 10:27:10 AM »
Brian, it depends on the metal  ;D

As you move up the conductivity ladder you increase the propensity for char.  It's not all that dramatic between cordierite (3ish conductivity) and steel (43), and you can also take steps (like lowering the sugar) to mitigate it, but, when you get into aluminum's realm (250) the heat payload is so proportionally greater at the beginning of the bake than the end, that I think avoiding charring for typical 4 minute NY bakes could be especially difficult.  It's one thing to push the temp on steel and have char at 2.5 minutes, but, at 4, you really shouldn't be forced into char, like you might be with aluminum.

This is still something that I'm getting my head around so I'm probably not explaining it all that well, but I believe aluminum is going to have a propensity for extremely contrasty undercrusts over a wide variety of bake times. This is why I'm favoring aluminum as a bottom. For all these scenarios, I think steel is the ideal top.
« Last Edit: August 31, 2012, 12:54:53 PM by scott123 »


Offline pizzaneer

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Re: Kenji likes the baking steel
« Reply #70 on: August 31, 2012, 12:24:01 PM »
I'm sorry Scott.  I still think we are having a misunderstanding.

In my view, being able to cook pizzas comparable to a modded oven in an unmodded oven would be a GOOD thing. 

If the aluminum + stone combo would result in char in 550 temps, what about 450?  How is this a downside?  Isn't this good for the majority of people, who don't have great ovens?


I'd rather eat one good meal a day than 3 squares of garbage.

Offline scott123

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Re: Kenji likes the baking steel
« Reply #71 on: August 31, 2012, 01:14:19 PM »
Brian, I guess what I'm trying to say here is that when you look at the materials

cordierite 3
steel 43
aluminum 250

the fact that aluminum is 83 times more conductive than cordierite puts it in an entirely different universe thermodynamically- that whatever differences you see between cordierite and steel (and I do believe there are slight differences), these differences will be magnified many times over with aluminum. Faster can be better, as the move from cordierite to steel shows, but faster isn't automatically better.

You might be able to get aluminum to give off a slower, more gentle heat if you go to a lower temp, but a lower temp translates into less energy in the hearth.  If a hearth has sufficient energy to bake a pizza at 550, if you lower the temp to 450 to slow down the rate at which the pizza cooks, the hearth may not have enough stored energy to bake the pie. As you drop the temp, for a material like aluminum, to match the stored energy of the higher temp, you have to go with a thicker plate.  And that could get prohibitively expensive.

Offline pizzaneer

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Re: Kenji likes the baking steel
« Reply #72 on: August 31, 2012, 03:51:36 PM »
Still sounds like you are talking about the metal by itself.  That's not what I'm talking about.

So what is the combined impact of corderite stacked under aluminum?  Is it 250 and then the heat capacity of the corderite hearth?  I can't see the corderite giving up all its heat at once, unlike aluminum. 

My prediction is upon loading a pie onto the stack that you would see an immediate heat transfer of all heat energy present in the aluminum to the base of the pie.   Then (in nanoseconds) you would see a replenishing effect, where the aluminum will draw from the entire top surface of the corderite and funnel it into replacing the heat lost to the pie. Eventually, the process would balance out, but not before the pie is long done.

Does this make sense?
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Offline MightyPizzaOven

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Re: Kenji likes the baking steel
« Reply #73 on: August 31, 2012, 04:08:50 PM »
Then (in nanoseconds) you would see a replenishing effect, where the aluminum will draw from the entire top surface of the corderite and funnel it into replacing the heat lost to the pie. Eventually, the process would balance out, but not before the pie is long done.

Does this make sense?


The heat stored in the alumium + the heat transfered from corderite to aluminum need to be sufficient for backing in the required time.

Just not sure how you can calculate heat transfer speed between corderite to aluminum .
Bert,

Offline pizzaneer

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Re: Kenji likes the baking steel
« Reply #74 on: August 31, 2012, 04:30:43 PM »

The heat stored in the alumium + the heat transfered from corderite to aluminum need to be sufficient for backing in the required time.

Just not sure how you can calculate heat transfer speed between corderite to aluminum .

Me either - that's a good reason to give it a try  ;D
I'd rather eat one good meal a day than 3 squares of garbage.

Offline scott123

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Re: Kenji likes the baking steel
« Reply #75 on: August 31, 2012, 04:33:24 PM »
Still sounds like you are talking about the metal by itself.  That's not what I'm talking about.

Brian, if you have aluminum on top, for a portion of the bake, it would be like baking on only aluminum.  The pizza would cook at a highly accelerated aluminum rate until the aluminum was exhausted, and then it would cook at the slower cordierite rate.

I guess if you went with an exceptionally small piece of aluminum, you could get a quick burst of heat and then you'd drop to the cordierite speed, but I'm not sure how much thermal mass a small piece of aluminum buys you.

It would be ideal, though, to, rather than a burst of heat and then a drop, to have something more constant.  If you put steel on top of aluminum, you'd get a steady steel rate of transfer for all the energy in both plates.

Offline MightyPizzaOven

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Re: Kenji likes the baking steel
« Reply #76 on: September 02, 2012, 09:53:37 AM »
This formula may help, if you have the patience.

q = m x C x DT
q = m x C x (Tf - Ti)

q = amount of heat energy gained or lost by substance
m = mass of sample
C = heat capacity (J oC-1 g-1 or J K-1 g-1)
Tf = final temperature
Ti = initial temperature

Specific Heat Capacity - The quantity of heat required to raise the temperature of a substance by one degree Celsius is called the specific heat capacity of the substance. The quantity of heat is frequently measured in units of Joules(J).

C = heat capacity for  Aluminum = 0.902
C = heat capacity for Carbon Steel    = 0.49

Not sure what the heat capacity for a  stone for a dough?
« Last Edit: September 02, 2012, 10:34:19 AM by MightyPizzaOven »
Bert,

Offline TXCraig1

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Re: Kenji likes the baking steel
« Reply #77 on: September 02, 2012, 10:01:34 AM »
Not sure what the heat capacity of stone and dough?

For dough, it changes as it bakes.
Pizza is not bread.

Offline scott123

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Re: Kenji likes the baking steel
« Reply #78 on: September 02, 2012, 06:46:23 PM »
This formula may help, if you have the patience.

q = m x C x DT
q = m x C x (Tf - Ti)

Bert, this is actually the formula I've been using to analyze the heat capacity of aluminum at lower temps.

Offline pizzaneer

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Re: Kenji likes the baking steel
« Reply #79 on: September 02, 2012, 07:20:19 PM »
Sorry guys, I still think there are far too many variables in this approach to be able to churn out a quick formula-based hypothesis.  Best way to go is still "throw it in there and see what happens". 

I've been looking, and unfortunately I think I used up my last big sheet of aluminum on another project.  I hope someone has some laying around.
I'd rather eat one good meal a day than 3 squares of garbage.