Author Topic: My new Weber charcoal (briquette) pizza oven  (Read 18766 times)

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Offline Chicago Bob

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Re: My new Weber charcoal (briquette) pizza oven
« Reply #60 on: June 09, 2013, 11:28:48 AM »
I'll bet you could make some even better pies on that grill if you loose the NP dough and go with something better suited for the Weber heat output.
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Offline adm

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Re: My new Weber charcoal (briquette) pizza oven
« Reply #61 on: June 10, 2013, 05:56:07 AM »
I'll bet you could make some even better pies on that grill if you loose the NP dough and go with something better suited for the Weber heat output.

Thanks Bob, I hadn't thought of that, but it's definitely a good idea to experiment.

What would you recommend, bearing in mind that I like a thin and fairly crispy pie with a nice puffed cornice.

I do have a half sack of Caputo 00 left - so a blend might be the way to go until that is used up. Having said that, I love the extensibility of the 00 based dough.

Do you know if a different make of 00 flour would be more suitable - is it only the Caputo 00 that has trouble browning at lower temperatures? I am in the UK, so have access to many different types of flour - but certainly not the same brands as you get in the US.

Cheers,

Alasdair

Offline Chicago Bob

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Re: My new Weber charcoal (briquette) pizza oven
« Reply #62 on: June 10, 2013, 11:44:24 AM »
Thanks Bob, I hadn't thought of that, but it's definitely a good idea to experiment.

What would you recommend, bearing in mind that I like a thin and fairly crispy pie with a nice puffed cornice.

I do have a half sack of Caputo 00 left - so a blend might be the way to go until that is used up. Having said that, I love the extensibility of the 00 based dough.

Do you know if a different make of 00 flour would be more suitable - is it only the Caputo 00 that has trouble browning at lower temperatures? I am in the UK, so have access to many different types of flour - but certainly not the same brands as you get in the US.

Cheers,

Alasdair
There are many great experimenters here but I believe member Chau has been the most prolific and his stuff is always awesome work.  :chef:

For what you are currently trying to do I would suggest you start here.  http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,11654.0.html   But don't forget to search out some of his NY style work baked in his WFO...now those are some of my favorite pizzas on the whole forum.  ;)
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Offline adm

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Re: My new Weber charcoal (briquette) pizza oven
« Reply #63 on: June 10, 2013, 12:49:09 PM »
Thanks!

I think I will start off by just mixing the Caputo with a percentage of HG flour and see what happens as I change the formulation.

Might even experiment with adding a little honey or sugar and/or replacing some of the water with beer.

I do like Craig's dough workflow, so I'll stick with that as it works well for me and I have the neccessary temperature control. And I'm definitely sticking with sourdough culture for the taste.

Bring on the experiments!

Offline Jackie Tran

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Re: My new Weber charcoal (briquette) pizza oven
« Reply #64 on: June 10, 2013, 01:03:57 PM »
Bob you are too kind.  Thank you.

Well...what I can tell you is that I have baked 8 pies on a single load of lumpwood charcoal and could have done more. I don't know how many more though - probably not many.  I have no idea about how even the heat distribution is. But it seems to work.

Good enough for me.  I want you to know that I wasn't trashing your oven.  Yes it will bake pizza.  Does it have to be a perfect oven with perfect heat distribution?  NO.  Im not sure many ovens are.  As long as it bakes pizza that you enjoy with your family, then it's served it's purpose.  Bringing people together for pizza and fellowship.

And 8-10 pies is sufficient for a small gathering, so it doesn't sound like you would need to refill the charcoal during a typical bake.  I was just making the point of liquid propane vs charcoal in the weber ovens. 

It's fairly low cost, is freely available in Europe and requires no modifications to anything.

This is a good point between the two.  For someone who doesn't have tools, the time, know how, or motivation to modify a weber charcoal oven, this would be a good alternative.

Learning how to make decent pizza itself is a whole different matter though!

Yes very true.  You could have the best pizza oven in the world but if you don't know how to make the dough, then what good is the oven?

If you are interested in blending caputo with HG flour, I've done a lot of those with good results.  A good blend I've used is 75% 00 and 25% HG.  You can stick with the ischia starter if you've had good luck with it.   Beer isn't popular on the forum in the dough, but it doesn't mean you won't like it.  Nothing wrong with experimenting.  How else do we learn?   Depending on how much top heat you are getting, sugar may or may not help.  Sugar will promote browning, so if you need more crust browning, a small % of sugar is not a bad idea.  I would start with 1-2% and see how you like it.

Anyways, good luck with the oven and do post up some more pies.  We love pictures here.

Chau
« Last Edit: June 10, 2013, 04:58:43 PM by Jackie Tran »

Offline adm

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Re: My new Weber charcoal (briquette) pizza oven
« Reply #65 on: June 10, 2013, 04:06:19 PM »
Thanks Chau,

I have just finished viewing (with deep envy and serious hunger pangs) many of your gorgeous pie photos and extremely detailed descriptions. I have learned a lot and will no doubt learn more from your posts.

I will definitely try blending the Caputo with HG as the first step. Change one thing at a time and record the results is my motto. I used to be an engineer....

I am beginning the long process of building a WFO (firebrick, Pompeii dome) as the centrepiece of an outside kitchen, so the Weber is a stopgap (but fun) measure. I might try modding that too (was busy taking measurements of my big ass propane burner today) at some point in the future, but for now I will stick with charcoal because I love the artisanal purity of it.

The WFO will be more general purpose than just pizza, hence the Pompeii dome profile rather than the Neapolitan. I'm sure it will cook good Pizza though.

I might mess around with adding some baffles to the lid of the Weber to see if that makes any difference. Thinking about it thermodynamically, it's almost certainly a pretty laminar airflow over the top of the pizza and maybe adding some turbulence might be a good thing. I also thought about adding a second stone in the lid. So much for me saying I wasn't going to hack it.....

Anyway. I think at the end of the day I managed to hijack Henrik's thread (although he hasn't been back for a while to update his results), so I think it's probably time for me to start my own pizza thread. Not sure quite where to put it as I am not sure exactly what style I am working to - probably somewhere between Neopolitan and New York with an Artisanal leaning.

Who knows? All i know is that the journey will be fun and involve many, many punishing miles up hills on my bicycle to work off the calories!

Cheers,


Alasdair

Offline Jackie Tran

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Re: My new Weber charcoal (briquette) pizza oven
« Reply #66 on: June 10, 2013, 04:27:59 PM »
For a while there I was really gung ho about pizza and doing many experiments.  I am just one of the many members here who chose to document a lot of what I did back then.  If you look, there are lots of very active members on this board making every style of pizza known to man.  There is such a wealth of pizza knowledge on this forum.   As you, I also benefit greatly from everyone's work.  I can always learn something new from any thread, whether I want to or not.  I hope that you continue to document what you are doing with your new oven.  As long as you are having fun, which it sounds like, and there are friends to enjoy your pizza, then you are successful.  We are all here for the same reason, a journey to better pizza and pizza nirvana.  I myself, still feel like a beginner many days and struggle just the same.  I'm not kidding. 

Yes, tinker and mod the oven if you have to.  If you are passionate about pizza, and it sounds like you are, you will find one way or another to keep tweaking and get better.  I'm very excited to hear that there will be a wfo in your future.  No matter what oven you end up with, you'll have fun learning how to get the most out of it.   But let me just say that if you think that you may end up doing mostly NP pizza, then please do get a low dome oven.  You'll find a way to make it work for the other foods you want to make in it.  It will just be easier.  Trust me.  But if NP isn't your thing, then any oven will do.   Having a low dome oven will just make doing NP easier.

As far as hijacking a thread, I am guilty of that many times.  It is common on this forum, so don't worry about it too much.  The mods will move things around if they need to. 

Cheers,
Chau
« Last Edit: June 10, 2013, 05:08:38 PM by Jackie Tran »

Offline Tatoosh

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Re: My new Weber charcoal (briquette) pizza oven
« Reply #67 on: June 17, 2013, 06:45:45 AM »
Nice looking unit, very space ship chic, imho.  Hope you can dial it in.  Temps can be improved with lump charcoal and some sort of blower.  That will kick it up a lot, so you need to be able to control the blower's output.  For the potatoes, anything that takes longer to cook, I'd par-cook (par-cook = partially cook) ahead of topping the pizza.  I will do this for raw sausages that go on 3 to 4 minute pizzas, even though I'm hitting 700F plus on my Weber (using KettlePizza insert).  Anything that takes a bit to cook, will likely need some help ahead of time.  Things that cook fast or only need to come up to temp for mouth feel, such as shrimp or finished sausages like pepperoni, salami, sliced ham - I'll put them on straight from the package. 

Hope you hang in there with it and get it sorted out.  It is a very stylish unit.
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Offline Henrik

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Re: My new Weber charcoal (briquette) pizza oven
« Reply #68 on: July 18, 2013, 10:19:02 AM »
Hi all!
Thanks for the high-jack(s?) and a lot of good comments, and added experience!!!

I have been so busy at a new work position, that I have had to leave the pizza cooking alone for a while, and I am thrilled to get the lump charcoal tested myself when back after vacation time here.


So thank you,  and I wish you all a good summer and happy baking.


Henrik