Author Topic: Covection oven with heating element at top  (Read 1817 times)

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Offline barrelli

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Covection oven with heating element at top
« on: June 26, 2006, 11:56:11 AM »
I am a new member.

I recently purchased an electric convection oven which has the heating element and the broiler at the top. Due to the placement of the heating element, the top of my pizzas are getting done before the bottom which is not very brown. I cooked the pizzas on a screen which lays on top of a half inch pizza stone. The oven gets up to 525 degrees. There are 4 different levels for the oven rack to be placed and the convection fan is centered  at the back wall. I would appreciate any advice given.


Offline scott r

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Re: Covection oven with heating element at top
« Reply #1 on: June 26, 2006, 12:15:27 PM »
I would definitely do a long preheat of the stone in there until all temps reach an equilibrium.  Keep your stone on the bottom rack, and get rid of the screen.  If this still does not work try turning off the oven a few minutes into the pie.  The stone will stay very hot and continue to cook your pizza.


Good luck on your pizza quest and don't give up!  You will get this worked out with trial and error.

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: Covection oven with heating element at top
« Reply #2 on: June 26, 2006, 12:56:00 PM »
barrelli,

I tend to agree with scott and would dispense with the screen, at least until you learn your oven better. The screen will just space your pie from the heat of the stone and prevent the bottom from browning sooner. I recall that at least one of our members has previously used both a screen and stone in a convection oven, so it is at least theoretically possible to do, although I don't recall the particular details where both the screen and stone were used.

I don't have much personal experience with convection ovens but I understand that they cook faster and often at higher oven temperatures than non-convection ovens. To succeed with making pizzas in your particular oven, it will help to master the oven's thermodynamics. The pizza will also have its own thermodynamics characteristics by virtue of its size, dough thickness, and the types and amounts of sauce, cheeses and toppings used. The oven's thermodynamics and the pizza's thermodynamics will have to be compatible to get optimum results.

In your case, you might want to try placing another stone above the one you are now using to serve as a barrier between your top heat source and the pizza. To test out the concept, you might try using inexpensive unglazed quarry tiles instead of the second stone before deciding to buy the second stone. You may also want to try a lower oven temperature and a longer bake time to see if that will help balance out the top and bottom bake. You most likely will also have to do some experimenting with the two oven rack positions you decide to use. If you decide to use two stones or stone/tile combination, you will need to allow for a longer preheat time to get the stones/tiles up to temperature.

My recollection is that some of our members, including Lydia, use convection ovens, and hopefully they can offer some guidance that may help you with your particular brand and design of convection oven.

Peter

Offline Lydia

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Re: Covection oven with heating element at top
« Reply #3 on: June 26, 2006, 09:01:10 PM »
First I'm wondering if you had baked this pizza in your previous oven with good results?

My oven is an electric oven which allows me to choose the convection cycle. I have an element on both top and bottom. It's wall mounted so It's capacity is a bit smaller than the average. 500F being is the highest temperature setting but I haven't verified its true temperature yet, but it bakes as I would expect it too at that temperature.

With the convection cycle, I was baking my pizzas directly on a stone that was preheated 45 minutes to 1 hour.  My toppings were baking well before average and well before the crust bottom. Placing the stone on the lowest level didn't prove to make that much difference. The lowest rack level is just under 2 inches (1 3/4 inch) from the element.

Something else though. The stone also didn't seem to be heating properly with this cycle. I still don't get it  ???

Beyond what's already been mentioned, all I can think to do is to create a barrier to defer the hot circulating air by covering the top of your pizza with silicone treated foil (Reynolds non-stick aluminum foil) and increase the bake time. Then just before your ideal bottom crust color is achieved, uncover if you would like to develop some browning of the cheese or to crisp the toppings.

I always have to be careful with that Reynolds stuff to make sure I have the non-stick side down. I've used this foil with enchiladas and lasagna with excellent results. I even accidently pressed the foil right into the hot melted cheese and it still didn't stick. I haven't tried it on pizza, but I would if convection was the only option for my particular oven.

Would the screen without the stone allow more air circulation to the bottom to crisp it up.

I dont use screens  :-\
The roundest knight at King Arthur's round table was Sir Cumference.They say he acquired his size from eating too much pi.

Offline Lydia

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Re: Covection oven with heating element at top
« Reply #4 on: June 26, 2006, 10:10:54 PM »
barrelli,

Just in-case, here is a link where someone just posted having some good results with one of Randy's recipes. He also had similar convection oven troubles and his is gas/convection.

http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,3268.msg27689.html#msg27689


The roundest knight at King Arthur's round table was Sir Cumference.They say he acquired his size from eating too much pi.