Author Topic: Reverse engineered coal fired brick oven  (Read 193479 times)

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Offline dzpiez

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Re: Reverse engineered coal fired brick oven
« Reply #650 on: April 13, 2008, 03:06:36 AM »
Willard,
Got my oven yesterday, and broke it in a few hrs. ago.  I must say it was the best pies I every made.  I used 100% Caputo pizzeria flour, got the oven up alittle over 1000, then brought it down to about 875 degrees to bake.  YOU are the man Willard.  Thanks.
Dave


Offline Pizza_Not_War

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Re: Reverse engineered coal fired brick oven
« Reply #651 on: April 13, 2008, 01:10:45 PM »
Four on Four pick-up game shootout on the 2stone

I compared 4 Varasano styled (5 day ferment) vs. a 24 hour Bill/SFNM Camaldoli Caputo method. Baking temps were between 775 - 825. 90 seconds - 2 minutes cook times for all.

League blackout rules prevented me from taking pictures (actually hungry people nixed the photo shoot).

First off, the 5 day dough was much softer and harder to work. The 24 hour dough was simple to form and pick up for the move to the peel. Crust was similar in taste, better overall on the 24 hour dough.

I did a Bianco Rosa styled pizza with Hickory smoked red onion, pine nuts, olive oil, rosemary & a sprinkle after baking of Parm Reggiano. Awesome flavor - crust really shines on this pizza - my hands down favorite. Also did some pepperoni, 6-in-1 pizza with Cantare mozz, some plain olive oil/salt pizza & some precious mozz - 6-in-1 pizza for the kids.

The 24 hour dough was a 68 degrees overnight and then moved to basement 64 degrees for the last 8 hours. Seemed like it was rising too fast at 68. I did stick it in the refrigerator for an hour towards the end to slow it down. The use of IDY in Varasano based recipe is not really needed with an active starter and I will be leaving the IDY in the refrigerator for all future pizza baking.

Offline FVG

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Re: Reverse engineered coal fired brick oven
« Reply #652 on: April 13, 2008, 05:13:41 PM »
My Recipes for Caputo 00 Flour on the 2Stone Grill:





Online Pete-zza

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Re: Reverse engineered coal fired brick oven
« Reply #653 on: April 13, 2008, 05:25:22 PM »
FVG,

I believe that the percents for salt and yeast in the first formulation should be 4% and 0.6%, respectively, and that the salt and yeast in the second formulation should be 4% and 0.4%, respectively. I am sure the members will find your table helpful for making multiple dough balls.

Peter

Offline 2stone

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Re: Reverse engineered coal fired brick oven
« Reply #654 on: April 13, 2008, 09:26:31 PM »
dzpiez,

Great to hear your up and running and got it going on.....875!! thats hot  >:D

If I remember... your one of those lucky fellows basking in the southern cal sun!!
We actually had a little more snow this weekend. (sun in the forecast) 


Pizza Not War,

Even without pictures your description: I did a Bianco Rosa styled pizza with Hickory smoked red onion, pine nuts, olive oil, rosemary & a sprinkle after baking of Parm Reggiano. Awesome flavor - crust really shines on this pizza. - my hands down favorite. was tantalizing enough to inspire me to try it out.

willard
 

thanks for the
tips and recipes

Pete,
very cool and
creative "pete-zza box"

Offline Pizza_Not_War

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Re: Reverse engineered coal fired brick oven
« Reply #655 on: April 13, 2008, 10:54:49 PM »

Pizza Not War,

Even without pictures your description: I did a Bianco Rosa styled pizza with Hickory smoked red onion, pine nuts, olive oil, rosemary & a sprinkle after baking of Parm Reggiano. Awesome flavor - crust really shines on this pizza. - my hands down favorite. was tantalizing enough to inspire me to try it out.

willard
 

Willard,

I forgot to mention that I made a change to the setup that seems to have really helped the results on my temperature control.

I bought a can of Rustoleum High temperature WHITE spray paint and painted the grill skirts WHITE. When you think about it, you really don't want the skirts to absorb heat - you want them to reflect heat (I would have done silver, but they did not have any left). I could have just wrapped them in foil, but that seemed less than elegant to me. I think I got a few minutes faster warm up and I was able to maintain a pretty high temp throughout an 8 pizza bake, twice my normal batch.

btw - the lack of loads of cheese on the Bianco style really cut down somewhat on the calories & fat intake, it also lets you know just how good the crust tastes. Going to try it with the Pistachio next time.

PNW

Offline dzpiez

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Re: Reverse engineered coal fired brick oven
« Reply #656 on: April 14, 2008, 01:02:07 AM »
Yeah Willard, it was 95 yesterday, and 97 today.  So even at 7:00 pm when I fired it up it was still in the low 90's.   Thanks again and I'll be lookin' into the cart soon.
Dave

Offline 2stone

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Re: Reverse engineered coal fired brick oven
« Reply #657 on: April 16, 2008, 08:30:51 AM »
"Fundamental tips & tricks" continued



6. Dough handling / dividing / containers

Use little or no bench flour.  Carefully fold under and tuck up the individual dough ball in a circular motion until it develops a tight feel. Place the dough ball in the oiled container with the bottom facing up. Use larger diameter round containers. This helps preserves the integrity of the final dough structure and you will have less stretching to do.

Even though your dough ball doesn’t look as pretty upside down, it will expand and blossom on the top during proofing leaving you with a consistent skin with less chances of tearing. 



7. Final dough handling / shaping

This is where you find out if you got it right, if you did it’s a breeze. If you didn’t there’s no turning back, no fixing it. (Better luck on the next batch)

The good news with the 2stone (or another high heat apparatus) is that hydration levels are not as important regarding the final texture and crust quality. At 700-800F just about anything you put in the oven will have good oven spring.

Offline Bill/SFNM

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Re: Reverse engineered coal fired brick oven
« Reply #658 on: April 16, 2008, 09:33:21 AM »
Willard,

Your list of instructions are great. Should be required reading for all pizza makers.

Bill/SFNM
Sometimes I use big words that I don’t fully understand in an effort to make myself sound more photosynthesis. - @itjenlawrence


Offline LabRat

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Re: Reverse engineered coal fired brick oven
« Reply #659 on: April 16, 2008, 09:40:19 AM »
The oven arrived late Monday night and I made my first pizza in it last night :chef:!  I defiantly need to do some tweaking on the technique and also the dough recipe (Lehmann's NY style from PMQ).  The skins were difficult to form as they were prone to tearing and the bottom of the pizza got a little burned before the top was done (stone temp ~850 degrees).  Tonight is take two!  Hopefully I can learn from yesterday and make improvements!

Offline WestCountry

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Re: Reverse engineered coal fired brick oven
« Reply #660 on: April 16, 2008, 10:45:48 PM »
Willard,
I agree with Bill/SFNM. Thank You for taking the time to put together some really helpful instruction. And THANKS for everyone else here in the forum adding their great input and ideas.

-Chris  ;D

Offline 2stone

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Re: Reverse engineered coal fired brick oven
« Reply #661 on: April 17, 2008, 09:16:54 AM »
"Fundamental Tips & Tricks" continued



8. Topping procedures


Less is more………... (What can I say…it’s simple but it’s true) Try cutting down on everything. You will be surprised at how much better your pizza will taste. It will bring out the subtle flavors of the crust that you have worked so hard to perfect.
Whether you sauté, roast, grill, or sun dry your toppings, get the excess moisture out of them. Not only are you avoiding a soupy pizza, but by doing so you add flavor to them. Put your cheese on in cubes or chunks, fresh mozzarella is better if you dry it out.     
 
When baking at 700-800 it is easy to scorch sensitive thin toppings such as grated cheese or fresh basil. Sprinkling olive oil on before baking adds flavor and can also help protect sensitive toppings. Otherwise it is better to put some toppings on after the bake to preserve their subtle delicate qualities from the scorching heat.


thanks, Bill and Chris
FVG thanks for the detailed Caputo recipe

LabRat, 750F is a good place to start, if you are having burning issues.
« Last Edit: April 17, 2008, 09:38:53 PM by 2stone »

Offline canadianbacon

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Re: Reverse engineered coal fired brick oven
« Reply #662 on: April 17, 2008, 10:35:43 AM »
Hi Willard,

My deck is clear of snow now..... I can almost smell the pizza baking in my new 2Stone pizza oven !

I don't know what I'll do, - should I try my gas grill that goes up to 600 degrees, or should I use my weber
bbq smoker which I can also use as a bbq and try that to do my first pizza ? hmm...

I wonder if charcoal will have a higher temp than my gas grill.... what do you think Willard ?

Anyway, I think I'll have a good summer practicing both ways, and seeing which is better, that's really the only
way to tell, and it's fun eating the experiments !  :P
Pizzamaker, Rib Smoker, HomeBrewer, there's not enough time for a real job.

Offline 2stone

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Re: Reverse engineered coal fired brick oven
« Reply #663 on: April 17, 2008, 11:16:44 AM »
Hi there Mark,

Funny thing I just sold a 15" 2stone PG to a guy with a small natural gas grill. I was worried since he wasn't even able to close the door on his grill because it was too small. He said he could really get his grill hot (it was a 36000 BTU Weber) I heard from him later and he said it was working like a charm.

First thing I would do is try to tweak your grill (Natural gas has all the muscle you need if you just figure out how to harness it properly.)

Now I have never tried this directly.....so maybe you could be the trailblazer.
I have added a charcoal starter full of burning lump coal under the gas burner on tests I was doing on the pizza pro. To make a long story short everything got so hot it all started to warp and twist along with burning off the handle on the charcoal starter that I scrapped the idea. I have the space under the burner on the pizza pro so a smaller version of the charcoal starter can be inserted with some wood chips to add wood flavor.

So I see no reason why you couldn't insert a cheap charcoal grate over your flames under your existing grate and put a few lump coal chunks on for added heat and flavor. This could potentially give you the best of both worlds and would certainly give you enough heat. It would be a lot simpler than burning straight charcoal and would still give you the ability to dial up and down with the gas to fine tune things.

I would be very surprised if it didn't work. Just make sure you use lump coal not reg charcoal, since charcoal has to burn off some gases before you can use it. (or if you use charcoal make sure you burn it down and check to make sure your stones aren't picking up any of the residue) Also place the coal so it doesn't restrict the flames from coming through.

If it works it would be a great solution for anyone with a gas grill with temp issues.

regards,
willard


Offline 2stone

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Re: Reverse engineered coal fired brick oven
« Reply #664 on: April 17, 2008, 09:01:46 PM »
"Fundamental tips & tricks" continued



9. Prep area & Peel tips & tricks

If you have a granite counter top you are definitely in business. Along with a nice smooth surface the thick stone mass is also a room temperature “heat sink” Lay your cold dough on the thick stone surface and with your IR gun you can almost watch it come to room temperature within minutes. Don’t despair if you have wooden or Formica counter tops. For a few bucks you can get a 20 X 20 ceramic tile that will do the same and give you a nice stone work surface for your prep area. (or for a few a extra bucks get a marble tile)

Use two wooden peels to build your pizza. Build your pizza on the larger one and just before you are ready to load the oven, transfer the pizza over to the freshly floured smaller peel. For the first few seconds the pizza will slide off incredible easy, and you won’t be disappointed by a misshaped / deformed pizza. An 8”spatula works great for tending and unloading the pizza.

This may seem difficult at first, but with a little practice it becomes second nature. Nothing is more disappointing than loosing a great pizza at this stage, so with a little practice back and forth between two peels, you won’t have to deal with any bad accidents. When dealing with 700-800 F temps cornmeal and semolina tend to burn. I use flour only, but I have seen others use a blend of flour and semolina on their peels with good results.

Offline canadianbacon

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Re: Reverse engineered coal fired brick oven
« Reply #665 on: April 17, 2008, 10:07:56 PM »
Hi Willard,

I think you have the perfect idea there !

It's funny you mention this, because I know a bbq guy that uses his gas grill as a charcoal grill.  He had mentioned he
uses a special charcoal tray in his BBQ, and just uses the gas to heat up the charcoal, ignite the charcoal, and then he turns the
burners off.

However, now I see where you are going with this, and this is very interesting Willard.  Sounds like a good test
if you ask me !

I thinking I could just use an old retangular pizza tray and that would do the trick. 

I'll report back with results when I do some pizzas ( with images )

Thanks for the info Willard.


Hi there Mark,

Funny thing I just sold a 15" 2stone PG to a guy with a small natural gas grill. I was worried since he wasn't even able to close the door on his grill because it was too small. He said he could really get his grill hot (it was a 36000 BTU Weber) I heard from him later and he said it was working like a charm.

First thing I would do is try to tweak your grill (Natural gas has all the muscle you need if you just figure out how to harness it properly.)

Now I have never tried this directly.....so maybe you could be the trailblazer.
I have added a charcoal starter full of burning lump coal under the gas burner on tests I was doing on the pizza pro. To make a long story short everything got so hot it all started to warp and twist along with burning off the handle on the charcoal starter that I scrapped the idea. I have the space under the burner on the pizza pro so a smaller version of the charcoal starter can be inserted with some wood chips to add wood flavor.

So I see no reason why you couldn't insert a cheap charcoal grate over your flames under your existing grate and put a few lump coal chunks on for added heat and flavor. This could potentially give you the best of both worlds and would certainly give you enough heat. It would be a lot simpler than burning straight charcoal and would still give you the ability to dial up and down with the gas to fine tune things.

I would be very surprised if it didn't work. Just make sure you use lump coal not reg charcoal, since charcoal has to burn off some gases before you can use it. (or if you use charcoal make sure you burn it down and check to make sure your stones aren't picking up any of the residue) Also place the coal so it doesn't restrict the flames from coming through.

If it works it would be a great solution for anyone with a gas grill with temp issues.

regards,
willard


Pizzamaker, Rib Smoker, HomeBrewer, there's not enough time for a real job.

Offline 2stone

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Re: Reverse engineered coal fired brick oven
« Reply #666 on: April 18, 2008, 08:47:34 PM »
Hey Mark,

You get the idea, but I would probably go for an open grate for the charcoal,
so the flames and the gas heat come through the grate. That way you are really
sure to get some serious heat.

willard


Here is a pie I did tonight.
80% high gluten 20% whole wheat.
mozzarella provolone shredded mix.
the cheese only works when it is smothered,
in this case pepperoni and thin sliced tomatoes.
Baked in the 2stone Pizza Pro at 700F / 3-4 min
« Last Edit: April 18, 2008, 08:51:10 PM by 2stone »


Offline pwaldman

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Re: Reverse engineered coal fired brick oven
« Reply #667 on: April 19, 2008, 05:00:22 PM »
I couldn't stand it anymore and after a couple of emails with Willard I took the plunge and ordered the 15.5 2 Stone and the great looking cart!  I need to get new peels now that I will be moving away from 16" pies in my kitchen oven.  Anyone know how wide the opening is for the 15.5 oven?  I want to be able to deposit up to a 14" pie with a little "wiggle room" on the peel; hoping that 16" wide peel will just fit!

Pete

Offline 2stone

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Re: Reverse engineered coal fired brick oven
« Reply #668 on: April 19, 2008, 09:38:47 PM »
hey Pete,

You got about  a 1/2" (that is on a 14" peel) I know it doesn't sound like much, but the
opening is all about keeping the heat inn also, so we don't waste anything!

willard

Offline pwaldman

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Re: Reverse engineered coal fired brick oven
« Reply #669 on: April 19, 2008, 10:16:52 PM »
Thanks Willard.  I'll need to practice my aim!

Pete

Offline Pizza_Not_War

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Re: Reverse engineered coal fired brick oven
« Reply #670 on: April 20, 2008, 01:54:59 PM »
One Month review:

I have had the 15 inch pizza grill for a little over 1 month. I also recently spent $100 to create a LBE clone using a Masterbuilt 7-in-1 smoker. I did a comparison and hands down the 2stone is easier to use and makes a better pizza. I am sure that if I tinkered around with the LBE clone I could develop a system and timing to compete with the 2stone, but why bother? I now use the Masterbuilt ($85 online steal price) for grilling chicken, while my Weber is left set up for pizza only. Frankly the $85 Masterbuilt kills the Weber Genesis on grilling chicken. Using the same Thai based recipe, the chicken came out much moister and with a better smoke flavor than I could ever do on the Weber.

Now for the 2stone - I can cook a great pizza from 650 - 825 degrees. I have yet to burn one. I pretty much have got the slide off the peel down, except of course yesterday I was so cocky that I screwed up 75% of them, still edible - not pretty. My pizza came out perfect (50-50 KABF/CAPUTO). I wish I could have taken a picture, my wife's pepperoni pizza got very close to the top stone when putting it in the oven. After I set it down I noticed that all the pepperoni was stuck to the top stone by its edges, just kind of dangling from the top. I was able to release them from anti gravity and they cooked nicely.

My complaints - a bit hard with a bad back to tend to the device and see what is going on. Burning hands on Weber handle is still a *#$(%# if you take the gloves off, NEVER take the gloves off. Would love to have a way to bake bread with the 2stone. I have done just about everything possible to get higher than 825 degrees, does not seem possible with my setup. Not sure that it ultimately matters but it is my "Quest for fire" to keep at it.

All in all eventually would like to have a true pizza oven - gas or wood or combo - Send me one Willard!


Seems like anyone wanting to move up from the kitchen oven would do well with the 2stone. Light and crispy crusts with great oven spring.

Offline 2stone

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Re: Reverse engineered coal fired brick oven
« Reply #671 on: April 21, 2008, 12:43:57 PM »
PNW,

The "BAD BACK" issue is a bad thing! I would highly recommend
that you find a good out door high chair. It improves the overall
experience drastically. I too cannot stand hunched over too long
without dire consequences.

I'm looking for a good solution to the hot
handle issue. I'll let you know. 

willard

Offline Pizza_Not_War

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Re: Reverse engineered coal fired brick oven
« Reply #672 on: April 21, 2008, 02:51:12 PM »
PNW,

The "BAD BACK" issue is a bad thing! I would highly recommend
that you find a good out door high chair. It improves the overall
experience drastically. I too cannot stand hunched over too long
without dire consequences.

I'm looking for a good solution to the hot
handle issue. I'll let you know. 

willard

So far Willard I have been kneeling like Sir Lancealot in the presence of King Richard the Lionheart! Very uncomfortable, will look for a chair.

How about something like http://www.woodstove-outlet.com/gasket1.htm wrapped around the handle. I have no idea if it would work, just figured it would beat the heat.

PNW - Sir Lancealot

Offline dzpiez

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Re: Reverse engineered coal fired brick oven
« Reply #673 on: April 21, 2008, 10:27:48 PM »
Still need to play with the temp., but it ended up being the best pie I ever made.  100% Caputo.

Offline 2stone

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Re: Reverse engineered coal fired brick oven
« Reply #674 on: April 22, 2008, 09:12:08 AM »
dzpiez,

Great looking pie!! was that 720 or 920 on the IR gun?
Boy...... you are straining my eyes!.........but then again,
maybe you are trying to make up for all the large files I post.

willard