Author Topic: I'm getting closer. Hybrid method.  (Read 2832 times)

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Offline jasonmolinari

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I'm getting closer. Hybrid method.
« on: July 23, 2007, 12:44:53 PM »
I think i'm coming close to decent neopolitan pizza at home. I used a hybrid method. Cooked initially on the grill on a stone preheated to 700 deg. (infrared thermometer reading of stone), for about 2.5 minutes, then finished for about 30-45 seconds in the broiler to get the top crust browned. Very delicious. Much better than either grill/stone or oven/stone alone.

The bottom could have used another 30 seconds.

Was also a little heavy on the cheese.


Offline vitus

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Re: I'm getting closer. Hybrid method.
« Reply #1 on: July 23, 2007, 04:01:02 PM »
Looks very nice indeed! Good work!  :chef:

A thought: Do you think that you could get the broiler effect (heat from above) by putting a lid on the grill?
I am probably going to make pizza on a grill/stone myself in a few days, and I plan on putting a lid on the grill in the end to get the top browned as you describe. It's a dome shaped grill by the way.

Offline jasonmolinari

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Re: I'm getting closer. Hybrid method.
« Reply #2 on: July 23, 2007, 04:06:32 PM »
The list was on the grill. Problem is, if you let the stone get hot enough to give it a nice char on the bottom, the top isn't properly cooked by the time the bottom is ready. If you don't get the stone hot enough, you have equally cooked pizza (top and bottom), but with no charring anywhere, and it takes about 5 minutes.

Offline vitus

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Re: I'm getting closer. Hybrid method.
« Reply #3 on: July 23, 2007, 04:19:12 PM »
Sorry if I'm a little slow here. English is not my first language, so please bear with me.  :-[

Are you basically saying that even with a lid on a dome grill, the pizza doesn't get nearly as much heat from above as it would from an oven broiler?
Because I would have guessed that quite a lot of heat would be reflected back when you put a lid on the grill.

Offline jasonmolinari

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Re: I'm getting closer. Hybrid method.
« Reply #4 on: July 23, 2007, 04:21:12 PM »
Vitus, that is exactly what i'm saying. At least with my grill. Yours may be different.
The oven broiler method puts the pizza about 1"/2.5cm or less away from a red hot electric element. It is blazingly hot.

Offline vitus

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Re: I'm getting closer. Hybrid method.
« Reply #5 on: July 23, 2007, 04:27:11 PM »
I see your point. That makes sense, I guess.  :)

If I get the chance when I'm making pizza on the grill, I'll make a couple of experiments - including finishing a pizza under the broiler as you suggest. If some of my pizzas turn out half as good as yours look, I'll be absolutely ecstatic!  ;)

Offline LPcreation

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Re: I'm getting closer. Hybrid method.
« Reply #6 on: July 25, 2007, 10:13:46 AM »
I can get good charring on top and bottom with my grill.  I found the key was to not let the stone get too much hotter than the grill is capable of stustaining.

Here's my method in a nutshell.

1. Aluminum foil, shiny side down on grill.  Leave room for air about 2 inches from grill edges so the heat can escape to top of grill.

2. Place large cast iron skillet on foil.
3. Place stone on skillet.

I let it heat up for about a half hour with all my burners on high....this will get the internal temp to around 750-800 degrees.

Then I open the grill and make the pizza.  This will cool the stone down to around 650 degrees.  Then I close the lid and let heat for another 5-10 minutes which will get my stone up to around 700 degrees and the air in the grill around 650-700 degrees.  The key to have a helper open and close the lid quickly when you put the pizza on so you don't lose much heat in the air surrounding the stone.

I also will adjust my burners so I don't ever let the stone get too much about 750 degrees as I can't get the air hot enough to keep up.

It's takes me about 3 1/2 minutes to cook a pie.

Offline scottfsmith

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Re: I'm getting closer. Hybrid method.
« Reply #7 on: July 26, 2007, 10:55:13 PM »
LP, you have some very good points there.  I think we are following a similar philosophy.  Let me try to rephrase to see if you agree.  The key is obviously to have the stone-to-air temperature ratio to be just right so the top-to-bottom cooking is even (plus all very hot of course!).  This is difficult to achieve because the stone has a tendency to keep heating more and more since it is closer to the fire, and to get ahead of the air temp.  But there is a point during the heat-up when the stone and air about match, because the stone takes a long time to heat up and so at some point the stone temp just catches up with the air.  If you throw the pie on at that equilibrium point, and maintain it through each successive pie (perhaps by lowering the burners a bit at points to cool the stone down), you have perfect pizzas.  On top of this, anything that can be done to insulate the stone and to provide radiant heat from above also helps by balancing out the temps (aluminum under stone, raising stone, bricks above pizza to radiate heat down).  This will increase the size of this "sweet spot", making it easier to hit consistently.

Right now I am using a huge brick right above the pizza and am raising the stone off the grill with bricks.  It was taking too long for the stone to heat up with foil so I stopped using it for now.   I have found the temperature doesn't dip for too long when the grill is opened, as long as I only open it just enough to slide the pizza in -- my thermoprobe shows the temperature recovers in 30 seconds.  The pizzas are coming out pretty good but are not yet consistently good; I am hitting about 2 minutes cooking time per pizza.

Jason, your idea sounds a lot more sure-fire, but less authentic.  If it makes a great pizza, thats what counts.

Scott

Offline LPcreation

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Re: I'm getting closer. Hybrid method.
« Reply #8 on: August 03, 2007, 10:22:15 AM »
That sounds right on Scott.  I have a question for you though.  What kind of brick are you using?  I'm getting tired of having to re-season my skillet everytime I use it.

Thanks!

Offline scottfsmith

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Re: I'm getting closer. Hybrid method.
« Reply #9 on: August 03, 2007, 11:13:39 PM »
That sounds right on Scott.  I have a question for you though.  What kind of brick are you using?  I'm getting tired of having to re-season my skillet everytime I use it.

I had some random concrete bricks from our walkway that I was using.  Recently I have been stacking dinner plates instead, two currently.  This lets me vary the height.  I was concerned that the heat might damage the plates but they haven't shown any wear so far.

..I recently got an IR thermometer so I will be able to accurately monitor the heat of the stone.  The one problem I am still having is the right and left sides are getting a bit burnt; I think the heat from the flame is "curling" around the edge there.  It may be necessary for me to put a 1" wall of something around the sides to keep that from happening.

Scott


Offline jasonmolinari

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Re: I'm getting closer. Hybrid method.
« Reply #10 on: September 23, 2007, 07:16:44 PM »
LAtest attempt with the hybrid method. 65% hydration dough using a starter from a local restaurant. Cooked at 750 on the stone on grill to get bottom char, finished for 30-40 seconds under broiler. Flavor of dough was very good, but could have used a few more hours at room temp to develop.



 

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