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Author Topic: Steel on oven floor safety  (Read 355 times)

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Offline zare111

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Steel on oven floor safety
« on: January 03, 2023, 01:35:20 PM »
Iím trying to figure out how to get the best bake (for NY-style) in the broiler-less, 500F-max oven in my current apartment. Putting my steel on a rack up near the top isnít really working since there is no heating element up there, the top of the pie takes too long to finish. I want to experiment with it on the floor of the oven, or rather on the sort of trayómade out of the same aluminum (i think?) as the rest of the oven insideóthat covers the heat vent on the floor. As far as I can tell, the steel will not impede the airflow out from the sides of this tray. Are there any other safety concerns I havent considered with such a setup? Ive put baking sheets and other stuff on this floor panel before without incident but nothing nearly so heavy or conductive as my steel.

Offline TXCraig1

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Re: Steel on oven floor safety
« Reply #1 on: January 03, 2023, 01:41:45 PM »
Baking as close to the top should be your best solution even with no upper element. That's how I do it and I don't ever use the broiler.

The intensity of the IR heat - which is largely what bakes the top of the pie falls off exponentially as you get lower in the oven. If you're having difficulty at the top of the oven, my guess it it will just get worse as you go lower. Probably a lot worse.
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Offline zare111

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Re: Steel on oven floor safety
« Reply #2 on: January 03, 2023, 01:57:17 PM »
Thanks. Any suggestions on improving the bake short of fiddling with the ovenís calibration? I mean, this was the best I could do with the steel up near the top. 11 minutes, not great.

Offline TXCraig1

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Re: Steel on oven floor safety
« Reply #3 on: January 03, 2023, 02:39:50 PM »
What flour are you using?
"We make great pizza, with sourdough when we can, baker's yeast when we must, but always great pizza."  
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Offline zare111

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Re: Steel on oven floor safety
« Reply #4 on: January 03, 2023, 03:07:21 PM »
What flour are you using?

I think this batch was 80% KABF and 20% their ďwhite whole wheat.Ē The organic ones if that matters. I know i could get more browning by adding sugar but Iím avoiding it at the moment. Naturally leavened, not refrigerated. 65% water i believe. Oven spring wasÖ ok

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Offline Pizza_Not_War

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Re: Steel on oven floor safety
« Reply #5 on: January 03, 2023, 06:55:12 PM »
I think you are okay from safety point of view. I did a bottom steel test and my steel hit 800f+ and incinerated the pizza bottom in less than a minute. I use top shelf or one down from top.


Offline TXCraig1

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Re: Steel on oven floor safety
« Reply #6 on: January 03, 2023, 07:32:45 PM »
I'd ditch the white whole wheat and use all KABF - maybe add some low diastatic malt powder too (LDMP). If you keep the WHW, I'd definitely add some LDMP.
"We make great pizza, with sourdough when we can, baker's yeast when we must, but always great pizza."  
Craig's Neapolitan Garage

Offline zare111

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Re: Steel on oven floor safety
« Reply #7 on: January 03, 2023, 08:19:35 PM »
Thank you for the tips! Iíll have to source some LDMP and try it. Iíve experimenting with natural leavening for the first time. (Your scholarship on that discipline has been invaluable, Craig, so thank you for your years of posts here.) Somehow I got it in my head that some portion of whole grain flour will enhance the fermentation and flavor of sourdough, though I wish I could access something more local and/or freshly milled. I think i really just need a hotter oven! Might be time to invest in an Ooni or the like.

Offline Yuvalvv

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Re: Steel on oven floor safety
« Reply #8 on: January 05, 2023, 08:33:28 AM »
I would suggest checking your oven's manual (if you have it).
Mine says: "Do not place ovenware on the cooking compartment floor if a temperature of over 50C (120f) has been set. This will cause heat to accumulate. The baking and roasting times will no longer be correct and the enamel will be damaged".

So based on that, I would advice against putting anything, particularly a steel, directly on the floor.

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