Author Topic: Advice Please on Using Deni Clone  (Read 2682 times)

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Offline Verace

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Advice Please on Using Deni Clone
« on: June 15, 2008, 01:10:28 PM »

Here's the 'Executive Summary' of the problem: The bottom browns but the top is still undercooked.

The Deni clone that I have is the Salton Pizza Chef and appears to be the same one that forum User jasonmolinari has.  I already did the thermostat modification as detailed in the Home Ovens thread called 'Modifying a Deni 2100' 

I made the Johns recipe that uses a combination of all-purpose flour and cake flour at 62% hydration.  After a two day fridge retardation and a 2 hour warm-up I heated the unit to 750 F. and slid the pizza onto the stone.

After about 3 to 3 1/2 minutes the bottom was cooked with some spotted brown bits, although no charred spots.  The top was quite pale and had an almost undercooked taste.

I checked the top element with an infrared thermometer and it is working although it doesn't heat up as fiercely as the bottom element.  I also put an ohmmeter on the top element and it reads about 18 ohms. 

Is 18 ohms about right?  Or is it just a case of raising the temperature to 800 or 850 before placing the pie?  Or?

Any suggestions appreciated!


Offline Villa Roma

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Re: Advice Please on Using Deni Clone
« Reply #1 on: June 15, 2008, 01:24:32 PM »
There's a couple of tricks I found to make good pizza in the Deni.

Preheat to 750 degrees and then load the pizza. Give the thermostat 1/4 turn CW. This will turn on both elements and the top will get browned. You may have to turn the pizza a few times during the bake to prevent burning. Turn the thermostat back 1/4 turn CCW when the pizza is done. Let the oven cool for a few minutes and repeat the process for the next pizza.

Go light on the toppings. If you use too many high moisture toppings the moisture will get trapped in the top and basically result in a steamed pizza. The other alternative is to quickly lift the top several times to allow the steam to escape. Watch out as the steam is hot!

Here's a few I made in my Deni.

    Good Luck, Villa Roma
« Last Edit: June 15, 2008, 02:10:06 PM by Villa Roma »

Offline Verace

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Re: Advice Please on Using Deni Clone
« Reply #2 on: June 19, 2008, 05:37:52 PM »
Many thanks for the suggestions, Villa Roma.

Attached are a couple of shots of a 'test' pizza that I made today - just tomato sauce and a few sprinklings of mozz to test out the oven. 

As you suggested top browning improves when the top element is forced on by turning the thermostat knob slightly cw.  I heated the Deni clone to just shy of 800 F. and quickly placed the pizza.  To let excess steam escape, I lifted the lid slightly at 90 seconds and again at 2 minutes.  After 3 minutes plus, the top was still blonde, so I slid a screen under the pizza and gave it another 30 seconds.  You can see in the photos that the top crust has started to brown.

Next time I might try brushing a thin coast of olive oil on the rim to kick the browning up a notch.

Thanks again for your insight, Villa Roma.


Offline Mahoney

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Re: Advice Please on Using Deni Clone
« Reply #3 on: August 03, 2008, 11:06:14 PM »
Just in case you are interested in modding a Deni Bella, I have just listed a new unused Deni Bella Model 2100 on ebay today.

Offline jasonmolinari

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Re: Advice Please on Using Deni Clone
« Reply #4 on: August 06, 2008, 12:47:43 PM »
Unfortunately, i've come to the conclusion that the modified Deni is OK,but not great for pizza.
The problem is that even if you preheat it for a long time, and get it to 750-800 deg, all that heat is lost when you open it to put the pizza in. The bottom stone stays night and hot, and so the bottom chars nicely, but the top isn't exposed to the super hot air as the hot air is lost.

I still use it, as it does as good to slightly better job than a regular oven and preheats in 15 minutes instead of 2 hours heating the house..but it isn't the solution to our oven woes. (In my opinion).