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  #1 (permalink)   Report Post  
Old 19-08-2005, 05:26 PM
Randall Nortman
 
Posts: n/a
Default The old quarry tile safety debate, and FibraMent vs. cordierite

[Crossposted to rec.food.equipment and rec.food.baking; followups
redirected to rec.food.equipment only.]

Yes, I've searched newsgroup archives, yes I've read all the arguments
that unglazed quarry tiles are safe, and yes I've been baking directly
on them for years and I'm still alive. But the time has come for my
wife and I to see if we can pass our genes on to the next generation,
and so we're being intentionally paranoid about food safety issues.
From what I've read, the argument that they're safe seems to be that
there's no evidence that they're not safe, and nobody has died or
gotten sick or lost IQ points because of them (as far as we know), so
there are more important things to worry about: they're innocent until
proven guilty.

My quarry tiles are dark red-orange in color. Red to me means most
likely iron, but perhaps cadmium. And who knows what else is in
there. Maybe lead, maybe not. Maybe whatever's in there won't
transfer to the bread anyway, but then I do bake mostly sourdough,
which is a bit acidic. I don't know the origin of the clay used to
make my tiles -- maybe it was Mexico or China, where perhaps the
regulations about lead and heavy metals are a bit more lax. That's
enough maybes for me that, being intentionally paranoid, I'm going to
take a "guilty until proven innocent" stance. Unless anybody can
point me to a supplier of tiles who will actually vouch for the
composition of their product, down to trace elements in the
single-digit ppm (parts per million) range, or else another reliable
source of evidence that they're safe, I'm going to replace my trusty
old quarry tiles with something NSF or FDA approved.

FLAME-RETARDANT DISCLAIMER: I'm not saying that quarry tiles aren't
safe -- I believe they probably are, and have no evidence to the
contrary -- but I'm just being paranoid. I don't encourage anybody
else to throw away their quarry tiles and buy an expensive baking
stone. If anybody can actually provide evidence to prove the
innocence of quarry tiles, I would be truly grateful, because they
work well and are cheap.

So on to what to replace it with -- there seem to be two contenders
for the home baker: the commonly available cordierite "pizza stones",
and the FibraMent stone from AWMCO (www.bakingstone.com). The former
is half the price, but the largest size I can find is 14"x16" --
that's not enough room for two boules, and barely enough room for a
moderate size pizza. I really need to completely cover my rack except
for a little room for air flow -- which makes 16"x20.5" the ideal
size. The FibraMent comes in a standard 15"X20", which is very close.
For the price of the FibraMent, I could get two (slightly thicker)
cordierite stones and cut one so that I had exactly the size I want,
albeit with one seam. (But add the expense of taking the stone to a
hardware store to be cut, as I don't have a tile saw.)

On the other hand, I once owned a cheap baking stone (probably
cordierite, but I'm not sure), which cracked after only a few months
of use, and I took what I thought was good care of it -- avoiding
putting water on a hot stone, and always preheating the oven with the
stone in it. The greatest stress was caused by transferring the
(cool) stone in and out of the oven, since I don't want it in there
when I'm only using the oven to quickly roast some vegetables, for
example, because pre-heating the stone is a waste of time and energy
in that case. Anybody who's owned a FibraMent for a while care to
comment on its durability, or on what hoops you have to jump through
to take advantage of their 10-year warranty?

Anybody care to comment on baking characteristics of cordierite
vs. FibraMent?

TIA for any info/advice,

--
Randall Nortman

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Old 19-08-2005, 05:37 PM
graham
 
Posts: n/a
Default


"Randall Nortman" wrote in message
nk.net...
[Crossposted to rec.food.equipment and rec.food.baking; followups
redirected to rec.food.equipment only.]

Yes, I've searched newsgroup archives, yes I've read all the arguments
that unglazed quarry tiles are safe, and yes I've been baking directly
on them for years and I'm still alive. But the time has come for my
wife and I to see if we can pass our genes on to the next generation,
and so we're being intentionally paranoid about food safety issues.


If you are that worried, haven't you left it a bit late?
Graham


  #3 (permalink)   Report Post  
Old 19-08-2005, 06:00 PM
Randall Nortman
 
Posts: n/a
Default

On 2005-08-19, graham wrote:

"Randall Nortman" wrote in message
nk.net...
[Crossposted to rec.food.equipment and rec.food.baking; followups
redirected to rec.food.equipment only.]

Yes, I've searched newsgroup archives, yes I've read all the arguments
that unglazed quarry tiles are safe, and yes I've been baking directly
on them for years and I'm still alive. But the time has come for my
wife and I to see if we can pass our genes on to the next generation,
and so we're being intentionally paranoid about food safety issues.


If you are that worried, haven't you left it a bit late?


At the risk of turning this into a massively off-topic thread, I'll
take this bait. I assume you refer to the fact that most of the nasty
stuff will collect and be stored in the body over many years. Well,
it's not like my wife has been sucking on mercury thermometers for the
last decade -- of course, being a generally health-conscious person,
she's been avoiding major sources of contamination. And she's not
pregnant yet -- we're just getting prepared.

But aside from that, I'm going to assume that most stored elements are
going to stay that way though the pregnancy, for the most part, unless
she ends up having to dip into her stored fat reserves for calories or
fat-soluble vitamins. We hope to avoid that as much as possible with
proper nutrition. Any newly-ingested materials, on the other hand,
will probably end up taking a trip or two around the circulatory
system before ending up either in her tissues or the baby's.

But putting all that hand-waving aside, this is largely a
psychological matter: if anything were to actually go wrong with the
pregnancy and I had been baking on anything questionable, I would tend
to blame myself, whether that would be rational or not. This is the
principle we're applying to everything -- if we would question
ourselves about our decision in the event that something went wrong,
it's better to play it safe.

This might be an interesting debate on an appropriate newsgroup. If
you'd like to continue the discussion, I suggest you find one and set
an appropriate followup-to.

--
Randall Nortman
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Old 19-08-2005, 10:09 PM
Vox Humana
 
Posts: n/a
Default


"Randall Nortman" wrote in message
et...
On 2005-08-19, graham wrote:

"Randall Nortman" wrote in message
nk.net...
[Crossposted to rec.food.equipment and rec.food.baking; followups
redirected to rec.food.equipment only.]

Yes, I've searched newsgroup archives, yes I've read all the arguments
that unglazed quarry tiles are safe, and yes I've been baking directly
on them for years and I'm still alive. But the time has come for my
wife and I to see if we can pass our genes on to the next generation,
and so we're being intentionally paranoid about food safety issues.


If you are that worried, haven't you left it a bit late?


At the risk of turning this into a massively off-topic thread, I'll
take this bait. I assume you refer to the fact that most of the nasty
stuff will collect and be stored in the body over many years. Well,
it's not like my wife has been sucking on mercury thermometers for the
last decade -- of course, being a generally health-conscious person,
she's been avoiding major sources of contamination. And she's not
pregnant yet -- we're just getting prepared.

But aside from that, I'm going to assume that most stored elements are
going to stay that way though the pregnancy, for the most part, unless
she ends up having to dip into her stored fat reserves for calories or
fat-soluble vitamins. We hope to avoid that as much as possible with
proper nutrition. Any newly-ingested materials, on the other hand,
will probably end up taking a trip or two around the circulatory
system before ending up either in her tissues or the baby's.

But putting all that hand-waving aside, this is largely a
psychological matter: if anything were to actually go wrong with the
pregnancy and I had been baking on anything questionable, I would tend
to blame myself, whether that would be rational or not. This is the
principle we're applying to everything -- if we would question
ourselves about our decision in the event that something went wrong,
it's better to play it safe.

This might be an interesting debate on an appropriate newsgroup. If
you'd like to continue the discussion, I suggest you find one and set
an appropriate followup-to.


Why don't you just send some bread to a lab and have it tested?


  #5 (permalink)   Report Post  
Old 20-08-2005, 12:17 AM
Ellen
 
Posts: n/a
Default



"Randall Nortman" wrote in message
nk.net...
[Crossposted to rec.food.equipment and rec.food.baking; followups
redirected to rec.food.equipment only.]

Yes, I've searched newsgroup archives, yes I've read all the arguments
that unglazed quarry tiles are safe, and yes I've been baking directly
on them for years and I'm still alive. But the time has come for my
wife and I to see if we can pass our genes on to the next generation,
and so we're being intentionally paranoid about food safety issues.
From what I've read, the argument that they're safe seems to be that
there's no evidence that they're not safe, and nobody has died or
gotten sick or lost IQ points because of them (as far as we know), so
there are more important things to worry about: they're innocent until
proven guilty.


You could put your breads on parchment paper and put that on the tiles or
stones or other surface. I tend to do that so I don't have flour or semolina
or cornmeal all over the bottom of the oven and on the heating elements.
That gives you a barrier between the stones and the breads.

In Maggie Glezer's latest book she mentions that she frequently uses 2
baking sheets stacked together and heated in the oven as a surface for
putting her breads on. I would think that if you had two decent baking
sheets and preheated them, that would provide good bottom heat to the breads
which is basically what we are trying to do with the tiles/stones as I
understand it.

Ellen




  #6 (permalink)   Report Post  
Old 20-08-2005, 01:27 AM
Vox Humana
 
Posts: n/a
Default


"Ellen" wrote in message
...


"Randall Nortman" wrote in message
nk.net...
[Crossposted to rec.food.equipment and rec.food.baking; followups
redirected to rec.food.equipment only.]

Yes, I've searched newsgroup archives, yes I've read all the arguments
that unglazed quarry tiles are safe, and yes I've been baking directly
on them for years and I'm still alive. But the time has come for my
wife and I to see if we can pass our genes on to the next generation,
and so we're being intentionally paranoid about food safety issues.
From what I've read, the argument that they're safe seems to be that
there's no evidence that they're not safe, and nobody has died or
gotten sick or lost IQ points because of them (as far as we know), so
there are more important things to worry about: they're innocent until
proven guilty.


You could put your breads on parchment paper and put that on the tiles or
stones or other surface. I tend to do that so I don't have flour or

semolina
or cornmeal all over the bottom of the oven and on the heating elements.
That gives you a barrier between the stones and the breads.

In Maggie Glezer's latest book she mentions that she frequently uses 2
baking sheets stacked together and heated in the oven as a surface for
putting her breads on. I would think that if you had two decent baking
sheets and preheated them, that would provide good bottom heat to the

breads
which is basically what we are trying to do with the tiles/stones as I
understand it.


But what you say won't address the psychological pathosis. I just hope that
when little Colton or Paige arrives that the paranoia doesn't continue. It
would be hell worrying if plastic wrap or tap water will lower the IQ, cause
sexual ambiguity, or result in any number of behavior problems like ADHA.


  #7 (permalink)   Report Post  
Old 20-08-2005, 02:15 AM
Randall Nortman
 
Posts: n/a
Default

On 2005-08-19, Ellen wrote:
"Randall Nortman" wrote in message
nk.net...
[Crossposted to rec.food.equipment and rec.food.baking; followups
redirected to rec.food.equipment only.]

Yes, I've searched newsgroup archives, yes I've read all the arguments
that unglazed quarry tiles are safe, and yes I've been baking directly
on them for years and I'm still alive. But the time has come for my
wife and I to see if we can pass our genes on to the next generation,
and so we're being intentionally paranoid about food safety issues.
From what I've read, the argument that they're safe seems to be that
there's no evidence that they're not safe, and nobody has died or
gotten sick or lost IQ points because of them (as far as we know), so
there are more important things to worry about: they're innocent until
proven guilty.


You could put your breads on parchment paper and put that on the tiles or
stones or other surface. I tend to do that so I don't have flour or semolina
or cornmeal all over the bottom of the oven and on the heating elements.
That gives you a barrier between the stones and the breads.

[...]

My understanding is that part of the function of baking stones, which
are somewhat porous, is to allow moisture to evaporate from the bottom
crust, resulting in a crisper crust. It seems to me that parchment
paper would not transmit much moisture. Not to mention all the wasted
parchment paper. (And I'm sure the pundits here have already guessed
that somebody as clearly psychotically paranoid about environmental
health as I am would also logically be a green-blooded tree-hugging
hybrid-driving birkenstock-wearing neo-hippie.)

Although, getting back on topic, I must admit that the idea is
appealing, if only because it would make the dough a lot easier to get
into the oven without deflating or deforming it.

Thanks for the constructive advice. Seems in short supply around
here.

Passive-aggressively yours,

--
Randall
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Old 20-08-2005, 03:44 AM
Del Cecchi
 
Posts: n/a
Default


"Randall Nortman" wrote in message
k.net...
On 2005-08-19, Ellen wrote:
"Randall Nortman" wrote in message
nk.net...
[Crossposted to rec.food.equipment and rec.food.baking; followups
redirected to rec.food.equipment only.]

Yes, I've searched newsgroup archives, yes I've read all the
arguments
that unglazed quarry tiles are safe, and yes I've been baking
directly
on them for years and I'm still alive. But the time has come for my
wife and I to see if we can pass our genes on to the next generation,
and so we're being intentionally paranoid about food safety issues.
From what I've read, the argument that they're safe seems to be that
there's no evidence that they're not safe, and nobody has died or
gotten sick or lost IQ points because of them (as far as we know), so
there are more important things to worry about: they're innocent
until
proven guilty.


You could put your breads on parchment paper and put that on the tiles
or
stones or other surface. I tend to do that so I don't have flour or
semolina
or cornmeal all over the bottom of the oven and on the heating
elements.
That gives you a barrier between the stones and the breads.

[...]

My understanding is that part of the function of baking stones, which
are somewhat porous, is to allow moisture to evaporate from the bottom
crust, resulting in a crisper crust. It seems to me that parchment
paper would not transmit much moisture. Not to mention all the wasted
parchment paper. (And I'm sure the pundits here have already guessed
that somebody as clearly psychotically paranoid about environmental
health as I am would also logically be a green-blooded tree-hugging
hybrid-driving birkenstock-wearing neo-hippie.)

Although, getting back on topic, I must admit that the idea is
appealing, if only because it would make the dough a lot easier to get
into the oven without deflating or deforming it.

Thanks for the constructive advice. Seems in short supply around
here.

Passive-aggressively yours,

--
Randall


To summarize the advice.... That apparently wasn't the answer you were
looking for (if you knew the answer why did you bother posting)

1. It is too late to make much difference.
2. Have a sample of bread tested to see if it is a real concern
3. Use Parchement Paper to isolate bread from stone. (note, the paper
can be reused a few times)
4. You are worrying way too much. If the child is not perfect in every
way you will have a breakdown for not preventing it.

Which of those responses do you consider to not be constructive? Or are
you upset that you only got 4 responses from 3 people in 8 hours? I
think your expectations in several areas are too high. Perhaps a little
therapy or a couple of doobies would help.

del
1


  #9 (permalink)   Report Post  
Old 20-08-2005, 04:45 PM
Randall Nortman
 
Posts: n/a
Default

I normally wouldn't bother to continue an off-topic discussion of what
constitutes a constructive response, but as it seems that every time
I've popped my head into this group over the years, there's been a
discussion of top-posting vs. bottom-posting going on, I will at least
be in good company. On that note, I'm top-posting this warning so
that sane and/or busy people can just move on to the next post without
wasting more time. My response is bottom-posted.

On 2005-08-20, Del Cecchi wrote:

"Randall Nortman" wrote in message
k.net...

[...]
Thanks for the constructive advice. Seems in short supply around
here.

[...]
To summarize the advice.... That apparently wasn't the answer you were
looking for (if you knew the answer why did you bother posting)

[Summarized responses quoted inline below]

Which of those responses do you consider to not be constructive? Or are
you upset that you only got 4 responses from 3 people in 8 hours? I
think your expectations in several areas are too high. Perhaps a little
therapy or a couple of doobies would help.


Here are a few definitions of the word "constructive":
http://www.answers.com/constructive

For your convenience, I will quote only the relevant definitions he

(a) "Serving to improve or advance; helpful"
(b) "constructing or tending to construct or improve or promote development"
(c) "emphasizing what is laudable or hopeful or to the good"

As Usenet-specific criteria, I would add:

(d) On-topic for the newsgroup(s) in which the response is posted and
addressing the issue in the original post in a positive or helpful
way.
(e) Does not make negative insinuations about the OP's psychological,
moral, intellectual, or physical deficiencies, nor about similar
deficiencies (in particular, marital infidelities) of the OP's
mother.

With these definitions in mind, let's evaluate the responses as you
summarized them:

1. It is too late to make much difference.


This is not constructive in any sense of the word.

2. Have a sample of bread tested to see if it is a real concern


I initially debated about whether this was a serious suggestion. It
certainly could have been intended as such by somebody more curious
than frugal, as it would certainly be more expensive than just buying
a Fibrament stone. However, that poster later made a post clearly
intended to insult me, so I'm thinking it wasn't a serious suggestion.

3. Use Parchement Paper to isolate bread from stone. (note, the paper
can be reused a few times)


This is the only constructive and on-topic response I've gotten.
Unfortunately, I think that within a couple of years I would have
spent more on parchment paper than a real stone costs, so I'm not sure
I like the suggestion.

4. You are worrying way too much. If the child is not perfect in every
way you will have a breakdown for not preventing it.


This is not constructive because, while it might be on-topic for
alt.support.ocd or alt.parenting, this is rec.food.equipment, and so
I'm looking for advice on kitchen equipment, not psychological
counseling. These responses also clearly were intended to violate
criterion (e) above rather than actually help me recognize and
overcome a problem.


This diversion of this thread from the topic at hand is partially my
fault, since I included off-topic information in my original post.
Allow me to rephrase my question, including only on-topic information:

-----
I need a baking stone which is certified by the NSF, FDA, or similarly
credible institution to be food-safe. Unless somebody knows something
I don't know, this rules out unglazed quarry tiles from the hardware
store. The ideal size would be 16"x20.5". I could get the 15"x20"
FibraMent stone for $60, or buy two of the commonly-available 14"x16"
for about the same price and cut one so that together they were
exactly 16"x20.5". Does anybody have any experience with these
stones, specifically regarding durability and baking performance? Has
anybody ever tried to make use of the 10 year warranty on the
Fibrament stones? Can anybody make other suitable suggestions?
-----

Now, let me clarify that I don't *expect* anybody to help me with
this. I'm not paying any of you. Responding is strictly voluntary.
However, since we're talking about what constitutes a constructive
response, allow me to provide some fictitious examples:

"I've had a Fibrament stone for X years, and it hasn't gotten so much
as a hairline crack on it. It replaced one of those cheap cordierite
stones that cracked easily."

"My Fibrament stone cracked when I was moving it out of the oven, and
AWMCO [did/did not] replace it under warranty."

"My cordierite stone has lasted me a long time, but I'm not sure it's
going to be easy for you to cut to size because of [some good
reason]."

"There was a study by [some reputable institution] published in [some
reputable journal] about heavy metals and other contaminants in quarry
tiles, and they didn't find anything."

"Have you thought of trying [some creative solution]?"


HTH.

--
Randall
I'm not really a pretentious prick, but I play one on Usenet.
  #10 (permalink)   Report Post  
Old 20-08-2005, 05:14 PM
Vox Humana
 
Posts: n/a
Default


"Randall Nortman" wrote in message
nk.net...
With these definitions in mind, let's evaluate the responses as you
summarized them:

1. It is too late to make much difference.


This is not constructive in any sense of the word.

2. Have a sample of bread tested to see if it is a real concern


I initially debated about whether this was a serious suggestion. It
certainly could have been intended as such by somebody more curious
than frugal, as it would certainly be more expensive than just buying
a Fibrament stone. However, that poster later made a post clearly
intended to insult me, so I'm thinking it wasn't a serious suggestion.


Sure it was a serious suggestion and one that would have settled the issue
completely, giving you both an answer to your specific question and telling
you if you had been contaminating yourself by using the tiles. Subsequent
to my initial and very responsible suggestion, YOU stated very clearly that
you are paranoid, among other things. To refresh your memory, here is how
YOU described yourself:

"(And I'm sure the pundits here have already guessed
that somebody as clearly psychotically paranoid about environmental
health as I am would also logically be a green-blooded tree-hugging
hybrid-driving birkenstock-wearing neo-hippie.)"

Once someone says that they are "psychotically paranoid" then it is
illogical to be insulted when others agree.




  #11 (permalink)   Report Post  
Old 20-08-2005, 05:20 PM
Will
 
Posts: n/a
Default

So... I went to the original post to review the question. I see that
you already have a tile system of sorts to sustain temp and so forth in
the oven. My solution would be to keep that stuff. If you've used it
for a while, it has already outgassed whatever there is to outgas. Why
add something unnecessary to the landfill?

I would look for black steel pans, in lieu of the parchment
"protection" option. I use small steel pizza pans that I bought, used,
for $1 each at a restaurant supply place. I think a Pizza Hut had
fallen off of the rails and unloaded a bunch of "personal pans" . They
are the perfect size for inverting 1000 g. SD boules. I also use blue
steel (an upscale variety of black steel) half sheet pans for rolls,
flatbreads, baguettes. The steel works great, cures like cast iron,
and, is indestructable. It is also easier than hauling a stone with
corn meal in or out of the oven all of the time. Finally, the steel
does not interfere with the beneficial "heat sink" effects your
existing stone system.

I would categorize this response in the: keep it simple, stupid...
file.

  #12 (permalink)   Report Post  
Old 20-08-2005, 05:48 PM
Vox Humana
 
Posts: n/a
Default


"Will" wrote in message
oups.com...
The steel works great, cures like cast iron,
and, is indestructable. It is also easier than hauling a stone with
corn meal in or out of the oven all of the time.


Do people really "haul ...[their] stone ....in or out of the oven all the
time." I don't. It lives in my oven 24/7. Anyone else haul stone?


  #13 (permalink)   Report Post  
Old 20-08-2005, 05:50 PM
Randall Nortman
 
Posts: n/a
Default

On 2005-08-20, Vox Humana wrote:

"Randall Nortman" wrote in message
nk.net...

[...]
2. Have a sample of bread tested to see if it is a real concern


I initially debated about whether this was a serious suggestion. It
certainly could have been intended as such by somebody more curious
than frugal, as it would certainly be more expensive than just buying
a Fibrament stone. However, that poster later made a post clearly
intended to insult me, so I'm thinking it wasn't a serious suggestion.


Sure it was a serious suggestion and one that would have settled the issue
completely, giving you both an answer to your specific question and telling
you if you had been contaminating yourself by using the tiles.


Then I certainly owe you an apology for misinterpreting your post.
However, as I said, it's less expensive and less troublesome to simply
buy a certified food-safe stone and be done with it. If anybody else
is curious and wants to contribute to a reasearch fund to answer the
question properly, I would certainly be interested in knowing the
answer myself and would contribute, though only out of academic
curiousity, as I would almost certainly have already replaced my
quarry tiles well before the lab results came back.

Subsequent to my initial and very responsible suggestion, YOU stated
very clearly that you are paranoid, among other things. To refresh
your memory, here is how YOU described yourself:

"(And I'm sure the pundits here have already guessed
that somebody as clearly psychotically paranoid about environmental
health as I am would also logically be a green-blooded tree-hugging
hybrid-driving birkenstock-wearing neo-hippie.)"

Once someone says that they are "psychotically paranoid" then it is
illogical to be insulted when others agree.


Your post referring to my "psychological pathosis" came before the
post of mine that you quote (by about 45 minutes), and it is largely
why I was being sarcastically self-deprecating in my post. However, I
*did* say in my original post that my wife and I are being
"intentionally paranoid". I meant to imply by this that our choice to
be paranoid is carefully considered and, in a roundabout way,
perfectly rational.

Forgive me if I overreacted to your jest. I don't actually drive a
hybrid, though I probably will when we need to replace one of our
current cars, and I long ago gave up Birkenstocks in favor of $20
sandals from Target. I find trees are rather unpleasant to hug, and I
seem to get enough iron in my diet to keep my blood quite red.

--
Randall
  #14 (permalink)   Report Post  
Old 20-08-2005, 05:59 PM
Randall Nortman
 
Posts: n/a
Default

On 2005-08-20, Will wrote:
So... I went to the original post to review the question. I see that
you already have a tile system of sorts to sustain temp and so forth in
the oven. My solution would be to keep that stuff. If you've used it
for a while, it has already outgassed whatever there is to outgas. Why
add something unnecessary to the landfill?


Is outgassing really the only concern? I would be more worried about
direct absorption through the bottom of the dough (to the extent that
I'm actually worried about it at all, which is a road we've already
been down).

I would look for black steel pans, in lieu of the parchment
"protection" option. I use small steel pizza pans that I bought, used,
for $1 each at a restaurant supply place. I think a Pizza Hut had
fallen off of the rails and unloaded a bunch of "personal pans" . They
are the perfect size for inverting 1000 g. SD boules. I also use blue
steel (an upscale variety of black steel) half sheet pans for rolls,
flatbreads, baguettes. The steel works great, cures like cast iron,
and, is indestructable. It is also easier than hauling a stone with
corn meal in or out of the oven all of the time. Finally, the steel
does not interfere with the beneficial "heat sink" effects your
existing stone system.


Well, the steel will insulate a little bit, delaying (and diminishing)
the initial heat slightly as the pan absorbs heat from the stone
instead of the dough absorbing it directly. Also, it will trap
moisture under the crust (which I'm not sure is really all that
awful).

I would categorize this response in the: keep it simple, stupid...
file.


Agreed, and appreciated.

--
Randall
  #15 (permalink)   Report Post  
Old 20-08-2005, 06:10 PM
Randall Nortman
 
Posts: n/a
Default

On 2005-08-20, Vox Humana wrote:

"Will" wrote in message
oups.com...
The steel works great, cures like cast iron,
and, is indestructable. It is also easier than hauling a stone with
corn meal in or out of the oven all of the time.


Do people really "haul ...[their] stone ....in or out of the oven all the
time." I don't. It lives in my oven 24/7. Anyone else haul stone?


I don't want to bother to preheat the stones when I'm only going to
use the oven briefly. The thing I use my oven for most often is to
roast vegetables, which usually takes only about 10-30 minutes,
depending on the type of vegetable. With the stones in, it takes at
least 10 minutes just to preheat the oven. More importantly,
especially in the summer, it means more heat radiating out of the oven
for the next couple of hours. (Actually, does anybody know how the
thermal mass of a baking stone compares to that of a typical
residential oven?)

That said, I'm often lazy about it, and just preheat while I'm washing
and chopping the veggies anyway. If I had a big single-piece baking
stone instead of a few easily-handled 8" square tiles, I would be more
tempted to just leave it in there all the time. But Will's point is
still true: unless you use parchment or pans, you have to clean burnt
flour or cornmeal off the stones after you bake with them.

--
Randall


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