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Getting ready for first pizza cook.

jfarleyjfarley Posts: 142
edited July 2012 in Baking
I'm getting ready for my first pizza cook. Having checked the forum it appears a good idea to get the pizza stone higher in the dome. Here's what I'm considering. PS legs up, three standard size clay bricks on grate with stone on top. This puts the stone nicely up in the dome (2 1/2 inches above the grate and gasket). I could vary this by putting the PS legs down and the bricks on the PS with no grate, or go to the thinner bricks I also have available. Any thoughts out there?
Pizza Steup.jpg
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LBGE - July 2012
Valencia, CA

Comments

  • Scott805Scott805 Posts: 147
    I am not an expert, but I think your first idea sounds better.  There are some pizza people on here that will chime in.

    Large BGE, 2 Tier Adjustable Swing Rack System, three (3) bricks from Home Depot for raised direct - Finally have a decent table!

    Dallas, TX

  • BrownieBrownie Posts: 1,022
    edited July 2012
    I always cook my pies at the felt line (your set up pictured would exclude bricks) and have had very good luck with a preheated egg. (desired temp for at least 20-30 min) My pies are happy between 450-550 dome. If your crust (bottom) is browning before you cheese bubbles you will need to elevate. Don't crowd with toppings and enjoy your cook. Are you planning on using corn meal or parchment paper?
  • paqmanpaqman Posts: 1,051
    As high as you can get in the dome is the best... It looks like your setup is fine.

    ____________________
    Entrepreneurs are simply those who understand that there is little difference between obstacle and opportunity and are able to turn both to their advantage. •Niccolo Machiavelli
  • chuffchuff Posts: 255
    Just for stability I would spread those bricks out so they're under the edges of the stone instead of the center, but I think that setup will work great. 
    XL BGE
  • jfarleyjfarley Posts: 142
    Brownie,

    I will use corn meal and a cheap $10 pizza peel I bought at Bed Bath and Beyond. All your comments are telling me you all see the photo I thought I attached? I sure don't see it now if it ever was there. Was my photo with my first posting? Perhaps I'm missing something obvious.
    LBGE - July 2012
    Valencia, CA
  • jfarleyjfarley Posts: 142
    Answered my own question. Picture is there when I go to the forum directly instead of my notifications.
    LBGE - July 2012
    Valencia, CA
  • BrownieBrownie Posts: 1,022
    If you cook multiple pizzas with corn meal you will want to blow or scrape it off between pies because it will tend to blacken and add a burnt taste. I use my ash tool to scrape lost toppings and corn meal off.

    For some reason if pics don't show your own post, you can hit "Latest Posts" at top of page and open your thread. Doing it this way should allow you to see you posted pics.
  • jfarleyjfarley Posts: 142
    Very helpful advice, I will be doing four. Will try to post pics of the end results and let all know how it turns out.
    LBGE - July 2012
    Valencia, CA
  • BrownieBrownie Posts: 1,022
    Sounds good! looking forward to see and hear your results. I think the elevated rule of thumb works for higher temps to bake toppings equally with crust. I don't think you'll want to rush your cook time, I usually set a timer for four minutes @ 550* to first check, which will give you just enough time to build your next pie. I do plate size pizzas so I can slide them from the hot stone onto a plate when finished, while the next pie to be cooked waits on the peel.

     If there is any other benefits to a higher temp guys let me know what I'm missing out on.
  • jfarleyjfarley Posts: 142
    Here's the results. I went ahead with the pizza stone set up on the standard size bricks on the grate. It was pretty easy to get to and maintain 600 degrees for ~ 25 minutes before I started cooking. In order I made a sausage, pepperoni, salami with my wife's spaghetti sauce; a mehrgerita, again with my wife's sauce; and a BBQ chicken with my homemade BBQ sauce. They came out really good and the family has consumed most. Here's what I learned:
    • The temperature held well for the first two pizzas dropping a bit from one to two. For the third pizza I was hard pressed to get the cooker to hold at 500 degrees with the bottom vent wide open and the top of the dome wide open. The first two pizzas were done as expected in about 8 minutes, the third took about 14 minutes after a 30 minute delay in the hopes the cooker would recover. I even used a makeshift tool from a coat hanger to clear the openings in the fire grate.
    • My gasket has burned through as a result of this cook. I've done about 30 hours of lower temp cooks ahead of this one. The Egg is touted as being able to handle high temp cooks as well as low. For the gasket to burn through now is a big disappointment but not unexpected based on other posts. Come on BGE folks, if this is supposed to handle cooks at this temperature why do I now have to buy a new gasket less than a month in to the experience?
    All things considered, this is the first time I've made pizza from homemade dough and it was a good experience overall.
     

     
    pizza results 001.jpg
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    pizza results 002.jpg
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    pizza results 003.jpg
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    LBGE - July 2012
    Valencia, CA
  • chuffchuff Posts: 255
    Those pies look pretty solid! As far as temp issues it sounds like maybe your lump was starting to run low. When I did mine a few days ago I made 5 with an average cook time of 4 minutes each. I had no problems with the egg cooling. In fact before I started cooking I had to close the vent about halfway because I felt it was too hot. 

    This was the only time I've been careful about the lump I put in the egg, though. I cleaned out the ashes and took all the old lump out, then I sorted through an unopened bag of lump and put all the biggest pieces on the bottom and medium pieces above that. I tried to avoid any pieces that were too small. The firebox was full all the way up to the bottom of the fire ring, and when I was done it was still nearly gone. I lit the fire in 4 places at once so it would hopefully all burn fairly evenly (just a theory). 

    Just a couple of thoughts for you.
    XL BGE
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 11,341
    Chuff got it right, I would even put more lump in there, biggest chunks on the bottom to protect grate airflow.  Pizza (high temp) cooking burns A LOT of fuel, and you don't want to run out before you're done.  Based on your pic at the top, and I don't know if you did this or not, but use the bricks to hold the grate by the outside of the grate so you have some airflow to the stone - stone on the grate.  Higher you can get the stone up in the dome the more you'll cook the top over the crust.  Your pizzas look good.
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    New Orleans, LA - we know how to eat 

  • chuffchuff Posts: 255
    Oh, and don't buy a new gasket. Call BGE. They'll send you a new nomex one gratis. 
    XL BGE
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 11,341
    ..or join the camp of "I don't neeeed no steeenkin' gasket!" (personally, not a member of that camp)
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    New Orleans, LA - we know how to eat 

  • jfarleyjfarley Posts: 142

    I didn't even think to look at the fuel because of how long it went on my previous cook at 230. That has to be the reason the temp went down. I'll take a look when I'm home from work.

    While I moved the bricks to the edge of the stone, I'll try your technique with the grate on the bricks next time nolaegghead.

    Thanks for the advice about the new gasket chuff!

    Onward and forward!

     

     

    LBGE - July 2012
    Valencia, CA
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