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Platesetter position

LongArmLongArm Posts: 16
edited December 2011 in Baking
Hello to the Egg world. Finally got an BGE and am trying every type of cook I dare. I've done pizza a few times and of course get better with experience. I saw a post about using the plate setter being in the legs up position, with the grate and baking stone on top. When I tried it, the temp struggled to get to 450. I did not have this issue with the standard placement (legs down, stone on top). I read about clogged air holes, etc, but am not sure if it was that, or could the plate setter position affect the temp?                                  

Comments

  • BMFDBMFD Posts: 25
    Doubt the plate setter would affect the temp; odds are the fire wasn't built well enough meaning to much fine pieces of lump clogging areas reducing air flow. 
  • Thanks BMFD,  you bring up another question on clogged air holes.....do you stir the charcoal every time before a new cook? or just if the temp is misbehaving once it's lit? When I stir the partially used charcoal, the small pieces end up on the bottom, making it seem more likely to clog air holes. ......or am I overthinking this whole thing.....lol    
  • LongArm -

    Welcome to the BGE group!

    The platesetter will not affect temperature - as you and BMFD said - lack of air might be one cause. However, I find that when temps are too low and you cannot seem to get the temp to go higher - most often it is lack or running out of fuel - not enough lump charcoal.

    I believe this common thing is because the DVD that comes with your BGE talks about how efficient the cooker is, and how it conserves fuel, and says to fill the fire box up to the holes on the sides or something like that.

    Forget that idea - is it best to fill the fire box past them holes and go all the way to the top of the first ring - it is best to have *too much* rather than *not enough* lump in there - because of you run out of charcoal - you have to take everything off, add more lump, wait for it to light and burn - and put the food back in.

    If you have not done so already - check out the Naked Whiz website - and bookmark it - LOTS of good info in there, including a great review of lump charcoal, how to make repairs - etc

    http://www.nakedwhiz.com/nwindex.htm

    Good luck and keep cooking!

    Wayne

     

  • Thanks much "Da Kine"....that's what I'm looking for, good site
  • I do every cook using a plate setter with the legs up.  This is the standard placement as you would always want a drip pan on top of the plate setter with the grid over that.  I can't think of a reason you'd want the plate setter legs down.

    If you couldn't get the temp up past 400, I'd bet you $10 bucks it was clogged holes in the charcoal grate. That's almost always the reason when you're unable to achieve high temps.
    Packerland, Wisconsin

  • bluegrasstigerbluegrasstiger Posts: 145
    edited December 2011
    I do every cook using a plate setter with the legs up.  This is the standard placement as you would always want a drip pan on top of the plate setter with the grid over that.  I can't think of a reason you'd want the plate setter legs down.

    If you couldn't get the temp up past 400, I'd bet you $10 bucks it was clogged holes in the charcoal grate. That's almost always the reason when you're unable to achieve high temps.
    That's interesting...do you also use legs up for pizza, with the pizza stone on the legs? Or is a placesetter and pizza stone redundant?  I have been using legs down with pizza stone on the placesetter...seemed like a lot of trouble.  Should I just use a grill extender and the pizza stone, or use the placesetter as a pizza stone?
  • ChokeOnSmokeChokeOnSmoke Posts: 1,697
    edited December 2011
    Yes, for pizza too.  I go plate setter legs up, drip pan, grid on the plate setter legs, and then pizza stone right on the grid.  I like to get as much air/gap as possible under the pizza stone so it doesn't overheat.
    Packerland, Wisconsin

  • Yes, for pizza too.  I go plate setter legs up, drip pan, grid on the plate setter legs, and then pizza stone right on the grid.  I like to get as much air/gap as possible under the pizza stone so it doesn't overheat.
    Very interesting.  I will have to try that next time.  Thanks
  • Ok, I'm convinced that clogged air holes was the culprit on the heat issue, and will try the "legs up" position (again) for pizza next time. I'm still looking for input on when and if I should stir the partially used charcoal from earlier in this thread.  
    Yes, for pizza too.  I go plate setter legs up, drip pan, grid on the plate setter legs, and then pizza stone right on the grid.  I like to get as much air/gap as possible under the pizza stone so it doesn't overheat.
    Over heat? What temp do you like to cook pizza? I've read every where from 425 to 700. The BGE book says 600, which is what I've done so far. Also a great tip of getting the pizza stone above the bottom rim, with a stone size a couple inches smaller than the egg diameter to let heat circulate better. Your opinion? (can you tell I like pizza?)
  • I stir the partially used charcoal after every cook to make sure the air holes are clear.  For a short cook I will just add new on top of what is leftover.  For a longer cook...5 hours for ribs or 12 hours for butts, I will completely clean out the firebox, vacuum out the ash and start over with new lump just to make sure there is as good a fire as possible.
  • BakerManBakerMan Posts: 154
    I'm still looking for input on when and if I should stir the partially used charcoal from earlier in this thread.  

    I have a scoop made out of a plastic jug cut at an angle.  Before each cook I scoop the remaining charcoal bits into scoop, knock all ash out of grate, clean out air holes, add new charcoal, then put leftover bits on top.  Some people might feel this is too much trouble but I don't like trying to "fix" a fire in the middle of a cook.

    I cook pizza with platesetter legs down, stone on top and Egg at 650.  I place pizza directly on stone (cornmeal on peel).  Takes about 9 minutes took cook a pizza and the raw sausage we put on top is cooked perfectly.

    BakerMan - Purcellville, VA
    "When its smokin' its cookin', when its black its done"
  • Over heat? What temp do you like to cook pizza? I've read every where from 425 to 700. The BGE book says 600, which is what I've done so far. Also a great tip of getting the pizza stone above the bottom rim, with a stone size a couple inches smaller than the egg diameter to let heat circulate better. Your opinion? (can you tell I like pizza?)
    I shoot for about 550.  My biggest problem with pizza is that the bottom gets too crispy.  I hate crunchy crust. I do everything I can to keep the pizza stone hot, yet not too hot that the crust gets overdone.
    Thinking about getting one of these infrared thermometers so I can tell what's going on in there.
    http://www.thermoworks.com/products/ir/

    image
    Packerland, Wisconsin

  • BakerManBakerMan Posts: 154
    Do you use a pizza screen? I don't use a screen because the bottom crust does not get brown and crisp.
    BakerMan - Purcellville, VA
    "When its smokin' its cookin', when its black its done"
  • Nope, I throw some cornmeal on the stone and put the pizza right on it.
    Seems I have the opposite problem everyone else has.  Most people tell you to preheat the stone as long as you can, I try to put the stone in the minimum I can so the bottom doesn't burn.
    There are other variables too, like what pizza dough you use.  That could be part of my problems as well.
    Packerland, Wisconsin

  • Thanks for all the replies and tips....Bakerman, I've done the same with the charcoal flip myself... I'm seeing that this is all a real individual preference thing.....and that's a good thing too
  • danhoodanhoo Posts: 10
    Tonight I cooked my first three pizzas on my L-BGE. I read about several different ways but I cooked with platesetter legs up, grill on platesetter, stone on the grill.

    egg at about 650F and preheated the pizza stone for about 40 mins until my infrared temp sensor maxed out at 500 F

    The first two were awesome, then there was about a 20 minute time gap from the end of the second until the third went on. The egg started to cool (would only reach 600F) and the stone was really hot. I had to pull the third pizza off early and finish it under a broiler otherwise the bottom would have been too crispy and the top wasn't bubbly.

    I think the key is keep the pizzas going back-to-back and use LOTS of lump. 



  • Yup, that's it. Mine was two pizza's at 600 back to back, then dialed back to 400 and did a whole chicken. Near the end I had the vents almost wide open to keep the temp over 350, and when it was over (all turned out great) there was only a very small handful of charcoal left, whew. "Lots of lump" lesson learned. 
  • seanbhallidayseanbhalliday Posts: 1
    edited January 2012
    I just want to chime in on the pizza screen (aluminum mesh round pizza grate available on Amazon and other places).   When I worked in a pizza place when I was 16 years old (oh so many years ago), we hand spun our pizza to fit on the appropriate size pizza screen, then we put the pizza in the big gas oven, and when the topping were close to being done, we used a very long pizza peel to take the pizza off the screen, and then directly onto the floor of the oven until the bottom was done.

    I've replicated that is and done the same thing, except on the big green egg (large).  First off, it is really easy to make the pizza, toppings and all on the pizza screen.  Then after about 4 minutes or so, I use a peel and take the pizza off the screen and place it directly on the pizza stone.  This is much better than using parchment paper, or trying to drag the pizza onto the stone from somewhere else.

    Highly suggest it (for at least making the pizza, putting it on the egg, then taking it off to put directly on the stone to finish the bottom crust).

    And with this method, you will never have to think about cornmeal.
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