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OT - Baking Aluminum (like baking steel). Today's project.

nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 10,905
Sorry haven't posted in a long while. This is a one-day recycle some junk to cook pizza on it project.

I was a little intrigued when LS talked about ordering some "baking steels".  Did a little web search and it looks like they're thick plates of steel that you cook on, like a pizza stone but made out of steel.  I thought that makes sense, steel transfers heat better than a junk-yard dog transfers fleas.  As a matter of fact, it transfers heat better n stone and cast iron. 

I was cleaning up round the back of the shop - we have a termite inspection on Wed.  Throwin' out some junk, and I found a big chunk of alloy I scavenged from an ICP we decommissioned at the lab. I thought it was magnesium, so I did a little test to see if the metal savings combusted.  I did that with a plasma cutter and I was a little worried I'd have a run-away thermite-like reaction, but alas, luck was on my side.

It was a weird milled and casted chunk of metal.  The plasma cutter didn't work well - I trashed the ceramic nozzle with blow-back.  Another sign it was aluminum....very good at conducting heat and tough to cut thick via plasma.

So I decided to use a carbide circular saw.  Cut it like frozen buttah.

Now, I got a buddy whose givin' me a chunk o thick steel for a "baking steel".  I'm gonna cut a 16" circle or hexagon for pizzas n stuff on the egg.  Because there's less mass, and therefore less thermal mass because the lower density of aluminum, I just made as big a chunk as I could, to give me as much real estate and thermal heat carrying mass as possible to cook pizzas, bread, eggs, bacon or whatever else I want to throw on it.

Why the OT?  Because this mother is too large to fit on the egg and shut the lid.  So I used it in the oven to test it out. Yep.  I'm a heretic.  Also works on the range burners.

Did all this today, and the pizza came out delicious - experimented with cheese first and sauce on top, and sauce on the dough and cheese on top.  The sauce on top was better.  Both pizzas came out delicious.

Here are the pics. I used a circ saw with a guide, then cut the junk (standoffs) off, polished it, seasoned it, cooked 2 pizzas on it.  Oven, did not fit in egg, so be a lover and not a hater.  Peace out.



imageimageimageimageimageimageimageimageimage
______________________________________________
This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
No City.

Comments

  • shtgunal3shtgunal3 Posts: 1,723
    Damn Nola, only you could look at a price of scrap and think "if I spent half a day on that I believe I could cook on it".

    Awesome job dude!

    ___________________________________

     

     LBGE,SBGE Sweet home Alabama........ Stay thirsty my friends .

  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 10,905
    "One man's trash is another man's cooking surface".  Thanks @shtgunal3

    It's a huge 1/4" thick slab o aluminum...or some aluminum alloy.  Came from a $150,000 instrument (when new) that used to measure metals in water n dirt down to the part per billion level.
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    No City.

  • BOWHUNRBOWHUNR Posts: 1,378
    Nice!  I still wanna bring a bottle of Templeton Rye down there and drink with you! 

    I'm ashamed what I did for a Klondike Bar!!

    Omaha, NE
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 10,905
    BOWHUNR said:
    Nice!  I still wanna bring a bottle of Templeton Rye down there and drink with you! 
    Anytime, brother!
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    No City.

  • MickeyMickey Posts: 13,713
    Ok, what the hell do you do for fun =))
    Salado TX Egg Family: 2 Large and a very well used Mini.... 5th Salado EggFest is March 14, 2015

  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 10,905
    @Mickey - cooking of course. Duh. :bz ....oh, sorry, I mean ;)

    @Village_Idiot - Busted! :ar!
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    No City.

  • AviatorAviator Posts: 1,429

    @nola

    Is the melting point not a concern. Although at normal indoor range cooking temps the seepage into food may be hardly worth mentioning, I am concerned that those high temps(pizza) aluminum may get to higher levels into food. Nola, I am NOT an engineer, you are. Aluminum causes mental retardation, among other things like malabsoption of Fe and anemia. In the brain it has a half life of 7 yrs. Again, it is readily excreted in the amounts we see day to day, but I would not fool around with it. Having said that, we see AL in a lot of stuff including antacids, deodorant gels, soda cans ...

    Not an argument, but for discussion purposes only.

    Like your creation though.

    ______________________________________________ 

    Large and Small BGE, and a baby black Kub.

    And all the toys to make me look like a Gizmo Chef.

    >:)

    Chattanooga, TN.

     

  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 10,905
    @Aviator - there's aluminum added to lots of stuff we eat - as anti-caking agents and dessicants and the like.  It's the most abundant metal in the earth's crust and it's in everything.

    I'm not worried about it.  As a matter of fact, I have three aluminum cookie sheets and two aluminum baking pans that I regularly use. 

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aluminium#Health_concerns

    I'd wager everyone on this forum has at least one aluminum cooking implement.  I'm more worried about the massive amounts of Bourbon and BPA that I ingest regularly.  ;)
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    No City.

  • calikingcaliking Posts: 5,252
    Nice project. And the crust on that pie looks spectacular.

    #1 LBGE December 2012 • #2 SBGE February  2013 • #3 Mini May 2013
    A happy BGE family in Houston, TX.
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 10,905
    Thanks @caliking.   The crust was phenomenal.   Consensus - putting something oily between the dough and the toppings gives a better crunchier crust (as expected).
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    No City.

  • calikingcaliking Posts: 5,252
    Nola- did you brush the dough with olive oil before adding toppings?

    #1 LBGE December 2012 • #2 SBGE February  2013 • #3 Mini May 2013
    A happy BGE family in Houston, TX.
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 10,905
    I  usually do, but this time I did two - one I put the cheese down first, the other the sauce.  No oil this time.  But in all fairness, I did work the dough with the cheese down first more, so it wasn't a perfect experiment. 

    The pizza nazi, who's opinion I respect with regard to pizzas (even though I'm a crunchy thin dough guy) said a family secret is to put the sauce on last.  So I tried that.  It was better.
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    No City.

  • AviatorAviator Posts: 1,429

     is to put the sauce on last. 

    You are so right. That's what I do and the crust is never soggy.

    ______________________________________________ 

    Large and Small BGE, and a baby black Kub.

    And all the toys to make me look like a Gizmo Chef.

    >:)

    Chattanooga, TN.

     

  • Austin  EggheadAustin Egghead Posts: 3,094
    nola you are truly a Renaissance man.
    You said:"I'm more worried about the massive amounts of Bourbon and BPA that I ingest regularly"...  ditch the red Solo cup, not the Bourbon :-)

    Eggin in SW "Keep it Weird" TX
  • Mama RoneckMama Roneck Posts: 337
    Fantastic! but I'm running out of superlatives for your projects...
    Mamaroneck
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