Sunday, May 29, 2011

Technique: Cooking Surfaces for Pizza (Part 10)

With most baking stones, you get what's available - a particular size and thickness. Maybe there's a choice of round and rectangular. Maybe there are a couple of standard sizes. But you're still limited by what's available.

A huge benefit to the Fibrament stone is that you can specify exactly the size you want. There are several standard sizes, but if want something different you can order whatever you like. Perfect if you've got an odd-sized or custom oven.

The stone I have is 15x17 x 3/4 inches thick. It's obviously not the same material as the standard stone. It's a greenish-colored stone and feels a little slick to the touch, although it's also bumpy.

The instruction that came with the stone explained that it needed to be cured, by heating at progressively higher temperatures. This is supposed to drive out any residual moisture which prevents cracking.

There are also warning about NOT washing with water. You're supposed to clean it by brushing with a dry cloth, or if things are burned on, heat it until the stuff burns off, and brush off the residue.

Like all the other pizzas, I preheated the oven for 1 hour at 550 degrees. At 45 minutes the stone was 535 degrees and at one hour it was 539 degrees.

Because I ordered a slightly larger stone it made placing the pizza easier than when I worked with some of the smaller stones. After the usual eight minutes, the pizza was baked and ready to go.

The bottom was nicely brown with darker patches and it was crispy. It wasn't the crispest pizza of all the ones I tested, but I don't think anyone would be disappointed with the result.

The standard sizes of Fibrament stones range from $43-$90.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the continuing series. Love reading the pros & cons on each. Can't wait to see which one ends up being the favorite.

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