#11  
Old 02-19-2011, 03:36 PM
GianniFocaccia's Avatar
Il Pizzaiolo
 
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Location: Disneyland, CA
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Default Re: No more wood-fired oven?

I'm not sure the members here could offer much in direct comparison (steel vs a real WFO) data.

What we do here is spend time dreaming about, sourcing materials for, pining over design details, convincing the wife of needing to buy another motor-driven tool, building the base, dome and enclosure, curing and firing schemes, not to mention bouncing every imaginable detail off a fantastic group of guys and gals willing to share their triumphs, errors, injuries, cooking processes and recipes and most all their obsession of all things WFO.
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  #12  
Old 02-20-2011, 05:51 AM
Peasant
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Location: Baton Rouge, Louisiana
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Default Re: No more wood-fired oven?

Hmmm, I see. I gather you're saying people doing WFO for the sake of WFO. The quality of pizza is part of the experience but not all of it. Okay, I get the point, I guess.

In the same vein, I miss out a good part of WFO experience since I bought a pre-assembled WFO.
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Old 02-20-2011, 06:10 AM
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Location: DFW area, USA
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Thumbs up Re: No more wood-fired oven?

Quote:
Originally Posted by whodatoven View Post
Hmmm, I see. I gather you're saying people doing WFO for the sake of WFO. The quality of pizza is part of the experience but not all of it. Okay, I get the point, I guess.

In the same vein, I miss out a good part of WFO experience since I bought a pre-assembled WFO.
Each of us has their own reality, I don't have to fit into yours and you don't have to fit into mine.
If you don't like what you did, do it again with a change that fits into your reality.
If you can learn from my mistakes, then, you are a step ahead.

Do your own thing for your own reasons. If the steel thingy fits your reality, go for it and report back to us.

Society and culture, wherever you live, is based on the fact that we all stand on the shoulders of those who have gone before us (stone age, bronze age, steel age....jet age). Lead the way if that is what you want......And, thank heaven you have the freedom necessary to do it.
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  #14  
Old 02-20-2011, 12:04 PM
Journeyman
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: minnesota, usa
Posts: 472
Default Re: No more wood-fired oven?

I have no doubt that a steel sheet, or a stone or a cast iron pan will make a pizza in the indoor oven that is superior to one that did NOT have any of those techniques applied to it, but it's still not even in the same category as a proper neo-style, WFO-cooked pizza. It's apples to oranges AFIAC.

The same holds true for most anything else one could cook in a WFO. You could probably apply roughly the same technique to the same food item in an indoor oven, but the results would be different, and, in my book, not as good. It depends on your point of reference. Pre WFO days, I thought I made a pretty killer indoor pizza--and I did. Yet now I wouldn't ever even bother, because WFO pizza raised the bar that much. OTOH, if I had never built a WFO, I wouldn't know that--I'd still be loving my indoor pies and buying a piece of sheet steel.
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Old 02-20-2011, 03:04 PM
GianniFocaccia's Avatar
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Default Re: No more wood-fired oven?

Quote:
Hmmm, I see. I gather you're saying people doing WFO for the sake of WFO.
It's a little more than that. All builders have their own personal motivations and indeed derive great gratification from completing a project of this scope, but the most compelling reason 'people do WFO' (I think) is to make up a reason for everyone to get together to eat, drink and be merry.

Sure, you could do the same thing with a piece of sheet steel, but it isn't nearly as much fun.
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  #16  
Old 02-20-2011, 10:01 PM
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Default Re: No more wood-fired oven?

Putting all personal tastes aside, lets look at the practical side. First, I just can't see where the sheet steel would be any improvement over a stone, Lodge cast iron, or a basic steel pizza pan. I am far from being a pizza snob or any kind of expert. I have cooked 'pizza' in or on just about everything imaginable. I think the difference here is the incorporation of the broiler, its not the sheet steel. From a cost standpoint I think it is rediculous. Unless the fabricator is a DEAR friend, the cost of 1/4" sheet steel to fit your home oven will be equal to that of any stone. Fabrication shops rarely do small single item jobs for cheap, it is simply to disruptive to there production runs. Shoot, I spent $20 on a piece of 1/4" boiler plate for my first WFO door. No fabrication, just a simple 18 x 24 piece that I took home and fabricated. That was a deal compared to 2 other suppliers.

The bottom line here is the fact WFO pizza is NOT what you grew up on (unless you are an Italian immigrant) and is nothing like what is produced in an indoor gas or electric oven. That high heat does some great and not so great things to ingredients. Its an apples and oranges thing. I happen to love pizza alot of ways, including in my 500 degree max electic oven. I built my oven based on on simple reason, I visited Italy and had WFO pizza every day for a week. It was new (to me) completely different, and I loved it. The only way to duplicate it was to build my own oven.
To me, building the oven was/is not part of the appeal, just another fuctional project for me; its all about a new (to me) and different way of cooking.
Go ahead an try the sheet steel thing, I'm sure you can make a good/great pizza, just don't try to rationalize or compare WFO cooking, and don't spend a whole lot - I think the cast iron skillet or any pan will have similar results.

I remember my brother and his wife doing a 2 yr stint in Italy when he was in the Air Force. NOTHING authentic appealed to them, most notably the pizza. They came home telling everyone it was all terrible. We like what we like...if you have had WFO pizza and like it, then you are going to have to build a WFO, there is no substituting or duplicating.

RT
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  #17  
Old 03-01-2011, 09:38 PM
Laborer
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 65
Default Re: No more wood-fired oven?

Using the oven for that effect means I'm still putting the air conditioner into a fight in the summer.

My larger fear is if it would warp over a few uses. I've seen some thinner steel cooking pans and such turn unsteady after some uses in high heat. It would also be nice to know if the steel truly is food grade--odd comment I suppose but one doesn't just eat off any old metal they find.
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  #18  
Old 03-02-2011, 05:42 AM
Journeyman
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: MN, USA
Posts: 346
Default Re: No more wood-fired oven?

I think if you really want to have over-the-top specific style pizza, this forum will only get you so far, since, after all, it is a forum that deals with WFO's. The other things discussed are/can be helpful, but since it isn't the focus, there's limited info. If you really want to get crazy about pizza, I'd suggest PizzaMaking.com - Pizza Making, Pizza Recipes, and More!. And, if you're really into bread, The Fresh Loaf | News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts. I don't suggest this to put down this forum at all, just offer them up as other spots to further knowledge on more specific subjects.

With all this said, there are a couple of guys on this site, who offer up PLENTY of bread knowledge.
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