Baking Stones and Circulation
Hey all. Unfortunately I recently accidentally broke my 16" square baking stone that has served me well for a while. It was already in two pieces and I think now it's a little too broken up to be usable.
I went to the hardware store to replace it, unfortunately they had no 16" tiles suitable for a baking stone. They did however have an 18" one so I got that.
I am just a little concerned however that there will be enough circulation in the oven. I have read that you should have at least 1" all around the stone. Due to the size of this stone, there is almost no space in the front or back, maybe 1/2". However, there is plenty of space on the sides, at least 3" on either side. Since there is good space on the sides, will that make up for the tight front and back, or is it really necessary to have good space all around? I haven't tried baking on it yet and won't for a week or so probably as I just baked a loaf which ended in my breaking my current stone as it cooled. So I don't know yet how it'll affect baking. Is there a way to test that? I have one hanging thermometer in the oven, I guess I can try moving that around to various spots and seeing the results, but I don't know if the variation would be significant enough to register or not. Hopefully the circulation is good though, It is nice having such a large stone, although it'll make heating up take even longer which could be another issue.
So is it probably too big, should I scale down some? Since I won't be baking for a bit I can keep checking in till they get a 14" or 16" in, or would this one do fine? Thanks!