Cracking Your Baking Stone: New Techniques, Extraordinary Disappointment
Learned a new way to crack a baking stone recently: put a room-temp stainless steel bowl on it with the oven set to 500F.
I put it open-side up to pre-heat for the famous "magic bowl" steaming technique. Apparently, the bowl acted as some kind of super-efficient heat sink. The stone cracked, though not all the way through, from what I can tell. It still holds together pretty well, and since the crack is about 1/3 of the way from the right edge, I can still load it with a normal size boule or batard.
I've had this one for years--really well-seasoned, nothing stuck to it (except pizza, when cheese got under the crust once), thick, perfectly sized to my oven. I think it came from Sur la Table, but I can't remember for sure.
What a bummer. The bread did turn out great, though--a very lofty, super-tasty version RLB's Basic Hearth Bread.