The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Enameled baking stone?

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JMonkey's picture
JMonkey

Enameled baking stone?

My baking stone of five years split in half last week. Strangely, it did so while in storage. So far as I can tell, nothing fell on it. Odd. Anyway, I'm still using it, but would like to get one that doesn't have a rakish separation all the way down the center. I could order one online, but I like to buy local. Only one store in my small college town carries them and, the odd thing is, their baking stones are all enameled.

The sales person said that this enables one to put them over a grill or open flame as well as putting them in the oven. I cook my grilled pizzas directly on the grill, and like them that way, so I don't see myself using it like that, but the price is not  significantly more than it would cost to buy a regular stone online and have it shipped.

Is there any downside to an enameled baking stone? If you've had experience with one, I'd love to hear about it. Thanks!

bradster's picture
bradster

Save yourself some money.  Get some cheap 18" ceramic floor tiles from a big box store.  These are all most likely enameled. "Quarry" tiles used to be available unglazed.  I haven't found any, so I got the manufactured ceramic tiles and used them.  The slick finish might slightly alter the crust, but I don't find the difference to be significant for pizza or bread.

The tiles that are sold for kamado style grills for use as a heat deflector and pizza baking on the grills are typically not enameled.

I found some discontinued 18" tiles for sale at Home Depot for about $1.50 each.  When using these in the oven, I use one tile as-is.  When I needed to use one on the grill for baking pizza, I used an inexpensive diamond blade in an old hand-held circular saw to trim the tile down to a round shape to fit in the grill.  They work great.  If you break one, you won't cry.  You'll want to clean them before using them for food applications.

I have gone through 4-5 expensive "pizza stones" in the oven.  No more.  They will break.  It's just a matter of time and how much you want to pay.

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

Enameling is usually done on metal whereas ceramic surfaces tend to be glazed.  If it is glazed, then it is fired higher (twice) and most likely stronger than unglazed tiles that are capable of absorbing water.

Nice to have you back again posting on TFL  (you've turned into a legend, you know...)

winstonsmith's picture
winstonsmith

I'm a bit unsure what you are considering buying. Is this a cast iron plate which has been enameled? If that's the case I don't see a problem with it for bread use. 

JMonkey's picture
JMonkey

Enameled, glazed, metal -- I'll find out! The person on the phone described them as "enameled baking stones."

A legend? In my own mind, maybe, but I'd be very surprised to discover that it extends beyond the confines of my own noggin'. :-) Good to see you, too, Mini. Where are you calling home, these days?

Mini Oven's picture
Mini Oven

in Los Angeles, Chile.  Summer has finally arrived!  I'm working with a potter to make me a perfect rye baking pot with a lid.  Stoneware.  Can't decide if I want a glaze or not...  it would strictly be for decoration or do I want a dark glaze to absorb heat. The clay color is a beige tan.  I can bake the bread in the pot and then store the loaf in it when both the loaf and pot have cooled.  I am tempted to have the pot look like a bread, but then handles would look weird.  Or build nice "Ears" to grab on the lid.  Always better to have a secure safe way to remove hot lids to prevent accidents.  

 Does your "Enamel" come in a dark color?  

Mini

MichaelH's picture
MichaelH

Glazing is done to porcelain/ceramic pieces at kiln temperatures up to 2200*F. I use porcelain dutch ovens for no-knead breads quite often. No need to worry.