Saturday, March 28, 2009

Pizza Stone Primer

When Cookware.com asked if I would be interested in running a guest post by them on the subject on kitchen gadgets, the first thing that came to my mind was my pizza stone. I use my well-seasoned pizza stone at least several times a week, and not just for pizza. Today I did, in fact, make Charlie a Trader Joe’s Roasted Veggie Pizza on it, but I often use it for making pita chips, veggie fries, reheating leftovers and baking bread. So what follows below is their introduction to the topic.  I hope you enjoy it, and if you do in fact own a pizza stone what do you like to use yours for?

Pizza Stones: The Versatile Kitchen Accessory

Shopping for a cookware set or a dinnerware collection can prove to be overwhelming once you’ve hit a few department and specialty stores in town. The different sized pots and pans, patterned plates, and infinite amount of cooking gadgets can make anyone feel frustrated which is why it’s important to map out a few must-have items to stock your space and help make your next meal a delicious one. With that being said, the pizza stone is one accessory that will make you wonder how you ever managed to cook a meal in the oven without it! This earthenware or ceramic platform is a wonderful cooking tool to use while preparing pizzas, baking cookies, or even reheating leftovers.

The clay or ceramic material does a fantastic job at absorbing excess moisture while in the oven, allowing you to make the crispiest of pizza, pita chips, or appetizers for your next dinner event or party. Not only will the stone’s material aid in your meals’ crispness but it will also help to maintain and distribute your oven’s heat evenly throughout the entire baking process. A popular way to cut down on cleanup is to sprinkle the pizza stone with cornmeal or breadcrumbs to provide a buffer and avoid food from sticking to the stone’s surface. In addition to cooking pizza or baking fresh bread, many pizza stone owners have used it to prepare sandwiches, roast garlic bulbs, or dry out fresh herbs picked from their garden for future meals.

Since the pizza stone will be spending a lot of time in a highly heated oven, it’s important to treat it appropriately before each use to prevent cracking from the intense change of temperature. Place the cold earthenware or ceramic stone in a cold oven on the lowest rack and allow the stone to preheat as your oven heats to the desired temperature. In terms of cleaning, these stones absorb everything including soap so it’s important to keep this in mind before putting any cleaning products on the surface. If you get to the point where cleaning is necessary, submerge the stone in clean, warm water for 15 minutes and place on a drying rack overnight.

1 comment:

VeggieGirl said...

Fun guest post and great information!!