11.23.2008

Weber Kettle Modification: Firedome (Part 2)

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Image 1: This is the dome of a 22.5" Weber Kettle Grill. I took a grinding attachment and my power drill to cut out a door. I have some additional images of this fabrication I'll post later. I also put a shutter hinge on it to keep it attached. The idea was to heat up the grill and place a pizza in it without having to remove the entire lid and lose heat. Ideally, the dome should be shaped like an igloo. Need a welding friend to pull that one off.

Image 2. Lid up and inside is an inverted saucer from a flower pot; it's made of unglazed quarry tile. Upon heating the inside to 500°F+, it cracked once. Still fine to cook on. It's diameter is 12" on top. The heat source is lump charcoal and I decided to try it direct. The pile of fuel is directly beneath the clay. I thought since the clay surface is so thick, I might not need indirect. I think I'm wrong on that. Another day.

Image 3. This is an 8" diameter or so piece of pizza dough. It's kind of squat and about 150 grams. This dough had been thawed only about 3 hours. It was frozen and I made it a couple weeks ago.

Image 4. Notice the hinged door was made wide enough to accomodate the peel. I flipped up the door and tossed in the dough. I used a little flour for the dough to slide on. I closed the lid and waited about 2 minutes. I didn't use any fancy temperature measureing devices, but I do know the air above the tile surface was much greater than 500°F.

Image 5: After 2 minutes on one side, I removed the shell and flipped it on the peel and slid it back in for another 2 minutes.

Image 6. The final product. Click image for a better view of this beautiful flatbread.

Conclusion. I think this setup, as is, will not cook a pizza properly. I need to find a means of heating so the top and bottom cook at approximately the same rate. I'll try distributing the fuel all about the edge of the grate below and try to achieve better convection. So far though, I pretty damn good pita. Breads were gone pretty fast.

• Complete set on Flickr, including more of the dome cutting details.

9 comments:

Andrew said...

That looks amazing-is the problem that the bottom gets done faster than the top, or vice versa?

Dave said...

Hey Andrew - exactly. Bottom faster than top. I'm considering placing the fuel(briquettes) all around the perimeter of the lower grate to get a better convection thing going. Have to wait until after Thanksgiving.

Chilebrown said...

Ideas like yours shaped the world that we live in. You are the Orville and Weber Wright thought of school.

Dave said...

Hey Chile,
Flattering words, thanks so much. I hope to make this better. Even if it flops, it's been fun. Been busy, got make it over your site more, smoked turkey?

Rosie said...

Dave - You are brilliant...

Dave said...

I'm blushing Rosie. But, as soon as the horrible business of xmas is over, I have some nifty runs in mind to get this thing working better.

Rev. Biggles said...

Hey man!

You know how like when you fan your fire it gets crazy hot? Such as using a little fan near a hibachi will grill that food near instantly?

The weber is too efficient and not built for what you're doing. What about getting a forced air intake on the bottom to give the coals a boost like a jet afterburner? You wouldn't need much. Maybe get some kind of vortex going inside and moving upwards out the dome?

Biggles

Dave said...

Hey Reverend! The Weber is too what I need. It's all I need. I'll get it cookin' you watch. I'm looking for a 700+ modification. I'll get it. Hopefully by Spring.

Joe said...

I saw your setup and had to cut a opening in my spare lid. My opening is not as high. This worked out great. I loved watching the cheese and dough bubble before my eyes. Took about 3 or 4 minutes for a pizza.
Thanks for the idea.