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A 50-pound hunk of burning love

When we dream of kitchen renovations, we dream of a wood-fired oven.

In the meantime, we’re happy to settle for the new Modernist Cuisine baking steel.

The idea for the impressive 14-by-16-inch metal slab was born when Andris Lagsdin, a pizza lover who works at a steel company, was thumbing through the Modernist Cuisine cookbook and found a technique for cooking pizza on hot metal. 

After prototyping a steel slab for his home oven, he partnered with Nathan Myhrvold and the Modernist Cuisine team to perfect the tool, which is now available in a limited run ($99). 

We tried it out in Tasting Table’s test kitchen and were thrilled with the results: Preheated at 450°, the steel gave our pizza a gorgeously blistered crust after just three minutes. It bested our results on a ceramic pizza stone (and in a fraction of the time). We also used the steel as a griddle for our pancakes by placing it atop an induction burner, with great success.

But please take caution: The steel is quite heavy, so put it on a well-supported oven rack.

Still, it’s lighter than a wood-fired oven.

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