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Crunchypop

Cooking Pizza In A Pottery Kiln, Toxicity ?

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Hi All,

This seemed the most appropriate heading in the forum list.

 

After posting a request on the Potter Network Facebook group page about cooking pizzas in my small test kiln,(https://www.facebook.com/groups/219780908063139/permalink/1029158647125357/?comment_id=1029269030447652&notif_t=group_comment) I was interested to get many opinions/comments on the hazards of what I was doing. Whilst the majority thought that it was a good idea to cook in the kiln, I am interested in finding out if there are any real hazards and if it is dangerous to health in any way.

I first must state that the kiln shelf I use is a designated "pizza" shelf only for food. I vacuum the inside of the electric kiln out reasonably often and that the Pizza is generally cooked in about 10 minutes at about 260 c.

 

I welcome your views.

 

Thanks

 

 

post-74236-0-20006700-1453242199_thumb.jpeg

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Really bad idea. It's not just the dust, but the fumes from all the stuff that's been burning out of your clay and glazes, including metals. When the kiln heats up those things come out and can get into your food. Would you eat food off your glazing table? No. So don't eat food from your kiln either. Food and industrial processes don't go together.

Chilly and Chris Campbell like this

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Well, other than WHY do this in such a difficult way ...

Lowering a shelf with a pizza on it into a hot kiln with heat blasting in your face ...

Waiting and lifting hot motzerella out of a hot kiln with heat blasting in your face ....

 

.... Is the answer to WHY? ... Because it's there?

DirtRoads likes this

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All the stuff I mix as I make glazes off gases to some degree into a kiln not to mention the bad stuff in clay when bisquing. That stuff ends up in the bricks. 

It comes back out when warmed. Do not eat in studio or cook there.

I think its similair reason we humans do not eat off the ground-I could think of a few others but they where grosser.

Is this your only heat source as well?

 

I have to go -dinners ready with an extra helping of heavy metal fumes and copper toppings

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So just so we're clear, I don't have any hesitation in saying the OP is having a laugh at our expense.  Mark Dally, the OP--Crunchypop, is a potter with a lot of experience (like, graduated from art school with an MA in ceramic design the year before I was born kind of experience).  He knows better than this.  He fires lustres and brightly coloured wares all the time.  From what I've seen of him on social media, he's got a bit of an impish sense of humour, too.

 

At least, I hope for the sake of his health that he knows better after 34 years plus of working with ceramics....

Crunchypop likes this

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As I said over there on the Facebook post showing the pizza in the kiln,  "Wonder what else is flavoring that pizza?"

 

It is a terrible idea since unless some testing is actually done.... no one DOES know what contaminants are there.  It is likely there is NO issue.  But...........

 

SO ... is the gun loaded?  No one checked the chamber yet. 

 

Just because something CAN be done does not mean is should be done.

 

best,

 

................john

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So just so we're clear, I don't have any hesitation in saying the OP is having a laugh at our expense.  Mark Dally, the OP--Crunchypop, is a potter with a lot of experience (like, graduated from art school with an MA in ceramic design the year before I was born kind of experience).  He knows better than this.  He fires lustres and brightly coloured wares all the time.  From what I've seen of him on social media, he's got a bit of an impish sense of humour, too.

 

At least, I hope for the sake of his health that he knows better after 34 years plus of working with ceramics....

 

 

If it is a joke, it's irresponsible of him to post something like that on the 'net, where folks who don't have his level of experience might think it's okay.

JBaymore likes this

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I'm curious to know how the pizza was and now he's got me thinking of barbecuing in there. Stick the franks on bead racks and stilts to raise the burgers of the kiln wash?

 

or franks on a stick through the peephole might be fun

Crunchypop likes this

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The only way to be sure it's safe, is to send the pizza to a certified lab for testing.

You'd have to make two , one in conventional oven and one in kiln.. ingredients of some pizzas questionable at the best of times.... then send them in...

Joking here not to be practised.. Could be a money spinner..old shelves for pizza stones

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I'll disagree with all the naysayers about it being dangerous. Do you really think that the air of the kiln is getting so contaminated with metals when heated to <300°C? I see no logic in that. Do you wear a respirator when unloading the kiln? No. So where is the hazard coming from? The inside of a kiln is one of the most sterile places I can think of and the inside of it is at most as dangerous as the work coming out it. (I personally would avoid doing it after a luster firing.)

 

You can cook a turkey wrapped in paper clay in a kiln too.

Crunchypop and Bunnybaer like this

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I had the same idea bevore,too.... but I didn´t realize it....It´s because my oven is still sooo BIG and I´m searching for an idea to use the head of it after glazing economical... But heating it up only for pizza? Wouldn´t that be very expensive?

Recently I don´t use it for making Pizza, I´m using the heat for drying my leatherhard things. I put them into the oven and close the door. The things stay there until I stick the oven up with my new things. So I have a clear mind....and my things dry quicklier... :rolleyes:

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 Do you really think that the air of the kiln is getting so contaminated with metals when heated to <300°C?

 

No.. the kiln interior (elements, refractories, posts, and so on) are not when the kiln is heated to  300C.  It is when the NORMAL firings are taking place that the fuming (fumes are basically tiny dust particles not "gases) of compounds comes out of the glazes being fired.  Then in the activity of re-heating to 'pizza cone', the air currents and the handling of getting things in and out are potentially able to get those particles onto the food.

 

Biologically... yes, of course the heat treatment of a kiln will kill things like bacteria (and most viruses).  That is not the question or the concern.

 

The CORE issue comes down to, "Do you KNOW what is in there?"  If you don't, is it simply plain stupidity to assume that it is perfectly safe.  To promote the practice without warnings in places like Facebo0ok and here is irresponsible.  The total point is that YOU DO NOT KNOW IT IS OK!

 

You are correct that there is small exposure to such materials also when loading and unloading kilns.  A lot of folks I work with in Japan wear respirators for that job (N95 paper masks). Why would anyone want to potentially ADD to the micro-exposures we already get in so many ways in the studio by eating food prepared in a kiln? 

 

Note that William Carty advocates washing off wares that contain copper in the glazes because of the deposit on the surfaces.  Not that copper compounds are all that toxic except to people with Wilson's Disease <rare one>.  But many things, like metals, fume.

 

Personally I don't check if the gun is loaded by aiming it at my foot and pulling the trigger.

 

best,

 

................john

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LOL! Can I point out the obvious? One slice of that giant pizza (generous 22? Inch wheat crust, some type of nitrate cured meat, (s)?, mozzarella cheese, tomatoe sauce) has 30gm carbohydrates alone, and few people alive will eat one slice at a time. 2? 3? 5? At a sitting? Talk about insulin resistance on a plate.... Diabetes, anyone?

 

The thing in that picture most likely to lead to his demise isn't the kiln, I would surmise, but the pizza itself :).

 

Let's talk about gaseous toxicities when the subject being toasted is red peppers or cauliflower.

JBaymore likes this

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The only way to be sure it's safe, is to send the pizza to a certified lab for testing.

I'll be researching the costs at the local ceramic laboratory tomorrow. Luckily Stoke on Trent is awash with the facilities to test fired ceramics. I wonder how they will react to my request to test a pizza.

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