Sunday, October 7, 2012

Chicago Style Deep Dish Pizza

For me, planning a vacation is so much more than just deciding where to go, where to stay and what to do... It also includes, where to eat, what is a local favorite, and what can I not get anywhere else...  I love to scour websites and find the best places to try, and plan out each meal.  Needless to say, I have yet to make it to Chicago, it is on my list of places I'd love to go, but I haven't made it there yet.  So, until I get to experience the sights, sounds, smells, and tastes of Chicago, this is my little escape through food.

From all of the cooking shows I watch, I do know that the crust on a deep dish pizza isn't your typical crust. It is flaky, and more like a biscuit.  I kept that in mind while searching for the perfect recipe.  This one was perfect, delicious in every way.  The kids devoured their entire pizza, and Everyone rated it 5 stars!  It will be gracing our dinner table many times to come.


  • 4 cups all purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons yellow cornmeal
  • 1 3/4 teaspoons salt
  • 2 3/4 teaspoons instant yeast
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil or salad oil
  • 1 cup + 2 tablespoons lukewarm water


  • 3/4 lb. mozzarella cheese, sliced
  • 1 pound Italian sweet or hot sausage, cooked and sliced; or about 3 cups of the sautéed vegetables of your choice
  • 28-ounce can plum tomatoes, lightly crushed; or 28-ounce can diced or chopped tomatoes
  • 2 to 4 garlic cloves, peeled and minced, optional
  • 1 tablespoon sugar, optional
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons Pizza Seasoning or mixed dried Italian herbs (oregano, basil, rosemary), to taste
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmesan or Asiago cheese
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, to drizzle on top


1) To make the crust: Mix the dough ingredients, and knead — by hand, mixer, or bread machine — to make a smooth crust. This will take about 7 minutes at medium-low speed in a stand mixer.
2) Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl or 8-cup measuring cup (which makes it easy to track its rise), cover, and let rise till very puffy, about 60 minutes.
3) While the dough is rising, ready your 14 inch deep dish pizza pan (I used 2 8" cake pans and it worked great). Grease it with non-stick vegetable oil spray, then pour in 3 to 4 tablespoons olive oil, tilting it to cover the bottom of the pan, and partway up the sides.
4) Stretch the dough to make as large a circle as you can. You can do this on a lightly oiled baking mat, if you choose; or simply stretch the dough in your hands.
5) Lay the dough in the pan, and stretch it towards the edges till it starts to shrink back. Cover, and let it rest for 15 minutes. Start preheating the oven to 425°F while the dough rests.
6) Stretch the dough to cover the bottom of the pan, then gently push it up the sides of the pan. The olive oil may ooze over the edge of the crust; that's OK. Let the crust rest for 15 minutes or so, as your oven comes up to 425°F.
8) Bake the crust for 10 minutes, until it's set and barely beginning to brown. While it's baking, prepare the filling.
9) Drain the tomatoes thoroughly. Combine them with the Pizza Seasoning or herbs, and the garlic and sugar (if you're using them). Add salt to taste; you probably won't need any additional salt if you've used the Pizza Seasoning.
10) Cover the bottom of the crust with the sliced mozzarella, fanning it into the crust. Add the sausage (or sauteed vegetables), then the tomato mixture.
11) Sprinkle with the grated Parmesan, and drizzle with the olive oil.
12) Bake the pizza for about 25 minutes, or until the filling is bubbly and the topping is golden brown. Remove it from the oven, and carefully lift it out of the pan onto a rack. A giant spatula is a help here. Allow the pizza to cool for about 15 minutes (or longer, for less oozing) before cutting and serving.
Yield: about 12 servings.

The recipe was found here.

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