I have been making pizzas quite a bit on the blog. My old roommate Mark asks me each time I post a pizza, when are you going to write about the Chicago style pizza you used to make back in college. Well Mark, this one is for you. Quite frankly I was scared to recreate this meal, as it contains over 5lbs of food. Granted I could only eat one slice, but come on, it is pizza. So here is my recipe for the Deep Dish.
This one topped out at 5.5lbs. Now that is a pizza.
Deep Dish Pizza Dough
- 1 cup warm water – (110-115 degrees)
- 1 package yeast
- 2 1/2-3 cups bread flour
- 1/2 cup cornmeal
- 1/2 cup vegetable oil
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 dough – (Recipe Above)
- 1 package fresh hot Italian sausage
- 6oz pepperoni slices
- 1 can whole peeled tomatoes
- 1/2lb mozzarella cheese slices
- 1 tbs fresh basil
- 2-4 cloves garlic
- 1/4 grated parmesan cheese
The first step is to make the dough. Pour the water, yeast and 1/2 cup of the flour into a bowl. Let a sponge form, about 5 minutes. Then add 1 cup flour, 1/2 cup cornmeal, salt and 1/2 cup vegetable oil. Mix by hand or in a stand mixer with the dough hook attachment. Once everything starts to incorporate, slowly add another 1/2 cup of flour. Continue doing this until the dough pulls away from the edge of the bowl and does not absorb any more flour.
Then roll it out onto a hard floured surface and knead until smooth.
Place in a oiled bowl and let rise until doubled.
Time for the sauce
To make the sauce first drain the can of tomatoes. If you don’t your pizza will get soggy. Next place them in a bowl with salt, pepper, the basil and the garlic.
Using your hands or a pastry blender, squish the tomatoes and create a rustic sauce.
Time to form the Dough
Next find a good pizza pan. I have found that the best pan for me is a 12in spring form pan. It works great, has high edges and the pizza always slides right out. Otherwise if you have a nice pizza pan go for it. they usually come in 12in and 15in pans. If you want the real Chicago experience go for the 15in Deep Dish pan.
Now that you have the perfect pan, grease it with vegetable oil. Next place the dough in the center of the pan.
Slowly punch down the middle and work it toward the edges. Next bring it up the sides about 2-3 inches.
Time to fill
Start with the cheese. Traditional Chicago style deep dish pizzas start out with the cheese on the bottom so that it doesn’t burn during the long cook time. So layer the cheese down first.
Next add the pepperoni in a thick layer.
Now add the slightly cooked sausage. Traditionally they add the raw sausage to the pizza, but my home oven can not reach the temperatures of the ovens in the pizzerias in Chicago. So if you use raw sausage it probably won’t cook through all the way. Further by the time that it does cook through, your crust will be burnt. So slightly cook the sausage until no longer pink on the outside. Then layer it into the pizza pan.
Now cover the pizza with the pizza sauce. It will probably require all of it.
Finally dust the top with the Parmesan cheese.
Place into a preheated 500 degree oven for 15 minutes. When the time is up turn the oven down to 400 degrees and continue to bake for 25 minutes.
This is an amazing pie weighing in at 5 1/2 lbs. That is a lot of pizza. I have taken the liberty of photographing the finished pie next to my beer to show you the true scale of this beast.
When cut it makes some big slices.
Not very many people can say that they had the same pizza for four meals. I am proud of this one. It is amazing.