Friday, December 5, 2008

Deep Dish Delight

It's Pizza Friday again. We skipped it last week, still suffering under the weight of so much turkey, stuffing and mashed potatoes. But having had about a week to recover, we were ready for some hearty fare tonight. This recipe differs from my usual pizza recipe in that it is cooked in my cast iron skillet, and loaded with diced tomatoes, spicy Italian turkey sausage, and plenty of mozzarella cheese. This is not ordinary thin-crust pizza. It is hot and gooey, and needs to be eaten with a fork and knife, at least if you do not wish to wear your dinner. This recipe, adapted from Gourmet Cookbook, is sure to please and makes a delicious meal on a cold night.

Deep Dish Chicago Style Pizza


2 1/2 t yeast (or one package)
1/4 t sugar
1/2 C warm water (about 105°)
1 1/2 C flour
1/4 C cornmeal
1 T olive oil
1/2 t salt

Mix water, sugar and yeast in a bowl and let sit for 5 minutes, or until foamy. Stir in flour, cornmeal, salt and olive oil and turn out onto board and knead to combine. Continue kneading for about 5 minutes, or until the dough is smooth and elastic. Put in oiled bowl and flip to oiled side up. Cover with plastic and set aside to rise in a warm place until doubled in size for about 1 hour.


14 oz. diced tomatoes (drained)
2 C mozzarella cheese, grated
1 t oregano
1/2 pound spicy turkey Italian sausage
salt and pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 500°.

Remove casing from sausage and crumble and brown in a heavy skillet (I use my 9 inch cast iron should not be non-stick!). Stir in tomatoes and oregano and season with salt and pepper. Remove to a paper towel lined bowl to drain. Wipe out skillet and when dough has risen, punch it down and roll it out into a 10 inch circle. Grease skillet and press dough into bottom and up sides. Let rest, covered for 15 minutes. Sprinkle with 1 C of the cheese, add the sausage tomato mixture, and top with the remaining cup of cheese.

Bake at 500° degrees for 12 minutes. Turn down the heat to 400° and bake for 8 minutes more or until crust is golden and filling is bubbling hot.

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