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I am working mom who loves to cook and bake. I hope to keep track of recipes and share some of my better ones. In the process, hopefully my photography and cooking will get better and better!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Chicago Style Pizza

We make a lot of homemade pizza.  My brother in law is obsessed with a local Chicago style pizza joint in his home, and of course has taken us there, leaving us with a craving but no outlet.  The thing I love about this pizza is the crust.  The layering with butter gives it this nice flakiness reminiscent of a pie crust but in no way sweet.  You can "bottom" this anyway you want- we chose Pepperoni in honor of my brother in law.  It's a nice change, and best of all, you can make it in advance and pop it into the fridge, unbaked, and cook it the next night.  It also can be frozen, unbaked and assembled, for more long term meal planning.

Chicago Style Deep Dish Pizza
Adapted from Annie's Eats, who adapted from Cook's Illustrated

For the dough:
1½ cups plus 2 tbsp. (8 1/8 oz.) all-purpose flour
¼ cup (1 3/8 oz.) yellow cornmeal
¾ tsp. salt
1 tsp. sugar
1 1/8 tsp. instant yeast
½ cup plus 2 tbsp. (5 oz.) water, at room temperature
1½ tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
1 tsp. olive oil
2 tbsp. unsalted butter, softened

For the sauce:
1 tbsp. unsalted butter
2 tbsp. grated onion
Pinch of dried oregano
¼ tsp. salt
1 clove garlic, minced or pressed
1 (14.5 oz) can crushed tomatoes
Pinch of sugar
2 tbsp. fresh basil leaves, coarsely chopped (1/2 tsp dried in times of supermarket disappointment)
1½ tsp. extra-virgin olive oil
Ground black pepper

For assembling and topping:
2 tbsp. olive oil
8 oz. mozzarella, shredded (about 2 cups)
¼ oz. Parmesan cheese, grated (about 2 tbsp.)
1 package turkey pepperoni

To make the dough, mix the flour, cornmeal, salt, sugar and yeast in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook on low speed.  Mix about 1 minute until blended.  Add the water and melted butter and continue mixing on low speed until fully combined, 1-2 minutes, scraping the sides and bottom of the bowl occasionally.  Increase the speed to medium-low and knead until the dough is glossy and smooth- and gluten developed-, and pulls away from the sides of the bowl, 4-5 minutes.

 Coat a medium bowl with 1 teaspoon of the olive oil- by hand is fine.  Transfer the dough to the bowl, turning once to coat with oil.  Cover with plastic wrap and let rise at room temperature until nearly doubled, about 45-60 minutes.

While the dough is rising, make the sauce.  Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat.  Add the onion, oregano, and salt.  Cook, stirring occasionally, until the liquid has evaporated and the onion is golden brown, but not burnt, about 5 minutes.  Add the garlic and cook just until the fragrance fills the kitchen, about 30 seconds.  Stir in the tomatoes and sugar and increase the heat to medium-high.  Bring the mixture to a simmer, then lower the heat to medium-low and continue to simmer until reduced to about 1¼ cups, about 25 minutes depending on your definition of medium high heat.  Off the heat, stir in the basil and oil.  Season with about 3/4 tsp salt and 1/4 teaspoon- 25 grinds- pepper to taste.

To laminate the dough, turn the dough out onto a dry work surface and roll into a 8- by 6-inch rectangle.  Using an offset spatula or butter knife, spread the softened butter over the surface of the dough, leaving a ½-inch border around the edges.  Starting at the short end, roll the dough into a tight cylinder.  With the seam side down, flatten the cylinder into a 9- by 2 inch rectangle with a rolling pin.  Fold into thirds like a business letter, pinch the seams to form a ball, and return to the oiled bowl.  Cover tightly with plastic wrap and let rise in the refrigerator until nearly doubled in size, 40-50 minutes.  Time crunched people cooking for tomorrow's dinner can just roll it into the pan at this point since it will rise somewhat when it sits until tomorrow night's dinner.

Preheat the oven to 425˚ F.  To assemble, coat a 9-inch round cake pan with 2 tablespoons of olive oil.  Transfer the dough ball to a dry work surface and roll out into a 13-inch disk about ¼-inch thick.  Transfer the dough to the pan.  Lightly press the dough into the pan, working into the corners and 1 inch up the sides.  If the dough resists stretching, let rest 5 minutes before trying again.

Sprinkle the pepperoni, then the shredded mozzarella over the surface of the dough.  Spread the tomato sauce over the cheese and top with Parmesan.  Bake until the crust is golden brown, 20-30 minutes.  Remove from the oven and let rest 10 minutes before slicing and serving.

Yield: 1 9-inch deep-dish pizza

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