It’s obviously been a little while since I last wrote. And while one might think that would leave me with an excess of things to talk about, all I really want to talk about is this:
and just one more time for good measure, this:
Pizza is kind of a favorite around here. I would say that on average, I make homemade pizza about twice a month. Several weeks ago, our pizza-eating experience was taken to new levels when I attempted deep-dish pizza for the first time. We have never looked back. I’ve now made this dish three times, and each time it is every bit as scrumptious.
I’m obviously no food-blogger, much less a food photographer, so the pictures hardly do it justice. But I just wanted you to know. I made that. And it was awesome.
1 pkg yeast
1 and 3/4 cup warm water
1 and 3/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup olive oil (SCANT 1/4 cup!)
4 and 1/2 cups flour (I use half all purpose, half whole wheat)
Mix yeast and warm water, let sit til dissolved. Add half the flour and beat till smooth-ish, stir in as much of the rest of the flour as you can, then knead til smooth and elastic. Don’t over-knead it…the dough should be slightly sticky, but not tacky. Huge clumps should not still be attaching themselves to your hand.
Cover, let sit in a warm place til double, about one hour. (The time largely depends on if you have the ideal environment for the dough to rise…I like to turn on the oven JUST til I can feel the first warmth, then I turn it off and put the dough in there. Perfect.)
Note: This recipe makes enough dough for two deep dish pizzas, if you are using a pie pan. If you want to make just one, let the dough rise and then freeze half of it.
Once the dough has doubled, take it out of the oven (this is important) and THEN preheat the oven to 450. While it’s preheating, assemble the pizzas.
To assemble your pizzas, divide the dough in half, and work each half into the pie pan. Make sure the dough comes all the way up the sides. Have a good amount of shredded mozzarella or pizza cheese blend (I’ve been shredding mozzarella and monteray jack and blending the two). You’ll add the cheese first, and you want to make sure you’ve got enough for maybe a cup and a half per pizza. Just pile it on. If you feel adventurous, sprinkle some black pepper over the cheese. Just sayin.
In terms of the rest of the toppings, it’s entirely up to you. I normally think that plain pepperoni pizza is b-o-r-i-n-g, but when it comes in deep dish form, magic happens. I’ll just tell you what toppings I used for these two, and you can let your creativity take it from there.
First pizza was just a pepperoni pizza. On top of the cheese, pile on pepperoni. I just used a single layer, but I overlapped the pepperonis slightly, so that the cheese was entirely covered. Sprinkle some oregano on top of that, then pour the sauce over the pepperoni. Approximately half a jar, but again–it’s entirely up to you how saucy you want this pie.
Second pizza was a little more exciting. Spinach, feta, onion and tomato. Chop up a tomato, sprinkle it over the cheese. I like a lot of tomato, so I piled it on. Same with the onion (I maybe used half of a small onion), then crumble up some feta and sprinkle it over the tomato and onion. Again, I love feta so I really, you know, piled it on. (Are you seeing a theme here?) Roughly chop up a big ol’ handful of spinach, and heap that on top of the rest of the toppings. You will want to put about twice as much spinach as you would think you will need, because as it cooks, it will shrink. Like a lot. So…heap it up. Add the sauce, approximately half a jar and attempt to spread it around evenly. Give up in frustration.
Put the pizza pies in the preheated oven, bake 20-25 minutes. Crust should be golden brown. To serve, see pictures above. Enjoy!