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Michael Paskevicius


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Deep-Dish Pizza Dough
1-2 tablespoon dry yeast
1 cup warm water
3 cups flour
1/2 cup cornflour
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 cup olive oil

Deep-Dish Pizza Filling
1 can whole peeled canned tomatoes
sausage/salami/vegetables – you can go crazy here and insert your favorites
sliced mushrooms
chopped peppers
Basil/Oregano – I forgot to add these, put them in with the canned tomatoes
Salt/Pepper as desired

Combine the yeast and half the water together and set them aside to get to know each other. Once they are friends small bubbles will appear in the water. Add the flour and cornflour and form a small volcano in which you can add the salt, sugar, and olive oil. Mix the whole mess together until it starts to form into a ball of dough. Often more water or flour will help this process along based on the feel of the dough. It should not feel sticky or too dry. Once you have a nice ball of dough you can remove it from the bowl and start to knead on a lightly floured surface. Knead the dough for as long as your hands can endure. Then set the dough ball aside in a lightly flour dusted bowl under a moist towel for it to rise at lease for an hour.

Note: My dough has never really turned out to be perfect so use this formula with care and your suggestions are welcome.

November 13, 2008 Edit: The trick to good dough is to make it the day before. You will not get the same results from dough made and eaten in the same day. Mix it, knead it, let it rise for an hour, knead it again, put it in a sealed container with a bit of olive oil and flour and leave it overnight.

If you are fanatical like me, consult Jeff Verasano’s website for all you might ever need to know.

After an hour your dough should have risen significantly. Punch it down and continue to knead it for about 5 minutes or so. Then you can roll it out on a flour dusted surface with a rolling pin. I didn’t have a rolling pin so I used a 500ml beer as a roller, it worked !!! Roll the dough just slightly larger than the pie plate and then over a light coating of oil you can begin to work your dough into the plate and up the sides.

Now I decided to try something new here, I normally top my pizza and slide it into the oven, however this time I wanted to try a pre bake of the crust alone to firm up the base. I baked it at 200C/400F for about 4 minutes and it really proved to be a good tip as the base was now firm and had risen slightly.

With a deep dish pizza you have to consider the filling. This is not a pizza anymore, it’s a pie! It just happens to have similar core ingredients. I decided to buy some traditional English sausage, fry it up with some candied onion and place the sliced up sausage into my pie.

Just as if you are making a lasagna, you need to start layering in your ingredients. I put the sausage and onion mixture in the bottom, followed by a layer of drained and chopped canned tomatoes, followed by sliced mushroom and red pepper. Finally a layer of sliced mozzarella and additionally I added some crumbled feta. I decided to top this pie with some freshly sliced tomatoes just to keep it from drying out and some fresh ground pepper.

This is what it looked like before going into the oven.

Another recent tip I discovered is the need for high heat when cooking pizza. Some people say that you should use the highest possible heat that you can get out of your oven. I went for 200C/400F for this pie and it cooked for about 30 minutes.

It’s important to remove the pie from the pan as soon as you get it out of the oven. Leave it to rest for a few minutes before attacking.

You can see that my crust did not really continue to rise while I cooked it. I am still working on the best way to get light fluffy crusts.

Looks brilliant, and smells tremendous.


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