Monday, May 31, 2010

For the last two years, I’ve spent Memorial Day weekend with my friends Melissa and Sean in Chicago.   They both appreciate eating as much as I do (Mel and I discovered our mutual gluttony in college) so I told them we had to make a special post while I was here.  We settled on a traditional deep dish pizza (which, according to wikipedia, was created in 1943 at Pizzeria Uno.)
To be completely honest, we weren’t crazy about the dough recipe we used – it kept its structure pretty well, but wasn’t as flavorful/flaky/deep dishy as we’d hoped (EDIT: dough was much better when reheated for lunch the next day!)… plus it took FOREVER to make!  Three hours from start to finish!  We ate at 10pm (and then promptly fell asleep on the couch in the 80 degree weather.)

Deep Dish Pizza Dough Recipe (via Cooks Illustrated)
3 1/4 cups (16 1/4 ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour 1/2 cup (2 3/4 ounces) yellow cornmeal 1 1/2 teaspoons table salt 2 teaspoons sugar 2 1/4 teaspoons instant or rapid-rise yeast 1 1/4 cups water (10 ounces), room temperature 3 tablespoons unsalted butter , melted, plus 4 tablespoons, softened 1 teaspoon plus 4 tablespoons olive oilInstructions (THIS IS INTENSE!!)
Mix flour, cornmeal, salt, sugar, and yeast in bowl of stand mixer fitted with dough hook on low speed until incorporated, about 1 minute. Add water and melted butter and mix on low speed until fully combined, 1 to 2 minutes, scraping sides and bottom of bowl occasionally. Increase speed to medium and knead until dough is glossy and smooth and pulls away from sides of bowl, 4 to 5 minutes. (Dough will only pull away from sides while mixer is on. When mixer is off, dough will fall back to sides.)
Using fingers, coat large bowl with 1 teaspoon olive oil, rubbing excess oil from fingers onto blade of rubber spatula. Using oiled spatula, transfer dough to bowl, turning once to oil top; cover tightly with plastic wrap. Let rise at room temperature until nearly doubled in volume, 45 to 60 minutes.
TO LAMINATE THE DOUGH: Adjust oven rack to lower position and heat oven to 425 degrees. Using rubber spatula, turn dough out onto dry work surface and roll into 15- by 12-inch rec-tangle. Using offset spatula, spread softened butter over surface of dough, leaving 1/2-inch border along edges. Starting at short end, roll dough into tight cylinder. With seam side down, flatten cylinder into 18- by 4-inch rectangle. Cut rectangle in half crosswise. Working with 1 half, fold into thirds like business letter; pinch seams together to form ball. Repeat with remaining half. Return balls to oiled bowl, cover tightly with plastic wrap, and let rise in refrigerator until nearly doubled in volume, 40 to 50 minutes.
Coat two 9-inch round cake pans with 2 tablespoons olive oil each. Transfer 1 dough ball to dry work surface and roll out into 13-inch disk about 1/4 inch thick. Transfer dough to pan by rolling dough loosely around rolling pin and unrolling into pan. Lightly press dough into pan, working into corners and 1 inch up sides. If dough resists stretching, let it relax 5 minutes before trying again. Repeat with remaining dough ball.
(see what I mean?  Where’s a Bobeli when you need one?!)
The dough is enough for two pizzas, so we made one more traditional and one non.
Toppings for Pizza #11 can of Muir Glen Fire Roasted Tomatoes (I buy these tomatoes all the time and use them for pasta, pizza.. everything.  Super tasty.)2 cups sauteed spinach5 cloves roasted garlic3 cups of grated Mozzarella 3/4 grated Pecorino cheese Toppings for Pizza #21 cup of sliced and roasted baby red potatoes2 cups Mozzarella (1 cup regular, one cup smoked)3/4 cup Pecorino cheese1/2 cup caramelized onions5 cloves roasted garlic2 tbls rosemary
(Traditionally, most of the cheese goes on the bottom, with the other ingredients piled on top of that, but we sort of forgot that rule, as you can tell by the pictures.)
Bake pizzas at 425 degrees until crust is golden brown, 20 to 30 minutes. Remove pizza from oven and let rest 10 minutes before slicing and serving.

Poorly sliced for your enjoyment:

What an epic preparation!  We were so full from snacking while we cooked that we barely touched the pizzas (but will be eating the leftovers for lunch.)  I’m not sure how soon I’ll be making pizza again, but I’m glad we had this adventure.  I’m sad to be leaving Chicago today, especially with Melissa and Sean moving back to Seattle this summer.  I’ll no doubt want to return again next year, but I won’t have my lovely hosts to show me around!  I’ll especially miss this one:

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