Chicago Deep Dish Style

The pizza adventure continues on to Chicago Style deep dish pizza. The Chicago deep dish is pizza that invokes memories for me. I had the only real surprise birthday party that I have ever had at a place that serves Chicago deep dish, I really had no idea it was even going down until I heard "Surprise!" What an awesome night, it was my 21st birthday, thank god my friends took my car keys! One of the first home pizzas that I ever made was a Chicago style deep dish from an on-line recipe. It was not even remotely as good as the this recipe from The Pizza Bible.

I must admit, I made some errors making this pizza last night. Usually, I use a cup measurer to measure the dough onto a container on my scale. I like that method because, if the container moves/slides and the scale re-calculates, then at least you know remotely where you are in the measurement process. Yesterday, I by-passed that method and poured the Ceresota flour into the container on my scale. I think the container must have been off balance on the scale and/or slide and the scale did not accurately reflect the weight of the flour in the container. Also, instead of weigh the dough, I simply started balling the dough. Weighing the dough would have caught the mistake of having to much dough and/or water, but the recipe makes one dough ball, minus 5 grams of additional dough that I figured would probably have aided in the rolling process. I need to purchase a scale that has more real-estate to weigh on, any brand/type suggestions or sites are certainly welcome.

48 hours of rising later - the dough was pulled and rolled at 57.5 degree fahrenheit. My rolling mat is only circled out to 16 inches beyond that is the end of the mat. The roll was definitely easier than the St. Louis Style. The recipe called for a roll out to 17 inches, I am wondering if that is for the 13 inch pan? I decided to see how my seasoned 12 inch Lodge skillet would work with the recipe, I think it did good, the dough did not get stuck, but that might have been because I misread the recipe call for butter as tablespoons instead of teaspoons. I got the dough onto the skillet and there was mad overhang and I thought something was wrong. I could not decide if it was just excess dough from a weighing issue, or if it was normal excess that was to be removed, or pressed into the sides. I decided to keep it and press it into the sides. My pizza definitely had excess crust, which was not a problem for me, because I am a crust guy.

What a filling, tasty pizza!

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Matthew D.
posted almost 3 years ago

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This looks really good!! I learn how to make pizzas better every single time I make one ... how to roll the dough, how to transfer it to a peel, how to slide it to a stone, how to top and finish it right, the timing and temp of the bake, choosing the best ingredients, buying the right equipment for the job, etc. There are so many small and important steps/skills involved in the process. Thanks for sharing ... it looks delicious!

P.S. The 17" roll is for the 13" wide, 2" tall circular pan. It would need to be adjusted down for a narrower/shorter pan like a 12" skillet. Also, look at my dough from the deep dish I made. It wasn't as fluffy as your's. I'm not sure what would cause that ... more flour, more yeast, longer rise, less thinly rolled out, etc.

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Paul S.
posted almost 3 years ago

Thanks! I am not sure what made the dough so fluffy. I used for the dough: Ceresota flour, Red Star Dry Yeast, substitute Crisco Vegetable Shortener for lard - because I forgot to order it in advance, Red Star dry yeast, natural spring water, Tony's Diastatic Malt, House of Autry Plain Yellow Corn Meal, Land 'O' Lakes European Butter, Maldon Fine Sea Salt. All of the ingredients except the flour were measured meticulously. My scales surface can handle the smaller containers used with those, it is the flour that needs a larger container that sometimes shifts on the scale or gets off balance and forces a recalculation/error. I am searching for a new scale, there are just so many options it is daunting to even think about them all. I always use a candy/instant thermometer for the water temperature, that part is said to be critical for the controlling yeast activity. It may be the yeast, warm and cold water temperatures. The last step for me in mixing is pouring the yeast into the warm water and giving a vigorous mix. Practically immediately after that, the ice-cold water is poured into the flour mixture followed by the yeast-warm water mix and then the ice cold reserve yeast slosh. Maybe it was the additional flour from the mis-weigh and subsequent additional water necessary for it to come together in the mixer. The dough was needed for approximately 2 minutes of kneading followed by an hour of resting beneath a room temp, damp kitchen cloth. Immediately after resting the dough was balled, tray'd and wrapped. 48 Hours of rise later, it was pulled and rolled. The dough was fluffy before the roll, so it was probably not the roll. I had to cut the roll short at 16" because the mat actually ends there and the counter was unchartered territory. My initial guess was that the additional flour, water had something to do with extra amount of dough. As to the fluffiness, that I do not know, but the above information may help to see what might have happened.

- Matthew   almost 3 years ago

For a scale I like the Soehnle Page Profi. 0.1oz/1g increments up to 15kg/33lbs. Accurate enough for flour, but can also double for packages, baby scale, etc. with the higher weight limit than your typical 5kg kitchen scale. Glass top is easy to clean. No nooks and crannies for flour on the top. ~$50

You'll need a separate pocket scale for salt and other small things, but that is typical.

Mark S.
posted almost 3 years ago

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