Thursday, April 14, 2011

Deep Dish Pizzas : The Results are in!

First, allow me to start by saying:  I love Bobby Flay.  At first I thought he was kind of cocky and off-putting, but watching him on Throwdown*  makes me really like him.  I love his interaction with his two assistants, Stephanie and Miriam (yes, I know their names).  It seems like they really have fun - and I love that they give him a hard time when he needs it.  I think he really respects his opponents on the show, and ever since he challenged Pioneer Woman (and she won), I love him even more! 

*Throwdown is an American show aired on Food Network, where Chef Bobby Flay challenges people who specialize in a specific food - ice cream, baked alaska, lasagna, pie, etc. - making a version of their specialty - impartial judges taste both foods and declare a winner.  

I've never visited any of his restaurants, but I've tried many of his recipes and each one was delicious.  Ever since I received the deep dish pizza pans from my sister-in-law, I've been researching various recipes.  The ingredients ran the gamut from vegetable oil, cornmeal, honey, yeast, no yeast, etc.  Some recipes involved kneading, some involved folding the dough like a letter (I immediately stopped reading that one!).  When I found a recipe from a Throwdown episode, I felt confident that I could make an authentic Chicago-style pizza.  I trust Bobby, after all. 

Here is the pizza dough recipe - it sounded pretty easy, and it was.  Plus, I already had all of the ingredients - huge bonus!

2 packages dry yeast
2 cups warm water (90 degrees)
1/4 cup canola oil
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 cup yellow cornmeal
5 1/2 cups all purpose flour
4 tsp kosher salt
4 T unsalted butter, softened

1.  Dissolve the yeast and water in the bottom of your stand mixer bowl (with the paddle attachment).  Add oils and mix for 30 seconds.
2.  Add 3 cups of the flour and salt and beat for 5 minutes.
3.  Switch to the dough hook.  Add the remaining amount of flour and knead for 3 minutes.
4.  Add the butter and continue kneading until butter is incorporated.
5.  Put into a large oiled bowl, cover and allow to rise until double.  Punch down dough and allow to rise until double again.

after the second rising

And now on to the fun part - assembly!  

place into your pizza pan

add one slice provolone, shredded mozzarella and pizza seasonings

top with pepperoni or desired meat or veggies

top pepperoni with tomato sauce

top tomato sauce with shredded parmesan
steps 1-4

bake at 375 degrees for 40 minutes

see how many tiny pieces you can eat

These pizzas were amazing!  When I mentioned carb-loading yesterday, I wasn't kidding.  Somehow, though, they weren't too doughy.  You can see how the dough gathered in so much air.  The fact that the girls and I only ate 2 tiny pieces, though, tells you how filling this was!  The next time I make this, I'm going to half the dough and see how it goes.  It was so interesting how the cheese seemed to melt down into the dough - it was hard to distinguish, but the flavor was still there.

Rob was really hungry and he managed to eat a whole pizza.  He's not normally a carb guy, but he went crazy for this pizza.  And, like our favorite pizza place in Colorado, he ate his crusts with honey (and let me tell you, he never eats the crust).

I've never seen the particular Throwdown episode that Bobby challenges a Chicago pizza restaurant, so I don't know who won - but I felt like a winner after we ate our pizza!


  1. man, that looks delicious! i can't believe how filling it is since the dishes seem so small. seems like your searching for the right crust paid off! i'll have to give it a try, as well. thanks again for sharing!

  2. WAY TO GO for using yeast! And those look amazing! Now I have to ask-- what is the fav pizza place in CO you are talking about? Is it in Winterpark???? I think I know the one! And yes, when there, you must eat the crust with honey :)

  3. It's BeauJo's - I think it's probably the same - the location where we ate was in Idaho Springs. So fun and delicious - although this recipe gives them a run for their money - kind of :)

  4. That looks really good Kirsten. I've always liked thin crust pizza, but I just might have to give this one a try. I haven't seen Throwdown yet, I'm sure it will be showing on here eventually.

  5. How big were the dishes if you could only eat a couple of pieces?

    It looks good and pepperoni is the kind of pizza I would make - with anchovies and kalamata olives!