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Deep Dish Debacle

Let me first say that I love this forum...I should have taken a trip here before the above mentioned debacle. Brief pizza history...first pizza, too thick, too much sauce, assembled to long before going on the stone...flour absorbed into the dough and made it almost impossible to transfer the pie to the preheated stone. Crust was crispy on bottom, and doughy under the sauce, wasn't the worst thing I've ever eaten, but that's only because I've eaten bugs and other nonsense, just to win a bet. The second and third pizzas, thinner, less sauce, assembled just before going on the stone, turned out great. Thought I would make a deep dish...preheated the deep stone, made the crust a little thicker again, assembled it on parchment paper just before putting it in the stone. the transfer was a mess...the dam broke, sauce and cheese on the stone, came part way apart, getting it to separate from the stone was difficult..all I put on the stone was fine ground cornmeal. It did cook, and the flavor was OK, but it was still doughy, and still a mess to handle. When I did check the deep dish posts, I saw one that showed a partially precooked crust, but the others were not. The stone and the CI cooks showed copious amounts of olive oil put in the stone or skillet, and the pies were actually assembled in the stone...I thought the stone needed to be up to temp before the pie went in, and I guess I thought I wasn't supposed to put oil on the stone. Now that I've prattled on too much, here are my I need to partially cook the crust before assembling the pie? should I always plan on assembling the pie in the stone? should the stone be preheated at all? always use olive oil in the stone prior to assembly? I didn't make my own dough, but will at some point. The first crust was a freezable premixed store brand dough, which we didn't care for. The next two were easy to use Betty Crocker mix...tasted good but we had little to compare with. Opinions on home made VS mixes, and which mix is most desired. Sorry I bounced around a little, but I like to cook, and I don't like to fail.     Thank you for any help.

Duuane  :)

Franklinville, Western NY


  • BudgeezerBudgeezer Posts: 637
    Search for user zippylip he has a great skillet dough recipe and how to.
    Edina, MN

  • jtcBoyntonjtcBoynton Posts: 2,111
    Deep dish and thin crust are two different animals.  A lot of the discussion on the forum pertains to thin crust (or medium).  Be careful which style is being discussed when picking up hints.

    Assemble the pie in the dish without pre-heating - you already found out why you don't try to assemble in a hot deep dish pan.  What you have is a ceramic dish, not a pizza stone. Preheating and not oiling pertain to flat pizza stones used for thin/medium crust pizza. If you get time and temp correct, you do not need to partially cook the crust before assembling, although some do. Different paths that get you to the same end result.
    Southeast Florida - LBGE
    In cooking, often we implement steps for which we have no explanations other than ‘that’s what everybody else does’ or ‘that’s what I have been told.’  Dare to think for yourself.
  • JstrokeJstroke Posts: 1,798
    First of all let me say when it comes to deep dish a cast iron skillet works wonders. Dough goes in cold with a little oil, smear around with paper towel etc. second, dough is super easy. We use americas test kitchen recipe. Buy yeast at restaurant supply store like GFS marketplace, maybe sams or costco has it. Dry instant yeast. Should be 1 lb. brick. Store in fridge in tupperware etc. Much cheaper than grocery store little jar. Second, bread flour, third kosher salt, last oil and water. A good stand mixer can help but not necessary. Cook indirect at slightly lower temps than thin crust so it has a chance to bake.
    Columbus, Ohio--A Gasser filled with Matchlight and an Ugly Drum.
  • jerryb78jerryb78 Posts: 215
    There was a very good thread in here recently about Chicago style deep dish. I suggest checking it out.
    Menasha, WI
  • DuuaneDuuane Posts: 53
    Thanks for the info..I will change my process with an eye in success. I'll also check out the suggested threads.
    Franklinville, Western NY
  • Carolina QCarolina Q Posts: 13,011
    Duuane, I've never used a ceramic or cast iron pan for Chicago deep dish, just a heavy gauge steel pan. Here's the Chicago thread already mentioned... As I recall, others used CI and BGE stone pans for this recipe. Check it out. And don't pre-heat for a Chicago deep dish.

    I hate it when I go to the kitchen for food and all I find are ingredients!


    Central Connecticut 

  • TjcoleyTjcoley Posts: 3,528
    I use a pretty simple dough for authentic Chicago Deep Dish, like Lou Malnati's .  This is not typical pizza dough.  More biscuit like - just like the original.Chicago-style Deep Dish Pizza Dough

     11/2 cups warm water

    1/2 tablespoon active dry yeast

    1/2 tablespoon sugar

    3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

    1/2 cup semolina flour

    1/2 cup shortening

    1 teaspoon salt

     Mix water, yeast & sugar.  Let sit for 5 minutes

     Using dough hook on mixer add shortening, 2 cups of the AP flour and salt then mix for 5 minutes.  Add 1 more cup of AP flour and the semolina flour, mix until a dough ball is formed.  Add the remaining 1/2 of AP flour as needed.  Dough should be wet but shouldn't stick to your hands.

     Put in frig to rise over night.  (Can be made the same day and let rise for 6 – 8 hours at room temp) Take out about 2 - 3 hours before use.

     Preheat Egg to 500 degrees 30 minutes before baking.

     Well grease (Crisco) a 15” deep dish pizza pan. I use a steel pan, and have also tried in a deep dish stone pan. Pat out dough in the pan, thinning it as you come up the sides.  and add your toppings.

    Start with a layer of SLICED mozza, then a layer of sliced Provolone.

    Add your favorite toppings - my family prefers sausage, which I pre cook and drain the grease.

    Top with sauce

     Bake about 15 - 25 minutes.

    It's not a science, it's an art. And it's flawed.
    - Camp Hill, PA
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