The first time I ever ate a deep dish pizza, I didn't realize I was eating a "Chicago style" pizza. In Manhattan in the seventies, there was a pizzeria with an unexpected name... Goldberg's Pizzeria. The late, great Larry Goldberg actually had three locations in Manhattan. One was down on 20th and Third Avenue, near my studio. Sure, Larry offered his famous--or infamous--"Goldilox" pizza featuring lox, but most of their offerings were very Italian. Some say that Larry bribed an employee at Uno's Pizzeria in Chicago (Larry's hometown) for their recipe, but I've since eaten Uno's pizza and it's nothing like I remember Goldberg's was.
I used to go to Goldberg's often to enjoy deep dish pizzas delivered to your high back booth table--lots of privacy for dates when I'd order their heart shaped pizza to make an impression. Larry's pizza's were thick, sweet and cheesy. While the crust was thick and steamy inside, the bottom and edge of the crust were nicely browned and there was always tons of fillings on top. He had a secret ingredient that he took to his grave (rye flour or corn flour in the crust?) Their meatball topping was amazing. The SMOG pizza had Sausage, Mushrooms, Onions and Garlic (s-m-o-g)--get it? The other thing that made Goldberg's so special was their sauce. It was sweet with a hint of spice. Perfetto! Or should I say, Mazoltov!
Fast forward to the age of foodie channels on the boob tube. After I started seeing lots of food shows profiling Chicago deep dish pizzas I knew I had to try making my own. The curious thing about what I learned is, typically, the fillings are put on in an upside-down manner. The meat would go on first, then the cheese, and the the sauce on top.
The pans are also crucial to making a successful Chicago style pizza. You need a 9-10" round pan that is black in color and about 2 inches high. Th black color is to ensure that the bottom of the crust is browned nicely at about the same time the toppings are ready. Here's my recipe for two 9 inch Windy City special pies:
2 cups King Arthur's Bread Flour
1 cup King Arthur's Whole Wheat Flour
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon sugar
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon dry active yeast
1-3/4 cups water (at 115 F)
1 tablespoon sugar for "proofing" the yeast
1 cup of my Nostra Cucina Pizza Sauce Recipe
2 teaspoons dried basil
2 teaspoons dried oregano
Extra virgin olive oil (for drizzling on top)
cheese of your choice (fontina, provolone, mozzarella, etc.)
for meat, try home made sliced meatballs, thin sliced prosciutto, smoked ham or diced Canadian bacon.
You'll need two black, deep dish pizza pans (or cake pans) about 2 inches deep, like this one on Amazon.
After removing from the oven, let these pizzas rest for at least 5 minutes before trying to cut and serve. They tend to be very wet in the middle, depending on the amount and thickness of the toppings. To slice, I really recommend using a thin spatula or knife to help loosen the pizza from the pan, then place the pizzas on a cutting boat where you can cut pieces using a large chef's knife or a large mezzaluna (THIS is the one I use).
Serve with a nice Primativo wine from Puglia.
If you enjoyed this recipe, please share it, post it to your favorite recipe site, but please tell them where the recipe came from. Ciao!
Copyright 2015, Jerry Finzi - All rights reserved.