Friday, February 3, 2012

Deep Dish Sausage and Pepper Pizza Recipe

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Pizza is a Friday night must-have in our house. No questions asked. Most of the time our pizza is the same. (I like routine). Crust a la bread machine, sauce, cheese, green peppers, pepperoni, onion. The result is a nice crispy crust on the thin side. We love it. 

But every once in a while I like to switch it up. And if mention DEEP DISH Kevin is drooling instantly. (Ok, so I'm the drooler, but whatever). :)  This crust has a phenomenal flavor and the sausage and pepper topping is reminescent of my Italian roots. 

Hey! It's Friday night! Try this recipe!

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Deep Dish Sausage and Pepper Pizza Recipe
recipe adapted from Two Peas and Their Pod
Makes 1 medium pizza, plus dough for a second (or even third) pizza

Ingredients

For the dough:
1 cup milk 
1 Tbsp butter
1 Tbsp  sugar
1 tsp salt
2-1/4 tsp instant dry yeast
5 cups all-purpose flour 
1 cup of water--added incrementally 

For the pizza topping:
2 Italian sausages, casings removed
1/2 small onion, thinly sliced
1/2 green pepper, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 jalapeno pepper, finely chopped 
1-1/2 cup (divided) mozzarella cheese, shredded 
1/2 cup (or more) pizza sauce

Directions

In a small saucepan heat the milk to just before boiling (to scald.) Turn off heat and stir in butter, sugar and salt. Remove from heat and allow the milk mixture to cool until it is just warm to the touch. Stir in yeast and let sit for 5 minutes.

Pour the milk mixture into the bowl of stand mixture and, using the beater blade, mix in one cup of flour at a time, until the dough comes together and pulls away from the edges of the bowl. Add the cup of water one tablespoon at a time. At this point, add additional flour if the dough is still wet and sticky. Change to the dough hook and knead for 8 minutes. The dough should be soft and springy when touched. 

Grease a second large bowl and transfer the dough to this new bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise for 2 hours or until doubled in size. 

While the dough is rising, heat a 10 inch cast iron skillet to medium heat. Once preheated, add the ground Italian sausage to the skillet and brown. Don't over-stir. Allow a nice crisp crust to form on the edges. Remove the sausage to a plate. 

Once dough is risen, preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Punch the dough down to remove the air bubbles. Knead for 1 minute on a lightly floured surface. Cut the dough into 2 or 3 separate pieces, reserved the extra dough balls for another time. (Wrap each piece of dough in plastic wrap and place in a freezer bag. Freeze.) 

Roll out the dough to a 14 inch circle. Butter the cast iron skillet on the sides and bottom. Press the dough into the skillet and up the sides of the pan. 

Spread with pizza sauce and 1 cup cheese, reserving 1/2 cup of the cheese for the top. Then sprinkle the remaining toppings--sausage, peppers, onions, garlic. Top with remaining cheese. (You may roll down the high edges of the crust in you wish.) 

Bake for 25-30 minutes until crust is golden brown. Remove from the oven and let the pizza sit in the pan for an additional 10 minutes. Remove to a cutting board and slice. 

Serve with additional pizza sauce for dipping. 
  




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