Author Topic: March 2010 Monthly Challenge.."anything except dough"  (Read 7218 times)

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Offline Pete-zza

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Re: March 2010 Monthly Challenge.."anything except dough"
« Reply #20 on: March 22, 2010, 04:46:25 PM »
My entry for this month’s Monthly Challenge is a crustless deep-dish pizza. The idea for this type of pizza came to me when I was researching deep-dish pizzas sold by Malnati’s, the famous purveyor of deep-dish pizzas in the Chicago area. Their crustless deep-dish pizza is based on using sausage to prepare a shell, or “patty”, that is fit into a deep-dish pan, followed by slices of low-moisture, part-skim mozzarella cheese, a fresh-pack tomato based pizza sauce, toppings, and a grated cheese/oregano blend. I decided to make a basic cheese pizza although, as noted below, I found that I was able to add multiple toppings on top of slices that were reheated in my toaster oven. To the best of my knowledge, the mail order crustless pizza is a plain 9” cheese pizza.

From what I have read, the Malnati’s crustless deep-dish pizza has been certified (if that is the correct term) as being gluten-free. In my research, I also found a few bloggers who said that the Malnati’s crustless pizza was, in fact, gluten-free (some said carb-free also). I believe that Malnati’s menu in their stores also make reference to that pizza as being gluten-free. When I looked for a photo of the pizza at the Malnati’s website, I could not find one. However, I was able to find several photos posted on the Internet, of which the photos at http://www.yelp.com/biz_photos/8vFJH_paXsMocmEO_KAa3w?select=0EUEoOGbGy6B6FXmc9JFSQ and http://www.yelp.com/biz_photos/8vFJH_paXsMocmEO_KAa3w?select=LNIzq6uvSoaZhgy6qnhBMA are representative. As can be seen, the toppings for the crustless pizza are placed on top of the sauce rather than under as Malnati’s does with its other deep-dish pizzas. I would imagine that pepperoni slices might be placed under the sauce, but I was not able to confirm this.

To make my crustless pizza, I pressed bulk Italian sausage into a 9” x 2” straight-sided aluminum cake pan that I had lightly oiled on the bottom with a bit of olive oil. I pressed the sausage up the sides of the pan by about 1 ½”. In purchasing the bulk sausage, I asked the butcher what was in it. He brought me the box in which the supermarket receives the sausage, and I saw that it did not contain any flour or any other filler or ingredient that might be out of bounds for those who want a gluten-free product. The supplier of the sausage is Syracuse Sausage Company, a Texas-based meat products company. After I fitted the sausage “patty” into the pan, I added slices of low-moisture, part-skim mozzarella cheese (a store brand) on top of the sausage patty. I did not have any fresh-pack tomatoes from which to make a pizza sauce like that used by Malnati’s, so I used Redpack whole peeled tomatoes in thick puree. To form the sauce, I crushed the tomatoes by hand and drained the contents of the can in a sieve until I got a texture and consistency such as I observed in a Mark Malnati YouTube video at
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cH_ymnmarRU&amp;NR=1" target="_blank" class="aeva_link bbc_link new_win">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cH_ymnmarRU&amp;NR=1</a>
. To simulate the sweetness of the fresh-pack tomatoes (from San Benito’s) that Malnati’s uses, I added a couple of teaspoons of honey to the drained tomatoes. I thought the sauce was very nice tasting.

In terms of quantities, I used 10.3 ounces of sausage, 7.15 ounces of mozzarella cheese slices, and 10.25 ounces of sauce. Before baking the pizza, I sprinkled grated Parmesan and Romano cheeses over the pizza, along with some dried oregano. The unbaked pizza weighed 27.55 ounces.

I baked the pizza in a way as to simulate how I imagined Malnati’s bakes its crustless pizzas, specifically, in a deck oven (quite likely dedicated to crustless pizzas). In my case, I baked my version of the crustless pizza on a pizza stone that I had placed at the middle oven rack position of my electric oven and preheated for about an hour at 475 degrees F. The pizza baked for about 25 minutes. When I removed the pizza from the oven, I saw that the pizza had shrunk away from the sides of the pan as the sausage baked. When I attempted to remove the pizza from the pan, I experienced a slight problem with the bottom of the pizza sticking to the pan. I attributed this to the fact that I was using a pan that I have been gradually seasoning but apparently was not yet fully seasoned. Fortunately, I was able to use a small spatula to dislodge and remove the pizza, although it would have been possible to cut the pizza into slices right in the pan. However, next time, I would use a dark, anodized deep-dish pan with smooth surfaces.

The finished pizza weighed 22.6 ounces. That represented a loss of weight during baking of 4.95 ounces, or about 17.3%. That was more than what I would have expected. For comparison purposes, the Malnati’s Nutrition Facts for its 9” mail-order crustless pizza indicates that the pizza weighs around 19 ounces. I have never seen a real-life Malnati’s mail-order crustless pizza, so I have no way of knowing whether my version was, in fact, too heavy.

The photos below show the finished pizza. I thought it turned out quite well. However, it was different than a typical crusted deep-dish pizza for which I have developed a fond attachment. Yet the flavors were very good. I later decided that I would use various toppings on leftover slices to be reheated in my toaster oven. The last photo shows a slice that I reheated with sautéed diced green pepper, sliced mushrooms, onions (caramelized) and pepperoni slices.

Peter


Offline Irish Daveyboy

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Re: March 2010 Monthly Challenge.."anything except dough"
« Reply #21 on: March 22, 2010, 05:15:40 PM »
Second submission for this months challenge.

Funnel Cake Pizza with Dried Apples and Ice Cream

The Funnel Cake Pizza was dressed with powdered sugar, vanilla ice cream, dried apples which were cooked and then these ingredients were added: (sugar, juice of ½ lemon, cinnamon, and dash of salt) After mixing this, the mixture was put back on the stove with added corn starch to thicken the mixture.

I like the nice and airy crumb, always!  ;D

Norma

OMG Norma,

Cholesterol City here I come, great idea, I wonder?

Could you incorporate golden sultanas, cooked apple, apple pie spice and cinnamon within the batter?
The batter probably would need to be thicker and the funnel larger, a bit like a German Strudel but in batter instead of pastry

Best Regards,
David
Diagnosed Coeliac 2005 after Chronic Illness. Couldn't eat the commercially available GF Foods.
Decided to make my own, I read cookbooks both GF and regular so now I devise my own from 'scratch recipes'

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Offline Irish Daveyboy

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Re: March 2010 Monthly Challenge.."anything except dough"
« Reply #22 on: March 22, 2010, 05:23:37 PM »
My entry for this month’s Monthly Challenge is a crustless deep-dish pizza. The idea for this type of pizza came to me when I was researching deep-dish pizzas sold by Malnati’s, the famous purveyor of deep-dish pizzas in the Chicago area.

The photos below show the finished pizza. I thought it turned out quite well. However, it was different than a typical crusted deep-dish pizza for which I have developed a fond attachment. Yet the flavors were very good. I later decided that I would use various toppings on leftover slices to be reheated in my toaster oven. The last photo shows a slice that I reheated with sautéed diced green pepper, sliced mushrooms, onions (caramelized) and pepperoni slices.

Peter


Looks good Peter,
maybe a little 'greasy' from the saugage meat, but a great entry.

Your last photo (the re-heated slice with onions mushrooms etc, looks like a meal in itself).

Thanks for the heads up on the Crustless GF Pizza from Malnati’s in Chicago, handy for travellers to the USA especially those going to Chicago.

Best Regards,
David
Diagnosed Coeliac 2005 after Chronic Illness. Couldn't eat the commercially available GF Foods.
Decided to make my own, I read cookbooks both GF and regular so now I devise my own from 'scratch recipes'

Click links for Website &  Recipes Blogs 

David's Space
Glutenfree-Au-Naturale
The Gluten Free Video Cookbook
Gluten Free Internet Recipes

Offline norma427

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Re: March 2010 Monthly Challenge.."anything except dough"
« Reply #23 on: March 22, 2010, 06:36:13 PM »
Irish Daveyboy,

I guess you could incorporate golden sultanas, cooked apple, apple pie spice and cinnamon within the batter.  You would just need something like a tea pot and then pour a thicker batter. There are special kinds of pourers that have a bigger opening for pouring batter.  The thicker batter could be something like a fritter batter.  They also use apples and raisins in that kind of batter.  As far as cholesterol, in my opinion a little bit doesn’t hurt.

Norma

Peter,

You and Bill always come up with the unique ideas for the Challenge.   The third picture  Crustless deep dish slice 3.JPG (60.01 KB, 490x367 really looks like a deep dish slice.  I can imagine that crustless deep-dish pizza was very tasty. I also never knew there was a Malnati’s crustless pizza.

Norma
Always working and looking for new information!

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: March 2010 Monthly Challenge.."anything except dough"
« Reply #24 on: March 25, 2010, 01:42:36 PM »
Following up on my last "crustless" deep-dish pizza, I decided to make a somewhat different version, but still be a gluten-free pizza. For my latest effort, I decided to combine rice flour with some bulk sausage to see if I could achieve some "crunch" to the sausage "shell". Since I did not want to make a pizza that ended up not being edible and having to throw it away, I decided to make a "mini" deep-dish pizza using a small (7" x 6.5" x 0.75") dark anodized PSTK cutter pan. Such a cutter pan is shown at http://www.pizzatools.com/Cutter_Pans/subgrouping.htm?cat=30870&orderfield=prsdesc&sort=sku&mid=0.

To prepare the sausage shell, I took an amount of bulk sausage that appeared to be enough to completely cover the inside surfaces of the cutter pan when pressed or rolled out. To the sausage, I added some rice flour. I added as much of the rice flour as the sausage would take but still be fairly dry and not be stiff. I stopped adding the rice flour when the sausage had a feel and consistency of a piece of pizza dough. At this point, the rice flour/sausage ball was not greasy to the touch, no doubt because the fat in the sausage had absorbed the rice flour. By analogy to a pizza dough ball, I would say that the "hydration" of the rice flour/sausage ball was around 60%. Since this was an impromptu experiment, I did not note, by weight, the amounts of sausage and rice flour I actually used. However, the rice flour/sausage ball felt like a piece of dough. To simplify the assembly process, I rolled out the rice flour/sausage ball to a diameter large enough to completely to fit the inside of the cutter pan. This was very easy to do. I then formed the "shell" to fit the cutter pan. This step was far easier to consummate than using only raw sausage, which has a tendency to stick to ones fingers and to slide and shift a lot.

To dress the pizza, I added slices of low-moisture, part-skim cheese on top of the shell. This was followed by a few pepperoni slices, pizza sauce, and toppings that included sauteed mushrooms, caramelized sweet onions, diced green pepper and a cheese/oregano blend of grated Romano and Parmesan cheeses and some dried oregano. In retrospect, I am certain that I could have "built" the pizza in the standard manner. However, I wanted to stay with the approach that I understand Malnati's uses for its crustless pizza. The pizza so dressed was baked in my countertop toaster oven for about 20 minutes at a temperature of about 475 degrees F. I did not use a small pizza stone. I simply placed the pan on the lowest rack position of my toaster oven.

The photos below show the finished pizza. I thought that it was excellent. The rice flour/sausage shell was crispy and crunchy. This was evident from the moment I ran my pizza cutter across the pizza to cut it into slices. The rice flour/sausage shell was not greasy, which came as a surprise to me, yet the flavors of the cooked sausage were still there. But not so much as to distract one from the rest of the pizza. I am sure that it should be able to make a normal deep-dish pizza using a regular deep-dish pan and a shell as described above. In fact, I plan to try such a deep-dish pizza some time. I would perhaps build the pizza in the typical way, if only to see how such a pizza compares with the regular deep-dish pizzas I have made.

Overall, I thought that the latest pizza was considerably better than the crustless Malnati-style deep-dish pizza that I discussed earlier in this thread. I think the crunchy, essentially greaseless rice flour/sausage shell was the main reason. It also occurs to me that the sausage is a good medium or vehicle amenable to taking on ingredients other than rice flour, like ground nuts or some of the other gluten-free ingredients that celiacs often use.

Peter

Offline Irish Daveyboy

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Re: March 2010 Monthly Challenge.."anything except dough"
« Reply #25 on: March 25, 2010, 03:38:08 PM »
Peter,
That looks excellent, I do agree looks far better than the first sausage crust attempt.
Go to the top of the class and take any prize from the top shelf.

Well Done.

Best Regards,
David
Diagnosed Coeliac 2005 after Chronic Illness. Couldn't eat the commercially available GF Foods.
Decided to make my own, I read cookbooks both GF and regular so now I devise my own from 'scratch recipes'

Click links for Website &  Recipes Blogs 

David's Space
Glutenfree-Au-Naturale
The Gluten Free Video Cookbook
Gluten Free Internet Recipes

Offline Pete-zza

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Re: March 2010 Monthly Challenge.."anything except dough"
« Reply #26 on: March 25, 2010, 03:50:14 PM »
David,

Thank you. Admittedly, the pizza was quite small and shallow but I ate the whole thing and enjoyed every morsel of it. The pizza is no longer carb-free but at least the "crust" wasn't on the rubbery side, as the sausage shell was in the first pizza.

Peter

Offline Irish Daveyboy

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Re: March 2010 Monthly Challenge.."anything except dough"
« Reply #27 on: March 31, 2010, 06:24:28 AM »
This is the Last Day of the Challenge, I'd like to thank everybody for their magnificent efforts.

To say I was surprised at the standard of entry is putting it mildly.

I, as a Coeliac will be busy in the coming weeks making the obviously GF pizzas and adapting the uncertain ones.

Best Savoury Peter's 2nd Deep dish Pizza

Best Dessert Norma's Funnel Pizza

Special word of praise goes to Bill with his unusual concept Sweet Potato Pizza.

Thanks to all for their entries, it's been interesting seeing how seasoned pizza makers coped without a dough crust.

Best Regards,
David
Diagnosed Coeliac 2005 after Chronic Illness. Couldn't eat the commercially available GF Foods.
Decided to make my own, I read cookbooks both GF and regular so now I devise my own from 'scratch recipes'

Click links for Website &  Recipes Blogs 

David's Space
Glutenfree-Au-Naturale
The Gluten Free Video Cookbook
Gluten Free Internet Recipes