Sitting down to leftovers for lunch
, and I figured that I'd update this thread.
My overall impressions are that this pie was a very credible first attempt. I'll need to refine a few things but fwiw here are some thoughts and hints, particularly for others new to Chicago style deep dish.
Crust was amazing. I used a 9" pan and this recipe: http://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php/topic,6480.msg87497.html#msg87497
(Reply # 194 on P10 of the Malnati's crust discussion).
The purpose of refrigerated ferment is to slow the yeast and allow flavor development with a slower rise. Dough was refrigerated for 15 hours with a degassing at 12 hours (at that point ball had not doubled in size). I then moved to room temp for 6 hours for further rise. I punched down at ball double 3 times during the warm rise. This is more on an as needed basis than a prescription. I had NO issues with the dough 'weeping' oil as I've seen in other posts.
As the oven and stone were preheating (500 for 1 hour), I started making the pie. As you can see here, the dough came out very nice, but a bit less like the pie crust in BTB's images. I wonder if it is because I oiled the flour prior to the addition of water.
Still haven't quite figured out how to get images into the text in multiple spots, but gimme a break, I'm a newbie!
For my cheese layer I went with Whole Foods Organic Sliced Low moisture part skim mozz (6 slices @ 1oz each) and chunked some quality Wisconsin mozz too (another 3-4 oz?).
Toppings: I used Boars Head sandwich size pepperoni, and it was only OK. I also added a couple of thin slices of sweet onion, an ounce or two of mushrooms, and a 1/4 cup (far less than shown in the pic) of red pepper.
I went with 1.5 cups of the Eden diced tomatoes. Out of the can they were slightly acidic but with very good fresh tomato taste. I pureed 1 cup and left half a cup diced for a chunky texture. <edit 4/15/2013> I did not drain the tomatoes, but will next time Thanks Jackie!</edit> I spiced with a dozen or so components, but I won't share that here as I need to tinker a bit. I did it a cold sauce, microwaving the moistened spices, and minced a 1/4 cup or so of yellow onion and 2 medium cloves of garlic. Sauted for a couple of minutes in 2 T EVO. All spices were stirred into the sauce and refrigerated for 3 hours.
Next post will show the final product.