This is my first post to the forums! A little history: I grew up in the suburbs of Chicago. Last year we moved to Texas, and I've been missing all the good pizza, particularly Giordanos stuffed pizza.
I tried buzz's recipe over the weekend on our new pan. It was mostly a disaster, but that is my fault. Let me explain. Deep dish pizza pans are hard to find down here, but I found a gormet kitchen shop with a 14". Much larger than what I wanted, but I figured - what the heck? We'll certainly eat the leftovers. I transated buzz's recipe up to 14" by doubling the ingredients from his 9". I had originally figured out that 2x the dough and 2.5x the toppings would scale correctly, but I found that 2x the sauce was already plenty. More on that later. I found 6-in-1 ground tomatos at my local grocery store, but could not find Stella cheese anywhere
. I have about 2-3 more places to look for Stella or Sorrento before I give up on that.
I made a bunch of little mistakes along the way, but the biggie was that I forgot to scale the time in the oven to correpsond to the larger size! The dough came out severely undercooked, but some of it was done enough to eat. The flavor was about right, so I think the recipe is perfect, I just need to tweak my preparation methods.
Here are specific problems and what I propose to change next time I try it. Do you guys have any other suggestions?
- Sauce was a little bit thin and there was a bit too much... Draining the 6-in-1 tomatos a little bit should help both issues.
- The pizza was floating on a pool of oil... Use less margarine to coat the pan. (I used a whole stick on a 14" pan!)
- The crust was undercooked... Precook the dough before adding toppings longer, and increase total baking time.
- The crust was not bread-like enough... I kneaded the dough for about 90 seconds, but I think 2-3 minutes with this size of batch would come out better.
Then, I have some questions that I don't know the answer to at all:
- How long should a 14" be in the oven? buzz called for 30-40 minutes total for a 9".
- Should I use shredded or sliced mozzarella?
- What oven rack should I use? I used next to the lowest for my last attempt.
- The biggest problem of all was the fact that the sides of the pizza "shrunk" down immediately when I started pre-baking the crust. Has this happened to anyone else? If I had to guess at the cause, I would say it was a combination of my dough being too thin and not pressing down into the pan well enough (too much elasticity left to pull it inwards).
It is pretty expensive to experiment on a 14" pan, so I think I will buy a 9" pan to work with until I get it right.
Thanks for the help! Thanks especially to buzz for his great recipe! I can't wait to nail this recipe and show all these Texans what they are missing.