I've not been too active in pizzamaking recently since I've move to a different home in the Tampa Bay area. But my family made a demand on me to make a good and tasty Chicago style deep dish pizza, so last week I went about putting together a 12" diameter pizza reflecting a formulation that I've successfully used in the past that delighted many taste buds.
Making the Pizza Dough
Formulation for 12" deep dish pizza:
Flour Blend* (100%): 293.94 g | 10.37 oz | 0.65 lbs
Water (47%): 138.15 g | 4.87 oz | 0.3 lbs
ADY (.6%): 1.76 g | 0.06 oz | 0 lbs | 0.47 tsp | 0.16 tbsp
Salt (1%): 2.94 g | 0.1 oz | 0.01 lbs | 0.53 tsp | 0.18 tbsp
Olive Oil (6%): 17.64 g | 0.62 oz | 0.04 lbs | 3.92 tsp | 1.31 tbsp
Corn Oil (12%): 35.27 g | 1.24 oz | 0.08 lbs | 7.84 tsp | 2.61 tbsp
Butter/Margarine Softened (6%): 17.64 g | 0.62 oz | 0.04 lbs | 3.73 tsp | 1.24 tbsp
Sugar (1.5%): 4.41 g | 0.16 oz | 0.01 lbs | 1.11 tsp | 0.37 tbsp
Total (174.1%): 511.76 g | 18.05 oz | 1.13 lbs | TF = 0.112665
**The flour blend consisted of 80% KAOAP flour (approx. 235 g) and 20% semolina flour (59 g). The proportions here can easily be increased or decreased depending upon one's personal likes and dislikes.
Note: 2/3 tsp of Baker's NFDM was added, but is completely optional (used for color and tender crust affect). I also added 1.5% dough residue but ended up only using about 92% of the dough mixture.
Everyone has developed their own style or routine for mixing or combining the dough ingredients. I'm set in my ways and usually put all the dry ingredients together in a bowl first (after measuring out the weight of the major component -- i.e., flours) and mix together by hand (all the while I'm waiting about 10 minutes for my ADY in a small amount of slightly warmed water -- 100 to 110 degrees -- to foam up). And my preference is to only use ADY. I then add the rest of the water (which is cooled or cold) and the ADY mixture (previously mixed in a small amount of that water which is warmed is a small shot glass), mix everything together very briefly, then add the oils. I've often in the past put the oils in the flour first, as some are advocating, but hadn't noticed much of a difference with that. But I may have to revisit that. The last addition I do at the very last moment of a mixing of 25 to 50 seconds or so is to add the softened butter. And doing it last and for just a very brief time assures you that the butter does not get fully "incorporated" into the mixture, which is a good thing. I think softened butter is much better here than melted butter.
After mixing the dough ingredients for this pizza, I put the dough ball in a oiled bowl, covered the bowl with plastic wrap, and let it rise in a slightly warm spot for about 4 or 5 hours, knocking the risen dough down a couple or more times during the interim. The intent was to use this as "same day" dough so no refrigeration was contemplated.
After the 4 or 5 hour period, I sprayed the bottom of my 12" Pizzaware 2" deep dish pan with "PAM for Grilling" spray. It's made for high-heat cooking and contains mostly cottonseed oil. It definitely helps to make the bottom crust crispier in the center. I think its better than olive oil or Crisco on the bottom of the pan and I thank Ed Heller for that great idea. I set the temperature in the oven in my new house -- which is a gas oven that I'm not fully practiced on -- to warm up at around 480 degrees F for 30 to 40 minutes. I previously only used an electric oven so use of a gas oven is a new experience for me in pizzamaking.
I generally never roll out the dough for a deep dish pizza, but I hand pressed it out a little first on the counter (may need a sprinkle of flour if too wet or oily), place it in the center of the pan, then press the remainder of the dough in the pan up to the sides and then up the side of the pan, preferably as high up to the top of the pan as you can, which in my case was a 2" pan.
Pressing the dough up the side of the deep dish pan is to me a critical part of classic Chicago deep dish pizzamaking. The tastier and typical Chicago deep dish pizzas have thin, crispy pizza rims (i.e. Cornicione) as opposed to the thick, fat, doughy, crust lip or edges. One can look at the many pictures of Malnati's, Original UNO's/DUE's, and others deep dish pizzas to see that fact. One exception is Gino's East in Chicago which does have a thick edge or lip, but the original Gino's on Rush St. had a thin edge or rim instead of a thick one.
So what I do after putting the dough in the pan and pushing it up the sides is to tightly and strongly "press, crimp, and pinch" the dough up the sides to make it as thin as I can. On Ed's website he describes it as getting it "paper thin." I don't know if one can get it that thin, but it would be nice. And one may have to do this several times to assure that thin crust edge. Actually the LAST thing I do before putting the dressed deep dish pizza into the oven is to AGAIN tightly press, crimp and pinch the dough up the sides of the pan (sometimes getting a lot of sauce on my finger tips). Surprisingly, it makes for a much tastier pizza, which only one's culinary experience with this can demonstrate.