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Author Topic: How to prepare spinach and sausage for a chicago stuffed pizza  (Read 250 times)

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Offline macnmotion

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Hi. I originally posted this in the toppings forum, but I didn't get much of a reply, so I'll try here.

 I'm going to make a Giordano's style stuffed pizza. I made one once, with cheese, caramelized onions and mushrooms. This time we want to use sausage and spinach instead. I'll be cooking in a cast iron pan, no stone/steel, in a regular oven. My questions:

1) Spinach - how do I prepare the spinach? I assume fresh spinach, washed and dried? Do I use whole leaves, or chop? Do I cook it first or put it in raw? I want to make sure I don't bring in a ton of moisture from it. Do I put under the cheese layer or mix together with the cheese?

2) Sausage - My plan is to pre-coook the sausage, drain all of the grease, and put under the cheese layer. I have read that some restaurants put in raw sausage, but I'm worried that it won't cook in my oven/pan, and that there would be too much fat rendering and making the bottom crust soggy. Pre-cooking would alleviate that, right?

Thanks for any input.

Online Pete-zza

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Re: How to prepare spinach and sausage for a chicago stuffed pizza
« Reply #1 on: May 01, 2021, 01:19:15 PM »
macnmotion,

I don't mean to put you a lot of work but I did just that some years ago to create the following thread that I made a sticky under the Chicago-style board:

https://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=30343.msg302527#msg302527

It's quite possible somewhere in the posts that I included in the stuffed pizza collection you will find answers to your particular questions. You might also get some good tips.

I did a random quick check to see if spinach popped up in the search and found this thread:

https://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=5674.msg48048#msg48048

I am pretty certain there are others, and certainly for sausage also, so I suggest that you use the Advanced Search feature at https://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?action=search using the search terms "Giordano's spinach" or "Giordano's sausage" or maybe even "Giordano's spinach sausage"(all without the quotes) and selecting Show results as messages.

Peter

Offline Garvey

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Re: How to prepare spinach and sausage for a chicago stuffed pizza
« Reply #2 on: May 01, 2021, 07:58:26 PM »
Recently discussed re: deep dish not stuffed but maybe it's useful:
https://www.pizzamaking.com/forum/index.php?topic=69155.0

Offline macnmotion

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Re: How to prepare spinach and sausage for a chicago stuffed pizza
« Reply #3 on: May 02, 2021, 12:44:09 AM »
macnmotion,

I don't mean to put you a lot of work

Thanks. I don't mind the work. I did use the advanced search for spinach stuffed before posting, I didn't see a direct answer to my question, but I'm sure I didn't exhaust every thread. I'll take another look.

Offline vcb

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Re: How to prepare spinach and sausage for a chicago stuffed pizza
« Reply #4 on: May 02, 2021, 02:33:10 PM »
Here's a video with Fred Besch from Nancy's making a spinach stuffed pizza, if that helps with the basic construction.
Adding sausage is one of those things where you can par-cook ahead of time, or bake raw chunks of sausage inside the pizza.
35-40 minutes is plenty of time to cook the sausage through.
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Offline Garvey

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Re: How to prepare spinach and sausage for a chicago stuffed pizza
« Reply #5 on: May 02, 2021, 04:31:32 PM »

1) Spinach - how do I prepare the spinach? I assume fresh spinach, washed and dried? Do I use whole leaves, or chop? Do I cook it first or put it in raw? I want to make sure I don't bring in a ton of moisture from it. Do I put under the cheese layer or mix together with the cheese?

2) Sausage - My plan is to pre-coook the sausage, drain all of the grease, and put under the cheese layer. I have read that some restaurants put in raw sausage, but I'm worried that it won't cook in my oven/pan, and that there would be too much fat rendering and making the bottom crust soggy. Pre-cooking would alleviate that, right?

Thanks for any input.

For deep dish (not stuffed), washed and dried whole leaves, uncut, is the way to go.  I was worried about it until I tried it.  That's why I pointed to that recent thread where this very thing was discussed.

As for sausage, definitely raw.  Your casserole will be baking at 450 degrees for a long time.

Offline macnmotion

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Re: How to prepare spinach and sausage for a chicago stuffed pizza
« Reply #6 on: May 03, 2021, 05:44:52 AM »
Here's a video with Fred Besch from Nancy's making a spinach stuffed pizza, if that helps with the basic construction.
Adding sausage is one of those things where you can par-cook ahead of time, or bake raw chunks of sausage inside the pizza.
35-40 minutes is plenty of time to cook the sausage through.


Thanks that was helpful. I'll post my results tomorrow after we eat!

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