### Author Topic: Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza?  (Read 9083 times)

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#### redox

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##### Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza?
« on: February 01, 2013, 05:25:23 PM »
I'd like to try making a small Chicago pizza in a well-seasoned 8 inch Lodge skillet. Is this possible or is cast iron all wrong for this? Has anyone tried it?
And this is to see if I understand the Dough Calculator using vcb's recipe:

Flour (100%):    141.73 g  |  5 oz | 0.31 lbs
Water (50%):    70.87 g  |  2.5 oz | 0.16 lbs
IDY (.60%):    0.85 g | 0.03 oz | 0 lbs | 0.28 tsp | 0.09 tbsp
Salt (.55%):    0.78 g | 0.03 oz | 0 lbs | 0.14 tsp | 0.05 tbsp
Olive Oil (5.4%):    7.65 g | 0.27 oz | 0.02 lbs | 1.7 tsp | 0.57 tbsp
Corn Oil (16.2%):    22.96 g | 0.81 oz | 0.05 lbs | 5.1 tsp | 1.7 tbsp
Sugar (.4%):    0.57 g | 0.02 oz | 0 lbs | 0.14 tsp | 0.05 tbsp
Total (173.15%):   245.41 g | 8.66 oz | 0.54 lbs | TF = 0.1421

Does that look reasonable or have I messed up something? (the skillet 8 inches at top/6.5 inches at bottom. 2 inches high-sloping sides with dough 1.5 inches up the side. I'll buy a new pan for baking this if I have to but the Lodge is just the right size.

#### Chicago Bob

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##### Re: Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza?
« Reply #1 on: February 01, 2013, 06:03:45 PM »
Looks good....go for it!
That is enough dough to pinch it all the way up the side. Where the bottom of your pan meets the side of your pan....that is a problem area with this style. Pinch it in there tight and then also all along the rest of the way up your side.
Great pizza redox...have fun!
You have your bake setup planned out OK?
Bob
"Care Free Highway...let me slip away on you"

#### redox

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##### Re: Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza?
« Reply #2 on: February 01, 2013, 06:36:54 PM »
Oh, oh, I'm not sure what you mean by bake setup. I was going to pre-heat the oven to 450 °F and then put it on the lowest rack. I'm not sure if I need the baking stone or not. Any ideas? Btw, thanks for your quick reply. It's nice to know that help is available.

#### Chicago Bob

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##### Re: Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza?
« Reply #3 on: February 01, 2013, 06:47:47 PM »
Oh, oh, I'm not sure what you mean by bake setup. I was going to pre-heat the oven to 450 °F and then put it on the lowest rack. I'm not sure if I need the baking stone or not. Any ideas? Btw, thanks for your quick reply. It's nice to know that help is available.
You are right on track...check bottom at around 20 min. will probably need another 5-10 at your temp.
Your pan cooks evenly, don't use the stone.   oven setup is what you described in your 2nd sentence. Good job dude, it will be a great pizza!
"Care Free Highway...let me slip away on you"

#### CDNpielover

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##### Re: Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza?
« Reply #4 on: February 01, 2013, 10:16:29 PM »
Why are you suggesting he not use a stone?  I can't see how it would hurt, and I can see a number of ways it would help.

#### Chicago Bob

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##### Re: Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza?
« Reply #5 on: February 01, 2013, 10:56:28 PM »
Why are you suggesting he not use a stone?  I can't see how it would hurt, and I can see a number of ways it would help.
Oh...Ok CDN...first off you are correct.
My rational is merely this...
Oh, oh, I'm not sure what you mean by bake setup.
I feel that a noobie needs the least amount of variables starting out. And redox is already beginning with a pretty reliable baking platform(his cast iron pan)for this style of pizza. I think it will give him the even browning that your mention of a stone can bring to the bake without his worrying about extended preheat times the addition of the stone will require. Just trying to keep it simple for now...if problems arise then, as you've mentioned....it can be fixed.
Bob
"Care Free Highway...let me slip away on you"

#### CDNpielover

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##### Re: Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza?
« Reply #6 on: February 02, 2013, 01:37:00 AM »
If it was me, id ditch the cast iron and invest \$10 in a spring form pan (or something like that), and use your stone.  I know its possible to bake puzza in cast iron, but its not really ideal in any way.

#### Chicago Bob

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##### Re: Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza?
« Reply #7 on: February 02, 2013, 03:29:48 PM »
If it was me, id ditch the cast iron and invest \$10 in a spring form pan (or something like that), and use your stone.  I know its possible to bake puzza in cast iron, but its not really ideal in any way.
+1...good point CDN!

http://www.webstaurantstore.com/american-metalcraft-hc80122-straight-sided-deep-dish-hard-coat-anodized-aluminum-pizza-pan-12-x-2/124HC80122.html
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#### David Deas

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##### Re: Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza?
« Reply #8 on: February 03, 2013, 10:05:45 AM »
I'd like to try making a small Chicago pizza in a well-seasoned 8 inch Lodge skillet. Is this possible or is cast iron all wrong for this? Has anyone tried it?
And this is to see if I understand the Dough Calculator using vcb's recipe:

Flour (100%):    141.73 g  |  5 oz | 0.31 lbs
Water (50%):    70.87 g  |  2.5 oz | 0.16 lbs
IDY (.60%):    0.85 g | 0.03 oz | 0 lbs | 0.28 tsp | 0.09 tbsp
Salt (.55%):    0.78 g | 0.03 oz | 0 lbs | 0.14 tsp | 0.05 tbsp
Olive Oil (5.4%):    7.65 g | 0.27 oz | 0.02 lbs | 1.7 tsp | 0.57 tbsp
Corn Oil (16.2%):    22.96 g | 0.81 oz | 0.05 lbs | 5.1 tsp | 1.7 tbsp
Sugar (.4%):    0.57 g | 0.02 oz | 0 lbs | 0.14 tsp | 0.05 tbsp
Total (173.15%):   245.41 g | 8.66 oz | 0.54 lbs | TF = 0.1421

Does that look reasonable or have I messed up something? (the skillet 8 inches at top/6.5 inches at bottom. 2 inches high-sloping sides with dough 1.5 inches up the side. I'll buy a new pan for baking this if I have to but the Lodge is just the right size.

Dude, seriously, just order the right pan for making Chicago style pizza.  I promise you it beats the living hell out of spending a bunch of time trying to figure a clever way around having the right pan.

#### redox

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##### Re: Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza?
« Reply #9 on: February 03, 2013, 12:31:29 PM »
Dude, seriously, just order the right pan for making Chicago style pizza.  I promise you it beats the living hell out of spending a bunch of time trying to figure a clever way around having the right pan.

I'm sure you're right but I was just asking a question. "Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza"
I have a 14 inch Chicago pizza pan but it's more than I need unless we have friends for dinner. I have a recipe for Chicago style pizza that I've used for some time now but I want to improve it. I'd rather experiment with a small pan than a large one. Less waste, you know. As for the rest, being new here I wanted to make sure I was using the dough calculator correctly. And for my own curiosity, I wanted to see how a Lodge skillet would work.

#### David Deas

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##### Re: Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza?
« Reply #10 on: February 03, 2013, 04:47:28 PM »
I'm sure you're right but I was just asking a question. "Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza"
I have a 14 inch Chicago pizza pan but it's more than I need unless we have friends for dinner. I have a recipe for Chicago style pizza that I've used for some time now but I want to improve it. I'd rather experiment with a small pan than a large one. Less waste, you know. As for the rest, being new here I wanted to make sure I was using the dough calculator correctly. And for my own curiosity, I wanted to see how a Lodge skillet would work.

I completely understand.  Long time ago I had a small 5 inch springform pan just for that reason.  However, it would not turn out great pizza.  One of the challenges had always been that deep dish pizza doesn't scale down very well to begin with.  The other was that the pan was just the wrong pan for the job.

Something like an 8 or 9 inch pan should be no problem to obtain.  The 9 inch stuffed crust is a small pizza.
« Last Edit: February 03, 2013, 04:50:25 PM by David Deas »

#### CDNpielover

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##### Re: Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza?
« Reply #11 on: February 03, 2013, 10:48:14 PM »
one can also use a screwdriver as a hammer, but I wouldn't recommend it.

#### Chicago Bob

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##### Re: Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza?
« Reply #12 on: February 03, 2013, 11:26:11 PM »
one can also use a screwdriver as a hammer, but I wouldn't recommend it.
That is true CDN...much better than using a forehead as a hammer!
"Care Free Highway...let me slip away on you"

#### Garvey

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##### Re: Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza?
« Reply #13 on: February 04, 2013, 10:08:07 AM »
Something like an 8 or 9 inch pan should be no problem to obtain.  The 9 inch stuffed crust is a small pizza.

A standard, straight-sided, round cake pan, which should be found in any kitchen, works perfectly.  I think they're what, 9"?  No need to buy new hardware, unless you really want to.

Cheers,
Garvey

#### Chicago Bob

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##### Re: Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza?
« Reply #14 on: February 04, 2013, 12:23:56 PM »
A standard, straight-sided, round cake pan, which should be found in any kitchen, works perfectly.  I think they're what, 9"?  No need to buy new hardware, unless you really want to.

Cheers,
Garvey

Yep, good old 9in. cake pan. What are they, about 7 bucks(even at a grocery store)?
"Care Free Highway...let me slip away on you"

#### vcb

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##### Re: Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza?
« Reply #15 on: February 04, 2013, 02:06:47 PM »
Yep, good old 9in. cake pan. What are they, about 7 bucks(even at a grocery store)?

I'd be concerned about burning the crust with a cast iron pan.

Like the guys said, go with a good heavy weight cake pan, preferably one with a dark anodized coating.
Most are under \$15 and you can get them at Target and most grocery store baking supply aisles.
You can often find Wilton and Kitchenaid brands at reasonable prices now.

If you wanna go for the "big guns", I have a deep dish equipment page with some items I like:
http://www.realdeepdish.com/deep-dish-equipment/
-- Ed Heller -aka- VCBurger -- Real Deep Dish - Deep Dish 101
http://www.realdeepdish.com/
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#### redox

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##### Re: Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza?
« Reply #16 on: February 04, 2013, 02:50:09 PM »
I've got a couple of these Domino's 9 inch deep dish pan that I found at Odd Lots, or some such store years ago. I just re-found them in the basement. Notice the holes? What's the deal with those? Crisper crust? I'd worry about getting oil all over my baking stone.

#### Chicago Bob

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##### Re: Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza?
« Reply #17 on: February 04, 2013, 03:06:53 PM »
I've got a couple of these Domino's 9 inch deep dish pan that I found at Odd Lots, or some such store years ago. I just re-found them in the basement. Notice the holes? What's the deal with those? Crisper crust? I'd worry about getting oil all over my baking stone.
Wonder if that pan might work good for a "fried" style Pizza Hut pan pizza? The holes look stamped inward...not too much oil an I'll bet it would stay in the pan.
« Last Edit: February 04, 2013, 11:35:51 PM by Chicago Bob »
"Care Free Highway...let me slip away on you"

#### mrmojo1

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##### Re: Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza?
« Reply #18 on: February 04, 2013, 11:11:24 PM »
yeah!  that might be good for that fried crust!!! thats a pretty cool pan!
"My Doctor says I swallow a lot of aggression.  Along with a lot of pizzas!!"

-John Candy(Stripes)

#### rothiii

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##### Re: Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza?
« Reply #19 on: February 17, 2013, 09:14:38 AM »
My well-seasoned cast iron pans are all I ever use.  They give a nice crust, and my pies never stick.  The dough actually pulls away from the pan a little bit from the side (which actually facilitates in getting it out of the pan).  I also bake at 450 degrees for 25-30 minutes.  I hope his helps!
« Last Edit: February 17, 2013, 09:24:23 AM by rothiii »

#### redox

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##### Re: Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza?
« Reply #20 on: February 17, 2013, 11:06:50 AM »
My well-seasoned cast iron pans are all I ever use.  They give a nice crust, and my pies never stick.  The dough actually pulls away from the pan a little bit from the side (which actually facilitates in getting it out of the pan).  I also bake at 450 degrees for 25-30 minutes.  I hope his helps!

What shelf do you bake your pies on? Is your range gas or electric?
I've got a couple of 14-inch DD pans which are great when we have guests for dinner but for the two of us an 8'' or 10'' pan is better for us (and our waistlines).
Any other tips? What recipe do you use?

#### rothiii

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##### Re: Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza?
« Reply #21 on: February 19, 2013, 03:46:09 AM »
Hi, Redox!

I have a gas oven.  I always bake my deep dish pies on the middle rack.  Here's the best deep dish crust for me:

1 C. Warm water

1 T. Sugar

1 T. Butter (Very soft or melted)

1 Pkg. Yeast (Or  1-2 tsp)

1 t. Salt

I "proof" my yeast with the water and sugar, then add the flour, butter and salt.  I use my Kitchenaid with the dough hook for the whole thing until smooth and springy.  This makes one 10" deep dish.  The butter is key.  Your crust will be rich yet crispy.  I also use a little butter in my bowl for rising and cast iron skillet.  Mangia!
« Last Edit: February 20, 2013, 03:20:53 AM by rothiii »

#### redox

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##### Re: Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza?
« Reply #22 on: February 22, 2013, 01:13:51 PM »
rothiii
Sorry, I missed your reply. Thanks for the info. It looks good but I'm pretty sure I have to bake on the lowest shelf in my electric oven. I do love Chicago DD!

#### rothiii

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##### Re: Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza?
« Reply #23 on: February 22, 2013, 07:19:19 PM »
Yes, Redox.  Here are some pics.....

#### rothiii

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##### Re: Is it possible to use a cast iron skillet to make Chicago pizza?
« Reply #24 on: February 22, 2013, 07:20:16 PM »
Cheese Application