When I told my husband that we’d be having pizza for dinner, he assumed we’d be ordering in some delivery. Nope, this was going to be the real deal with homemade crust and all. While I’ve made homemade pizza in the past, my dough usually comes from a bakery that does all the labour for me….I just need to let it rise, punch it down and stretch it out. Not too much hassle. But now that I’ve primed my yeast-baking skills, I figured it was time for me to branch out and bake a real pizza with real dough made from my 2 hands. Exciting times in this household!
I always thought making dough would be tough but really it’s pretty simple. Just a few repetitive steps: stir, knead, rise, punch, knead…ta-da!! I had spotted a recipe for a deep dish sausage pizza in the Gourmet Cookbook (my go-to cookbook edited by my muse, Ruth Reichl), and decided that I’d create my own sauce and toppings but definitely follow the dough recipe step by step. While I followed the directions carefully, this dough was unlike any of the bakery dough that I had used in the past. While it was much easier to work with, it certainly wasn’t as elastic and stretchy so that made me slightly fearful that I had somehow screwed up this pizza attempt. Luckily, the crust was perfect and even tastier than its bakery counterpart!
As for the toppings, I just went with what I had in the fridge. I love pineapple on pizza, but you could certainly substitute your favorite toppings to make the pizza of your dreams. Instead of mozzarella cheese, I used a farmer’s cheese recommended to me by the proprietor of my favorite local Italian deli. He not only sold me some lean pancetta, but told me that the farmer’s cheese would go great on pizza. It was perfect!
deep dish tomato, pancetta & pineapple skillet pizza
1/4 t sugar
1/2 c warm water (105° – 115°F)
1 pkg active dry yeast
1 1/2 c flour, plus additional for dusting
1/4 c cornmeal
1/2 t salt
1 T olive oil
1 T olive oil
1/4 c chopped pancetta (or bacon)
1 small onion, sliced thinly
4 cloves of garlic, crushed
1 small can of diced tomatoes
1 t dried oregano
1 t dried basil
salt & pepper to taste
1 c fresh pineapple, diced
1 small green pepper, diced
1½ – 2 c grated farmer’s or mozzarella cheese
1. Make the dough by stirring together the sugar, warm water and yeast in a large bowl. Let stand for about 5 minutes or until the surface appears creamy. Add flour, cornmeal, salt and oil and stir until dough forms. Knead dough on a floured surface until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Dust occasionally with flour to prevent sticking.
2. Place dough in a large oiled bowl and turn dough to coat with oil. Let rise, covered with plastic wrap, in a warm location until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour. While dough is rising, start making the sauce.
3. In a large skillet, heat oil and fry up pancetta. If you use a fatty pancetta or bacon, you may not need oil at all. Add in onion and turn down heat slightly, letting the onions get soft and slightly caramelized. Add in garlic, tomatoes, spices and salt and pepper and simmer for 30 minutes.
4. Preheat oven to 500°. Oil up a cast iron skillet. Punch down dough and knead 4 times. Press dough into oiled skillet with oiled fingers until it comes 2 inches up the sides and is an even thickness on the bottom. Let dough rise in a warm place for 15 minutes, covered loosely in plastic wrap.
5. Sprinkle dough with half of the cheese then top with tomato sauce. Evenly sprinkle pineapple and green pepper on top and then cover with remaining cheese. Bake for 12 minutes and then lower oven temperature to 400° and bake for 8 minutes more or until edges of crust are golden. Remove from oven and let sit for at least 5 minutes before cutting.
oh, no–yum! the only thing that i truly miss since going vegan is cheesy deep dish pizza. it can’t be replaced, so i don’t even bother trying. i’ll just drool over yours instead.
delivery-pizza has NOTHING on your gorgeous pizza-pie – yum!
Wowsa,I would have never thought to do deep-dish pizza in a cast iron skillet! Cast-iron is just the best, isn’t it?
That pizza looks scrumptious and I say that with authority, as I’m pizza lover no. 1! 😉
I love love love homemade pizza and this one looks perfect. The first photo is excellent, by the way, and has made me quite hungry.
I don’t usually do the skillet thing– just bake my pizzas, but seems worth a try.
this looks so yummy–what a great idea! i’ll have to try this sometime. my dad made homemade pizza several years ago and had fun with it. maybe it’s my turn to see what it’s all about. boy, i’m hungry!
Finally! I’ve been waiting so long for this recipe. You’re becoming quite the seasoned dough chef LOL.
I have made home-made pizza before but I always buy the dough from the market, and I still have a hard time with it. I make a big mess, get flour everywhere, parts of the dough stick to the counter and end up with holes on the dough…but in the end it’s all GOOD!! Yum!! I still need to buy me a cast iron skillet and then I will attempt to make pizza ‘a la kickpleat’ 🙂
Yum! That looks good! What a great idea to put in a cast iron pan too! makes the whole thing easier, and you can get more fillings!
mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm mmmmmmmmm nyam nyam – i;m eating my screen that looks soooooo goood
wow, that is some serious pizza action you got going on there
That’s one good looking pizza.
Oh wow! That looks soooo good! I am a pizza freak but I’ve never even tried making my own from scratch before.
meg, i would definitely miss out on cheese if i were a vegan (which is why i can’t commit!), so i understand your loss.
yeah, hag, a cast iron pan works great for a deep dish pizza. so good!
mevrouw, i love my old cast iron pan! it’s from my husband’s grandmother and it gets used on an almost daily basis.
thanks cookinpanda, i did bake the pizza but in the skillet!
bellcurves, it’s pretty fun making a pizza! so much better than calling someone to make it for you.
thanks bijoux! this dough is so much easier than the market or bakery kind. i used to have all those problems too. maybe the next pizza dough i’ll make will be the more traditional variety and i’ll have those exact problems too.
hahaha, thanks aria!
thanks connie. it’s tres serious 😉
thanks sylvie! it tastes even better than it looks!
lina, you should give it a try! if i can do it so can you!
I am a pizza addict and that looks awesome. I saw an ATK episode where they did ‘pan pizza’ in straight sided 9″ cake pans. That looked pretty kewl as well.
We make pizza, including the dough, sometimes. It is almost always better than anything you can buy or have delivered.
I bake it in the oven on a baking stone…
Made this for lunch on Sunday. It was great but your’s looked better. Thanks for posting!
Seriously, my mouth watered when that picture came up. YUM!
coopernicus, pizza in pans? i’m in! sounds awesome.
woolies, i’m now definitely tempted by a baking stone….but do i need another thing for my tiny kitchen? ack!
leigh ann, glad you tried it out! homemade is the best 🙂
trust me, sandy, the pizza tastes way better than that photo 😉
Can I get one of your pizzas delivered to my home? You’ll only have to cross the country and the border. I know it’ll cost me but from the looks of the picture, it’ll be worth every penny!
Oh my. This looks so, so, so, so, so good! And no way could delivery compare to this. Some people are all about thin crust pizza–I do not understand this phenomenon. Give me this gooey, deep dish version any day!
I love homemade pizza, it’s always so much better than anything you order out. I like pineapple on my pizza too!
This is awesome! Such a good idea! I gave it a shot and loved it so much, I posted about it on my fledgling blog. You can see it here if you like. I gladly gave you credit. Great job!
Did I miss something – I tried this dough and it was incredibly dry and tough. My other dough recipe calls for 1.5 cups of water..is there a typo in the recipe as posted?
cheesefairy, i looked again at the dough recipe in Gourmet and it is indeed only 1/2 cup of water. i remember the dough feeling strange to the touch & i didn't think it would work out, but it did (thankfully for me). sorry yours didn't work out as well as mine and i haven't repeated this recipe again for myself. sorry it was such a bummer for you!
Hey, thanks for checking. I need more faith, evidently 🙂