Recipe Shout Out: Deep Dish Pizza Hack

deep dish sliced pizza on cutting board

America’s Test Kitchen is a staple in our house.  All of their recipes are tried (and tried…and tried!) and true!  If followed, you are assured of a quality outcome.  My only issue with ATK’s recipe and formula is the number of steps and the length of time it takes to complete.  Recently, in their “at home” version (due to COVID), co-host Bridget Lancaster made an incredible deep-dish pizza in a cast iron skillet.  It looked so amazing, I definitely planned on making it.  But…and you knew there was a “but” coming, I just didn’t have the patience.  I opted to use store-bought pizza dough – not that her recipe was difficult, it just took 12-24 hours (and I couldn’t wait) and used my go-to sauce, Rao’s.  Let me tell you, if this hack comes close to what hers tasted like, well A-MEN!  But if you’re short on time and patience, this does very nicely!!

Directions

Serves:  Two very hungry or Four civilized pizza lovers
Time:  60 minutes

1 store bought pizza dough (set it out to come to room temperature)
3 tbs olive oil
¼ cup Rao’s tomato basil sauce
12 oz Monterey jack cheese, grated
¼-½ tsp red pepper flakes

Unique Method:

I preceded method by “unique” because this pizza is ALL about the method.  It may sound a bit strange but follow this and you’ll be pleased!

Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

Place 3 tbs olive oil in a cold 10-inch (interior measurement) cast iron skillet. Swirl it around to ensure the entire bottom is covered.  Plop the dough in and with your fingers, press the dough so that it nearly reaches the edge of the pan – but allow a small gap.

Sprinkle half the cheese around the edge of the dough – filling in the gap between it and the pan.  Gently press against the pan to create a wall.  This will fry up in the oven, creating an amazingly crisp crust called Frico.

Carefully spoon the sauce over the middle of the dough – coming up to the edge, ensuring it’s evenly covering the dough.  Now, sprinkle the rest of the cheese over the top.

Bake for 30 minutes.

Remove from the oven, and with a flexible spatula, lift the pizza by an edge and check the color of the bottom.  If it’s not evenly brown – which it probably won’t be, carefully move the skillet over a medium-high burner and cook for about 5 minutes.  Check again for color.  It should be beautifully toasty brown.  Allow to cool in the pan for at least 5 minutes.  Remove to a wire rack and cool for another 5 minutes.  Slice and prepare yourself!

 

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A great day for me is preparing great meals for friends and family. I enjoy experimenting with new ingredients and also updating classics that I've enjoyed for years. I love to travel and try lots of new cuisines - and wouldn't be anything without the love of my family!

2 thoughts on “Recipe Shout Out: Deep Dish Pizza Hack

  1. Ralph, as always you inspire us with your wonderful and helpful tips of the trade! This looks delicious and I can’t wait to try it. I will keep you posted when I make it. I have been wanting to use my cast iron pan and just needed inspiration. I wonder if you could do all of this over an outdoor grill. I don’t know if it would burn the crust-hmmmm. It might be up to this kitchen hack to give it a try. Love the Rao’s by the way, and I can make a mean sauce, but it is helpful to have it in the pantry. Keep the recipes, tips and inspiration coming. Thanks!

    1. Thanks Dom! I think you can certainly use the grill – just be sure to be able to regulate the temperature. Thanks also for the encouragement! Keep reading! 🙂

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