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How Chicago-Style Pizza Can Be So Thick?

The deep-dish Chicago-style pizza is obviously not your average pizza. It is believed that the deep-dish pizza was invented in 1943 at Pizzeria Uno, Chicago, that’s established by Ike Sewell, a former football player. The recipe itself is probably made by the original chef in Uno, Rudy Malnati. The deep-dish Chicago pizza has a simple foundation. It has a thick dough, made from cornmeal and olive oil. The dough is placed inside the deep round pan, then pulled up to all the sides. Because the pizza crust is thick, it needs to be “parbaked” first, so it will have the necessary consistency to support the large amount of topping. Parbaking is a special cooking technique, by partially baking the crust and it is rapidly frozen in the freezer.

Before being placed in the freezer, the crust should be about 80 percent cooked. The partial cooking process should be enough to kill the yeast and the spongy texture of the bread is already formed. After the nearly baked crust is frozen, it will be pulled out from the freezer. Sliced or grated mozzarella is placed inside the pan, then covered with different ingredients, depending on the recipe. But, common ingredients may include bell peppers, ground beef, onions and Italian sausage. A sauce with pureed or crushed tomatoes and some dried herbs is also an important with the deep-dish Chicago pizza. Just like lasagne, layers after layers of cheese and other ingredients are added. It’s not common for a single deep dish pizza to contain a pound of pizza.

As a result, deep-dish pizza is incredibly thick and gooey, which can be quite messy when eaten directly with our fingers. We often need to put a thick slice on our plate, then eat it with knife and fork. Sewell opened a companion pizzeria in 1955, called Due. The emerging popularity of this pizza style spread across the city and soon dozens of pizzeria specialized on this type of deep dish pizza. Today, Chicago-style, deep-dish pizza is already popular around the world and you don’t need to travel to the United States to get it. In many large cities around the world, there should be at least a few pizzerias that offers deep-dish pizza as one of the offerings. Chicago is also famous for its stuffed pizza, which may have thicker topping density than deep dish pizza.

Even so, it is still very possible to get rustic, thin crust pizza in Chicago, if you want to have a much lighter offering, than those thick, heart-threatening pizzas. Deep-dish pizza with thin crust is also available in some areas and some of them may have domed appearance, asking you to break the upper, thin crust layer to see what’s inside the pan. Regardless of the type of the deep dish, you can always find liberal addition of Italian tomato sauce, mozzarella pizza and various meat-based ingredients. There could be opposition to the deep-dish pizza among purists, but it adds to the richness of the modified Italian cuisine in the U.S. and around the world.

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