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MainRecipesMaindish | Deep-Dish Sausage and Tomato Pizza

   Deep-Dish Sausage and Tomato Pizza submitted by Aaron Johnson
My boss at Jive Software, Bill, hails from Iowa and roots for the Bears. This year for the Superbowl he made a Chicago style deep dish pizza and let me in on his recipe.

Stir together sugar, warm water, and yeast in a large bowl and let stand until surface appears creamy, about 5 minutes. (If mixture doesn't appear creamy, discard and start over with new yeast.) Add flour, cornmeal, salt and oil and stir until a dough forms. Knead dough on a floured surface, dusting with additional flour as necessary to prevent sticking, until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes.

Put dough in a deep oiled bowl and turn to coat with oil. Let rise, covered with plastic wrap, in a warm draft-free place until doubled in bulk, about 1 hour.

While dough is rising, cook sausage in a large heavy skillet over moderately high heat, stirring and breaking up lumps, until no longer pink, about 3 minutes. Stir in tomatoes, oregano, salt, and pepper, then transfer mixture to paper towels to drain and cool.

Preheat oven to 500 degrees. Grease cast iron skillet.

Punch down dough and knead 4 times. Press dough into oiled skillet with oiled fingers until it comes 2 inches up sides and is an even thickness on bottom. Let dough rise, covered loosely with plastic wrap in a warm place for 15 minutes.

Sprinkle dough with all of the mozzarella and then top with sausage mixture. Put skillet on floor of gas oven or in lower third of electric oven and bake for 12 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 400 degrees and bake until edges of crust are golden, about 5 minutes more.

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v For the dough:
v 1/4 teaspoon sugar
v 1/2 cup warm water (105-115 degrees)
v 1 (1/4 ounce) package active dry yeast
v 1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour, plus additional for dusting
v 1/4 cup yellow cornmeal
v 1/2 teaspoon salt
v 1 tablespoon olive oil
v 1 tablespoon freshly chopped rosemary

v For the topping:
v 1/2 pound fresh spicy Italian sausage, casings discarded
v 1 (14 to 16 ounce) can whole tomatoes in juice, drained or chopped
v 3 teaspoons dried oregano
v 1/4 teaspoon salt
v 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
v 2 cup coarsely grated whole milk mozzarella
v 2 tablespoons fennel seed

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