Cast Iron Skillet Pizza

Excitingly, I am gaining a sister next June when my brother marries his love, Ashley. She and I spend many workday afternoons Facebook chatting, and given her bridal gown body plans and my refusal to gain 1,000 pounds in this pregnancy, our conversations steer most frequently to food. And the Kardashians. But also, food. And typically it’s the food that both of are avoiding. So last week as I was talking about Swedish Fish, and she was talking about margaritas and Pop-Tarts, we both started talking about pizza. And she mentioned making deep dish pizza in a cast iron pan. And it was all I thought about for days. DAYS. I make my grocery lists on Thursdays, and cut coupons and cross-reference with my list on Fridays, so our conversation dovetailed nicely with the weekly grocery prep.

Sure enough on Saturday morning, I stocked up on all the things I needed, and Sunday night I hauled out our largest cast iron and got to building. And I sort of felt like I could relate to Michaelangelo as he put the finishing strokes on the Sistine Chapel when I stepped back and took a long look at what I’d created. Because pizza is power, folks. Pizza is power. And serving it in a cast iron feels at once rustic and fancy. Now, being me, serving it prettily was basically a no-go. Rather than waiting on it to cool down, as the husband sagely advised me, I took a knife and hacked into it immediately. The result was a pile of pizza casserole on each of our plates. And of course, pulling it out of the fridge this morning to serve myself a piece into a Tupperware for lunch, it sliced into a perfect wedge of deep dish pizza. He wins again. But casserole scoop or perfect slice, this is one to make over and over.

Note of caution: I also opened a tin of anchovies, which was clearly faulty (bubbled up with air despite being unopened), to add into a layer, and the entire thing exploded all over my face, into my eyes, hair, dress and feet. The dogs loved me. I was irked. And I probably still smell like anchovy. So it will not be listed in the ingredient list below. We’re in such a fight.
Cast Iron PizzaCast Iron Skillet Pizza
1 package Trader Joe’s whole wheat pizza dough (or other prepared dough)
2 cans tomato sauce
Baby bella mushrooms, sliced
Green pepper, diced
Black olives, sliced
Shredded mozzarella
Shredded parmesan
Grated parmesan
Italian sausage, browned, optional

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Roll out pizza dough and transfer into cast iron skillet, allowing a little to hang over the edges. Bake 5-6 minutes. Remove from oven and add a light layer of cheese and return to oven to bake for 1-2 minutes. Remove. Begin filling pizza with toppings of choice. Recommended: sauce, vegetable, cheese, meat, sauce, vegetable, cheese, vegetable, cheese, meat. Return to oven and bake 20 minutes until crust is browned, cheese is bubbly and meat is crispy. Allow to cool slightly before slicing.

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