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Pandemic Whole Wheat Thick Crust Pizza


Legendary Pitmaster
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Joined Sep 7, 2013
I was inspired by Smokinginthegarden's Chicago style pizza thread. Unfortunately I can no longer eat my white flour fermented crust, but a 50/50 mix of whole wheat and AP flour is fine. So, time for a pandemic pizza experiment using one of my 15" paella pans. Bottom line, it was fantastic, and one piece was plenty!

I only took pics of the constucted and finished pizza. Pics only for now. If anyone is interested in the recipe I used/created and how I made the pizza, I'll post it.





Master of the Pit
Joined Oct 18, 2017
For some reason I suddenly got hungry
For pizza. Typically I'm a New York style pizza guy(or at least what I think it is) but I also like this style and I'm drooling over that last picture! Very nice!


Legendary Pitmaster
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Joined Sep 7, 2013
Sunday my wife said "let's go buy a Chicago-style pizza." Man, I HATE paying $30+ for something that tastes great but makes me feel like crap. Heck, I could do that myself. I told her, "Give me three days and I'll have something better than we can buy. And I'll make it healthier, too."

Started the dough fermenting on Sunday for a short warm/long cold ferment. Formed it into a BIG ball on Monday then back into the fridge for another day of cold fermentation.

Then it was time to cook the sauce, cool it off, then overnight in the fridge for the flavors to meld together.

Shopping early Tuesday morning for cheeses, sausage, and pepperoni. I picked up the turkey pepperoni by mistake, but it was pretty dang good.

Took the dough out of the fridge and let it sit covered on the counter for 4 hours to warm and relax. It was SOOOOO easy to work. No pullback at all.

Built the pie, 35 minutes in a 425F oven in the carbon steel paella pan sitting on a hot cast iron pizza stone. IT was 185-195F so the uncooked sausage was done. Bottom of the crust was so crunchy and great that even with all those toppings/sauce you could pick up the pizza slice!

We both ate just one piece and were full. Six left. Ahhh, leftovers!


Legendary Pitmaster
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Group Lead
Joined Jun 11, 2015
Glad to see experiments like this to help those who have health issues. Great looking pie.



Master of the Pit
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Joined Oct 17, 2014
I'm glad I kept scrolling down Ray, if you weren't going to tell me how you made it I wasn't going to "like" it. It looks scrumptious, Like! RAY


Smoking Guru
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Joined Dec 14, 2013
That looks great . On my list to do . The ferment is key , like you said no pull back .
That last pic of the slice is mouth watering . Nice work .


Legendary Pitmaster
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Joined Sep 7, 2013
Pizza is one of those creations that range from the purist to the creative. Sauces range from mere tomato to cooked. The recipe below has typical pizza toppings and 9 grams of fiber and 38 grams of protein per 630 calorie slice. We won't talk about the fat.

Ray's Whole Wheat Crust Chicago-Style or Thick-Crust Pizza

I shigged the basic crust recipe from the website crumblycookie.net. I made minor changes and was REALLY impressed with how workable it was. The flavor was delicious.

The pizza, as made below, turned out AWESOME!

Pizza Dough Ingredients
10 ounces (2 cups) AP flour
10 ounces (2 cups) whole wheat flour
2 teaspoon salt
⅔ teaspoon active dry yeast
1 teaspoon sugar
1¾ cups warm water (100F)

Sauce Ingredients
30 oz can diced tomatoes
6 oz can tomato paste
6 cloves fresh garlic, chopped
½ small onion, chopped
1 Tbs granulated sugar
1 Tbs Dried Italian Seasoning
½ Tbs salt
1 tsp black or red pepper

Pizza Toppings
1 lb Low moisture mozzarella cheese, sliced
1 lb provolone cheese, sliced
4 oz parmesan or Romano cheese, grated (don't you DARE use the crap in the can)
7 oz pepperoni, sliced
4 oz Italian sausage filling, uncooked
1 cup fresh basil leaves

Directions 2-3 Days Prior to Making Pizza - Start the Dough
In a medium bowl, put everything but the water. Stir the dry ingredients until well mixed.
Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and add the warm water.
Stir to mix well until a shaggy dough forms.
Lightly coat with olive oil, cover loosely with cling wrap, and leave on the counter for 3-4 hours to allow the fermentation to start.
Then place the covered bowl in the refrigerator for 20-24 hours to ferment. This also replaces the kneading requirement.
At the end of the initial fermentation window, turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead for about a minute to form a smooth ball. Put olive oil the bowl used for fernentation and coat all sides of the dough ball with oil and loosely cover with cling wrap (can use the same piece used earlier).
Return the covered dough to the refrigerator for another 20-24 hours, up to 48.
I use a 15" paella pan to make the pizza. This dough makes one thick-crust 15" pizza. It make two 9" springform pizzas.
Total time to do the above steps is 15-20 minutes.

Directions Day Before Making the Pizza - Make the Sauce
Add all the sauce ingredients to a 5-6 cup sauce pan, stir to mix thoroughly, and bring to a gentle simmer. Simmer over low heat.
Stir every 15-20 minutes to avoid burning.
Simmer until the sauce reduces about an inch, approximately 60-90 minutes.
Let cool, then put in a container in the refrigerator overnight to allow the flavors to meld.
This recipe makes enough for one 15" pizza or the two springforms.
Total prep time is 10 minutes.
Cooking and cooling about 2-3 hours.

Directions to Make the Pizza
Remove the dough from the fridge 3-4 hours before it's time to build the pizza. Leave it covered on the counter to warm and relax. It will be very easy to work with if done this way. If the dough draws up when ready to make the pizza, it needs to rest and relax longer.
An hour before making the pizza, put a pizza stone in the oven and preheat the oven and stone to 425F (435F my oven) on a rack just above the center position.
Coat the paella pan or springforms with olive oil.
Roll the dough out onto a cutting board and shape for the paella pan or springforms.
Press the edges of the dough up the sides of the pan(s).
Put a layer of the provolone, mozzarella, and pepperoni.
Pinch off bits of the uncooked sausage and evenly space them on the ingredients.
Evenly space the basil leaves.
Spoon the sauce evenly and spread with the back of the spoon.
Grate the parmesan or Romano evenly over to sauce.
Place the pizza(s) onto the stone and bake for 35 minutes. The center of the pizza should read 185-195F.
Remove from the oven and let rest and cool for ten minutes, then slice and serve.
Prep time 30 minutes.
Cook time 35 minutes.
Rest time 10 minutes.

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