April 11, 2010


About 3 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
1 packet dry yeast
1 1/2 tsp. salt (or part flavored salt)
1 1/4 c. warm water (120-130 degrees)
3 tbsp. oil
1 lb. hot pork sausage (bulk style)
1 (28 oz.) can plum tomatoes, drained
2 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. dried oregano, crumbled
1 tsp. dried parsley
1/2 tsp. dried basil leaves
1/2 tsp. garlic salt
1/8 tsp. crushed red pepper (or dash cayenne)
1/2 lb. fresh mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
1 lg. green pepper, quartered, seeded, and thinly sliced
2 med. to sm. onions, thinly sliced
1 (8 oz.) pkg. sliced Mozzarella cheese
1 c. (4 oz.) shredded Mozzarella cheese
Grated Parmesan cheese (as desired)
Use 14 inch deep-dish pizza pan, 2 inches deep. Oven, 450 degrees. Yield: 6 to 8 generous servings.First prepare the pizza dough. In the large bowl of an electric mixer, combine 1 1/2 cups flour, the dry yeast, and salt. Mix well. Add the very warm water and oil to the flour mixture. Blend at low speed; scrape bowl and beat at medium speed 3 minutes, continuing to scrape the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula occasionally. By hand, gradually stir in enough remaining flour (about 2 cups) to make a firm dough. Knead on a lightly floured surface, at least 5 minutes. Cover dough with plastic wrap, then a towel and let rest 20 minutes.
After some of the elasticity of the dough has lessened, roll it to a 16 inch circle (or slightly larger than whatever baking utensils you're improvising with, if a 14 inch pizza pan is not available). Pull it up and place in the pan (greased first), pushing dough halfway up the sides of the pan. Cover; let rise in a warm place until puffy, about 30 minutes. Even if it's not puffy, proceed with the recipe after half and hour.
Brown the sausage, stirring to break up the lumps; remove to a plate with a slotted spoon. Add the sliced mushrooms, green pepper, and onions rings to the sausage drippings an saute briefly, no more than 2 minutes. Set aside. Drain the plum tomatoes, reserving the juice to add to soup or beverage. Chop the tomatoes, draining again. Stir in the sugar, herbs, garlic salt, and cayenne or crushed red pepper.
To assemble the pizza, place the sliced Mozzarella in a single layer on top of the pizza dough. Tear the slices to fit, so most of the surface of the dough is covered. Distribute the browned sausage over the cheese, then the sauteed vegetables mixture (still crisp, but draining off any moisture that has accumulated). Add half of the chopped tomato mixture, distributing it evenly over the vegetables. Sprinkle on the shredded Mozzarella and distribute the remaining tomato mixture. Sprinkle the top generously with grated Parmesan cheese.
Bake in a preheated 450 degree oven about 25 minutes or until the edge of the dough is browned and the cheese is melted. If the vegetables have cooked out a lot of juices, tip the pizza and add to the reserved tomato juice (great soup stock). Slice into thick wedges to serve.

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