WOW have the past couple of weeks been a whirlwind! January 1 was the start of a new year and a brand new life for me. As of the first day of 2016, I am now a resident of Chicago and so incredibly proud to say that I’m a full-time employee of Enjoy Life Foods – the first brand I discovered when I found out about my allergies and intolerances almost 4 years ago!
It’s crazy how things work out. I remember working at my first gluten free event a little over a year ago and meeting some of the marketing team. And I remember being starstruck. But it was the beginning of something great. Fast-forward to one year later and I was accepting the position of Community Engagement Associate. I still can’t believe it sometimes. Now, I wake up every day excited to work for a company that I have loved for so long. I’m loving every minute of it.
Of course, what better way to celebrate this exciting turning point in my life than with a RECIPE?! And not only is it a recreation of a classic Chicago food, but also uses the Enjoy Life Foods Pizza Crust Mix! It was literally the perfect representation of my new life. I’m not sure I’ll be able to find a deep dish pizza here that is gluten, dairy, corn and tomato-free (although I’m definitely looking for one), but this recipe is free-from all of those. It’s actually free-from the top 8 most common allergens. Plus it has probiotics in it for extra digestive support (awesome) and packs 5g of protein (algal protein – how cool is that?!). As for the sauce…you may remember me mentioning the fantastic gluten-free, vegan and tomato-free lasagna I had at FACCWDW this past year. You know, the one with the roasted red pepper sauce? Well, I recreated that sauce for this pizza. Check it out!
PS: Crisis: Where do I even categorize this recipe? It’s not meat, it’s not vegetables. It’s a dilemma. This is TBD.
PPS: You’re welcome for that glimpse into my riveting thought processes. #TypeA
Chicago-Style Deep Dish Cheese Pizza
Makes 1 9-inch pizza
For the crust:
1 tbsp olive oil, plus more for coating
1 1/4 cups cold water
For the sauce:
2 large red bell peppers, cut in half with seeds removed
2 tbsp olive oil, divided
1/2 tbsp minced garlic
1 1/2 tsp Italian seasoning, plus more to taste
Sea salt & pepper to taste
Additional toppings as needed (pepperoni, sausage, veggies, etc.)
- Preheat oven to 400 F.
- Roast the red bell peppers with 1 tbsp olive oil for 25 minutes or until browned.
- Throw all of the sauce ingredients in a blender (I used my Magic Bullet) and puree until smooth. Add more seasonings if needed. This will yield about 1 1/2 cups of sauce.
- For the crust, follow instructions on the Pizza Crust Mix box. The box makes two pizzas, so I set aside half of the dough for another day after mixing it with the oil and water. I recommend coating your hands in oil before handling the dough.
- Grease and line a 9-inch pie or cake pan with parchment paper (I used the kind with removable bottom), and press the crust into the pan, making sure it is evenly distributed along the sides and bottom of the pan.
- Brush the crust with olive oil and salt, then bake for 8-10 minutes at 400 F.
- When the crust is done baking, pour the sauce into the crust until filled (this used about 1 1/4 cups of sauce when I made it).
- Sprinkle with Daiya Mozzarella Style Shreds until filled to your liking.
- Bake for another 10-12 minutes or until cheese is melted.
- Let sit for about 10 minutes before slicing.
- Enjoy life because you can now have deep-dish pizza without gluten, dairy, and tomatoes!