Sunday, June 26, 2011

Deep dish pizza potpie + pizza dough recipe

Tonight's dinner was also inspire by $5 dinner mom.  I love her book.  Has some great ideas.  I didn't make as many changes to this one as the pasta salad from last night, but I did make some.
Warning - it is pretty time consuming - plan 2 hours - dough has to rise, sauce has to simmer, then it all has to cook in the oven.
It was pretty well liked by the kids.  Aaron is finally getting better at trying food and actually tried a couple of bites - of course he called what he as trying eggs (it was really cottage cheese.)  I was happy he tried that and sausage.  Hooray for small victories.
I'm also including $5 dinner mom's pizza dough or at least my adaptation of it.  It isn't my favorite for pizza - I have used it - not following her instructions to cook it first, top it and cook some more, but just like I always do - cook it at high temp with topping already on.  It is OK.  It is full of seasonings which I don't care for in a pizza crust.  I like my crust more smooth.  However, I don't mind using this for calzones, or in this case as the top of the pizza pot pie.  However, I made some changes in directions this time and had no problems with it so here is what I did today.


  • 1 pound Italian sausage (we used homemade, took it out of the casings and fried it up in crumbles)
  • 1 Tablespoon butter
  • 1 clover garlic, minced
  • 1/2 large onion chopped
  • 1 bell pepper, chopped (we used a few tiny sweet orange, red and yellow that we have - would have equaled 1 normal size)
  • 2 14.5 oz canes diced tomatoes drained
  • 16 oz. cottage cheese (original was ricotta but for some reason I forgot to buy it.
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 batch homemade whole wheat pizza dough (see below)
Pizza dough ingredients
  • 1 cup + 2-4 Tablespoons water (I started with 1 - wasn't enough and poured more - not sure exactly how much, but I added a little 3 times, so my guess is 2-4 Tablespoons.)
  • 1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 cup white flour
  • 1 packet active dry yeast
  • 1 Tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 2 Tablespoons Parmesan cheese
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  1. Mix all dough ingredients together in a mixer.  Let knead in the mixer for 6-10 minutes - until smooth and elastic.  Cover and let rise until doubled.  (that is it for the pizza dough - use it any way you like - for this I just let it rise while I prepared the rest.  It was ready when the rest was.)
  2. In a saucepan, cook sausage -we crumbled it as we cooked it.  Transfer to paper towels to drain.  
  3. In the same skillet melt butter (we didn't have any grease to clean our, or to even saute the onions because we were using a lean homemade sausage -you may need to adjust directions accordingly), saute onions, garlic, oregano, thyme, and Italian seasoning until the onion begins to soften.  Add bell peppers and saute briefly.  Add diced tomatoes and cooked sausage.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce heat and simmer 20 to 30 minutes. (I worried this wouldn't simmer since I had drained the tomatoes, but it worked fine.)
  4. Preheat oven to 375.  In a medium bowl, whisk eggs.  Add cottage cheese and Parmesan and stir to combine.
  5. Pour half of the sausage filling in a 9 X 13 baking dish.  Pour cottage cheese over the top and smooth out to cover sausage layer.  Top with remaining sausage mixture - coating cottage cheese evenly.
  6. Spray counter with cooking spray and roll dough into a 10 X 14 inch rectangle.  Carefully pick up the rectangle and place over the baking dish allowind 1-2 inches to flop over the edge of the dish.  Press dough alond the edge of dish to seal.  Cut 4-5 slits in teh top of the dough to vent.
  7. Bale for 50-60 minutes or until crust is golden brown and filling is bubbling.  Remove and let cool for about 10 minutes before serving.

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