Don's Deep-Dish Iron Skillet Pizza
Extra-virgin olive oil for brushing the skillet
18 ounces ready-made pizza dough
½ to 2/3 cup pizza sauce (I used Whole Foods 365 brand organic)
1 level tablespoon dried basil, crumbled
6 ounces low moisture, part skim milk mozzarella cheese slices
6 ounces shredded low moisture, part skim milk mozzarella cheese
6 ounces cooked, broken up and drained sweet Italian sausage (from 8 ounces uncooked)
1 medium-size sweet green pepper, cored and sliced
2/3 medium-size red onion sliced very thin into rounds (use a mandolin)
12 uncured turkey pepperoni mini slices (I used Applegate naturals)
Lightly brush the interior of a 12-inch iron skillet with olive oil. Place the chilled pizza dough in the skillet's center and lightly press into a flat circle. Let the dough come to room temperature and rise; about one hour.
Position the oven rack in the upper-middle position, place a pizza stone on that rack and begin heating the oven to 550 degrees.
While the oven heats, using your fingers, press the dough out to the pan's edges and about a ½-inch up the sides. Lay the mozzarella slices on the dough, cutting some of the slices to fit inside the dough's circle. Using a large spoon spread the pizza sauce out to the dough's edge. Evenly sprinkle the dried basil over the sauce. Distribute the sweet pepper slices around the sauce and then the cooked Italian sausage pieces. Distribute the shredded mozzarella cheese over the sausage and peppers. Distribute the thin-sliced onions around the cheese. Place the pepperoni slices over the onion.
Place the skillet in the oven on the pizza stone and bake for 15 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown. Carefully (using hot pads because the pan's very hot) remove the pan from the oven and place on the stove top. Let the pizza rest for 5 minutes and then, using a spatula slide the pizza out of the pan onto a large cutting board. Using a large chef's knife cut the pizza into six pieces and serve immediately.
Omitting the mozzarella slices reduces the calories per serving to 406 (41.7 percent from fat), fat to 18.8 grams and sodium to 998 mg.
Note: When pressing the dough out in the pan, you may have to lift it up from the edge to release an air bubble trapped between the dough and the pan.
Nutrition values per serving: 506 calories (45.9 percent from fat), 25.8 g fat (9 g saturated fat), 42.8 g carbohydrates, 4.1 g sugars, 6 g fiber, 27.4 g protein, 55 mg cholesterol, 1,148 mg.