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Sausage for chicago style deep dish pizza?

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Hi all,

I've been working on creating the perfect deep dish pizza clone ( similar to Giardanos/etc ).

However, I'm having the most trouble finding good sausage to use for the top.

Any recommendations? Also, how do some places get the rectangular, thin sausage type patties that cover the top?

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  1. Most of the deep dish places put a hand formed patty the size of the bottom of the pizza on top of the cheese, which is laid down first. I make deep dish as well and I have turned to a local producer of sweet Italian sausage. The guys at my meat market make it. Personally I'd look for the best sweet sausage and take it out of the casing if that's the only way you can find it.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Lenox637

      I have to ask a question I have always wondered, since I have never had a real Chicago style deep dish - but I have seen them a lot on the tube....... Placing the sausage on the pizza raw - what happens to all of the grease coming out of the sausage, doesn't it soak into the crust ??? always been curious, but have never seen anyone touch on the subject....

      1. re: RJJR

        I used to cook the sausage before putting it on the pizza and then one day (out of lack of time) i just put it on raw. I must say that I didn't really get any of the greasiness that I thought I would. I now make my deep dish the "chicago" way.

    2. First off, I take my Italian sausage very seriously. It is the key to some of my mother’s best dishes and therefore the epitome of comfort food for me. It is also an essential ingredient in the one meal that my husband and I collaborate on – PIZZA! He’s the baker, I’m the cook. (and since he’s a pizza-whore, we do every style). I’ve searched for sausage in many parts of the country and truth be told, most of it sucks.

      Try the local shops – both specialty Italian and Butcher, a lot of these places make their own sausage. Don’t bother with the big chains, including Whole Foods. My best luck lately (I live in the NW) has been with a local chain sourcing local pig. Pig is Big, so you might want to recheck places you haven’t visited in awhile.

      I have never seen the large slabs o’ sausage for sale (honestly, I never looked...but since I used to live in Chicago you'd think I have run across it), I’m pretty sure you’ll need to form it yourself. If you DO locate it, well, I might question the quality since it is probably mass produced stuff created specifically for restaurants. Personally, I prefer the non-slab to begin with and it’s much less messy to just pinch the raw meat and toss it into the pie, and I agree with the poster above, it isn’t too greasy.

      My dream Italian sausage comes from Graziano Brothers, a small Italian store in Des Moines, Iowa. (yes, IOWA – DSM has a large Italian population and Iowa has some of the best pig in the world). Unfortunately, they don’t seem to have a website. I keep promising myself that I’ll call and see if they’ll ship…

      1. I agree, the best is locally produced. i always form my own patty, sometimes I luck out and can get to my butcher before he runs the sausage through the casing machine.