As a native of the Chicago suburbs who now calls New York City home, I’ve heard many a negative opinion about deep dish pizza.
“It’s not really pizza,” one person will say, “It’s like a savoury pie with sauce,” another will pipe up.
New Yorkers, and other non Chicagoans, love to bemoan the existence of this hearty, delicious meal.
Here’s why they’re wrong.
Deep dish is pizza
In its simplest form, pizza is dough with some kind of tomato sauce and cheese that’s cooked in an oven. The specifics differ from region to region, but generally that’s the gist of things.
Deep dish has all of those components. Sure, the crust is thicker, and the pizza itself is deeper, allowing for more sauce and cheese, but portions aside, the basic ingredients are all there.
Maybe it’s not the kind of pizza you’re familiar with, but that doesn’t mean it’s not pizza.
A slice of deep dish packs way more punch than your average dollar slice
As its name suggests, deep dish pizza is baked in a round, relatively deep pan, which means that there’s more available surface area to fill with toppings. It is thus insanely cheesy.
That’s part of the reason why I love deep dish. Just one slice leaves me feeling satisfied. Eating a flimsy dollar slice, on the other hand, leaves me wanting three more.
Deep dish offers more pizza per slice for you to enjoy. What pizza lover wouldn’t want that?
It’s ok that the sauce comes on top.
Haters love to comment on the fact that deep dish is not constructed like other kinds of pizza.
Yes, sauce comes on top of the cheese and other ingredients, and yes, that’s just fine.
There’s actually a specific reason for this unconventional order. Because deep dish is larger than most pizza, it requires more time in the oven. If the cheese and other toppings weren’t placed under the sauce, they would burn, so it’s a protective measure.
Plus, because there’s more emphasis on it, I find that deep dish uses fresher, better quality sauce than a lot of other pizza does.
The crust is better than normal pizza crust
Sometimes when I eat pizza, I skip the crust. However I never do this when I eat deep dish. Because throwing away deep dish crust would be a sin — that’s how good it is.
Deep dish crust offers the perfect balance of doughiness and crunchiness. The dough that forms the base is soft and doughy, whereas the crust that forms the end of the pizza is crunchy.
The crunchiness of the end crust owes itself to the fact that deep dish is cooked in a deeper pan, forming what can best be described as a wall of crust around it. This wall adds a whole other dimension to the pizza that’s simply not offered by flat crust. Deep dish crust is crunchy in a way that most doughy flat crust will never be.
For all the haters out there — just give deep dish a chance.
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