Chicago Deep Dish: Pizza or Casserole?
Hash Brown-Crusted Meat Lovers Pizza
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 3 cups hash browns, defrosted
- ½ cup Cheddar cheese
- ½ cup Parmesan cheese
- 4-5 tablespoons pizza sauce
- 10 ounces mozzarella cheese, shredded
- ½ cup green bell peppers
- ½ cup red bell peppers
- 10 slices pepperoni
- Green onions, diced to garnish
- Red pepper flakes, to garnish
- 1 pound ground beef
- ½ pound ground pork
- 2 eggs, beaten
- ½ cup flat leaf Italian parsley, chopped
- 1 cup grated Romano Pecorino cheese
- 1 tablespoon black pepper
- 1½ tablespoons salt
- 5 garlic cloves, finely minced
- 1 cup day-old Italian bread, soaked in water, squeezed, and torn into ½-inch pieces
- To make the meatballs, begin by preheating the oven to 400°F.
- Combine the ground beef and pork in a large mixing bowl.
- Soak the day-old Italian bread in water until all the liquid is absorbed, and squeeze out as much of the water as possible. Tear the bread into chunks and add to the meat mixture.
- Add the eggs, cheese, black pepper, salt, parsley, and garlic. Mix thoroughly.
- Using your hands, form meatballs 2-inches in diameter. Place them on parchment paper lined baking sheet.
- In a greased skillet over medium heat, sear the meatballs until each is evenly browned on all sides.
- Remove them from the oven and place them on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Bake for 10-15 minutes.
- Keep the oven at 400°F. Use parchment paper or a nonstick mat to line an additional large baking sheet, and set aside.
- In a large bowl, combine the eggs, salt, hash browns, Cheddar, and Parmesan cheese. Mix well.
- Spread the mixture out across the baking sheet and flatten it into a circular shape approximately ½-inch thick. Place the sheet in the oven and bake for 20 minutes or until the crust becomes crispy and golden brown in color.
- Remove the hash brown crust from the oven. Starting with the pizza sauce, layer the mozzarella cheese, bell pepper, pepperoni, meatballs, and a sprinkle of green onion. Place it back in the oven and bake for another 5-10 minutes or until the cheese is melted.
- Take the pie out of the oven. Top with the remaining green onion, red pepper flakes, and serve.