Stuffed Pizza

After a long evening of shopping for our Christmas Eve party, Chris and I wanted something to fill us up. We were thinking ahead and bought a 1 1/2-pound pizza dough at the grocery store along with everything else that was on our holiday checklist. I know we've blogged pizza numerous times, but I swear, this one's different! We split the dough into two pieces, about 2/3 and 1/3 size each. Chris stretched each piece of dough the way he does, and we lined an oiled and heated cast iron pan with the larger dough, sides and all, allowing a bit of overlap on the top. In order, we topped it with layers of the following: olive oil, slices of fresh mozzarella cheese, pizza sauce, sliced pepperoni, and shredded mozzarella. Then we put the smaller dough on top as if it were a pie, folding over that extra overlap from the pan-lining dough. We let it cook for a couple of minutes on the stovetop then flipped it (very carefully!). We topped the previously-bottom-but-now-top-dough with a little more sauce and shredded cheese and put the whole cast iron into a preheated 500-degree oven for 10 minutes. I turned on the oven light and we sat in front of the stove, watching our creation bubble and brown, our stomachs growling in anticipation. After it cooled a bit, we cut it into six thick pizza slices that were oozing piping hot sauce and cheese. It was the kind of pizza you needed a fork and knife to eat. It was filling and delicious, and with a bottle of cheap chianti, our dinner was everything we wanted it to be.

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