"The Peppy Pepperoni" Calzone

Posted by Unknown Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Taste Level: VGR
Cost: $20 and under
Serves: 2-4
Prep Time: 40-45 min.
Cook Time: 35-40 min.
Difficulty: 2

I made this calzone based off of our Peppered Pepperoni Pizza.  I figured if it tasted so great as a pizza, it would taste just as great as a calzone!  I of coursed changed up things a little because somethings that I think work great for pizzas I feel can ruin a calzone and vice versa. I decided to go with an avocado pesto sauce and a tasty cheddar goat cheese in lieu of the sauce and cheese I used on the pizza and my mother who always says she hates calzones said, "Wow, that was a little spicy but it was delicious!"  Enjoy!

(For instructions on how to make your own sourdough calzone skin check posting dated 7/7/09.)

5-6 oz fresh Mozzarella (shredded)
1/4 cup goat cheese cheddar (shredded)
4 oz hot pepperoni slices
1 jalapeno (seeded, diced)
2 tbsp pickled pepperoncini slices
2 green onions (chopped)
3 tbsp (Avocado Sun-dried Tomato Pesto)
Fresh crack pepper (to taste)

Calzone Topping Sauce
2 tsp Extra virgin olive oil
1/4 tsp fresh crack pepper
1/4 tsp Romano (freshly grated)
1/4 tsp Parmesan (freshly grated)

Calzone Skin

(Optional Calzone Crust Filling)
2 tbsp Neufchatel Cream cheese
2-3 tsp jalapeno (seeded, diced)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Tossing dough
What works best for me is I strongly throw the ball of dough down on a solid flat surface covered with a piece of wax paper until it is large and flat enough for me to easily balance on top of both of my fists. Then I make an X with my arms keeping my fists close together (backhand to backhand, the dough atop of them both) and I fling the dough upwards with my fingers as I simultaneously bring my arms quickly parallel (palm to palm) about 3-4 inches apart. As the dough falls I remake my fists and catch the dough atop them again in the X position and repeat until the dough has formed a 12 inch thin crust (stretch into an oval.)

(Alternately you can lay dough on a solid flat surface covered with wax paper and squish flat with hands. Roll into a ball and slam the dough down onto your solid flat surface covered with a piece of wax paper. Using your fist mush the dough down repeatedly as if you were punching it softly but firmly (this helps get any air bubbles out of it.) Now using your finger tips press and stretch dough until you have formed a 12 inch spherical calzone skin.

Brushing Sauce
Melt 1 tbsp butter, mix with fresh crack pepper and 1/8 tsp garlic powder.

(Optional Crust Filling)
Mix ingredients together in a small bowl.

Sprinkle corn meal onto a baking sheet and lay skin on to it. Spread sauce onto 1/3 of calzone skin making sure to leave a 1 inch edge around the outside of the calzone skin.  Layer pepperoni, then top with onion, jalapenos and pepperoncinis.  Sprinlke cheeses over filling and then crack a little pepper over filling. Fold uncovered skin over covered half and align the edges. (If using optional crust filling evenly spread mixture over the top outer edge before folding and twisting into the crust.) Fold and twist edges together from right to left until calzone is sealed (I tuck the last twist under the calzone for appearance.) (Make a few slits in calzone for venting if wanted.)

Place calzone on baking sheet lightly coated with corn meal. Arrange your oven racks to where they are on the upper and lower thirds of the oven. If you are using a baking stone as we do place it directly onto the floor of a preheated oven for 45 minutes (but you will be less likely to ruin your pizza stone if you place it on a rack at its lowest position.) Place baking sheet with calzone on the top oven rack and bake for 20 minutes, brush calzone with brushing sauce,sprinkle with cheese. Then slide calzone onto pizza stone and continue to cook for 15-20 minutes or until bottom is crispy and top is golden brown. Slide calzone onto a cutting board or baking sheet and slice into 4 pieces and serve hot with marinara or your favorite dipping sauce (ranch dressing, honey and olive oil with balsamic and fresh cracked pepper our our favorites.) Enjoy!


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