"The Inland" Calzone

Posted by francis keyser Monday, May 23, 2011
Taste Level: GR
Cost: $20 and under
Serves: 2-4
Prep Time: 40-45 min.
Cook Time: 35-40 min.
Difficulty: 2

Before I made this calzone it had been 14 years since I made one, 14 years!  I can't believe it took me so long to get around to making them again.  I mean I use to love making myself calzones for school, work and just for snacking!  They were perfect to chow down on before tennis practice.  A calzone is basically a gourmet pizza pocket and heck, who doesn't love pizza pockets (here is looking at you cheeseburger pocket!) So for my first calzone in 14 years, I made my favorite stand-by calzone from my teen years, which I am now calling the Inland!  Enjoy!

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

Ingredients:
8 slices hard salami
4 slices hot capicola (diced)
1/2 cup roasted orange bell pepper (diced)
1/3 cup smoked mozzarella (shredded)
1/4 cup sharp provolone (shredded)
1/4 cup ricotta
2 tbsp Parmesan (flaked)
2 tbsp fresh chives (chopped)
2 tbsp fresh basil (shopped)
red pepper flakes (to taste)

Brushing Sauce
1 tbsp butter (melted)
1/4 tsp garlic powder 
fresh crack pepper (to taste)

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 butter, then mix with fresh crack pepper and garlic powder.

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

Calzone
Toss all calzone ingredients together in a large mixing bowl.

Sprinkle corn meal onto a baking sheet and lay skin on to it. Evenly spread around mixed ingredients over one half of the calzone skin about an inch from the edge.  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, Slide calzone onto pizza stone, brush with butter mixture 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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