Yummy, yummy calzones! I used to make a more traditional calzone in the pre-heart attack days....huge pockets stuffed with ground beef, italian sausage, cheese, and pepperoni. It was bread filled heaven I tell you. Our needs are different now, however, so the pockets are much smaller and stuffed with a bit different ingredients. The leftovers get frozen for easy meals later on. This shouldn't stop anyone from going the traditional route. Stuff the calzones with what tickles your taste buds.
1 small onion, chopped
1 tbls garlic, diced
1/2 tbls olive oil
14.5 oz petite diced onions, no salt added
1 tbls lemon juice
2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 tsp sweet basil
1/4 tsp oregano
1/8 tsp black pepper
1/8 tsp red pepper flakes
1/8 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cajun seasoning
Saute onion and garlic in olive oil. When the vegetables are tender stir in everything except the corn starch. Simmer for 5 to 10 minutes over medium low heat. If you're incorporating your marinara with your filling, the sauce is finished. If you plan to serve it on the side for dipping, add in 1 tbls corn starch. When sauce has thickened, remove from heat.
1/2 to 3/4 head of green cabbage sliced up
apple cider vinegar
slice of onion
a few slices of pepper
1 tsp pickling spices
1/8 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp garlic
I usually do 50% water to 50% vinegar in a saucepan. Put your pickling spices in a tea ball and dangle it from the side of the pot. Toss in all your vegetables and spices. Bring pot to a boil. Reduce heat and cook for about 15 mins. Drain and set aside when finished.
1 lb lean ground turkey (I used 99%)
1.5 tbls olive oil
2 banana peppers
1 tbls garlic
2 tbls apple cider vinegar
1 tsp cajun seasoning
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
dash of paprika
-Turkey Pepperoni (used later when you actually put your filling in the calzone)
- 2 cups Finely Shredded Mozzarella (used later when you actually put your filling in the calzone)
Cook meat, onion, garlic, and peppers in olive oil over med to med-high heat until meat is cooked through. Stir in seasonings and apple cider vinegar. Cook another 5 minutes or so. Add marinara and picked cabbage to the filling and stir it all together. (If you are serving your marinara on the side just add the pickled cabbage and the filling is finished.) Let the filling cook for another 15 to 20 minutes to allow the liquid to reduce down and cook out. While your filling is finishing up mix up your dough.
3 cups unbleached all purpose flour
1 package active dry yeast
1 cup warm skim milk
1 tbls oil
1 tbls raw honey
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 cup milled flax
1/4 cup wheat germ
2 tbls vital wheat gluten
Dissolve the yeast in 1/4 cup warm water from the tap. Mix in warm skim milk. I heat mine in the microwave. Stir in oil, honey, and salt. Mix in flax, wheat germ, and gluten. Mix in flour gradually. When the dough gets too stiff to continue stirring pour it out onto your work surface and knead in the remaining flour. Continue kneading for 8 minutes or so. Divide in 8 pieces. (If you want larger portion sizes 4 pieces.)
Take one of the 8 pieces and work it into a ball. Your dough should be quite elastic....if it's not, work it some more. On a greased cookie sheet, press your ball of dough out into a thin circle. Line half of the dough with a layer of turkey pepperoni. Put a mound of filling on top of the pepperoni followed by a layer of cheese. Fold the other side of the dough up over the layered mound of filling and press the edges together to form your pocket. Repeat for the other portions of dough.
If you want your calzones to have a puffy, thicker crust cover them and let them rise in a warm place for 30 minutes or so. If you want to stay with the thinner crust pop them right into a 375 degree oven for 20 - 25 minutes or until the calzones are nicely browned.
Some pictures of the process....
I remember the days where I could just pop open a can of sauerkraut and I was good to go. ;) Do I need to say super salty? Anywho this is my work around where I can still have a kick of extra flavor, but not the overload of salt. A tea ball works great to hold the pickling spices for the cabbage.
The picked cabbage, marinara, and turkey are all ready to be incorporated together and begin the cook down process. Honestly I could probably drain the diced tomatoes at the very beginning before I added them to the marinara sauce....but I think there would be less in the flavor dept.
Yummy, yummy filling all cooked down and ready to stuff into calzones.
Be careful that you don't overfill your pockets or you will have trouble closing them. You will also risk tearing your dough or stretching it to thin if they are too full. If you do end up with a hole, you can nip off a little bit of dough from one of the corners of the pocket and do a little dough patching. Not pretty, but it works.
A pocket all nicely formed and ready to either go into the oven or rise for 30 minutes. Make sure you pinch the edges together firmly. You don't want your edges to pop open on you during baking.