All who dwell within this house love calzones!
It's rule #1 of being in this family. Must Love Calzones.
What an easy rule to obey!
This recipe is a really fun one. It's easy, it's interesting and it's flexible.
You can change it on a whim and it always comes out beautifully!
You can dress this down with plain sauce, cheese and pepperoni.
Or dress it up with pesto and chicken. Try barbecue sauce, pineapple and Canadian bacon.
I'm thinking I'd like to try Alfredo sauce with something.
Just about anything you've got in your fridge will taste yummy in a calzone.
Mushrooms, meatballs, sausage, olives, onions....
There's no limit to what you can create!
First I make the pizza dough. I use a bread maker recipe from The Bread Bible.
I'd be happy to give the recipe to anyone who wants it.
Bug likes to feel the bread machine vibrate on her chin while it kneads the dough.
It is pretty mesmerizing. This is what the dough looks like straight out of the maker. A nice round airy lump of dough.
She's slumping her shoulders because I just scolded her for it.
If it's snapping back to much, I let it rest for a few minutes
(a little tip from my cousin L that saved me from having to yell
at my pizza dough to stay put. It's never good to yell at dough.
Especially in front of young children.)
Isn't my Bug beautiful? She takes my breath away.
long as she promises to stop jabbing at the poor thing.
I'm going to roll the dough into an 11 x 17 inch rectangle to assemble the calzone.
Then I prepare the baking sheet by spraying it with Pam.
Sometimes I sprinkle cornmeal on the cookie sheet.
That makes it seem very authentic.
Then I get to thinking I'm authentic.
So I start saying things like "atsa matta for you".
No one thinks it's funny.
"I'm going to show you a very important baking technique.
Pay close attention honey, and watch your mother, the master.
I'm going to roll this dough onto the rolling pin..."
maneuver, but once you master it, you'll be an expert, just like mommy."
Now we just transfer it nicely to the baking sheet just like so..."
"And then we HEY! NO! ARRRGH!"
Bug is eyeing me suspiciously and wondering with trepidation
if someday she will, in fact, be "just like mommy".
Soooooo, I was supposed to masterfully unroll the dough onto
the Pam'd baking sheet. It's not really a complicated maneuver.
I just wanted to feel special.
Anywho, the dough got to where it needed to be.
In a round about way.
Just not any way that would be photographed.
Let us never speak of this again.
How about some sauce?
Bug spreads on the pizza sauce...
3/4 cup total.
I'm finding her so cute, I can't stop photographing this part.
get this show on the road? Or should we just keep
taking pictures til the cows come home?"
This is where it gets fun because you can create your
own masterpiece with any filling you crave.
What would compel a little girl to make such straight pepperoni lines?
We thought some yellow bell pepper might be fun.
like the good cooking show hostess that she is?
pepperoni landing strip. Ah, yes. Ever Grandpa's girl.
This entails opening the slider to let in my dog-vac.
Hannah's even got a feline helper today. Hello Harrison.
Stand down Harrison! Stand down!
Don't underestimate Harrison due to his small stature.
Just look at this wicked cat in action.
Mrs. Belle's ears never regained full upright form after that day.
We had some spinach lying around and thought that might be interesting to try.
Here Bug helpfully explains our rationale for trying spinach: Then cheese. Lots of cheese.
Which we did wish.
Mark my words, this girl's 2 seconds away from her own cooking show on the Food Network. Here she's describing
the nature of the cheese to you, so you can feel like
you are in the kitchen with us....
Once we've piled on all our fillings of choice,
I cut the edges of the dough on an angle.
If this seems really unnecessary, you can just fold the
two sides of the dough up around the filling.
Keep doing it all the way down one side.
try to keep it even with the other side. It's not really going to matter.
When I finish, it looks like this:
going in the same direction as the angle I cut.
That last sentence doesn't make sense even to me, and
I made the thing, so here's a picture that shows what I mean to say: And another for good measure.
I keep a little dish of water nearby and periodically dip my fingers in it...
...and then sprinkle the water on to the dough to help seal some of the seams.
But it's not too big of a deal if the seams are left unsealed.
Then I brush the top liberally with butter.
This will brown it very nicely.
I bake it at 350 degrees for 40-45 minutes.
Bug has brought in some vegetation. What is she doing?
but she said it was to be a surprise.
Ooooo, it's done!
and chewy and cheesy!!