I have a serious problem. When others are getting changed into their jammies, settling down with a book in their beds, I find myself in the kitchen, putting together recipes better suited for the daylight hours. Is there an Anonymous group for that?
I fully intended only to prepare the Semolina Pizza Dough from Emeril’s Kicked-Up Sandwiches. I knew I would be making the Sopressata and Genoa Salami Calzones later in the week as part of #SeriousSandwich and I figured a head start might help on hectic soccer practice days. But once I reached the end of the first rise, I talked myself into continuing to the second rise, and the next thing I knew, I was pulling homemade calzones out of the oven at 10PM. It sure beats other late night snacks I could have had!
Usually when I make pizza dough, I leave that task to the dough cycle on my bread machine. I have a beautiful KitchenAid mixer whose dough hook has rarely seen any action. What a shame. For the sake of authenticity, I pulled the cart over to the outlet and put my KitchenAid to work. I wanted to make this recipe as close to the original as possible.
The recipe called for kneading on medium speed for about 10 minutes, but my mixer got pretty hot about halfway through that time. Then I remembered the warning on the top of the dough hook to use it at Speed 2. I turned the speed down and just let it go a bit longer than called for. No worries.
There isn’t a lot of hands-on time with this recipe. Mostly waiting for the yeast to do its job and raise the dough. When it’s time to assemble the calzones, you do have a little bit of chopping to do, but it’ll take no more than 10 minutes, 15 if you’re slow and have no knife skills (like me!). I used the time of the second rise to prepare my fillings and get the oven and pizza stone ready. From there, it was a piece of calzone. (Not cake, of course!)
The recipe states that it makes 4 calzones, and this is true. But they are 4 gigantic calzones which could be split between two large adults, turning it into a meal fit for 8. Or you’ll have some fantastic leftovers for work the next day. My coworkers were jealous when I was heating mine up, filling the office with that delightful aroma. Mmmm!
Sopressata and Genoa Salami Calzones are featured in Emeril’s Kicked-Up Sandwiches, as well as the recipe for the Semolina Pizza Dough. This latest cookbook from Emeril Lagasse will be released for sale on October 16th, or you can pre-order it here. If you’d like to take your chances at winning a copy of your own, don’t forget to check out my first post on #SeriousSandwich–the contest is open until 11:59PM TONIGHT.
The verdict? Fantastic meal! Plan ahead a little and you’ll have something restaurant quality from your own oven. Don’t be intimidated–you can do it!
- 1 recipe Semolina Pizza Dough (page 298)
- 1 cup Quick Tomato Sauce for Calzones (recipe follows) or your favorite jarred pizza/pasta sauce
- 1 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
- 8 ounces mixed sopressata, hot sopressata, Genoa salami, and/or pepperoni, chopped
- 1 cup ricotta cheese, drained
- 8 ounces smoked mozzarella cheese, cut into ½-inch cubes
- ¼ cup finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
- ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper
- Flour or cornmeal, for dusting the pizza peel
- 1¾ cups
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, chopped
- One 28-ounce can whole peeled tomatoes, drained and pureed
- 1 sprig fresh thyme
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- Place a pizza stone in the bottom third of the oven and preheat the oven to 500°F. (Alternatively, place an upside-down rimmed baking sheet on the rack in your oven.)
- Halve one of the pieces of dough and roll it out on a lightly floured work surface to form two 8-inch rounds. Spread ¼ cup of the tomato sauce over the bottom half of each round, leaving a 1-inch border. Sprinkle ¼ cup of the basil and one-quarter of the cured meats evenly over each portion of sauce. Sprinkle one-quarter of the ricotta, mozzarella, Parmesan, and crushed red pepper over each portion of meat. Gently fold the top half of the dough over the filling, rolling and pressing the edges together with your fingertips to seal them, and crimping as you go along. Make 2 more calzones with the remaining ingredients.
- Depending on the size of your oven, you may be able to bake only 2 calzones at a time. Cut several small slits in the top of each calzone to allow air to escape while baking, and transfer the calzones to a pizza peel that has been lightly dusted with flour or cornmeal (to facilitate moving the dough). Tilt the pizza peel to slide the calzones onto the preheated baking stone. Bake for 16 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and the dough is cooked through. Remove the calzones from the oven with the pizza peel or a spatula, and serve immediately or at room temperature.
- Heat the olive oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic, and cook for 3 minutes, until soft. Add the tomatoes, thyme sprig, salt, and pepper, and simmer for 20 minutes. Remove from the heat. Stir in the extra-virgin olive oil, discard the thyme sprig, and set aside until ready to use.
Disclosure: The views and opinions expressed on this blog are mine alone, based upon my personal experience. Morrow Cookbooks provided me with a Cookalong Kit including an advance copy of Emeril’s Kicked-Up Sandwiches. In addition, upon completion of the #SeriousSandwich cookalong, all participants will receive a small grocery reimbursement and a complete library of Emeril Cookbooks.