You know you are an obsessed Foodie when you go to visit people and you request to go check out the different supermarkets. Is that rude? I hope not because I'm guilty. I visited my Sis last weekend and she made a really yummy pizza on Friday night that had a delicious chicken sausage on one of them.
Chicken in sausage? I may be a snob but until that night I've not had a chicken sausage worth trying. Typically they are dry and bland. But, she surprised me with deliciously tasty sausage stuffed with chicken, spinach, fontina and roasted garlic. AHHHH! Maybe we have found the answer! It had Garlic in it! Anything with garlic can't be that bad right!?!
Then I asked her to take me to the source. I'll be damned. It was Costco. So we went to Costco and I got myself some sausage to bring home. We also went to an amazing Latin American supermarket. I'll have to share more on that later.
All week I've been dreaming of encasing that sausage in a calzone pocket stuffed with cheese and tomato sauce. I was not disappointed. It was really good.
Dough (This dough can make 4 calzones. I made 2 and put the remaining dough in the fridge for another use later in the week.) 1 cup warm water 1 tsp dry active yeast 1 tsp sugar 3/4 cup white bread flour 3/4 cup whole wheat flour plus all purpose flour for dusting 1 tsp kosher salt 1 tsp olive oil
Mix the water, sugar and yeast. Set aside for 5 minutes. With a food mixer, mix in the 1 cup of bread flour. Add the salt and oil. Mix in remaining flour slowly. Remember, weather can impact how much flour a dough can take. Use your instincts. Stop adding flour when the dough is still a little sticky but not sticking to the side of the bowl. Allow the dough to rise for about 1 1/2 hours.
Stuffing for Calzone 1/4 cup of tomato sauce per calzone 1 sausage per calzone - sliced 1/2 cup Really Good Provolone per calzone (I like the Boars Head brand.)
1/2 cup Parmesan 1 egg Cornmeal for dusting
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Saute the sausage in a skillet for about 8 minutes.
Grate the cheese.
Cut the risen dough in half. At this point I put 1/2 the dough away for later use. I took the remaining half and cut it in half again so I had two little balls. Allow the balls to rest for about 5 minutes. Roll each ball out into approximately 8-10 inch discs. On the half of each disk add 1/4 cup of cheese, spoon over the tomato sauce, sausage slices, and top with the remaining 1/4 cup of cheese. Fold the other half of dough over, press down and crimp with a fork.
In a small bowl, whisk the egg with about a tbsp of cold water.
Lightly dust a pizza stone with cornmeal. Place each calzone on the stone and brush with the egg mixture. The egg mixture will help you get a perfectly browned crust. Bake in a 400 degree oven for about 15 minutes or until lightly browned.
Once baked, sprinkle with finely grated parmesean cheese.
Food is so intriguing. I’ve always loved to cook whether it’s casual and simple or complicated and elegant. After living in the Midwestern United States all my life I find myself jumping between All-American foods and foods from other cultures. There is definitely a sense of comfort with cooking and enjoying food that I’ve grown up with.
I have a voracious curiosity to learn about all cultures, especially the Middle East/Mediterranean, Indian, Chinese, Vietnamese, and Thai foods. I’ve learned that a simple curry dish or an Asian dumpling can transform your mood and be just as much of a comfort food as the foods you’ve known you’re whole life.
It is fascinating to me how each culture has such a diversity of ingredients, and when used with different combinations and cooking techniques you can easily transform the same few ingredients into a multitude of dishes. The unfamiliar, the diverse ingredients and techniques, can be intimidating to many people. I’ve created this blog to chronicle and share my explorations in the kitchen so that hopefully you will want to start experimenting in your kitchen.