Tuesday, July 28, 2009

four cheese calzones

So this whole ricotta adventure started because when I was back in Jersey, we went to a pizzeria called Italian Village. It's the best in Madison after all. My sister ordered a cheese calzone that I coveted. It was full of the freshest ricotta and loads of mozzarella. A cheese lover's paradise. And THIS was my vision and mission statement, starting even at step one of ricotta making.

One of my favorite Italian-American cookbooks is Lidia Bastianich's Italian American kitchen. The pizza dough recipe in there is fairly simple - the ratio seems to work really well in my kitchen as well as hers.

Dough recipe (for pizza and calzones)
based on recipe by Lidia Bastianich

  1. Dissolve 1 tsp yeast in 1 cup warm water in bottom of mixing bowl with paddle attachment.
  2. After yeast has bloomed add 1 tablespoon each honey and olive oil (my addition, for flavor)
  3. Combine 2 tsp (or up to 1tbsp) salt with 3 cups flour. Sprinkle dry ingredients over wet ingredients
  4. Mix until combined.
  5. Switch to dough hook. Knead for 10 minutes in machine.
  6. Move dough to an oiled bowl. Cover top loosely with a damp towel. Let proof until doubled about 2 hours.
  7. Separate into smaller balls of dough for individual pizzas or calzones.
  8. Let proof again in refrigerator for 8-24 hours.
  9. Allow this to come to room temperature before stretching for pizza or calzones.
I made this dough early in the morning. It's pretty easy to knock off during breakfast time. Then it proofed, once and twice, while the day's controlled chaos swirled around it. This recipe made me six reasonably sized calzones, of which a hungry man could have had two.

Cheese calzone filling (for one calzone)
  • 1/2 cup fresh ricotta cheese
  • 2 generous slices fresh mozzarella
  • 1/4 cup pecorino romano
  • one slice mild provolone
  1. Stretch dough into a circle
  2. Put above filling into half of calzone
  3. Fold half over top of filling.
  4. Fold edges over each other to prevent filling from leaking out.
  5. Bake at 450deg (convection if you have it) for 12-15 minutes, or until browned.

Served above with garlic wilted kale and a simple tomato salad.

1 comment:

Jen of A2eatwrite said...

Thank you so much! This is the calzone from my childhood and I've been missing it so much in Michigan!