Saturday, August 6, 2011
The teen likes to have homemade pizza on Friday nights. For some reason he thought Saturday was Friday...that just means it is time for summer to be over! When the days start running together... it's time to hit the structure of SCHOOL!!!
Anyway, I made some homemade pizza dough for him and while it was rising he said "Mom, I think I want to make a calzone". Uh, okay - never made one but I think it's basically a pizza in a pocket. He, however, wanted a BIG calzone...so we gave it a try.
We used our standard pizza dough that I use to make focaccia and pizza. It's a Martha Stewart recipe and has never failed me. I have blogged it before - see link in previous sentence. Actually, I just make the dough and the teen always takes it from there. Today, as we so often do, I made a half recipe, because I was having a salad for dinner.
I lightly rolled the dough into a rectangular shape on a floured surface and transferred it, on a rolling pin, onto a cookie sheet dusted with cornmeal. While I cleaned up, the teen built the calzone. He laid down his ingredients on one side of the dough - pizza sauce, his special herb mix (basil, Italian seasoning, garlic, onion powder, and pepper), layered on some Asiago cheese and a good bit of mozzarella, a layer of pepperoni, some bacon crumbles, and lastly more mozzarella cheese. He carefully pulled up the second half of the dough to cover the side with toppings, and began pinching together the edges. We considered several options for sealing - a fork (hard to do with a pan with an edge), a finger pinch, and lastly - he sort of rolled it up and then pinched it all around. Looked good to me. I next told him he should dust off the cornmeal that had stuck to the bottom of the pizza dough he'd pulled over the toppings - so he did, using a pastry brush. Next I showed him how to make an egg wash, which he then painted all over the calzone. I explained this would give it a nice brown crust. He likes a soft crust so he was leery...but he did it. Lastly I recommended sprinkling on some Parmesan or Asiago on top.
He had the oven pre-heated to 400 degrees and carefully placed his rather large calzone onto the middle rack in the oven. He started with 15 minutes on the timer and then checked it - felt like it needed a bit more time so we both agreed - set it for 7 minutes more and then check again.
He deemed it perfect at the 22 minute mark and removed it from the oven to rest for about 5 minutes before slicing into it. It slid easily onto a cutting board and he asked me to make the first cut. I think he wasn't sure what might bubble out! It was quite pretty on the outside and equally nice on the inside. His eyes got kind of big and said "it's like stuffed Italian bread!"... and it was! The sauce had mostly been absorbed into the dough and the cheesy stuffing looked mighty good. (It WAS delicious - I did have one small piece ;-)
I do believe he was very proud. And, I... I was once again, a very proud mom! I also have no doubt this will become one of the regulars on "pizza night".
Bon Appetit, Y'all!!!