Calzones are a popular dinner option at our house, and they work well at home or on the go. Over the summer, I made the pizza pockets from 100 Days of Real Food for one of our many evenings when we were out at a swim meet during dinner time. Everyone liked them except for my daughter, who refused to eat them. I couldn’t understand it because she loves pizza. I modified the recipe to make the dough less dry, and after a few tries I found a version that everyone, including my daughter, loves. The key is to roll the dough very thin and pinch the edges together on just one side. The possibilities are limitless when it comes to fillings, but I’m partial to this version. If you want to keep it vegan, fill the calzone with dairy-free pesto and dried tomatoes for a delicious twist on this classic meal.
2 cups lukewarm water
3 tsp. active dry yeast
1 tbs. honey
1/3 cup olive oil
6 cups white whole wheat flour
1½ tsp. salt
½ cup pizza sauce
8 ounces mushrooms, sauteed
1 cup grated mozzarella
1 cup ricotta
- Mix together the warm water, yeast, and honey. Let it sit for 5 minutes, then add the oil.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer, mix together the flour and the salt. Add the wet ingredients.
- With a dough hook, beat the mixture until a ball of dough forms. The dough should be well hydrated but not sticky. (It should be almost sticky.) If it’s sticky, add a little more flour. If it seems too dry, add a little more water.
- Divide the dough. If you want large (10 inch by 5 inch) calzones, make 4 evenly sized balls. If you want smaller, individual size calzones, make 8 balls. Cover the dough and let it rise for 20-30 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees and grease 2 cookie sheets.
- Roll out each piece of dough into a circle 1/8 inch thick. Top the dough with sauce, mushrooms, and cheese. You could also do a Hawaiian version with ham and pineapple, a pesto version with pesto and sundried tomatoes, or a mixed cheese version. Anything you would put on a pizza is fair game.
- Fold the dough in half and pinch down the edge on one side. You don’t want a thick section with two layers of dough. Pierce the dough with a fork once or twice.
- Bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until the dough begins to turn brown. Let the calzones sit for a few minutes before cutting. Enjoy warm or at room temperature.
This recipe makes 8 servings and the total cost is $6.21, or $.78 per serving. These whole wheat calzones are as delicious as they are convenient.