It started off with Jamie Oliver's Calzones from the latest Delicious. magazine this month (September 2014 - Issue 141). I wanted a little challenge and this is exactly what I felt like. I adapted the recipe slightly because our local supermarket isn't very good with ingredients that are a little out of the ordinary or specialised.
I'll be honest. I was a little hesitant about making this but thought that if it fails completely it's only Tristan and myself who I'm feeding and we can always have pasta with cheese on if its terrible. So on that note, I had nothing to loose.
I started with the dough and quartered the recipe that Jamie gives in the magazine. For the Calzone recipe you are meant to half the recipe but then that makes six calzones. Six is a little much for two of us no matter how greedy we are sometimes so I halved it again, quartering the original recipe. I had to scale out 2g of dried yeast... that was a little tricky since my scales are very tempremental. I had planned on seeing how many teaspoons 7g was then quartering it by eye but went with the rough 2g measurement instead... and it worked! YAY!
I kneading the dough on my lovely blue bench top for 5 minutes then let it rest. The recipe says to rest it for 1 hour... I didn't have one hour. My stomach was eating itself even with just the thought home made Calzones. This step is good for tuck-shop lady arms.
For the filling I boiled two small potatoes, pan-fried some mushrooms, roughly chopped some baby rocket and then quartered bocconcini balls. The original recipe says use Taleggio cheese which is a strong soft italian cheese. When I worked in the restaurant it was on the cheese platter and it was a stinky one! I have nothing against smelly cheeses and I would have probably used Talleggio but like I've said above, our supermarket stocks a large brand variety of basics. And I have an obsession with bocconcini at the moment... mmm those soft little round milk stringy balls of cheese...
After I got over my day dreaming of cheese, cheese and more cheese. I divided the dough into three, rolled the out to roughly about 5mm thick. Divided the filling between the three and folded one side over sealing the edges, pinching the sides over each other. Scored the tops and baked them in a very hot oven for 20 minutes. YUM YUM YUM.
(Ok I'll admit something... I was meant to add a spoonful of creme fraise or sour cream to the filling but I got so excited that they were coming together and it was working and I wasn't pulling my hair out in frustration that I completely forgot to add it. But can confirm they are delicious with or without the cream fraise... I might add a couple of cherry tomatoes halved next time to make it a little more juicy. Who knows... maybe if I'd added the creme fraise I wouldn't be thinking nest time to add cherry tomatoes?!?)
Anyway... the verdict... it was scrumptious and I was pleased that I had gone outside my boundaries and made Calzones on a week night and not saved them for a weekend when I plan to make a more special meal and everything goes down the drain because something crops up. If your organised enough (not like me) you can even make the pizza dough the night before and leave it in the fridge so all you have to do it roll it out, fill them and bake them. How easy is that?!!
Let me know what you think... there are a few steps in here that are hard to explain... would a little video help?? I'd love to hear your thoughts!
Calzone from Delicious. magazine September 2014 issue by Jamie Oliver.
Serves 2 hungry people or 3 with a side salad.
Pizza Dough -
250g 00 Flour (or strong white flour)
2g dried instand yeast (or 1/4 of a 7g sachet)
1 tsp caster sugar
15mL olive oil
180g potatoes, halved
1 tsp butter
1 tbsp olive oil
2 thyme sprigs, leaves removed
200g button mushrooms
1 garlic clove, crushed
pinch of chilli flakes
1 tbsp creme fraiche or sour cream
150g bocconcini balls, quartered
1/2 cup baby rocket, roughly chopped
**Pre-heat your oven to 220 C or 420 F. **
Start by making the pizza dough:
- Sift the flour and a pinch of salt into a large bowl or onto your bench. Make a well in the centre.
- In a jug mix 160mL of warm water, dried yeast, caster sugar and olive oil together and let sit for a couple of minutes. (You are waking the yeast up in the step so it can make your dough rise later)
- Using a fork, pour the liquid into the well in the flour and start working it together gradually from the centre until all the flour has been incorporated. Don't worry if it looks like a shaggy mess at the moment. Turn it out onto your bench if you have used a bowl and start kneading it with the heel of your hand on a floured surface.
- The amount of extra flour you will need to add will depend on the weather and the type of flour you have used. You want an almost tacky dough. Not so sticky that it's sticking to your hands every time you knead it but you defiantly don't want it too dry. The more you knead it, the better it will come together. If you're unsure about adding too much flour start by adding a little at a time as you work the dough. Knead it for 5-10 minutes or until smooth and stretchy.
- Place the dough in a floured bowl and cover with a damp tea towel somewhere warm for 1 hour or until it's doubled in size. While your dough is resting, start your filling.
For the filling:
- Boil your potatoes for 12-14 minutes or until cooked through, drain and then slice into 1.5cm pieces. Allow to cook a little.
- Pan fry your mushrooms with the butter, olive oil and thyme until all the liquid has been absorbed and they start to colour. Add the garlic and chilli flakes and cook for another minute. Allow to cool a little.
- In a bowl add the bocconcini, baby rocket, potatoes, mushrooms and creme fraiche (or sour cream) and mix together.
Constructing your Calzone:
- Knock back your dough by punching it down in the bowl then roughly knead it for a minute or so. (It's at this point you can cling wrap your dough and refrigerate it for 24 hours ready to use straight from the fridge). Divide it into 3 pieces.
- Roll out each piece of dough on a lightly floured surface to about 5mm thick and circle in diameter as possible.
- Divide the filling up between the three rolled out pieces of dough.
- Fold one side over and bring the edge to meet the other edge. Seal it by pinching and turning the edges over on each other then giving the final end a good pinch. Do the same to all of them.
- Score the top then place in the oven for 20 minutes. I had to rotate my trays so get even baking so make sure you keep an eye on them when your oven is up this high.