Remember the BBQ Chicken Braid? The possibilities of filling bread with magical ingredients has been on my mind ever since.
The next step beyond the braid was inevitable since homemade pizza is such a staple around here: a changed-up calzone. Beyond the traditional pizza fillings, I knew I wanted something different.
I mean, I wasn’t using pizza dough as the base (although you could!), so I figured what better way to combine one of my favorite sandwiches into calzone form.
I love…like, really love…philly cheesesteak sandwiches. So here’s the calzone cousin.
Tender roast beef, succulent sauteed peppers and onions, and of course creamy, melted cheese. Using the same french bread roll recipe as the braid, I separated the dough into six-ish pieces and filled them to heaping with the delicious filling.
Baked to golden perfection – this meal was the ultimate in comfort for me. (And has been made lotsa lotsa times in the last month.)
16 ounces deli roast beef, thinly sliced (leftover roast beef like this Italian Beef would work great in this)
1 tablespoon canol or olive oil
1-2 medium yellow onions, cut in half and sliced into thin half moons
1-2 green peppers, chopped
12 ounces white button mushrooms, sliced
8 ounces provolone cheese, grated or thinly sliced
Make the french bread roll recipe and follow the steps through the first rise. Separate the dough into 6 or 7 pieces and shape into a ball. Let them rest lightly covered for 10-15 minutes to help the dough relax a bit.
While the dough rests, preheat the oven to 400 degrees and heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet. Add the onions and mushrooms and cook, stirring now and then, until the onions begin to become translucent and the mushrooms start to cook down, about 3 minutes. Add the peppers and continue to cook until the vegetables are tender and most of the liquid has cooked off, about another 3-5 minutes. Toss in the roast beef and cook until the beef is warmed through (if there is still a lot of liquid left in the skillet from adding the roast beef, either drain the liquid or cook until the liquid evaporates). Take the skillet off the heat.
Using a nonstick mat or a lightly greased countertop, working one at a time, start flattening each piece of dough into a circle. (Photo #1)
Eventually you’ll want it between six or eight inches in diameter (depending on how thick you want the calzone – I prefer them on the thinner side so they aren’t overly doughy). (Photo #2)
On the bottom half of the dough circle, leaving at least a 3/4-inch edge on the bottom and sides to crimp later, layer on a portion of the meat and veggies, taking care to portion the meat and vegetables so you’ll have enough for each calzone. (Photo #3)
Top the meat and veggies with cheese. (Photo #4)
Grab the top edge of the dough and fold it up and over the filling. (Photo #5)
Using the tines of a fork, press the edges of the calzone together until well sealed. (Photo #6)
Carefully lift the calzone onto a silpat-lined or lightly greased baking sheet. Follow this process with the remaining pieces of dough, spacing them at least one to two inches apart on the baking sheet. Bake for 14-15 minutes until golden brown and cooked through.
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