Freezer Week: Kale and Pepper Calzone
When I was trying to come up with ideas for freezer week I figured I’d go to the boss. “What’s something you love to eat but we don’t always have time to make for dinner,” I asked Scarlett. “Spaghetti and meatballs!” she replied. Good point. However, not so freezer friendly. I poked and prodded her a bit more and she decided pizza was another good thing to eat. I loved the idea but we’ve already done a few great pizza recipes (not that the world couldn’t use more). But then it came to me. “Let’s make calzones,” I said. “What’s that?” Scarlett asked. Hmmmmm, let me see. How do I explain? “It’s like a slice of pizza covered in all your favourite things rolled up.” I completely had her attention.
I was feeling pretty pleased since this meant I found another great use for my spelt pizza dough. Now, I know you’re also thinking: “Who has time to roll out dough?” But it’s so easy and really doesn’t have to messy. The time it takes you to flour the space, roll out the dough and cut it into sections is the same amount of time it would take you to find that damn pizza takeout menu in the drawer. You know the draw I mean. The one where everyone in the house throws the random stuff like half dead pens and the silly banzs you confiscated last year. I know you have one of those drawers.
Kale and Pepper Calzone
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 onion, chopped lengthwise
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 red pepper, chopped
2 cups chopped frozen kale
1/2 lb mozzarella cheese, cut into pieces
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
1 lb. store-bought whole wheat pizza dough
Preheat oven to 450 with oven rack in lowest position. Place parchment paper on a large baking sheet.
In a large skillet over medium heat, cook onion and red pepper in oil and a sprinkling of salt until onion begins to brown and peppers are softened but still a bit crisp, about 8 to 10 minutes. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, another minute or two. Then add frozen kale (you can also use spinach) and stir until kale has wilted and softened, 3 to 4 minutes.
Meanwhile, slice cheese into small pieces. On a floured surface, roll out pizza dough into a rectangle with a lightly floured rolling pin until it’s about a 1/4 inch thick. Cut the dough into four square-ish pieces. Working with one section at a time, place a heaping tablespoon or even a bit more on a diagonal towards one corner of the square, add a few pieces of mozzarella and sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Then lifting at the bottom right corner, fold the dough toward the top left corner. Pinch edges of the calzone pulling dough upwards to close. Brush the top surface of the calzone with the remaining old and carefully slice three steam vents into the top.
Bake in the oven until golden brown, about 15 minutes. Cool for a few minutes and then serve with a side of warm tomato sauce for dipping.
I hate to say it but I left Scarlett out of the calzone extravaganza. I just didn’t want to find flour in my kitchen corners for the next 5 days. However, she’ll love this project. She told me so with a mouthful of calzone. “Next time Mommy, I make the the folded pizza,” she informed me. “No problem, next time for sure,” I said as I tucked four calzones in the freezer. I’m just hoping they last me until she’s 20 and out of the house. This way “next time” is in her first apartment and she can clean the flour.
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