Go to any legit Neapolitan pizza restaurant, and even the occasional neighborhood slice store. Open the menu, and scan the list of pizzas. Go the margherita, the pepperoni, the white pie with garlicky spinach, and there, on the backside of the checklist, chances are you'll be fortunate sufficient to identify it: the calzone.
Calzones are deceptively plain-looking, primarily a baked dough pocket named for males’s trousers. However inside that modest brown blob lies an excellent white-hot ooze of fluffy, seasoned ricotta and flowing mozzarella. Pizza could also be a “what you see is what you get” proposition, however the calzone has a component of shock. Plus, due to their sealed pocket form, calzones keep scorching longer than pizza and permit for not simply comparable add-on components however extra of them.
“There has at all times been one thing about calzones for me,” says Mike Fadem, the co-owner of Brooklyn’s celebrated Ops pizzeria. “A calzone is the right car for consuming cheese and dough.”
Fadem at all times retains a cheese calzone on the menu, with a rotating checklist of further fillings like crumbled Italian sausage and tomato-braised kale, served with a aspect of marinara for dipping. The Ops calzone has achieved minor fame on social media, within the press (it’s one in every of restaurant critic Invoice Addison’s favorites in New York), and by phrase of mouth for the superbly stuffed, blistered pockets.
Calzones have been round for centuries, beginning as a tidy grab-and-go possibility for 18th-century Italians. But within the panoply of pizza and its doughy relations (see, e.g., garlic knots), calzones typically appear to rank because the last-place pony in pizza joints and residential kitchens alike.
Subsequent time you have got designs on home made pizza for dinner, flop that dough in half, and make it a tacky calzone.
But calzones are a breeze to make at residence. Fadem places it straight: “Truthfully, a calzone is tougher to fuck up than pizza.” So subsequent time you have got designs on home made pizza for dinner, flop that dough in half, and make it a tacky calzone.
So long as you'll be able to deal with a spoon and stretch pizza dough right into a form loosely resembling a circle (you'll be able to trim uneven edges), you may make a calzone. The straightforward fill-and-fold technique makes calzones an ideal entry recipe for newbie pizza makers, and an incredible pizza-adjacent various for skilled pizzaioli on the lookout for a change.
A house oven’s temperature limitations received’t maintain you again right here. Skilled pizza ovens typically bake pizza at temperatures round 900°F. However a house oven set to the comparatively decrease temperature of 500°F permits for pro-level exterior browning, with time for all the inside cheese and fillings to cook dinner by.
To make calzones, collect a ball of room-temperature pizza dough (homemade is nice, however so is a ball of dough picked up out of your native pizza place), mozzarella cheese, contemporary ricotta, and any further fillings you may like to incorporate. Cooked, crumbled Italian sausage; salami; or chopped broccoli rabe sautéed in olive oil and garlic are all good concepts. That mentioned, plain ricotta and mozzarella cheese is the truest genuine Neapolitan model.
Generously mud an 8- or 9-ounce pizza dough with flour and unfold it right into a spherical on a greased baking sheet, as if making a pizza. Fadem recommends not utilizing a peel at residence, as a result of calzones could be too heavy and moist to slip onto a pizza stone.
After you have your skinny, flattened spherical of dough, unfold a giant scoop of frivolously seasoned ricotta, some grated mozzarella, and no matter different fillings you need over one half of the dough. Season with salt and pepper, and depart a small rim across the edge, such as you would with a pizza crust.
Now seal the deal. Fold the plain half of pizza dough over the tacky half, and press a seam across the edge to seal it. Be sure that the seam is tightly closed. Sealing the dough effectively prevents cheese blowouts. You could possibly slice an air vent within the high to launch steam because it bakes, however many calzone makers depart it absolutely sealed; the cheese creates steam because it heats, puffing up the calzone when baked.
Earlier than putting your calzone within the oven, brush the highest with olive oil. Bake it for about 20 minutes, till the underside and high crusts are properly browned and crisp. Whereas the calzone bakes, chances are you'll need to warmth a bowl of marinara sauce for dipping. Take away your baked calzone from the oven, wait a couple of minutes, then thank your self as you dig into your fluffy, tacky triumph.