Monday, April 20, 2009

Ham & Broccoli Calzone

While we were out grocery shopping over the weekend, I saw some fresh pizza dough for sale. The dough came from NY and we know that NY has the best pizzas ever. Some people say it's because of the NY water, I don't know. I guess it could be, since NY is known for having the best tap water around. So I picked a pack up (rather cheap too, I believe it was only $1.95). Since I still had a tiny bit of ham left, I decided to make some Ham & Broccoli Calzones for dinner tonight. This is all the ingredients that you would need.

Calzones are actually rather simple to make. First, remove the dough from it's plastic packaging. This can be quite tricky if the dough is all sticky and stuff. The trick is to use a lot of flour. Dust your hands with flour too before you handle the dough. Make sure you dust on lots of flour on your work space.

Using a sharp knife, cut the dough into two equal halves. Form the dough into two balls. I bought a small pack of dough, which is enough to make two large calzones or four small ones. If you are getting the large pack, it is enough to make four large or eight small calzones.

Cover the dough balls with a tea towel. Se it aside for about 15 minutes or until it reaches room temperature.

While waiting for the dough, we can start to make the filling for the calzone. Scoop about half a tub of ricotta cheese into a large bowl.

Add in an egg yolk from an extra large egg. If we were to add in the whites, it would make the mixture too watery. If your filling is too watery, it might cause your calzone to be soggy later on. If you think that your filling is too watery, you can place it in a sieve to get some of the liquid out.

Add in some chopped broccoli. I used frozen broccoli, so it's already pre cooked. If you are using fresh broccoli, it will be good that you either boil or steam it until it's half cooked before mixing it in.

Add in the ham and mix it all up evenly.

By now, the dough should be all ready to be rolled out. Press the dough out to form a circle with your fingers. Again, do not be afraid to use lots of flour. Try to flatten it out as much as possible.

Continue to roll out the dough using a rolling pin.

Once you think that its thin enough, transfer the dough to a greased baking tray. Sprinkle on some garlic salt/garlic powder as well as some Italian herbs blend.

Sprinkle some shredded Mozzarella cheese on one side of the dough.

Scoop on some of the ricotta, broccoli and ham mixture. Just pile it high as it will all reduce when it's in the oven. Having too little filling will cause your calzone to sink. Sprinkle on more Mozzarella cheese.

Brush on some egg wash around the edges of the calzone.

Pull the empty half of the dough over the filling and press it down firmly with your fingers to seal it tight.

To make sure that its really sealed and that it doesn't pop open during baking, press down the sides with a fork.

Cut some slits on the top of the calzone. This is to allow the steam to escape while baking (we do not want an explosion in the oven :P).

Brush the top of the calzone with egg wash. This will give it a nice golden brown color when it's done. If you do not want to use egg wash, some people would brush on some oil instead.

Pop the calzones in a 400F oven for about 15-20 minutes. Once it's done, take it out from the oven and sprinkle on some Parmesan cheese before serving.

Here it is! Ham and Broccoli Calzone served with some Marinara sauce on the side. Give it a try. It's really simple to make. I hope you will enjoy making and eating them as much as I did!! :D

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