In Italian the word calzone means "stocking" or "trousers" or "drooping sack."
A calzone is a savory Italian turnover made from pizza dough and stuffed with cheese (usually mozzarella and ricotta) and
a variety of other stuffing ingredients. They can be either baked or deep-fried. Calzones are typically served with marinara
sauce on the side for dipping. Calzones are similar to stromboli but the stromboli is rolled to resemble a loaf and a
calzone is folded into a semicircle.
Calzones may be made with purchased pizza dough but we are also providing you with a pizza dough recipe that is the
same as the one we use for Skillet Fried Pizza. We prefer bread flour for the dough because it makes a more elastic
dough but you can use all-purpose flour. We have also included some ideas for fillings but you can fill a calzone with any
of your favorite pizza topping ingredients.
Makes 4 (8-inch) calzones
2 cups all-purpose or bread flour
1 teaspoon rapid-rise yeast
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 teaspoons sugar
1/2 to 3/4 cup water
3 tablespoons olive oil
Egg wash: 1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water
To make the dough:
In a food processor, combine the flour, yeast, salt and sugar.
With the machine running, add 1/2 cup of water and the olive oil through the
feed tube. Process for 15-20 seconds, adding more water a little at a time, until
the mixture forms into a ball. If the dough seems to sticky, add a little more
flour. Transfer the dough to a lightly-floured surface. Knead a few times just to
get a smooth dough.
Grease a bowl with a little olive oil and transfer the dough to the bowl.
Turn once to coat all sides with the oil. Cover the bowl and let rise until double
in volume, 1-1/2 to 2 hours.
Punch down the dough and place it in a lightly-floured surface.
Divide the dough into 4 pieces. Cover and allow to rest for 20 minutes.
To form the calzone:
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
To make 4 calzones, divide the dough into 4 equal pieces
Roll out one round at a time to a 10-inch circle. Place one-fourth of your filling
mixture onto the bottom half of the dough circle. Fold the top half of the dough
over the filling to form a half-moon. Seal the edges well by squeezing them
together with your fingers. To insure a tight seal, fold the edge of the dough
back toward the filling, pressing to seal. Transfer the calzone to an oiled baking
sheet and brush with the egg wash. Repeat procedure for the remaining pieces
of dough and filling. Bake the calzones for 20 to 25 minutes, until the crust is
Calzone Fritto (Fried)
To deep-fry a calzone:
Heat oil in a deep fryer to 350 degrees F. Divide the dough into 4 equal pieces.
Roll out one round at a time to an 8-inch circle. (For deep-fried calzones you want
the dough to be slightly thicker than for baking so they don't burst in the fryer.)
Add the filling and brush the edges of the dough circle with a little water or the
egg wash. Fold the dough as outlined above and seal the edge very well with your
fingers. (Calzones that are not sealed well can open in the hot oil.) You do not
need to brush the tops with egg wash when making deep-fried calzones.
Add one or two (depending on the size of your fryer) of the calzones to the hot oil.
Do not crowd all four calzones in the oil at once or they will not cook through
properly. Fry the calzones for 6 to 8 minutes until golden brown.
Allow to rest a few minutes before serving with sauce.
You can fill a calzone with the cheese filling alone. You may even choose to
make it a four-cheese filling by adding another cheese such as fontina or
provolone. But you can fill a calzone with almost anything that you like. I
always include the cheese filling as a base in my calzones and then add other
ingredients to it. Reduce the amount of cheese filling to compensate for the
added ingredients. Below are just a few filling suggestions.
3 cups ricotta cheese
1/2 cup grated Parmesan Cheese
1/2 cup grated mozzarella cheese
1 tablespoon chopped parsley
Salt and pepper
Combine filling ingredients in a large bowl and stir to combine.
Add cubes of pre-cooked sausage or saute loose sausage in a skillet until well
browned. Drain sauteed sausage on paper towels to remove some of the
grease before adding it to the filling.
Sausage and Broccoli Rabe:
Saute some chopped broccoli rabe in a little olive oil with minced garlic and red
pepper flakes and add it to the sausage filling mixture.
Ham and Salami:
Add cubes or chopped slices of deli ham and salami
Prosciutto and Provolone:
Add cubes or chopped slices of prosciutto and provolone cheese
Add cubes of a fresh seeded tomato along with some torn fresh basil leaves to
the cheese filling.
Vegetables must be blanched or pre-cooked to al dente before adding them.
Try blanched broccoli, sauteed mushrooms, or sauteed cubes of eggplant.
For added flavor, saute your vegetables in olive oil with a little chopped onion
and garlic. For a great spinach filling, use thawed and well dried frozen
chopped spinach added to the cheese filling.