Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Pizza for breakfast

This morning before work I made pizza dough.

I meant to do it last night, but I came home late from boxing, and then we pulled dinner together.* And basically, after eating dinner and watching someone do the washing up and having a shower and watching Doctor Who, I just couldn't be bothered.

The pizza dough was my solution to being very busy. It made sense to me when I came up with it.

I had heaps of odds and ends in the fridge - a little left over choi sum in garlic, half a bunch of silver beet, a quarter of a cabbage. A handful of roquette. Half a bulb of fennel. onions and garlic in the pantry. I didn't want to go shopping for a whole new fridge full of vegetables - it seems so wasteful not to use what I have. And I'd planned a roof-top-bar-detour on the way home from work. I needed something that would come together quickly and didn't feel like a fuss to eat.

It made sense – sauté all the vegetables together with onions and garlic, throw in some toasted fennel seeds and a few sultanas, crumble in some fetta (which can bought from the supermarket on the way home), wrap it all in fresh pizza dough and voila: calzone. Tasty fresh green vegetably parcels just perfect after a few glasses of wine in the balmy summer evening.

On reflection it sounds a little complicated, but the advantages impressed me. Use up the left-overs, thus minimising additional shopping. Quick and easy just to throw together when I walk in the door (cut vegetables, sauté, roll dough - 10 minutes max. Bake for 20 minutes.). Good with a second glass of red wine.

Providing you make the pizza dough. And allow it to rise. And rest it.

The thing with calzone is you have to use fresh dough, not pre-made pizza bases, because you fold it over. It wraps around your pizza "topping", and it needs to be soft and pliable to do this. You can make the dough in advance. It can prove in the refrigerator over several hours, or even be stored in the freezer. And if you have a dough hook attachment for your beaters (which I do) it only needs to be kneaded for about 5 minutes. The night before.

Or in the morning, if you forget / can't be bothered.

*Just a warm salad. After boxing I'm more interested in speed and quantity than anything else. Which is just as well, given that the kitchen-helper took a scorched earth approach to the chicken.

Frugal Calzone

2 cups shredded silverbeet
2 cups shredded cabbage
½ fennel bulb, finely sliced
1 onion, finely sliced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
½ teaspoon toasted fennel seeds
2 tbsp sultanas
1 cup chopped roquette
200 g fetta cheese
1 quantity dough

Heat the oven to 180ºC.

Sauté onion and garlic in a large pan until softening, add silverbeet, cabbage, fennel and fennel seeds. Cook until collapsed and soft. Turn off the heat and add the sultanas and roquette. Cool (now is good time to roll out the pizza dough). Crumble the fetta cheese into the mixture and mix through. Season to taste.

Divide dough into four portions and roll into thin circles, about 25 cm diameter.

Brush the outer edge with a little water. Spread the filing onto one half, then fold over the dough to form a semi circle. Pinch the dough to seal. Place on an oven tray lined with baking paper and bake in a moderate oven for about 25 minutes, until crispy and brown.

Basic dough

2/3 cup luke-warm water
1 tsp dry yeast
Pinch sugar
2 cups plain / strong flour
¼ cup olive oil
Pinch sea salt

Mix the yeast, water and sugar together in a large bowl. Set aside until it is kind of frothy on the top.
Add the flour, oil, and sea salt. Mix with a dough hook for five minutes, or by knead by hand for about 20 minutes. Place in a light oiled clean bowl and leave to rise until doubled in size (or cover and refrigerate. To use, remove from fridge and bring dough back to room temperature).

No comments:

Post a Comment