Okay, so I know the poll winner was supposed to be my next entry, but I won’t have time to go to the grocery store until the weekend. So, just to hold you over until then, after getting some suggestions from my friends on the What’s Cooking board, I decided to make Buffalo Chicken Calzones for dinner tonight. I’ve never made calzones before, but this morning, I took out a stray chicken breast to defrost and then remembered that I had a ball of frozen pizza dough in the freezer, and decided to try my hand at it. My original plan was to do an alfredo type of filling, but I went with the buffalo chicken, because it seems a little more interesting. I sort of made up the recipe as I went along, so this one definitely provides some insight into the culinary mind of me. I used The Pioneer Woman’s basic method to whip up a quick homemade ranch dressing for dipping. It was a perfect accompaniment. I didn’t have any in the fridge but, I also think some finely chopped celery would be great in the filling, and of course, blue cheese dressing would be fantastic! Here’s what i created:
Boneless Skinless Chicken Breasts
Hot Sauce (Texas Pete’s is my fave!)
Ricotto Cheese (Part-skim or whole is fine.)
Freshly Ground Black Pepper
Frozen Pizza Dough (Defrosted)
Frozen Peas (Because you always need something green :))
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Start by pre-heating your oven and pizza stone to 450 degrees (you can use a cookie sheet if you don’t have a stone. Then clean, trim, and chop your chicken breasts and heat a skillet over medium fire.
Sautee the chicken in a small amount of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Allow to cook through and lightly brown.
While the chicken cooks, melt equal parts butter and hot sauce together.
Next prepare the cheese mixture. Combine ricotta cheese, parmesan cheese, salt, pepper, and paprika.
Next, stir the cheese mixture into the melted butter and hot sauce.
Transfer the mixture to a bowl and add the frozen peas and cooked chicken (If your pot is large enough, you don’t have to mess another bowl). Combine well.
Add an egg yolk to the mixture (the number of yolks can be increased depending on how much filling you are making). This will help bind the mixture, so it doesn’t run out everywhere when you cut into it.
Incorporate, well and set the mixture aside while you prepare the dough. Flour a board and score the pizza dough to divide into the number of calzones you would like to make. I divided mine into thirds so that I’d have one for lunch tomorrow.
Stretch or roll each portion of dough into as round a shape as you can manage. Mine were more oval, but I’m just gonna call them rustic.
Spoon the filling onto half of the dough. Be sure not to overfill or it will bubble out while baking (yes, this happened to one of mine).
Fold over th dough and pinch the edges together.
Once all of your calzones are formed, carefully remove the pizza stone from the oven and lightly mist with cooking spray. Then arrange the calzones on the stone, brush with olive oil, and sprinkle with some kosher salt.
Return stone to the oven and bake until crust is golden brown and crisp.