Sunday, December 27, 2009

Sausage and Veggie Calzones

I was looking in the fridge and found some veggies that were close to being unusable. Have you ever done that? Forgotten what you've had on hand, then realized you needed to use something up pronto? The first thing I did with the veggies was make a stir-fry. I also used leftover turkey from Christmas Eve dinner. Easy enough. But I still had veggies left over, and I really, really hate to throw them out. Veggies aren't cheap, ya know?

So I chopped them up and made calzones. I added cheese and sausage (leftover from Christmas morning brunch). And they turned out FANTASTIC! Hubby declared them "blog-worthy" and asked that they become a regular menu item.

Here's what you'll need:

1 loaf frozen bread dough, thawed but not allowed to rise (you can substitute your favorite pizza dough or bread dough recipe here)
1 teas. minced garlic
Approximately 2 cups chopped veggies (I used broccoli, carrots, red pepper, mushrooms and onions)

1 cup shredded sharp Cheddar cheese
1 cup cooked sausage
salt and pepper to taste

Pour some olive oil in a saute pan and add minced garlic. Saute for a couple of minutes. Add your veggies and cook for 5-7 minutes or until softened. You don't want them to be soggy, though.

Add the sausage and spices and mix thoroughly. Divide the bread or pizza dough into 6 equal pieces. Roll each into a ball. Stretch each ball into a 5 or 6 inch circle. Sprinkle one side of the circle with cheese, then spoon some filling over the cheese. Fold the other side of the dough over the filling and seal. Brush the tops of the calzones with Italian salad dressing. Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown.

I have to admit, these turned out much better than I thought they would. The veggies were flavorful and the cheese added just enough tang. The sausage rounded these out nicely. The great thing about this recipe is that you can leave the sausage out altogether or use a different combination of veggies. Look in your fridge and see what you can use to create a filling, tasty calzone.

I'm going to try to freeze these, too. I'll let you know how that turns out.

UPDATE: Okay, I made some of these to freeze. And they were awesome! I wrapped each one in aluminum foil, then placed in a freezer bag. To use, I placed the foil-wrapped calzones on a baking sheet and heated at 375 degrees for 15 minutes. It was perfect. Your oven might bake a little hotter and require less time. But they were fabulous after being frozen. Yum!

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