Four Cheese Calzone with Tuscan Kale & Prosciutto

        From the blog For Love of the Table

2 T. olive oil

1 medium red onion (about 7 oz.), finely diced

1 fat clove garlic, minced

Pinch of hot pepperflakes

Salt & pepper

1 bunch Tuscan Kale, stems stripped (about 5 oz, trimmed)—rinsed well to remove all grit

3 oz. Whole milk ricotta (1/3 c.)

2 oz. goat cheese, crumbled

2 oz.  Fontina, coarsely shredded

1/2 oz. finely grated Pecorino

1 1/2 oz. (3 thin slices) prosciutto, cut in 1/4-inch strips


Make the dough:  Place the water in a small bowl, sprinkle the yeast over and whisk in.  Let sit until the yeast has dissolved.  Place the flour and salt in the food processor fitted with the metal blade and pulse to blend.  Add the oil and yeast/water mixture and pulse until the dough is homogenous.  Begin to run the mixture in long pulses until the dough is smooth and elastic—about 15 to 30 seconds total processing time.  If the dough seems wet and sticky, sprinkle in a bit more flour, a tablespoon at a time, pulsing after each addition.  Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured counter and give it a few kneads by hand. Transfer the dough to a lightly oiled bowl and cover the bowl with plastic wrap.  Let the dough rise until it has doubled in size—about 1 hour.  Punch down the dough and turn it onto a lightly floured surface and form into a ball.  Cover with a towel and let rest for 15 to 20 minutes.  The dough is now ready to be formed into calzones.


While the dough is rising, prepare the filling:  Warm 2 T. olive oil in a medium sauté pan set over medium heat.  Add the onion along with a pinch of salt and cook until very tender and lightly caramelized—about 10 to 15 minutes.  Add the garlic and pepper flakes and cook until fragrant.  Remove the pan from the heat.


While the onions cook, cook the kale in a large pot of boiling salted water.  When tender (after about 7 to 10 minutes), scoop the greens out of the water and place them in a colander to allow most of the excess water to drain.  Spread the drained greens on a baking sheet and allow them to cool.  When cool, pick up small handfuls of the greens and squeeze out most of the water.   Roughly chop and add to the pan of cooked onion and garlic.  Toss to combine.  Taste and season with salt & pepper.


In a large bowl combine the cheeses, prosciutto and kale/onion mixture.  Taste and season with salt, pepper & a pinch of nutmeg.


Build the calzone:  On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough out into a large (13- to 14-inch) round.  Transfer the round to a peel that has been dusted with semolina flour.  Place the filling on one side of the round or dough, leaving a half to one inch border at the edge.


Lightly brush the bare edge with a bit of water, fold the other half of the dough over so that the edges meet.  Roll and pinch the seam to form sort of a running crimped edge that is well-sealed.  Slash the top with a sharp knife three or four times.


Slide the calzone onto a preheated stone in a 500° oven.  Bake until well browned and the filling is bubbling through the slashes—about 12 to 15 minutes.  Transfer to a wire rack and brush the surface with olive oil.  Let the calzone rest for a few minutes before serving (so the filling can firm up and so it won't be quite so molten hot when it is served....).


The calzone may be served immediately or cooled and reheated.  To reheat, heat the baking stone in a 350° to 400° oven and place the baked calzone directly on the stone until hot through—5 to 10 minutes. 


Serves 2 to 4.  


Notes & Variations: 
  • You many use any mixture of cheeses that appeals to you. I think at least 3 to 5 oz. of something soft—like ricotta and/or goat cheese is a good base. A good melting cheese like Fontina, low-moisture Mozzarella or Provolone is also a nice component—but you could also just increase your quantity of ricotta or goat cheese. And then a touch of an aged grating cheese like Parmesan or Pecorino to round out the flavor is good too. Aim for a total of 7 to 8 oz. cheese. 
  • The cooked greens and onions measure about one cup. If you like, you could create another style of "Four Cheese Calzone" by replacing them with the same quantity of another cooked vegetable (sautéed sliced mushrooms, for example). 
  • The number of people this calzone will feed will depend on appetites...and the other things being served. I like to serve my calzone with a salad (tossed green...grated carrot salad...etc.). With a salad and our lighter appetites, this serves four. If you have a large appetite...and don't serve a salad (or dessert) this will serve 2. The recipe is easily doubled to make two calzones. 
  • If you like, you may make 3 small calzones. Divide the dough into three balls after the first rise. Roll each ball into an 8-inch round. Divide the filling evenly between the three. Form and bake as for the large one.