An Italian take on the great British traditional mince pie . Ideally served warm with a glass of mulled wine or can be served as a dessert with Brandy Butter, Clotted Cream , Custard , Brandy Sauce or of course they can be just eaten on their own. The word calzone comes from the Italian dialect meaning stocking or trouser leg in reference to the shape.
The size given in this recipe can be changed to suit your individual needs but it is advised to keep the weight of the filling to that of the dough.You can increase the filling volume but there is a danger that too much will boil out and spoil the end product.
We recommend that you use the highest quality mincemeat, if possible. You can always improve purchased mincemeat by the further addition of spirits such as Rum, Brandy, Whisky depending on your taste but do not add too much as the consistency of the filling will be affected.
To make 15.
280g (10oz) Strong bread flour
100g (4oz) Plain white flour
1 level Tsp Salt.
1 Tsp Sugar
1 Table Spoon Olive oil
8g (1/4oz) Dried Active Yeast (not fast acting)
15g (1/2oz) Fresh yeast.
240ml (81/2oz) warm water (28C)
(1) Sieve both flours together with the salt and the sugar into a suitable mixing bowl.
(2) Add the yeast to the water and make sure it is thoroughly dispersed.
(3) Make a well in the flour and add all the water/yeast + the olive oil.
(4) Using your hand or a large mixing spoon, gradually draw the flour into the liquid, continue stirring /mixing to form a dough. If using a machine use the dough hook.
(5) When a dough has formed you then need to develop the dough , as for bread making, this may be easier done by tipping out onto the work bench. This is quite a soft dough, do not be tempted to add more flour. As you mix it will start to form into a clear dough. By hand this will take at least 6-8 minutes of mixing.
(6) When the dough is fully developed , cover the bowl with cling film and set aside for 1 hour in warm (not hot) draught free area.
Turn on the oven : 195C, 175 C FAN, 380F. Gas 5-6. If possible place a spare baking tray in the oven to pre-heat, This will provide a hot surface to bake your prepared calzone on (see note (9) below.
Working off the Dough.
(1) Tip the dough out of the bowl on to the work surface. For ease of handling we suggest you divide the dough in approx half , putting one half in to a freezer bag or lidded container and then place in the fridge. (this will keep and can be used for at least 24hrs ).
(2) Weigh/scale the dough into 38g (11/2oz) pieces and form into ball shape (round up)
(3) Using a rolling pin, pin-out a dough piece to form a circle of dough approx 120mm(41/2in) diameter.
(4) On to this circle of dough place a heaped dessert spoon of mincemeat (42g/1.5oz) just off centre as in thumbnail pic 2 below and then lightly wet the edge with water.
(5) Fold over the edge of the side containing the mincemeat and seal it inside of the opposite edge, pic 3 below. Do not seal the edge to edge as this will cause too thick a crust.
(6) To complete the seal, using your fingers and thumb fold the bottom edge over to form the crimp. pic 4.
(7) Place, evenly spaced, onto a lightly dusted, baking-paper lined, baking tray. You can use plain flour or to give a more authentic crust , use either ground rice or semolina, do not grease. pic 5.
(8) Carefully wash with milk, taking care to ensure a thin even coverage.
(9) Taking great care with both the product and with your own safety in mind, carefully slide/transfer, by pulling the baking-paper, the whole tray off of the cold tray, onto the pr-heated tray that is in the oven. This gives the bottom of the product a sudden hit of heat and helps to form a firm base. If you are not confidant to do this ,just place the tray straight into the oven.
(10) Bake for approx 12-18 mins. On removal from oven leave on the baking tray for at least 5 mins and then remove to a cooling wire. Take care when handling to avoid damage but also to avoid being burnt by any filling or juices that may have boiled out. When ready to serve ,lightly dredge with icing sugar.
(11) These Calzone are best eaten hot/warm. They can be stored, baked, in an airtight container for at least 1 week and then re-heated for use. They are best stored, unbaked, in a fridge for up to 24hrs or frozen for 3 months.