Calzoni are half-moon shaped stuffed pizzas that can be prepared as individual servings or one large turnover to be sliced into pieces. The fillings can include a variety of meats, vegetables, and cheeses. In Italy, calzoni are not typically prepared with tomato sauce. This version combines spicy sausage (use mild if you prefer), spinach, and a blend of mozzarella and provolone cheeses. Brushing the calzoni with an egg wash gives the baked pies a professional sheen.
Sausage, Spinach, and Cheese Calzoni
Makes 4 individual calzone
1 tablespoon semolina or cornmeal
1/2 pound spicy Italian sausage links
1 onion, finely chopped
1 bag (6 ounces) washed baby spinach leaves, stems removed
2 large garlic cloves, minced
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese or 4 ounces fresh mozzarella, thinly sliced
1 cup shredded provolone cheese
1 large egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water
Prepare the Simple Pizza Dough and set aside to rise. Coat a large baking sheet with cooking spray. Sprinkle semolina or cornmeal evenly over the pan surface.
Meanwhile, coat a medium skillet with oil. Set over medium-high heat. Cook the sausage, turning occasionally, for 5 minutes, or until browned on all sides. Remove and set aside. Reduce the heat to medium. Add the onion. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 1 to 2 minutes, or until lightly browned. Add the spinach and garlic. Cover and cook for 1 to 2 minutes, or until the spinach wilts. Uncover and cook off any liquid. Remove from the heat. Stir in the salt and pepper.
Punch down the dough. Transfer to a lightly floured work surface. Divide into 4 equal pieces. Pinch the cut ends together and shape into 4 balls. Cover with plastic wrap and let stand for 10 minutes. Slice the sausage.
Preheat the oven to 400°F.
With floured hands or rolling pin, pat or roll the dough balls from the center outward on a lightly floured surface into 10-inch circles. Brush with the egg mixture. Place the mozzarella, evenly divided, on half of each circle. Top with equal amounts of sausage, the spinach mixture, and the provolone cheese. Fold the dough flaps over the stuffing until the edges almost meet. Pull the edges of the bottom of the dough circle up to overlap the top half by 1/4 inch. Pinch securely to seal. With a floured spatula, transfer the calzoni to the baking sheet. Brush with the remaining egg mixture. Pierce the tops several times with a small sharp knife.
Bake for about 20 minutes or until golden. Remove and let stand for 5 minutes.
To prepare one large calzone: Roll the dough into a 16-by-12-inch oval. Stuff and seal according to the recipe, then bake in a preheated 400°F oven for about 22 minutes. Remove and let stand for 10 minutes.