You know what I love best about food (other than the whole keeping you alive thing)? It’s the memories that go with it. As far back as my brain can go, the big memories are associated with food. One of the first things I can recall is being forced to choke down an overcooked brussel sprout (at age 3 or 4) and then promptly throwing it back up. Of course we all have thousands of more pleasant food memories – from school lunches and holiday feasts to picnics, tasty travels and everything in-between. And the best of them all usually involve friends and/or family.
That brings us to a beautiful day at the end of August when we visited our local apple orchard for some apple picking shenanigans. It was a fabulous time – after picking (and tasting) several varieties – the kids tried caramel apples for the first time and then we went home and made fresh pressed apple juice and crumble. And just when I was wondering how to store all those apples, they were gone.
Best apple memory and yummiest apple treat, this year: having our friends over to make calzones. The kids did most of the work – rolling out the dough, loading it up with their choice of pizza fillings and then doing it all over again for dessert – featuring our beautiful apples.
Not 100% sure what a calzone is? It’s basically pizza dough that’s stuffed with a variety of fillings and then baked into yummy goodness.
Whatever type of calzones you decide to whip up, make sure to let the kids get their hands in there. This recipe features apples, but you can use any filling that tickles your fancy – savoury or sweet. Just follow the basic instructions and vary the insides however you like. They make a perfect lunch box treat.
Adapted from Vegetarian Times Magazine – Sept. 2012.
Makes 16 calzones.
1 recipe Spelt pizza dough
4 medium organic apples, washed, dried and grated
4 tablespoons of succanat or coconut palm sugar
1 teaspoon of freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon cinnamon
chopped dates, shredded coconut, fruit spread, chocolate chips, chopped nuts
1/2 tablespoon extra succanat or coconut sugar (for topping)
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
Divide the dough into 16 small balls. On a floured surface, roll out the balls into ovals.
Using a brush or your finger, lightly dampen the edges of the dough ovals with water.
If you want to use jam or tomato sauce, spread 1 teaspoon onto bottom half of each oval – avoiding the edges.Top with approximately 1 tablespoon of your preferred fillings.
Fold dough in half and press the edges together to seal. Pinch edges together with your fingers.
Transfer to parchment lined or oiled baking sheets. Brush each calzone with a little water and sprinkle with succanat (optional, for dessert calzones only).
Bake for approximately 15 minutes – until calzones are lightly browned. Resist biting into them until they’ve cooled for 10-15 minutes, the insides are HOT!
Even while I’m writing about this I remember the sounds of the kids laughing (and not fighting!) together, the mouth-watering smell of the food baking in the oven, chatting with my girlfriends over glasses of wine, and of course – eating our delicious calzones. When friends and food come together it’s a recipe for good times!
What is your most recent food associated memory?