Happy 2013! We’re only on day 2 of 2013 yet I think I’ve said calzones like a billion and trillion times already.
The word calzone is such a funny word. I mean, in Spanish it means underwear and call me immature but I just can’t stop laughing about baking underwear in the oven. Oh how badly I was teased over these calzones.
Well, calzones might have a funny name but they are so delicious. A pizza folded like an empanada and stuffed with your favorite toppings. What’s not to like? That it’s stuffed with collards and beans inside? Now why did I want to stuff my calzones with collards and beans in the first place? & why did that question just sound so totally wrong?
I wanted to combine a vinegary, tangy filling with cheese to make a calzone? Vinegary food and cheese are fabulous! Have you ever made a grilled cheese with marinated artichoke hearts? Super delicious!
Well, I had a bag of collards sitting in the crisper drawer of the refrigerator screaming to be cooked and eaten already. I usually just cook collards up in a stew with vinegar, a little bit of sugar, red pepper flakes and throw in some beans. Delicious? Not really. Warm and feel-good food? That I can say this stew is all about. Collards are so good for you and combined with beans, well, even healthier!
And after all the heavy and rich holiday food plus a couple moments of sugar overload here and there I just really had this great big desire to make something healthy. But I was hoping to give this healthy collards stew a little more excitement this time. Maybe even add a little pinch of sense of humor. That’s where the calzones stepped in. My small little silly brain exclaimed, “I’m going to stuff my calzones with collards and beans!” And the kitchen filled with laughter, my brother and my sister just couldn’t control themselves. Major laugh attack! Well at least I made them laugh. Laughing is also good for you and healthy!
To be so perfectly honest here, I was a bit leery about this calzone. My thoughts filled with worry, “I may have just made a disastrous and unappetizing calzone”. But at first bite I was immediately shocked and surprised. Yummy gooey cheese melted with slightly tangy, mildly vinegary collards and beans…so DELICIOUS-delicioso! All this stuffed inside a freshly baked pizza pocket-style calzone that tastes so soft inside and crispy outside. Perfection!
I’ve done it! I finally made something delicious with collards and I didn’t need bacon. I needed cheese and pizza dough but no bacon. I love bacon but, I’m trying to cut back on bacon. I know, for all you bacon lovers that might sound like an insanely mad thing to do. I agree with you! I am mad and insane.
So what did I do with the leftover broth? Since I only used the collards and beans and left the broth behind because including the broth would make soggy calzones. Soggy calzones are not good…in any form! Well, actually I served the leftover stew as a warm broth along with the calzone. I know this broth may not taste so yummy and delightful but it feels so GOOD. It makes me feel warm and energized.
Stomach satisfying, guilt-free, and healthy…this calzone with collard greens and beans is delicious!
Calzones with Collard Greens & Beans
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 2 cloves garlic (minced)
- 1 stalk celery (chopped)
- 1/2 large onion (chopped)
- 15.5oz can of beans (or 2 cups)
- 12oz collards (bag or 1 bunch)
- 5 cups water
- 1-2 tablespoon sugar
- 1/2 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 1/2 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 2 pinches red pepper flakes
- pizza dough (homemade or store bought)
- mozzarella cheese (shredded)
For the pizza dough, I used my favorite recipe from Martha Stewart. But I only made half of the recipe to make just one 1 lb. pizza dough which makes two calzones.
|In a medium pot, heat the oil and add onions, garlic, and, celery. Cook until tender.|
|Add beans, collards, red pepper flakes, sugar, balsamic, apple cider vinegar, and 5 cups of water. Bring to boil, cover, reduce heat, and simmer until collards are tender. About 25-30 minutes or more depending on how tender you like the collards. Season with salt and pepper.|
|Preheat oven to 450 F. |
Roll out one 1 lb. pizza dough to 1/4 inch thickness round shape. With a slotted spoon scoop as much of the collard mixture (about 1/2 cup or more) except for the broth. Sprinkle with a generous amount of shredded cheese on top. Wet the edges with some of the broth and fold the other side over. Seal with a fork or crimp the edges with your fingers. Brush with oil on top and sprinkle some of your favorite herbs (basil?). I sprinkled a little bit of cheese on top.
|Place calzone on a parchment lined baking sheet. Reduce oven temperature to 400 F and bake for 30-35 minutes.|
|Serve with your favorite tomato sauce. A nice sweet-tasting tomato sauce works really well!|