Looking for a sinfully delicious splurge day meal? This is it! I created this recipe for my husband Sean, he is a lover of all things that are carb loaded and anything that has lots of meat and cheese. I have made regular calzones many times for him, and one night decided to switch it up and combine my favorite pizza toppings with one of Sean's favorite meals, it has become our all time favorite and hopefully now yours! Enjoy!
1 1/2 lbs. Hot Italian pork sausage
2 11oz balls of pizza dough from whole foods (or whatever pizza dough recipe you prefer)
1/2 cup Gouda, shredded
1 cup Mozzarella, shredded
1/2 cup whole milk Ricotta
1 1/2 cup marinated artichokes, roughly chopped
2 cup fresh basil leaves
2 cloves garlic
1/4 cup pine nuts
2/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesano reggiano
Salt and pepper to taste
1 egg, beaten for egg wash
Preheat oven to 400 degrees
For Pesto Sauce:
In a food processor or blender, combine basil, garlic, and pine nuts and pulse until coarsely chopped. Slowly pour in 1/2 cup olive oil while mixture is blending until it the mixture is smooth and all oil has been fully incorporated. Next, transfer to a bowl and stir in the parmesan cheese. set aside.
Next step is to cook the sausage,
In a large skillet, cook sausage over medium/high heat until browned and completely cooked through (about 8-10 mins) Transfer to large bowl and allow to cool for 5 minutes.
Once sausage has cooled down a bit, add the gouda, mozzarella, and ricotta cheese and a pinch of salt and pepper to the sausage. Mix together until incorporated. Set aside.
Flour a large wood cutting board or clean counter top surface before working with the dough. Cut each 11oz Dough ball in half, each half will make a large calzone (4 Large calzones in total) You can also cut them in half again if you prefer 6 smaller calzones.
Take a half portion of dough and flour the top so that your rolling pin wont stick.
Roll out dough, rolling outward and moving dough in circular motions so it creates a 6-7" round (it will look like a mini pizza) and about an inch to an inch and a half thick.
Once all dough has been rolled out, take pesto sauce and liberally spread over dough, make sure you leave an inch boarder around edges so you can seal up the calzone.
Layer sausage cheese mixture on top of the pesto sauce
Sprinkle artichokes over sausage mixture
take one side of the dough round and pull over the flling to meet the other sides edge creating a crescent shape.
pinch sides together, once pinched together, you can use a fork and press all along the edge to seal it or you can twist and roll with your fingers to create a pretty sealed edge.
Once all calzones have been formed, cut three small slits on top of them to allow heat to escape during cooking so they don't explode ;)
Brush entire Calzones with egg wash
Bake at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes or until calzones are golden brown