When I was asked if I wanted to take a look at the cookbook Quinoa Cuisine, 150 Creative Recipes for Super-Nutritious, Amazingly Delicious dishes by Jessica Harlan and Kelley Sparwasser I jumped at the chance! I’m a big fan of Quinoa, but I don’t use it this often and thought it would be fun to find some other things to do with such a versatile, healthy ingredient. So today for Meatless Monday I’m going to share with you a recipe from the cookbook for Spinach and Black Olive Calzones made with Quinoa flour and let me tell you these are fabulous!
They also have some really great sounding recipes for things like Hummus, Thai Summer Rolls, Spicy Chicken and Waffles, Mushroom Soup, Grilled Quinoa Cakes, Chile Rellenos, Eggplant Parmesan and even desserts like Triple-Chocolate Bundt Cake and Funnel Cake Bites all incorporating quinoa! But for now sit back grab a fork, and let’s talk some Calzones!
What You’ll Need for the Quinoa Pizza Crust:
1 1/4 cups of warm water (about 110 to 120 F)
1 tablespoon of active dry yeast
1 tablespoon of honey
2 to 2 1/2 cups bread flour, as needed, divided
1 teaspoon of kosher salt
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 1/2 cups quinoa flour
1. Place the warm water in a large bowl. Stir in the yeast, honey, and 1 cup of bread flour. Let sit in a warm place until foamy, about 15 minutes.
2. Stir in the salt, 1 tablespoon of olive oil, and quinoa flour. Gradually add the remaining bread flour, 1/2 cup at a time, until the dough forms a slightly sticky ball. Turn out onto a well-floured work surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. Add more flour if needed. The dough will be slightly sticky. Form into a ball.
3. Drizzle the remaining 1 teaspoon olive oil into a clean bowl. Place the ball of dough in the bowl, turning to coat with oil. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the dough rise in a warm place until nearly doubled in size, about 1 hour. Use in your favorite pizza or calzone recipe.
What You’ll Need for the Spinach and Black Olive Calzones:
2 recipes Quinoa Pizza Dough (see above)
Cornmeal or semolina flour, for baking sheet
4 cups of prepared pizza sauce
2 (10-ounce) packages frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed to remove excess water
1 cup sliced black olives
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese (about 4 ounces)
1. Prepare pizza dough according to the recipe instructions, making a double batch.
2. Preheat the oven to 450 F; if you have a pizza stone, put it in the oven before preheating. If you don’t have a pizza stone, sprinkle a rimmed nonstick baking sheet lightly with cornmeal or semolina flour. Heat the pizza suace in a medium saucepan and keep warm over low heat.
3. Divide the dough into four equal pieces. Work with one piece at a time, keeping the other pieces covered with towel or plastic wrap so they don’t dry out. On a work surface lightly dusted with flour, use your hands to pat and stretch a piece of dough into a flat oval about 12 X 8 inches. Arrange a quarter each of the spinach and black olives on half the oval, leaving a edge of about 1 inch uncovered. Sprinkle with about 1/4 cup mozzarella cheese and drizzle with about 1/4 cup pizza sauce. Fold the dough over the filling and, beginning at one end, roll the edge to seal. Tuck the rolled edge under the calzone. Carefully transfer the finished calzone to the baking sheet or slide onto the hot pizza stone in the oven.
4. Repeat with the remaining dough and the filling. Bake the calzones until the dough is golden and they sound hollow when tapped, about 15 minutes. Serve hot with the remaining pizza sauce spooned over.
Notes: I used sea salt instead of kosher salt. I also sprinkled the tops of my calzones with oregano and Parmesan cheese.