Kale, Bacon and Caramelized Onion Calzones

Had another clean out the fridge style cooking dilemma last night. So I decided to use one of my Christmas gifts. My brother Jeff bought me a calzone press, so I decided to make some tasty calzones using some multigrain pizza dough I had just bought. Calzone is such an underrated pizza alternative, especially since I always fold my pizza anyway. Using a little bit of bacon and some tasty caramelized onion for flavor, I also added kale to pack in some healthy vitamins. The combination of these ingredients yielded a flavorful and tasty calzone that wasn’t overloaded with calories and salt. These made a fabulous dinner and I loved using the press, which made rolling, measuring and filling the dough a snap! Paired with some zesty homemade pizza sauce for dipping, it was a great meal that made some fabulous leftovers.

Read more for the full recipe

Recipe yields 3 large calzones. Serving size is 1/2 a calzone

Ingredients:
1lb (16oz) fresh pizza dough
whole wheat flour (for rolling dough)
1/4 cup water
2 onions, sliced
1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
12 oz park skim ricotta
2 cups fresh kale, ribs removed, washed and chopped into 1″ pieces
1 cup part skim mozzarella cheese
1/2 lb (8 oz) thick cut bacon
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 cups pizza sauce (recipe below)

Pizza Sauce Ingredients:

1 medium onion, diced
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
4 tbsp tomato paste
12 oz tomato puree
1 tsp dried basil
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp dried rosemary 

Step by Step Instructions: 
1. Preheat oven to 375

2. In a small frying pan, saute onions in olive oil. Once browned, reduce heat to med-low and continue
to stir until caramelized, 15-20 minutes

3. While onions caramelize, saute bacon until browned, 5-7 minutes

4. In a mixing bowl, combine ricotta, kale, mozzarella, bacon, and onions

5. Flour the rolling surface and divide dough into thirds

6. Roll dough out to 1/8″ thickness – if using a press or other pan, measure as you roll – shoot for 8-9″ in diameter

7. Leaving a 1/2″ margin around the edge of the dough, fill one half of the circle with the ricotta filling

8. Dip a finger in water, and dampen the end of the dough

9. Fold the unfilled half over the filled half and press the edges together with a fork

10. Place each completed calzone on a greased cookie sheet

11. Lightly brush the top of each with egg wash

12. Bake for 18-20 minutes, until dough is crisp and slightly browned

13. Serve with pizza sauce

Pizza Sauce Instructions:
1. Saute onion and garlic in olive oil on medium heat until soft, 4-6 minutes
2. Add tomato paste and herbs and continue to brown 2-3 minutes
3. Add tomato paste, stir to incorporate, cover and reduce heat to med-low
4. Simmer sauce for 20-30 minutes and then serve warm

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14 Responses to Kale, Bacon and Caramelized Onion Calzones

  1. Ann January 11, 2012 at 3:57 am #

    That looks amazing! I really like the addition of kale. Your brother is pretty darn cool that he got you calzone press! Tell him my birthday is in September!

  2. Cake January 11, 2012 at 4:19 am #

    Mmmm… these sound fantastic! Anything with caramelized onions and bacon is awesome.

  3. Nava.K January 11, 2012 at 7:48 am #

    I am just like you because I do the cleaning of the fridge quite often. That pizza sauce is making me drool, I somehow love dipping sauces and can just lick it off using the spoon. This will be perfect for our dinner, lovely with the kale.

  4. bananamondaes January 11, 2012 at 12:27 pm #

    Oh wow – this looks so good. I love calzone – but this is the best filling I've ever seen. No idea that calzone presses existed. Yummy.

  5. coffeemuffins.com January 11, 2012 at 12:55 pm #

    Ah great minds! I just made Bacon & Kale Calzones too. Although I didn't have your awesome Calzone press – in fact I didn't even know they existed :)

  6. PolaM January 11, 2012 at 1:07 pm #

    I love fridge cleaning recipes: you never know how they will end up. That calzone looks great!

  7. healthyfoodietravels January 11, 2012 at 1:41 pm #

    Oooh, this looks so, so lovely! I love calzone, and that's certainly a new use of kale (which I only discovered last year in the U.S. and now love) for me. great recipe, it looks perfectly crispy and melty on the inside.

  8. yummychunklet January 11, 2012 at 2:14 pm #

    You said the magic word, "calzones". Yum!

  9. Kristen January 11, 2012 at 2:42 pm #

    OOOH, I think I might need a calzone press. What a great gift! Those babies look de-lish-us!!!

  10. S.V. January 11, 2012 at 4:15 pm #

    I enjoy a good calzone…these look really good. Love that you got a calzone press!!! I had no idea they even made them talk about making life easier. IThe kale, bacon and onion sounds yummy.

  11. katherinemartinelli January 11, 2012 at 9:14 pm #

    Yum yum yum! You know I agree with you that bacon makes everything better ;-) I've never seen a calzone press before but now I kind of want one!

  12. Tina January 12, 2012 at 12:32 pm #

    This is a delicious twist on the standard pizza type calzones that are out there. I like that you put some kale in this recipe to make them a little bit more healthy, but you kept in the great flavors of the cheese and bacon-yum! Congrats on getting that handy gadget too.

  13. Nami | Just One Cookbook January 14, 2012 at 1:08 am #

    Your brother must be a good cook too (or he's asking you to make one for him? Teehee). This looks so delicious! I like the use of kale in here. My kids will not complain when green veggies are covered like this (they won't take it out, that's what I meant). Looks so good!!! Now I want to buy a calzone press too. =)

  14. kitcheninspirations January 14, 2012 at 1:52 pm #

    I'm not a big calzone eater but this recipe is certainly intriguing, I might have to try making a breakfast version today but instead of bread dough I'm going to do a crepe!

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