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Mom's Filled Calzones

Calzoni della Mamma
Whenever I visited my mother, I would take her out to dinner to one of her favorite restaurants. Mom was never one about ambience; it was all about the food. So it was not surprising that she often liked to go to a nondescript hole in the wall diner where they made delicious ricotta cheese filled calzones. They were as big as a platter and she often brought half of one home for lunch the next day. Mom could recreate anything so instead of asking the diner folks how they made them; she created her own recipe with many filling variations, like spinach and cheese or broccoli and cheese or sausage and cheese.

Still, I loved the ricotta ones the best because she did too. The success of this recipe depends on the quality of the ricotta and mozzarella cheeses.




1 cup good quality ricotta cheese, well drained

1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt

2 tablespoons minced parsley

1 tablespoon minced chives

1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, cut into bits

2 tablespoons grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese


1/2 recipe Whole Wheat Quick Yeast Dough for Pizza


1 large egg and 1 tablespoon water, lightly beaten with a fork

Coarse sea salt for sprinkling on top of calzones

Sesame seeds for sprinkling on top


Mix the filling ingredients well in a bowl. Cover and keep refrigerated while making the dough.

For the Dough
Place 1 cup of flour in a large bowl or bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook. Add the yeast, water, salt, honey and olive oil and mix until blended. Add remaining 2 cups of flour and mix until the dough comes together.
Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface and knead it with your hands for a couple of minutes. Use a bench knife to divide the dough in quarters.
Preheat the oven to 375°F for baking on a baking sheet or pizza pan.
Place each dough piece on a sheet of parchment paper and roll or pat out each piece with your hands into an 8 inch diameter. Place the dough on the parchment on the baking sheets or place on a pizza paddle if using the baking stone. The paddle allows you to slide the calzone with the parchment onto the stone.
Divide the filling evenly between the 4 rounds of dough and spread it evenly on one half of the circle.  Fold the other half over the filling to create the calzone or turnover shape and seal the edges with a fork that has been dipped in flour.

Reposition the calzones, if necessary, leaving at least 2 inches between them.  Brush the tops of each with the beaten egg and sprinkle them with the coarse salt and sesame seeds.  Make an X in the top of each calzone to allow the steam to vent as they bake.  Bake for 12 to 15 minutes or until the edges are puffed and nicely browned.

Transfer to a cooling rack.  Serve warm.

This recipe is featured on show 2114 – Whole Wheat Pizzas.


  1. michael sampogna's avatar

    michael sampogna

    Love your show and have been a fan for many years.
    I'd love to find out where I can buy those great large metal spoons that you use..You used them in the episode on whole wheat pizza with salad on top.

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