For our anniversary, we couldn’t decide what to do. We figured we’d eat at home, so I decided to make something a little out of the ordinary. I made two different kinds of calzones, and they were both pretty delicious.
The meaty version was a Philly Cheese Steak Calzone. I grilled a strip steak, sliced it up thinly, sauteed onion and green peppers and topped it all off with provolone cheese.
The veggie version was spinach, cheese and mushroom. I sauteed the spinach with some garlic and squeezed it dry. Then I mixed the spinach with ricotta, mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. These ingredients alone would be perfect, but I added some sauteed mushrooms.
I tried a new recipe for dough, and I liked it a lot. It rose well and was incredibly easy to roll out and make the calzones. The only issue we had was that we had to break out the steak knives to cut through the bottom of the calzone. Other than that, the dough had a good chew and good flavor.
I doubled the dough recipe and only baked 6 calzones for dinner and for leftovers this weekend. I made the other 6 dough balls into calzones and froze them to thaw out and eat later. It is so nice to have homemade meals in the freezer. As long as you can remember to put them in the fridge the morning before you plan to enjoy them, kitchen time is cut to a minimum….as is clean up!
The recipe for the dough came from My Kitchen Cafe. It is a French dinner roll recipe used as calzone dough, so I will probably try it for rolls at some point. You make the dough as you would for the rolls, but divide the dough into about 6 pieces after the first rise for the calzones.
Now, on to the cake. I had planned for us to eat my Daring Bakers July dessert for our anniversary. But when Ben got home from work he had a lovely pink box with him that contained this beautiful cake!
It was such a great surprise. The cake was made by Cara Linn Cakes in Amarillo. I took a cake decorating class from her a few months ago. She is a great teacher, and is incredibly talented. I am so pleased to have someone like her in Amarillo. If you are a fan of the Food Network challenges, then you may have seen Alisa Strauss on a few of the cake challenges. Cara interned for her in New York, before opening her own store. If you’re not impressed by this, you should be!
The cake not only looked beautiful, it tasted even better. The cake itself was a dense vanilla that was sweet and delicious, but not a fake sweet like cake mixes and most bakery cakes. The buttercream was strawberry, that had actual pieces of strawberry in it. Yum. The fondant that covers the cake is unique in that it looks smooth and beautiful and it tastes good! Cara changed my opinion of fondant.
If you are in need of a cake, cupcakes, or other sweet treats, please call Cara. She was a huge help to my husband when he ordered the cake and she does an incredible job. The cake classes are well worth your time and money. I had such a fun time and I learned a lot. You also get to take your cake creation home!
Read on for the calzone recipes.