Wednesday, May 19, 2010


The girls had a half day of school today and requested pizza for lunch. There's nothing better than getting the kids to make their own food (mostly) on their own, so I agreed. As much as I love pizza - it is the staff of life, after all - I decided that I wanted something a bit different than my usual pizza. At first I was thinking spinach and ricotta calzones. I was remembering these awesome spinach, mushroom and ricotta calzones I used to get from a pizza joint near SU, when I was struck by a memory of their stromboli- even better than their calzones.

As you'll see from the recipe directions, this is NOT a low-fat dish. Dear God, there is enough fat in the assorted meats to make a cardiologist blanch. In addition, the fact that I sauteed the vegetables in the delicious rendered fat from the sausage would have Bob and Jillian from The Biggest Loser over here to kick my ass. But oh my GOD does it make it taste good!

Since I only ever eat this occasionally, it won't hurt me much, right?

makes 2 8-inch stromboli


For the dough:
  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/2 T RapidRise Yeast
  • 3/8 teaspoon salt
  • Italian seasoning (optional)
  • garlic powder(optional)
  • onion powder (optional)

  • 1/2 cup hot water (between 120-130 F)
  • 1 T olive oil
For the filling:
  • 6 slices capicola
  • 6 slice sopressatta (or genoa salami)
  • 6 slices provolone
  • olive oil
  • 2 spicy Italian sausage (or sweet Italian sausage)
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, sliced into strips
  • 1/2 yellow bell pepper, sliced into strips
  • 1 red onion, sliced into thin strips
  • pepperoni


  1. Crumble the Italian sausage and cook(spicy or sweet, your choice) in some olive oil until nicely browned. Remove the browned sausage with a slotted spoon to a bowl and set aside.

  2. Saute the bell pepper strips in the same pan with all of the rendered fat from the sausage until they start to soften and then add the onion. Saute until everything is nice and soft and just starting to brown. Remove to a bowl and set aside.

  3. Preheat the oven to 450. You want the kitchen to be good and warm.

  4. Put 1 cup of the flour in a large bowl along with the yeast granules, salt and Italian seasoning, garlic powder and onion powder.

  5. Mix very well with a whisk, breaking up any clumps.

  6. Test the temperature of the water (very important when you are using RapidRise yeast). When it is about 125 F, add 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add this to the dry ingredients and mix well with a wooden spoon until all of the water is incorporated.

  7. On a well-floured surface (I just use a clean counter) dump out the dough. At this point it is a wet, scary-looking, shaggy mess. Don't worry. You still have 1/2 cup of flour nearby.

  8. Knead the dough and work in the extra flour one small handful at a time. It takes a good 4-6 minutes to get the right amount of flour in. Because there is oil in it, the dough will still be slightly tacky, though not sticky. If it's sticky, keep adding flour.

    How I like to knead: I fold over half the dough and press it in, then I turn the whole ball of dough a quarter turn, and keep on folding and pressing, adding more flour to the counter and to the dough as it absorbs.

  9. Once the dough is slightly silky, shape it into a ball, re-flour a bit of the counter, set the ball on it and dust it with more loose flour then cover it with a cloth. Let it sit for at least 10 minutes, longer is better, like 30 minutes.

  10. When you are ready to shape it, remove the cloth. It ought to have risen nicely - if it did not, chances are the kitchen is too cold or the yeast died. So sad. :(

    Punch it down and divide it into 2 pieces.

  11. Oil a pan with olive oil (or cooking spray).

  12. Place the ball of dough on a floured surface (I use my silicon pastry mat), and starting in the middle of the ball, flatten it gently. DO NOT PULL or STRETCH THE DOUGH That will just rip holes in it. With your fingertips, press down, gently flattening the dough into a 6 x 10 inch rectangle. Take your time. If the dough seems stiff and unyielding, let it rest in a warm place for 5 - 10 minutes and then continue shaping it.

  13. Optional- let it sit in a warm spot and rise 10 minutes... OR

  14. Top it immediately. Leaving an 1 1/2 inch border around the dough, I lay down 3 slices of capicola, then the sopressatta and provolone. Next, I add the browned Italian sausage, the sauteed peppers and onions. Finally I top with a layer of pepperoni.

  15. Very carefully, roll it the long way pretty tightly, pinching the seams.

  16. Repeat steps 10-13 with the second ball of dough.

  17. Place the 2 stromboli on a cookie sheet. Brush the top with olive oil

  18. Bake in a preheated 400-F degree oven for 10 minutes. Take out and brush the tops with a bit more olive oil and sprinkle the tops with grated parmesan. Bake for an additional 5-7 minutes until golden brown.

  19. Remove to a wire rack to cool, and let sit for a good 5 minutes before slicing.

  • This dough recipe doubles and triples very well. It is my basic pizza dough recipe and is very forgiving.

  • It reheats nicely, wrapped tightly in foil in a 400 degree oven, and it tastes even better when reheated.


  1. You are bringing back good memories with this dish! With these detailed instructions I will have every confidence that it will turn out as good as yours!

  2. We love stromboli at our house! This is a super recipe with good instructions and a great, mouth-watering photo!

  3. Thanks! It was amazingly delicious, though now I have extra salami and capicola. I need to make another 2 stromboli or see if I can freeze the meats. I have never tried that before, so... I may make more stromboli this weekend. :)


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