Pastrami Calzone

Sometimes you have great plans for making a meal, other times you have to forage through your refrigerator and be creative. This was definitely one of those other times.

A few weeks ago, I cured and smoked two beef tongues and made them into pastrami. I have been eating it and sharing with others, but I still have almost an entire one remaining. Tonight I planned to make a nice hot, pastrami sandwich, but when I opened the refrigerator door, I noticed that there was a pizza dough ball that needed to be baked. My on the fly decision was to make a pastrami calzone.

First I preheated the oven with our pizza stone in it to 475°. Then I stretched out the dough ball on the pizza peel.

I diced up about 2 cups of the pastrami, half of a red onion, and a quarter of a red bell pepper.

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I sauteed these ingredients with a 1/4 cup of whole grain brown mustard. While that was cooking, I shredded about a cup of aged Irish cheddar cheese.

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After I took the pan off the heat, I began assembling my calzone. I put half of the meat, onion, pepper and mustard mixture onto the crust, then sprinkled the cheese on top, before adding the other half of the pre-cooked mixture.

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I laid the other side of the pizza crust over the top, carefully folding the edges over one another to make a good seal. Then into the oven it went for about 18 minutes.

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Once I removed it from the oven, I cut it in half.

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The dominant aroma from the calzone was the vinegary mustard. My first taste combined the flavors of the mustard, the pastrami, and the onion. Those flavors completely over-powered the cheese and the red bell pepper, but sometimes that’s what happens when you challenge yourself with the contents of the refrigerator. It tasted pretty good, but perhaps a stronger flavored cheese and some roasted bell pepper would give it a little bit more. There is always the next time.

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