Pizza. Could there be a better food out there? Kids love it, adults love it. Even the pickiest person can find some form of pizza that he/she loves. Ordering out for pizza can ensue a large debate among family members. Pizza Hut or Aurelios? Giordano's or Connie's (both my favorites!) Pizza Ranch or...well, out here nothing can really compare to Pizza Ranch, right? Pizza can be dangerously flat or so deep that you can't open your mouth wide enough (like my beloved deep dish Chicago pizza). There's New York style, so large you have to fold it (think mall-style). Then there's pizzas that are meant to be baked folded, such as calzones. Thin, regular, skillet, deep...oh the crusts. And sauce - sweet? tangy? spicy? red saucey? And of course the toppings. Oh, the toppings. My favorite is ham/canadian bacon and pineapple (much to the chagrin of my father)- the Hawaiian as it is known to the world, or Sweet Swine as it is known to the Pizza Ranch world. The wacky taco pizza. The ever-faithful pepperoni and sausage. My family's favorite growing up - pepperoni and green pepper. My favorite frozen - supreme (with most of the black olives picked off). Extra cheese? No cheese (for those on a diet)? My favorite food from my trip to Europe: Margherita pizza. (well, after gelato, that is).
I won't even go into the fork/no fork debate.
When having pizza, I think that homemade is the best. You can substitute anything and everything to make it truly your own. Here is my favorite American/Mexican version of the classic Italian-born pizza.
BBQ Chicken Calzones
1/2 red onion, chopped
3 cups shredded, cooked chicken breast meat
1 cup barbeque sauce
1 loaf of frozen bread dough, thawed (I guess it wouldn't be frozen then, huh?)
1 cup or more shredded mozzarella cheese
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
Preheat oven to the temperature indicated on the bread dough package.
Cook bacon in skillet over medium high heat until crisp. Remove, place on paper towel and crumble when cooled.
Add the onion and shredded chicken to the bacon grease. Fry over medium heat until onion is tender. Stir in some of barbeque sauce, and remove from the heat. Mix in the cooked bacon.
Roll the bread dough out onto a greased cookie sheet or stone. Press out to an even thickness. Spread the chicken mixture out to within 1/2 inch of the edge. Drizzle the remaining BBQ sauce over the filling. Sprinkle the cheese and cilantro over the top. Fold the dough over the filling, and press the edges together with a fork to seal.
Bake for 25-30 minutes in the preheated oven, or until browned to your liking. Cool for a few minutes before eating.
*I used an egg wash with some Italian seasoning mixed in on the dough before putting it into the oven.
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