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Friday, March 30, 2012

Whole Wheat Spinach Ricotta Calzones

I wanted to try making a healthier calzone using whole wheat instead of white flour and part skim/non fat cheeses.   I sauteed baby spinach and mushrooms in olive oil before adding the vegetables to a mixture of mozzarella and ricotta cheeses. This recipe yields 4 medium size calzones.  Each serving (1 calzone) contains approximately 500 calories.  Maybe not an every day meal, but a special treat once in awhile!

Whole Wheat Spinach Ricotta Calzones

1 package active dry yeast (I used Pizza Crust yeast)
1 cup warm water
1 Tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 and 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 and 1/4 cups fat free ricotta cheese
1 egg, beaten
1/4 cup freshly grated parmesan
1 cup shredded part skim mozzarella
1 Tablespoon fresh italian parsley
2 teaspoons olive oil
6 oz. package of fresh baby spinach
1 cup mushrooms

In a small bowl, dissolve yeast in water.

Add the oil, sugar, and salt.  Mix in 1 cup of the flour until smooth.  Gradually stir in the rest of the flour until dough is smooth and workable. 

Knead dough on a lightly floured surface for about 5 minutes or until it is elastic.  Lay dough in a bowl containing 1 teaspoon olive oil and flip the dough around.  I used pizza yeast so that it wasn't necessary to let the dough rise.  If using regular yeast cover and let rise for 40 minutes until it has almost doubled.  When dough is ready, separate it out into 4 parts. Roll out the dough.  I made 4 triangle shaped pieces.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.  Add 2 teaspoons olive oil to a skillet and saute mushrooms until tender. 

Add the baby spinach and saute for just about a minute longer or until it is wilted.

Remove from heat.  Next mix ricotta cheese, egg, fresh parmesan cheese, and fresh parsley in a bowl.

To this mixture add the sauteed spinach and mushrooms and mix to combine.

Place filling in center of each of the whole wheat triangles. Roll the pointed size to meet the solid edge and close.  Calzones will appear slightly overstuffed, but once in the oven will settle once they have started heating up.  There may be a slight amount of filling left.  Heat in a 350 degree oven for 25-30 minutes or until done.  Serve with your favorite sauce. 

Serves 4 at approximately 500 calories/serving.  Bon Appetit.

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