Saturday, September 1, 2012

Mushroom & Spinach Pockets with Walnuts


I was going to make a pizza, but then I discovered that both my cheese & my sauce had grown hoary-bearded with age. I came up with this because several of the key ingredients are things I keep in the freezer, and are consequently unlikely to spoil. I was thinking of Pete's Kalezones*, but since I had no kale, I added nuts for texture.

1 recipe of the pizza dough I use for everything

8 oz mushrooms, chopped
8 oz chopped frozen spinach
1 large onion, diced
1 or 2 garlic cloves, crushed
a tomato (Optional. It was in the fridge, and I wanted it gone.)
1 tablespoon tomato sauce
1 teaspoon each of minced fresh rosemary & oregano
1/2 cup grated parmesan
1/2 cup finely chopped walnuts
salt & pepper
oil for frying

Pre-heat the oven to 450.

If your dough is in the fridge, get it out and let it start warming up.

Put a little oil in a heavy bottomed 3 or 4 quart saucepan. Saute the onions, garlic, herbs, and mushrooms until they are fairly dry and are starting to brown. Add the spinach and tomato, continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the liquid from the spinach is pretty much gone. Remove from the heat and let cool enough to stir in the nuts & cheese without melting the cheese. Salt & pepper to taste.

Cut the dough into 8 pieces, roll them out, and fold a scoop of filling into each one. Seal with a fork, and slash a hole in the top so they don't blow up in the oven.

Bake for about 23 minutes.


1. Parmesan is pretty salty. Definitely you will want to hold off on the salt until after the cheese is in the filling to see if you want more.

2. On the other hand, it needs a good amount of pepper. Go ahead and put that in any time, actually.

3. Who the hell ever just has one tablespoon of tomato paste lying around? Not me. I divide up a can into blobs and freeze them. Then I can just pull one out of the tupperware when I want it.

4. Incidentally, I also keep walnuts in the freezer. Keeps the %*$$! meal moths at bay.

5. Don't knead the dough before using it. Just cut it up and flatten it out, or it will be too rubbery to deal with.

I got these done at about 10 pm last night, but they sure are good for breakfast. The dough is pretty chewy, and holds up well to the slightly chunky texture of the filling. They would probably taste good with hazelnuts too, but if you do that, I'd recommend toasting the nuts first.

* I thought I'd written a post about Pete's recipe for kale & cheese calzones, but now I can't find it. The procedure is roughly the same as this, but the filling is composed of kale and onions, with plenty of ricotta and some mozzarella, I think. What on earth happened to that recipe?...


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