Hey, this bread is full of pizza!
If you really wanted to, you could call this a calzone, I guess. I am not calling it that. I am calling it pizza bread. It’s bread that is stuffed with pizza stuff and there is a fine difference here. Pizza dough is pizza dough and bread dough is bread dough. There’s a difference, my friends.
In my non-expert opinion, I say the big difference between bread dough and pizza dough is fat. Pizza dough has fat in it, peferably lard. Yeah, I said it. Lard. Seriously – go read this post I contributed to The Amauteur Gourmet Community Blog. I know you think you have great pizza dough that you make with your fancy olive oil. But I am here to tell you – just try it once. Replace the olive oil with lard and see if it isn’t a revelation.
But back to this thing. This dough I had sitting in the fridge had no fat in it. It is the ubiquitous 5 minutes-a-day bread. I wasn’t even quite sure I had enough dough left to stuff it but it was Friday and I wanted something pizza-like. I made a valiant attempt to mix some dry herbs into the dough, but that’s kind of hard to do when the dough is almost made. It got a little uneven so some part of the dough had lots of herbs and others had not much. I forged on anyway and rolled it out into a rectangle.
Meanwhile, I preheated the oven to 450 with my pizza stone on the middle rack. While it was heating, I threw in a pan of chopped up onions, garlic and shallots and let them roast with a little olive oil. By the time the oven was hot, the onion mixture was nice & softened & roasty.
I spread a little marinara sauce over my dough rectangle and started layering it up with pepperoni, mozzarella cheese and the onion mix. Then I wrestled it into a bread-like shape and pinched it closed along the edges. I let it rest for about 10 minutes on my pizza peel before brushing it with melted butter and popping it in the oven. It took a little longer to bake than I thought – close to 40 minutes. But it was worth the wait!
I sliced it up and served it with extra marinara on the side for dipping and I didn’t even miss the lard. Because this was not a pizza or a calzone, darn it. It’s bread, and it’s stuffed with pizza stuff. It’s pizza bread. And it’s good.