Getting Stuffed

Food that comes in its own edible wrapper can be fun to make and eat. Learn more at TwiceasTasty.com.
There’s something special about food that comes in its own edible wrapper. It can be filling, comforting, flavorful, unique—but mostly it’s fun to eat. It can also be fun to make if you approach it with the right mindset.

Self-contained perfect bites have plenty of advantages. Some, like Sourdough Empanadas, travel well and make ideal meals at school or work. Others, like Pumpkin–Goat Cheese Ravioli with Butter–Nut Sauce, can be frozen for later quick-and-easy meals. With Mushroom-Stuffed Blini, it’s hard to decide whether the freshly made packets or the leftovers, sautéed until crispy, taste best.

These scratch-made recipes also have a downside: They take time and effort. The key is to keep the entire process relaxed and fun. I have several tricks that will help you enjoy the time, break the project into stages, and sample some of your creation along the way. Hopefully these tips will ease you into some of the food projects already on the blog—and the new ones I’ll be sharing this month.
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Beyond Pizza

I learned to appreciate calzones and empanadas by baking pizzas at home. If you love deep toppings and excessive cheese, you’ll want these recipes. Learn to make Sourdough Calzones and Empanadas.I didn’t appreciate calzones until I started baking beautiful pizzas at home. Before my homemade pizzas achieved elegance, they tended toward soggy masses on soft, undercooked dough or slightly burned toppings over a cracker-crisp crust. Both variations resulted from the same problem: too many toppings at too low of a temperature.

I’ve learned not to compare pizzas baked in a home oven with fully loaded, wood-fire pizzas—and especially with those I ate in Naples. Kenji, lord of Serious Eats, puts it bluntly: “You’re never going to be able to produce a perfect Neapolitan-style pie in a home oven.” The crew at Bon Appétit is a bit less forceful yet just as adamant: “For those hefty pies to work, they need an ultra-sturdy crust and a really, really, really, really hot oven. Leave it to the pros and go simple.”

So as I teach all my workshop participants, whether grilling or baking your pizza, keep your temperature high and your toppings light. But if you’re a fan of deep toppings and excessive cheese, turn your pizza dough into calzones or empanadas.
Learn to make Sourdough Calzones and Sourdough Empanadas