Layered Stromboli


Happy Christmas Eve! For the main course each holiday, I usually try to go with something that is visually arresting, because what better time to do so than for a special meal. The layered stromboli definitely fit the bill. Folds of dough nestling melted cheese and sauce, with a bit of height, is just the sort of eye-catching dish I wanted. And with all the best flavors of your typical pizza (and red and green as well!), there's nothing not to love about this dish, except waiting for it to rise and bake!

Pair With

Recipe from smitten kitchen.

-1/2 cup plus 3 tablespoons warm water
-1/4 teaspoon granulated sugar
-1/4 teaspoon active dry yeast
-1/2 teaspoon salt
-2/3 cup (115 grams) semolina flour
-1 1/3 cups (175 grams) bread flour
-1 tablespoon olive oil
-2 cloves garlic, minced
-1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
-1 teaspoon dried oregano
-1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
-1 teaspoon salt
-Handful of fresh basil
-1 cup shredded Italian cheese blend

In a mixing bowl, combine semolina flour, bread flour and salt. Create a well in the center of the flour mixture, and add the warm water, sugar and yeast, let sit for 10 minutes covered with plastic wrap or a towel. Add the olive oil and begin to stir ingredients. As the dough forms, knead it to incorporate all the dry flour, then proceed to knead for about 8 minutes.

Coat the inside of the bowl lightly in oil, then leave the dough in the bowl, covered for at least an hour in order to rise.

While the dough rises, heat a small pot on the stove at medium setting. Using a little bit of olive oil or cooking spray, saute the garlic for 30 seconds to a minute, then add the red pepper flakes, oregano, crushed tomatoes, salt, and a few large leaves of fresh basil. Stir and simmer for 10 minutes, then either remove the basil, or pulverize with an immersion blender. Set aside until cool enough to work with.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees, then line a baking sheet with parchment paper sprinkled with a dash of cornmeal. On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough into a thin (about 1/16 inch) rectangle, long side nearest to you.

Spread a few tablespoons of sauce over the dough, sprinkle with a half cup of shredded cheese, and add some chopped fresh basil. Fold the right and left sides of the dough over, to meet, and touch, in the middle. Spread a couple more tablespoons of sauce, a quarter cup of cheese, and more chopped basil. This time, fold the top and bottom to the middle of the dough. Finish by topping with sauce -- you won't have used all the sauce, so reserve some for dipping later, then add the remaining cheese and basil. Fold the dough in half now top to bottom, and transfer to the baking sheet.

Prick the top with a fork, and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour.


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