Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Spaghetti and Meat Sauce Calzone

That's right...spaghetti and meat sauce in a calzone! Talk about major carb-loading! I wish I had the excuse of a long run or a race tomorrow, but I don't. I was thinking about what food I had in my fridge today, and I remembered the half dough ball that was unused from last night, and the meat sauce and pasta we made for dinner on Sunday. At first I thought that pasta in a calzone was a crazy idea, but the more I thought about it, the more I craved it.

This evening after work I went for a 40 minute tempo run, as my half marathon training program dictated. I usually follow Hal Higdon's training programs for half marathons, and have followed his program for one of the marathons I've run.

Tempo Runs: This is a continuous run with a buildup in the middle to near 10-K race pace. A Tempo Run of 30 to 45 minutes would begin with 10-15 minutes easy running, build to 15-20 minutes near the middle, then 5-10 minutes easy toward the end. The pace buildup should be gradual, not sudden, with peak speed coming about two-thirds into the workout. Hold that peak only for a minute or two. (Taken from Hal Higdon's training guide).

I have a pretty hard time with tempo runs outside...its hard for me to judge my pace gradually increasing and then decreasing, even with my trusty little Garmin watch. These are much easier when you can control the speed on the treadmill, but I prefer to train outside. So today I did my best, and ran my butt off in the middle of the run!

Now onto the Spaghetti and Meat Sauce Calzone...

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Make sure your dough sits at room temperature for at least 20 minutes (this makes it easier to stretch and mold).

Start with a bowl of spaghetti and meat sauce:

Heat in pan on stove or microwave until very hot. Mix in sauce and cut pasta:

Stretch out your dough:

Spray pizza pan or sprinkle some flour on pan so dough won't stick, then lay dough on pan:

Add pasta and sauce to dough, spreading evenly:

Close calzone, pressing outside together to seal. Paint lightly with oil, and add any toppings you desire (I used fresh ground pepper, garlic powder, and fresh grated Parmesan cheese). Cut a few slits in top of calzone so steam can escape while cooking.

Bake on 400 degrees for about 16 minutes. Take out when crust has browned nicely.

We sauteed some spinach in a little bit of olive oil and garlic (first saute garlic in the oil, then add spinach and cook for a couple minutes on medium).

And dinner is served! Such a fancy meal deserves special glasses for skim milk and chocolate milk :)

We found that the calzone is best with some extra marinara sauce on top (this is meatless sauce...Trader Joe's makes amazing marinara). Look at that bite!

To make this calzone EVEN better...I would recommend a layer of fresh mozzarella cheese inside the calzone, and perhaps some marinara inside too!

For dessert - cantaloupe with cinnamon sprinkled on top:

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