Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Make Ahead Pizza Pockets

Today, I decided to do some make ahead cooking. I needed something quick and easy for those days when we barely have time to get from point A to point B. I had spaghetti sauce that needed to be used so I decided to make some pizza pockets. I used the recipe from
The dough ingredients. 3 1/2 cups of whole wheat flour, 1 cup of butter melted (I used a butter/canola blend that I got for free), a dash of salt, and a cup of yogurt. (I was out of yogurt so I mixed water with sour cream until it was yogurt like in consistency.)

Toss in your mixer bowl and mix away. You can use any type of mixer or even your hands for this.

It's done when the dough pulls together and the sides of the bowl are almost clean. The dough resembles shortbread. FYI add a cup of sugar or more until it tastes sweet enough to be dessert and VOILA! you have shortbread dough. ;)

This is how I mess proof my granite countertop. (It was a steal from Emma Warehouse and one of my favorite things about my kitchen! It sits on a cupboard base that I picked up at a garage sale for $1.) Wipe counter with a damp cloth and cover with wax paper. It won't try to wiggle away.

I divided the dough in half again and again until I got balls of dough the size I wanted. I ended up with 16 total. I forgot to take a picture of rolling out the dough so we're going to fast forward now. ;) I rolled this out too thin, you want it to be thicker than a tortilla but not as thick as flatbread.
I used the cheese I had on hand. You can make pizza with ANY kind of cheese, don't worry about not having mozzarella or Italian cheeses. I actually prefer cheddar on my pizza, unless I have the option of goat cheese.  MMMmmmmm
These are cut-up brown and serve sausage links. I paid 68c for them and they are well worth it in my opinion. It saves washing a pan and the time it takes to cook them. They are perfect for casseroles and pizza where they will be warmed through before serving. You can also make breakfast pigs in a blanket by wrapping a canned biscuit around them and baking at 375 for 12 minutes. (coming soon to a blog near you)
 I always make up a HUGE batch of spaghetti sauce from home-canned tomatoes. Yes, I AM that cheap...this year I am just making spaghetti sauce and canning that!! We eat spaghetti one night(usually on family night when there are twelve or more people present), a casserole on another night, and then I make pizza with the remainder. (Work smarter, not harder!)
Glob some sauce (use less than you think you'll need), sprinkle cheese, and strategically place sausages, You need them to end up as close to the fold as possible or else they will try to escape and make your pretty little pocket look like a culinary horror film.

Fold over and crimp edges with a fork. See the sausage attempting to escape? Blood, I mean, sauce oozed out of that opening when they were baked.
Honestly,  I was not expecting these to be so tender and flaky. They taste amazing but are simply too delicate for my family to grab and go. However, I do plan on using this pastry to make other things in the future because it was so flaky and yummy!

I added more flour, baking powder, a little yeast for flavor, and some water and tossed the remaining dough back in my mixer to make a sturdier crust that we could bump without worry. This dough was exactly what I had in mind for a good pocket, however, I have no idea how much of this-and-that that I added to make it into the perfect crust...  

I also made some turkey and cheese pockets and some pigs in a blanket that my oldest begged me to make. If you have to use your oven, make it worth your time.

We have enough make aheads for two dinners and a few lunches. :)

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