I enjoy inspiring a love of baking and cooking, sharing a recipe is the highlight of that inspiration. It’s sad to think of all the recipes that have faded out of existence because of an unwillingness to share them with someone else.
I believe the art of cooking and baking is a language in itself speaking to all the senses, powerful enough to draw us to the table and spend time together nurturing body and soul.
I’m sure that some of the best recipes are not necessarily found in cookbooks but instead on scraps of paper or hand written on worn, food stained note pads. Some recipes have never been penned but are alive in those who have not found it necessary to write them down remembering every ingredient and step.
My mother made Panzerotti from an unwritten recipe she had watched her mother make and I make them with the unwritten recipe I watched my mother make. Simple and delicious describes them well and best enjoyed with family and friends.
An email last week from my daughter-in-law Sarah thanked me for the Panzerotti recipe I had given her some time ago and telling me she had made them for the first time. I honestly don’t remember having written out the recipe for her but the picture sent of the hand written recipe on a three by five index card proved otherwise.
Thank you Sarah for inspiring me to make Panzerotti this week and share the recipe once again!
Tomato and Mozzarella Filling
- 1 can plum, peeled plum tomatoes (28 ounces /796 ml)
- 3 ½ cups shredded mozzarella
- ¼ cup grated parmiggiano or favourite cheese
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Remove core from peeled tomatoes and place in a colander to drain.
- Add mozzarella, cheese, salt and pepper, mix well and leave in colander to continue to drain until ready to assemble panzerotti.
1 tablespoon sugar
2 cups warm water
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 tablespoon active dry yeast
4 to 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour1 tablespoon salt
- Dissolve sugar in warm water and let stand about 10 minutes or until yeast foams.
- Place 2 cups of the flour into a large bowl, make a well in the flour and add the yeast mixture oil and salt.
- Beat with a wooden spoon until smooth and elastic.
- Stir in remaining flour gradually adding enough flour to make a stiff dough.
- Turn dough out onto a floured surface and knead 5 to 10 minutes until dough is no longer sticky.
- Divide dough in half and place into two clean, plastic storage bags, seal bags and cover with a tea towel.
- Let rise in a warm place until nearly doubled, about 1 to 1 ½ hours.
- Remove dough from one bag, place on a lightly floured surface and cut into approximately 15 equal pieces.
- Roll each piece into approximately 4 to 5 inch rounds (don’t roll too thin)
- Fill with about ¼ cup of cheese filling, fold dough over and press edges closed.
- Using a crimper/cutter tool cut and seal the edges or press closed with a fork.
- Place on a dish towel lined baking sheet continuing until all are filled.
- Repeat with second half of dough.
- Heat oil in a skillet and depending on how large your skillet is fry 3 to 5 at a time. Do not over crowd.
- Drain on paper towels to remove excess oil.
- Keep warm in oven until all panzerotti are fried and ready to serve.
- Makes approximately 30 panzerotti.
Notes, Tips and Suggestions
- Make sure the tomato mixture is very well drained, too much moisture makes for an improper seal and edges will open in hot oil...messy!
- For meat filling, use same meat preparation for calzone.
- Panzerotti will not be uniform in shape and size…distinguishably homemade!
- If 30 Panzerotti are a few too many to make, use the second piece of dough to make a French Baguette.