Difference Between Calzone And Stromboli

What’s The Difference Between Calzone And Stromboli?

Embarking on a culinary journey through the heart of Italy’s rich and diverse food culture reveals a world where every dish tells a story, embodying centuries of tradition, regional variations, and the passionate debates that come with them. Among the subjects of such debates are two beloved Italian-American creations: the calzone and the stromboli. While they might seem similar at first glance, each has its unique history, preparation methods, and cultural significance, making them distinct stars in the Italian culinary sky. This article delves into the intricate differences between a calzone and a stromboli, offering readers not just a guide to distinguishing the two, but also a deep dive into their origins, evolution, and the place they hold in the hearts of food enthusiasts around the globe.

Our exploration is designed to not only establish expertise on the topic but to also demonstrate the value of understanding the subtleties that define and separate these dishes. By unraveling the nuances of difference between calzone and stromboli, we aim to enrich your culinary knowledge and appreciation, whether you’re a seasoned chef, a culinary novice, or simply a lover of Italian cuisine. So, join us as we venture beyond the surface similarities to uncover the fascinating stories, techniques, and flavors that make calzones and strombolis uniquely captivating. Prepare to have your curiosity piqued and your appetite whetted, as we promise a journey that will encourage further exploration into the delightful world of Italian fare.

What Is A Stromboli?

What Is A Stromboli?

A stromboli is a traditional Italian-American dish that consists of a rectangular piece of pizza dough or yeasted bread dough. The dough is topped with mozzarella (and sometimes Parmesan or other cheeses), as well as cured meats, vegetables, and sometimes tomato sauce. The dough is then folded lengthwise over the filling to create a cylinder shape. Excess dough is folded and pressed or pinched at the seams to seal it. Slits are cut into the top to allow steam to escape during baking. The stromboli is then brushed with an egg wash or olive oil and baked until it turns golden. Finally, it is sliced into portions to serve multiple people.

What Is A Calzone?

A calzone is a traditional Italian dish consisting of a circular piece of pizza or yeasted bread dough that is folded in half. It is filled with a combination of ricotta, mozzarella, Parmesan, cured meats, vegetables, and herbs. The edges are sealed using a crimping technique, and it is brushed with an egg wash before being baked until golden. Usually, a calzone is cut in half to serve one or two people and is accompanied by marinara sauce for dipping. Additionally, mini calzones can be deep-fried and are known as panzerotti.

What’s The Difference Between Calzone And Stromboli?

The Calzones and strombolis —two of Italy’s most mouthwatering and coveted creations. But what exactly distinguishes these two oven-baked dishes? Let’s break down the key differences in shape, size, origin, sealing technique, fillings, and more. By the end, you’ll know exactly how to tell these two cheesy delights apart.

History

Calzone

The calzone originated in 18th century Naples. Often dubbed a “walking pizza,” this hearty street food was created for workers on the go.

Early calzones featured a simple half-moon shape with basic pizza ingredients folded inside bread dough. The basic ingredients back then? Just tomato sauce, mozzarella, ricotta, and maybe some cured meats or vegetables.

Over time, calzone fillings expanded across Italy. But the half-moon shape and pinched edges remained unchanged.

Stromboli

The stromboli has a much more recent origin. It was invented in 1950s Philadelphia and named after the classic Italian film “Stromboli.”

Unlike the calzone, it sports a long rolled shape resembling a burrito. Fillings are sealed tightly within multiple layers of dough.

The stromboli was originally made with pizza dough just like its cousin. But it diverged by focusing more on low-moisture mozzarella fillings.

Sealing Technique

Sealing Technique

Calzone

To form a calzone, the dough is flattened into a circle or oval. Fillings are added to one half of the base. The bare dough is then folded over the fillings, pressing the edges together to create a half-moon shape. The seam is pinched shut to prevent fillings from escaping.

Stromboli

For a stromboli, the dough is pressed into a rectangular shape. Fillings are placed down the center. Then the dough is rolled tightly around the fillings, creating a long spindle shape. The cylinder is sealed by tucking in the ends and pinching along the log.

Shape & Size

Calzone

The half-moon calzone is designed for single servings. It typically measures 6-8 inches across. Smaller than a pizza, a single calzone makes the perfect individual meal.

Stromboli

With its rolled log form, the stromboli is made for sharing. It can stretch up to 2 feet long in giant variations. Most average 18 inches, containing multiple servings in each hearty roll.

Fillings

Calzone

The calzone showcases a wide variety of fillings. Ricotta cheese is the star. Mixed with herbs, it creates a moist filling and creamy bite. Mozzarella is also common for stretch and texture. Beyond cheese, calzones may contain cured meats, vegetables, mushrooms, or other ingredients. Sweet fillings like fruit or chocolate are popular too.

Stromboli

The traditional stromboli focuses on low-moisture mozzarella for perfect meltiness. Provolone, cheddar, and parmesan often make appearances too. Other possible fillings include Italian meats like salami, capicola, and pepperoni. But, veggies are rare. Stromboli fillings tend to be simpler with fewer ingredients than the calzone.

Preparation

Both the calzone and stromboli are baked in a hot oven until the dough is golden brown. However, frying can give the calzone’s dough extra crunch.

Calzone

A calzone destined for the oven gets an egg wash and sometimes sesame seeds or herbs sprinkled on top. Frying adds an optional crispy element. The calzone gets deep fried for 2-3 minutes per side at 350°F. Then it’s ready to be served up hot.

Stromboli

A stromboli always goes straight into the oven after shaping. While frying sounds amazing, the size makes deep frying impractical. Some recipes brush olive oil or egg wash over the rolled dough before baking. But usually no special treatment is needed. The long, spiraled layers bake up nice and crispy.

Sauce

Though fillings differ between the calzone and stromboli, sauce is a constant. Both dishes are traditionally served with marinara or garlic dipping sauce on the side. Sauce is meant for dunking, not baked inside. This prevents the interior from getting soggy. Of course, some rebel cooks can’t resist injecting sauce into their calzones or stromboli. While untraditional, a spoonful of sauce adds extra juiciness. Just beware of potential saturation.

How To Make Calzone?

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon active dry yeast
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup warm water
  • ½ cup tomato sauce
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • ½ cup ricotta cheese
  • ½ cup chopped deli meat (optional)
  • ½ cup chopped vegetables (optional)

Instructions:

  1. In a large bowl, combine flour, yeast, and salt.
  2. Add olive oil and warm water, mix until a soft dough forms.
  3. Knead the dough on a floured surface for about 10 minutes until smooth and elastic.
  4. Place the dough in a greased bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let rise in a warm place for 1 hour, or until doubled in size.
  5. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
  6. Divide the dough into 2 pieces.
  7. Roll out each piece of dough into a circle.
  8. Spread tomato sauce on ½ of the dough.
  9. Top with mozzarella, ricotta, deli meat, and vegetables.
  10. Fold the other ½ of the dough over the filling, seal the edges to form a pocket.
  11. Bake the calzone for 20-25 minutes until golden brown.

How To Make Stromboli?

Ingredients:

  • 1 Italian loaf
  • ½ cup tomato sauce
  • 1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • ½ cup sliced pepperoni
  • ½ cup chopped green bell pepper
  • ½ cup chopped onion
  • ¼ cup sliced mushrooms (optional)
  • ¼ cup chopped ham (optional)

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
  2. Cut the Italian loaf lengthwise.
  3. Spread tomato sauce on ½ of the bread.
  4. Top with mozzarella, pepperoni, green bell pepper, onion, mushrooms, and ham.
  5. Fold the other ½ of the bread over the filling, press the edges to seal.
  6. Bake the stromboli for 20-25 minutes until golden brown.

Tips:

  • You can substitute mozzarella with other cheeses like provolone, cheddar, or Parmesan.
  • You can add other ingredients to your liking, such as olives, pickles, etc.
  • You can brush calzone or stromboli with olive oil before baking for a golden finish.

Conclusion

Whether you’re craving a personal pocket of ricotta or a giant log of melted mozzarella, both the calzone and stromboli deliver. Choose a calzone for smaller single servings packed with savory, sweet, or cheesy fillings. Opt for a stromboli when you’re feeding a crowd and desire that irresistible rolled shape. Whichever you pick, you’re sure to be singing “That’s Amore” with each delicious, cheesy bite.

6 thoughts on “What’s The Difference Between Calzone And Stromboli?

  1. Godfrey Brooks says:

    A Stromboli is rolled into a tube shape, kinda like a jelly roll. A calzone is just a half moon, basically like a pizza folded in half.

    • Winifred Bond says:

      Just to add on, calzones generally have pizza toppings inside along with marinara.Strombolis can, but are generally more varied.

  2. Egbert Fernandez says:

    Weirdly, here in my neck of the woods (southwestern Indiana) strombolis are basically pizza subs. Meat, sauce, cheese on a regular roll. Called stroms for short. I have no idea why.

    • Winifred Bond says:

      On the east coast we call them “bolis.” Never heard the term “strom” before, interesting.

  3. Doug Cohen says:

    Calzone is a turnover containing typical pizza ingredients. A stromboli is a wrap usually containing deli ingredients.

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