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I’m excited to introduce you to Lori from Mutt & Chops. Sho loves creating food with purpose and sometimes re-purpose, that’s the motivation behind her incredible dishes. I have always believed that cooking is a form of art. When you are passionate about the meals you create, you add your heart and soul into each new recipe. I believe Lori is an artist and each one of her new creations is something that should be enjoyed by many.
I appreciate that Lori created a recipe to share on my blog that is not only delicious but something that can be put together easily. She knows I’m a busy mom who is always looking for quick, healthy, and simple dinner ideas. I’m thrilled to have this recipe to share with family.
Lori from Mutt & Chops – Guest Post
Where did pepperoni pesto pizza pockets come from? If you give me a minute, I’ll give you the scoop.
I worked in the corporate world for 26 years, starting before my children were born. Trying to juggle a family, a home, and a career was challenging, especially when the boys became older and active in sports. It seemed there was never time. We were always going, going, going! But what was I going to do? It was our life and we were living it the best we thought we should.
I knew other moms who stayed home and who were no less overwhelmed. And now there are moms juggling a hybrid, trying to work or blog out of the home. Let’s face it, having kids and trying to make everything fit in a day is a lot of work.
But families are a labor of love, first and foremost. And cooking for my family was something that filled me with joy and satisfaction. So, I cooked for them as much as I could, trying to minimize the number of meals we ate out. Frankly, eating out with a family can be costly and is not always the healthiest option around.
I was often making up quick and easy stuff that could be efficiently assembled. But it also had to meet a certain standard. You know, the one all kids seem to grade their food on…is it as good as the restaurants. Because for all we grow up and realize the beauty and quality of scratch made food, when we were kids, it had to pack that flavor punch that only restaurant food could provide.
It was like trying to make homemade food look and feel like something they would get eating out so they would like it.
When Breeze invited me to contribute a recipe to her blog, this memory of cooking for an active and busy family came rushing back. So, I decided to come up with another of my little meal things. And there we have pepperoni pesto pizza pockets.
Thank you for sticking with me through that. 🙂
These pockets are crunchy on the outside, full of flavor on the inside, and they contain a secret healthy ingredient that will make a parent feel good about serving them.
Let’s see what goes into making these pepperoni pesto pizza pockets!
Yes…spinach. Give it a coarse chop and wrap it in pesto and pepperoni. It really blends well with the flavors.
I usually make my own pizza crust, but this meal is meant to be as quick and easy as possible. I found this organic frozen pizza crust at Wal-Mart and I REALLY like it. It tastes like homemade and all you have to do is defrost it. It defrosted very quickly in the bag on my kitchen counter, a little over an hour.
As for the pesto, there are several brands that offer fresh, store-bought pesto. For this recipe, I used this Rana product, which is available in the cooler section with the fresh, ready-made pasta. I really liked the taste.
The rest is pretty straight forward.
Start by chopping the spinach coarsely and the onions finely.
Then shape the dough into a symmetrical tube. Keeping it symmetrical makes it easier to cut equally-sized portions.
Cut the tube into six sections and then roll one section out into a thin round.
Layer first the pesto, then the onion, then the pepperoni, and finally, the cheese.
Keep the edges free of filing so that you can seal the pocket. And notice that most of the filling is slight off center. The right side will be the side folded over to make the top of the pocket.
Gently fold the side with less filling over the toppings and pinch the top crust to the bottom crust to seal the pocket.
My trick it to fold the top over like a blanket, and use my fingers and thumbs to gently push the filling towards the center while I am covering it.
Then fold the edges up, creating a lip, and pinch it down again. That way you have an overlapping seal.
Place the pocket on a parchment covered baking sheet, and repeat until all six portions of dough are stuffed and sealed.
Brush with olive oil and bake.
And this is what you get!
Crunchy and juicy, salty and creamy. And that unmistakable pepperoni goodness.
Eat them with a fork and knife, or grab it with your hands and take a bite.
A sit-at-the-table meal, or an easy “grab on the run” one. Either way, I bet your family will love them!
Be sure to follow Lori, you won’t want to miss her creative, healthy, and tasty dishes!