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Sunday, May 25, 2014

Caroline's Stromboli

My dear friend Caroline's little son Wes is battling stage IV neuroblastoma at only 1 1/2 years old. Since the beginning of this incredibly difficult journey, I have admired Caroline courage, grace, humor, and tenacity. More than anything, I am astounded by Caroline's ability keep a level head and take life one day at a time. I was recently down in DC and was able to visit Caro and the family in VA for the day. The two of us escaped for a nice long lunch in the sun and a couple of glasses of champagne. At the end of the afternoon we returned to the house and amidst organizing the three kids, batting practice in the front yard, and preparing for an evening at baseball practice (all while entertaining ME), Caroline whipped up some stromboli. I share this recipe because it's delicious but also because it totally captures Caroline... "Oh, these? I carmelized the onions this morning while everyone was still sleeping..." Enough said.

Pretty much any of these ingredients can be swapped/subbed but I'm staying true to Caro's recipe:
1 pre-made pizza dough
1 package of shredded Italian cheese
1 red onion, caramelized
1 handful of jarred jalapenos, finely chopped
6-8 slices of salami
1-2 cups of blanched and chopped spinach
Red sauce for dipping

1. Preheat the oven to 425

2. Roll out the pizza dough into a rectangle, about 12" by 24." Make sure to use plenty of flour so it doesn't stick to the surface.

3. Sprinkle the cheese evenly over the dough, leaving 1/2" on the left end clean for sealing. Sprinkle the onion, the jalapenos, and the spinach over as well. Top with slices of salami. It should look like a big square pizza.

4. Starting on the right/short side, gently start to roll the dough from right to left. Roll as tightly as you can. When you get it all rolled up, seal the long end to the roll and seal the short ends so nothing oozes out while baking.

5. Place carefully on a baking sheet (you might need an extra set of hands), sealed side down. Bake for about 30-40 mins or until the crust is browned and the insides are melted.

6. When stromboli is done, remove from the oven and let sit for about 5-10 mins before cutting. Serve with tomato sauce on the side for dipping.

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