Stromboli

My Grandmother often referred to the food she cooked in Sicilian.  I’d always ask her to repeat the word, struggling to repeat what she had said.  Today, however, I give you her “stuffed bread” which is what everyone else calls stromboli.  Out of all the dishes she prepared, the word “stromboli” seems easy enough to say. My Grandma never, ever used the word stromboli; her parents were from Campofelice di Fitalia, in the province of Palermo. Perhaps a stromboli is referred to as something else?
I’ve created this recipe from memory, because it’s definitely not written anywhere.  Some concessions – my Grandma probably never used a leek in her life, but I had 3 leftover in my refrigerator, so in they went.  She may or may not have used parsley, but I love parsley, and it’s green, so I added that, too.  I used fresh mozzarella because I love it.  The end result was nothing short of luscious.

Stromboli

Filling

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 cup sliced green onions
2 cups sliced leeks
2 tablespoons minced garlic
1/4 cup minced parsley
1 lb Italian sausage, removed from casing
8 oz fresh mozzarella, sliced
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Dough
4 cups bread flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon yeast
2 tablespoons sugar
10-12 oz warm water
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

In a large pan, heat 3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil over medium-high heat.  Add green onions, leeks, garlic.  Saute until soft and wilted.  Stir in parsley.  Set aside and allow to cool.  Using the same pan, brown sausage until no pink remains, spoon into a strainer to drain off excess oil; set aside and allow to cool.

For the dough, using the bowl of a stand-mixer, combine the yeast, sugar, and 4 oz warm water; let stand until frothy.
Combine the flour and salt in a bowl, add the flour to the yeast mixture, and with the machine on low, add 4 oz water and 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil.  Continue to mix, adding the remaining water, if necessary, until the mixture pulls away from the bottom of the bowl.  Switch to the dough hook, and knead for 6 minutes. Remove from bowl and shape into a ball.
Lightly oil a large bowl, place the dough in the bowl, turning to coat.  Cover with plastic wrap and drape with a kitchen towel.  Let rise in a warm place for an hour.
Deflate dough and place on a floured surface.  Roll out dough into a 12×15 rectangle.  Spread leek mixture onto dough and evenly distribute sausage over leek mixture.  Place sliced mozzarella on top of sausage, and sprinkle with 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese.
Starting from the long side, roll dough toward you, as you would with cinnamon rolls.  Place onto a parchment-lined baking sheet.  Cover with a damp cloth and allow to rest for 30 minutes.  Bake at 400 degrees for 40 minutes, or until dark golden brown.  Let rest for an hour before slicing.  Serve with marinara if desired.
Enjoy!

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