Saturday, May 16, 2009

Garbanzo bean flour "calzone"

I guess you could say I am in the maintenance phase of a candida cleanse. My goal is to continue to minimize it and not allow it to take charge again. That means eating only high-quality carbs such as whole gluten-free grains (quinoa, brown rice, amaranth, steel-cut oatmeal) and low-glycemic fruit (blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, melons, cantaloupe). By the way, I can't believe I can eat cantaloupe again. Before going on the anti-fungal program, I hadn't eaten any in five years for fear of what it might do to my digestive tract.

For flour, I rely on bean flours such as garbanzo and soy. I haven't ventured in to trying any of my other gluten-free favorites, which are quinoa, brown rice and amaranth flours because the carbs are too high but eventually I will. In the meantime, it's amazing how creative you can get with garbanzo bean and soy flours.

I especially enjoy garbanzo bean flour because it has an almost nutty texture, cooks quickly and is amazingly easy to work with. Today's recipe for Garbanzo Bean Flour Calzones (and I use the word calzone loosely) was inspired by a leftover turkey burger. I was really hungry for a burger with some kind of bread and voila the idea for calzone was born.

Garbanzo Bean Flour Calzones (for 3 calzones)
Note: Adjust quantities depending on how many you are making.

3 turkey burgers

Fresh spinach leaves

Fresh basil leaves

1 cup+ garbanzo bean flour

2 T. olive oil

salt, pepper and dried herbs such as basil, oregano, etc.

1/4-1/2 cup water


Heat the oven to 480 degrees.

Prepare turkey burgers in advance. Mix lean ground turkey with salt, pepper, chopped spinach and basil leaves. Form into patties and grill or fry.

For the dough, mix garbanzo bean flour with salt, pepper and desired herbs. Add in 2 T. olive oil and water. Mix into a fairly still dough. You may need to add more flour or water.

Allow the turkey burgers to cool slightly. Spray a baking sheet. For each calzone, wet your hands with cold water before grabbing a hunk of dough. Press the dough onto the baking sheet into a circle large enough to accommodate a burger and then be folded over. Keep wetting your hands as needed to keep the dough from sticking. Place a few spinach and basil leaves on one side of each circle. Place a turkey burger on top of the leaves. With your hands wet again, pull the other half of the dough over the turkey burger. Pinch the edges of the dough together to completely enclose the turkey burger.

The trick here is to keep your hands wet. Garbanzo bean flour is tremendously easy to work with if your hands are wet. The flour is extremely absorbent so any extra moisture will be soaked up like a sponge.

Drizzle a bit of extra oil on your baking sheet and on each calzone. Place in the oven and bake for about 15 minutes. Check a few times as garbanzo bean flour cooks rapidly.

Slice each calzone in half. Serve with a spinach or spring mix salad. Make a mock mayo by blending silken tofu with minced garlic, salt, pepper, dried mustard powder and some canola oil.

I think you too will soon be singing the praises of garbanzo bean flour. I know I have my family converted over to garbanzo bean flour pizza crusts.

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