There’s a surprise inside…

by zydecopaws on July 27, 2010

Tonight’s offering consists of several firsts for No Excuses BBQ. It was the first time the cast iron pizza pan was used, the first time I made artisan bread, the first time bread was cooked on Bubba Ho-Keg, and the first time MOINK balls were incorporated in a calzone.

Before I go any further, I realize that the MOINK ball dish could qualify for the 2010 MOINK Ball Challenge. However, by sharing the dish here first I’m violating a couple of the competition rules. No problem, as I had no intention of using this dish as my entry (although it will likely go into the BBQ Brethren throwdown currently in progress). There were too many new things going on tonight for me to consider this as a viable entry; besides, I have something else in mind for that one.

On with the story. I made up a batch of the basic artisan bread recipe found in “Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day”. Then I prepared several MOINK balls using the traditional recipe, but substituting Cajun seasoning mix and Italian seasonings for the usual rub mix.


They went onto Bubba Ho-Keg for about 90 minutes at 250°F. I didn’t glaze this batch as they would get sauced when stuffed in the calzone.


The next step was to spread out some of the bread dough and layer it up with some homemade pizza sauce, shredded cheese (this was a Mexican blend, because that’s what was in the refrigerator), MOINK balls, sliced onion, and sliced mushrooms.


This all got folded up, the edges pinched together, and thrown on the cast iron pizza pan that had been sprinkled with some corn meal. After about 30 minutes, it was ready to eat.


The crust didn’t brown up as much as I would have liked; this was likely due to not getting the temperature back up as high as the recipe called for (450°F) before putting it on the grill. It didn’t seem to affect the taste much though, these were pretty good (and very filling).


Since I had sauce leftover and still had plenty of dough, I made up a second calzone using leftover pulled pork instead of MOINK.


It looks pretty tasty, but I won’t know until tomorrow as I am way too stuffed from eating the MOINK calzone.

Last but not least, I took the rest of the bread dough and made up a small artisan loaf. It didn’t rise as much as I had hoped; I assume I screwed up something when making the dough (besides the cooking temperatures). I broke off a piece of the bread and it tastes pretty good, so it wasn’t a total loss and I learned quite a bit.


The cast iron pizza pan is a wonderful addition to the armory. Nothing stuck to it tonight, and that included the corn meal which was looking pretty toasted by the end of the evening. I have a feeling we’ll be getting a lot of use out of it, especially as I continue to explore new bread recipes. There is something really nice about having fresh bread in the summer without heating up the house to get it…

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