I currently work for my college’s dining services during the morning shift. I have worked this shift for four years, and I really enjoy it because I can actually make the food for customers on occasion whenever we serve pancakes, French toast, omelets, etc. For the past two years during this shift, I have experimented with making different kinds of breakfast pizzas.
My inspiration for breakfast pizzas developed initially as a challenge. On slow days at work, and with the permission and encouragement of my supervisors, I tried to make breakfast pizzas using the food we served to customers. For example, if we were serving scrambled eggs, sausage links, and hash-browns, I would try to make a breakfast pizza out of these ingredients. The challenge with a breakfast pizza though is deciding what kind of “sauce” to use so that the pizza will stick together. The most common sauces I tend to use on breakfast pizzas are sausage gravy, cheese sauce, hollandaise sauce, or salsa, and the sauce I use depends on the pizza. For a breakfast pizza using sausage, I would use sausage gravy and then add scrambled eggs, green onions, hash browns, cheddar cheese, and bacon bits.
I never used an official recipe for my pizzas because they were all created using my intuition of what would likely taste good. After making a pizza, I encouraged the staff and customers to try it. To my pleasure, my breakfast pizzas tend to earn good, and sometimes even great, reviews. This past year, I submitted the recipes of my two favorite pizzas, which have the sausage gravy or cheese sauce base, to the head Chef at our dining services for it to be taste tested officially and possibly added to the breakfast menu. There were a few occasions where they taste tested my breakfast pizzas and served them to customers, and each time they received complimentary reviews. Now they are on the menu!
Since then I have branched out from breakfast pizzas, and I recently made breakfast calzones. I made twelve breakfast calzones total with six being a meat lover's calzone, and six being a vegetarian lover's calzone. For the meat lover's calzone, I made my traditional sausage gravy base with sausages, and I added scrambled eggs, green onions, diced ham, diced bacon, green and red peppers, and cheddar cheese. Then I coated the top of the calzone with melted garlic parmesan butter. For the veggie lover's calzone, I added scrambled eggs, green onions, green and red peppers, diced mushrooms, diced tomatoes, and sliced zucchini, and then coated the top with the melted butter.
My work shift was over by the time the calzones were cooked and served, but I was told they received complimentary reviews. I hope to do more calzones in the future, but they do generally take more time to create than regular pizzas given the extra ingredients that must be prepared. While making these calzones, I had the idea of making dessert calzones. I have brainstormed quite a good list of dessert calzones that would taste delicious. The list includes the following as potential calzones:
- Raspberry and chocolate
- Raspberry and crème cheese
- Strawberry and chocolate
- Strawberry rhubarb
- Lemon raspberry
- Triple berry
- Apple crisp
- Blueberry cobbler
- Caramel crumble peach
- Pineapple/pina colada
- Boston crème with chocolate
- Oatmeal creme
- Chocolate chip cookie
- Chocolate chip brownie
- Smores (chocolate chips, marsh mellows, and graham cracker crumbles)
Most of these calzones are inspired by their correlating pies such as the apple crisp pie. I have not made any of these calzones yet, but I look forward to opportunities where I can make them in the future. These are definitely recipes that I could try at home, but I would not be able to create such a variety at one time like I would in a work setting where I can create and taste test different recipes.
I encourage you to try these recipes. A breakfast pizza or calzone is a tasty meal any time of the day, and it will certainly fill you up. Also, instead of making a pie, make whatever pie you have in mind into a calzone and see if it works out. Experimenting with food is very fun, and when other people try your creation, it is deeply satisfying.