Panzerotti are a common street food in southern and central Italy. They differ from calzone in that they are smaller and usually deep-fried, making them a perfect portable snack for an evening stroll through the piazza. While I’ve kept the filling savory here, you could also make a sweet version filled with ricotta and jam and dusted with confectioner’s sugar while still hot.
- Vegetable oil, for frying
- Warm marinara, for serving
- For the dough
- 2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for working the dough
- 1 1/2 teaspoons instant yeast
- 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for the bowl
- For the Filling
- 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano, preferably Sicilian oregano on the branch
- 1 cup marinara sauce
- 4 ounces fresh mozzarella, diced
- 1 ounce diced prosciutto cotto
- 1/4 cup freshly grated Grana Padano
- 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, chopped
For the dough, combine the flour, yeast, and salt in the bowl of a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Combine the olive oil and 3/4 cup cold water in a spouted measuring cup. Pour the water mixture into the flour. Mix on low speed until combined. Switch to the paddle attachment and knead on medium-high speed until the dough forms a ball and is smooth and springy, 5 to 6 minutes.
Scrape the dough onto a floured surface and knead until the dough comes together in a smooth ball. Coat a large bowl with olive oil and add the dough bowl. Cover and let rise at room temperature until doubled in size, about 1 time.
While the dough rises, make the filling. Stir the oregano and a pinch of peperoncino into the marinara sauce in a medium bowl. Stir in the prosciutto, mozzarella, Grana Padano, and basil.
Once the dough has risen, punch the dough down. Divide into 8 pieces. On a floured work surface, press or roll the dough into approximately 5-inch rounds. Divide the filling among the rounds. Brush the edges of the rounds with water and fold over. Press with your fingers to seal. Place on a parchment lined baking sheet and let rise while the oil heats.
Preheat 3 inches of oil in a large Dutch oven to 350 degrees F. Add half of the panzerotti and fry, turning occasionally, until puffed and golden, about 5 minutes. Drain on a paper-towel-lined tray and serve warm, with more warm marinara.