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Easy Veggie Artichoke and Olive Calzones and Shin Splints…

By December 17, 2010June 10th, 2011Food, Main Courses, Recipes, Running, Vegetarian

Veggie Artichoke and Olive Calzones

As soon as it gets cold, really cold, all I really want when we get home from work is bread, cheese and blankets. I have so little motivation and while bread and cheese surely tastes great, too much is definitely not an aid to our better health. So last night when I was craving calzones, had to hit the gym in a few hours, and knew there was nothing else in the world that would tame my craving, I made some changes to our recipe…

The dough is thin and light, and I went easy on the cheese and marinara and stuffed them with veggies. Even with my substitutions, they were perfect and hit the spot. Bread and cheese cravings tamed again for another day, well hopefully several days, otherwise my family’s tendency to adopt the Hobbit diet plan during the holidays might kill me. First breakfast, second breakfast – you get the idea.


For the dough:
1 cup (6 ounces) of water
1 packet of active-dry yeast (if using instant yeast, you don’t need to dissolve it during the first step)
3 cups (10 ounces) whole wheat or unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
4 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 egg, beaten (optional)

For the calzone innards:
2 cups artichoke hearts
2 cups olives, halved or quartered
2 cups marinara or tomato sauce (your preference)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup oregano (dried or fresh)


Veggie Artichoke and Olive Calzones

1. To make dough: Between 30 minutes-1 hour before baking, preheat your oven to 375 degrees. If you plant to use a baking stone, place it in the middle of the oven. Add warm water to yeast and whisk and stir yeast thoroughly into water. Allow the yeast a few minutes to dissolve. Measure flour into a mixing bowl, add salt and brown sugar and use your hand or whisk to combine.

Mix until dough is stretchy and just a bit sticky and turn onto counter to finish mixing/kneading. Place in a covered bowl and drizzle a glub or two of olive oil over the top and allow to rise for 30-45 minutes.

Veggie Artichoke and Olive Calzones

2. When the dough is ready pull from bowl and knead until olive oil is thoroughly mixed in the dough. Divide into four pieces, rolling each piece out, and laying it on your pizza stone/baking sheet.

Veggie Artichoke and Olive Calzones

3. Layer 1/2 of the dough with marinara and top with cheese, artichokes, olives, garlic and oregano. Pull empty side over, and fold edges over to seal or use a fork. To get the trademark crescent shape, gently fold the edges and straight side toward you in a “c” shape.

Veggie Artichoke and Olive Calzones

4. Brush each calzone with lightly beaten egg and bake for 18-22 minutes (depending on your oven). Allow to cool for several minutes before removing.

Makes 4 calzones.

Veggie Artichoke and Olive Calzones

Veggie Artichoke and Olive Calzones

So good! Hit the spot completely and we have two leftover to munch on sometime this weekend while we’re busy running around trying to get ready for Christmas next week. Hopefully you all are a lot more organized than we have been this year. Where did December go?

That brings me to my latest newb running issue. Shin splints. As I’m rounding the year mark since I started running, I’ve only just now encountered what is seemingly a common problem for most runners early on. It’s mainly in my left leg and it stops several inches below the knee. I can usually run about 3/4 of a mile before my shin starts tightening and I’ve only noticed this problem since October when I bruised my right ankle running trails.

I can’t help but think that maybe I’ve changed my stride from that injury. Coupled with the fact that because of the weather I’ve been trapped on the treadmill which had caused more change in the way I typically run. I’m not ready to make a PT appointment just yet, but wondered if my more experienced fellow readers might have suggestions or insight?

BTW, can I just say that I hate the treadmill with the intensity of a thousand erupting volcanoes! I just hate the treadmill. It’s boring, it doesn’t adapt to the change in pace, stride or movement natural running takes and it just doesn’t relax me. Unfortunately, until the ice melts off the streets, I just don’t feel comfortable trying to run outside and possibly slipping and hurting myself again or worse than I did in October.

Can I get an amen!?


  • Oh, great minds think alike. I had calzones for dinner last night too!!

    Sorry to hear about your shin splints. I haven’t had them in a long time. I’m no doctor, but I’ve heard toe raises can be beneficial. I just googled it and found a link that explains it more on Runner’s World:

  • Blake says:

    Sarah’s Article is a good one. The biggest thing to remember in general is stretching. More importantly, making sure you are stretching correctly and using the correct technique. I’ve been a runner for years and it wasn’t until PT on my first knee surgery that I learned the correct way to stretch. Not knowing how to stretch was not the cause but did contribute to my Knee issues. After the Second Knee surgery, I was stretching correctly which allowed for a pretty quick comeback.

    For anyone that doesn’t know me, At 27 I had torn mincus surgery on my Left knee, 5 months later I had the same surgery on my right knee. It was worth it, my knees are in great condition and I run more now then I have since high school. Granted, each knee is missing about 40% of the inner part of the minicus and over time will lead to probable knee replacements by the time I’m 60. The lesson, Listen to your body, don’t abuse your body becuase you are young, and stretch properly.

    The Calzones sound pretty tasty, I’m not a huge fan of Artichokes, but they still look good. Also remind me sometime, I’ll show you are neat braid for the edges that could fancy them up just a little bit.

  • Maria says:

    I can’t wait to make these! Great weeknight dinner. I owe you an email too:)

  • Try stretching, for sure. It’s also possible that it may just be your body getting used to running. While training for my first half marathon I developed a killer case of plantar fasciitis, and could hardly walk after the race. The next time we trained I paid more attention to it and stretched, and since then I haven’t had any problems with it – even though I don’t really give it much thought or specific stretching anymore.

    If you really want to take a different route, you can also look into barefoot running. 🙂

  • Katie says:

    AMEN! The treadmill can get boring REALLY fast. I can only do about 3 miles before I’m ready to throw myself off the side. Although, I try to mix things up with speed intervals, which, is also helping me develop a naturally faster stride. As for the shin splints, how are your shoes? If they’ve got a fair amount of mileage on them (or they’re the same ones you’ve had since last year), a new pair could clear your problem right up! Good luck!

  • Jessica says:

    @Annette, I’ve definitely thought of some barefoot intervals, if anything just to kind of motivate my feet to run in a more natural way. I definitely need to stretch more than I am, and i think my lack of time in the past few weeks has me just running without really paying attention just to get it done!

    @Katie, ahaha, I get about two miles before I am so bored that I become preoccupied with the fatigue and how annoyed I am that I’m on a treadmill. I need to do more intervals and work on my speed, and I’ve been throwing ten minute stints of eliptical just to feel like the time is moving faster. I hadn’t thought of shoes! Mine are about a year old…probably time to put them on the list for replacement. I’m thinking of getting a pair with less of a moon walk cushion now that I’ve been running a bit more and like a bit of “road noise.”

  • Melissa says:

    Great pictures! I’m curious to try the recipe sometime.

    For whatever it’s worth, I used to get shin splints chronically. Treadmills made them a lot worse, so you might consider getting some cold weather gear and trying some outside runs. It takes some getting used to, but it makes you feel super tough when you say you ran in 19 degree weather 🙂

    One last note – I just read something on runner’s world that mentioned that what people think are shin splints are often stress fractures. Hopefully that’s not the case, but might be worth checking out if they don’t start feeling better.

    Happy running, happy cooking, and merry Christmas!

  • karen says:

    Ok, so i’m a total newbie when it comes to cooking and specially with baking. Quick question… Why do the ingredients say “1 cup (6 ounces)”, and “3 cups (10 ounces)” … this really has me confused. I know there are 8 ounces in a cup and i’m positive you know that so then what does it mean????