Yes, I like cooking. I cook four or five nights a week. I cook even if I'm eating alone. It's more of a pleasure than a chore (particularly since I have a dishwasher...). But we always, always have a couple of pizzas in the freezer. Pizza is Paul's comfort food. It fits, for him, into some weird mental category where the calories don't count, he considers it low-carb and no matter how queasy he is feeling pizza makes him feel better.
Unfortunately, the pizza places that deliver to us are all pretty awful and overpriced. We were delighted, a few months ago, to discover a new one. The first pizzas we had from there were delicious, some of the best we've had in years. Our second order was patchy. Our third was so undercooked it was almost raw and made us both sick. And I've noticed they have stopped delivering.
So we'd rather stick with frozen pizzas, where at least we know they are cooked all the way through. I was very pleased to accept a couple of vouchers to try Dr Oetker Ristorante Pizza Calzone.
First things first, the instructions say to place the frozen calzone directly onto the rack in a preheated oven. Now, I always do that with other frozen pizzas, but I just wasn't 100% convinced of the structural integrity of the dough envelope, so I decided to be cautious and put it straight onto the rack, but with a paper-lined tray on the shelf underneath it. Which was a good move, as I watched a long drip of cheese ooze down.
As this sort of folded pastry tends to be lava-hot inside, I was quite happy to take a few pictures before I ate it. I know from past experience that you can't really taste anything with a blistered palate. The aroma when I first cut into it was very good - a savoury waft of yeast and herbs.
To me, this tasted of my childhood. I don't know if we actually ate French tinned champignons that often, but that slightly pickled mushroom taste took me straight back there. The Edam cheese is mild and pleasantly gooey, the salami nicely meaty, the crust crunchy. There could/should have been more cheese, as quite a lot of it dripped out and was lost, though. It doesn't taste particularly Italian; it's a very Teutonic approach to a pizza, but it was an enjoyable solo meal.
The biggest problem I can see with us adding these calzones to our regular pizza supply is the cooking time. Because they are folded they take more than twice as long to bake as an ordinary frozen pizza. If it's going to take half an hour to bake I'm probably more likely to go up the road for a kebab. But other people are more patient than I am.
One other concern I had was over the use of palm oil, but I read the Dr Oetker supplier report to the Roundtable for Sustainable Palm Oil. Dr Oetker has been in conversion to sustainable palm oil suppliers since 2011, and world wide conversion is scheduled for this year. Which is very pleasing for those of us who like orang utans as much as we like pizza.