Pastrami & Provolone Stromboli with Caramelized Onions / by Anthony Michael Contrino

Stromboli, a cousin of pizza and calzones, and, in my opinion, the easiest of the three to execute perfectly.  A stromboli is pizza dough rolled with whatever you want.  WHATEVER.  YOU.  WANT.  The "traditional" is usually jam-packed with the kind of stuff you'd find in an Italian hero - ham, salami, sopressata, hot sausage, etc...  This variation pays homage to one of my favorite sandwiches - Steamed Pastrami with Provolone and Caramelized Onions.  To ace this recipe, be sure to really caramelize the onions.  The sweetness pairs perfectly with the spices of the pastrami and the mellow flavor of the cheese.  

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

4 medium yellow onions, sliced into thin half moons

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 store-bought pizza dough

3/4 pound pastrami

3/4 pound provolone cheese

Honey mustard sauce, for serving, optional

Make the caramelized onions.  Warm the olive oil in a large, high-sided skillet over medium-high heat.  Add the onions and cook, stirring often, until deep golden brown, about 20 minutes.  Season with salt and pepper, to taste.  Cool completely.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Stretch (or roll) out the pizza dough into a rectangle.  Be sure to stretch the ends of the dough; the entire sheet of dough should be slightly thinner than 1/4" in thickness.

With the long-end facing you, layer the pastrami, leaving a 1-inch "crust."  Sprinkle the caramelized onions over the pastrami.  Layer the cheese over the pastrami and onions.  Roll the dough longways to create a log, keeping the seam at the bottom.  Squeeze the dough at the sides to seal and trim off any excess dough.  Carefully transfer the log to a parchment lined baking sheet and twist the sides to create a crescent.  Using a pair of kitchen shears, cut 1-inch slits across the top of the dough, spacing each cut three inches.  

Bake until golden, about 35-40 minutes.  Cool 10 minutes.  Transfer the stromboli to a cutting board and slice into 1-inch pieces.  Serve hot, with honey mustard sauce, if desired.