I have a confession to make: I have never eaten a Hot Pocket in my life. Not even in college. Not even at 3 a.m. after a night of Newcastles. Not even after watching Jim Gaffigan's Hot Pocket routine for the 347 millionth time.
So, when The Kitchn linked to Planet Green's Homemade Hot Pocket recipe, I'm not sure why it appealed to me. It could have been the whole-wheat crust angle, or the lack of decent calzones in my neighborhood. Probably it was the idea of reproducing an insanely processed meal out of ten or eleven actual food-like ingredients.
Whatever. I made them. And I loved them.
Each sizeable, 405-calorie turnover contained just the right amounts of cheese and vegetables—not too skimpy, not too overwhelming. The crust puffed up significantly and had an excellent crispy-on-the-out-side, chewy-on-the-inside texture. There was no mess when I scarfed one with my hands. All good things, none of which I hear are endemic to the mass-produced versions.
What's more, these guys are super customizable. Asparagus, turkey sausage, lean ham, 2% cheddar, and more can all go in place of the suggested fillings. Heck, you can even take Gaffigan's suggestion and stuff them with other Hot Pockets, like an edible Russian Doll.
Still, in the end, though this was a success, I'll probably never try a commercial Hot Pocket. KFC Bowls? That's another story.
Healthy & Delicious: DIY Hot Pockets
- 1/2 package active dry yeast
- 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon warm water
- 3/4 cup whole wheat flour
- 3/4 cup all purpose flour
- 1/2 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1/2 tablespoon kosher salt
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 8 ounces button mushrooms, sliced
- 1 cup cooked spinach, drained
- 2 cups part-skim mozzarella, grated
Combine yeast and water in a small bowl. Stir. Let sit five minutes.
Mix flours, sugar, and salt in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the hook attachment. Turn speed to medium and slowly add yeast water. Let knead about 10 or 11 minutes, stopping to scrape down sides of bowl if necessary.
Coat a large bowl with olive oil. When dough is done mixing/shaped roughly like a ball, add it to the bowl, cover with a kitchen towel, and let sit 90 minutes.
When dough is done sitting, split it into 4 rounded balls and let sit another 20 minutes in the bowl.
Meanwhile, preheat oven to 450°F. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil and spray with cooking spray.
Saute mushrooms in a medium pan with a bit of olive oil. Once cooked, pour into a medium bowl and let cool a little. Then, add spinach and mozzarella and mix well. Salt and pepper to taste.