Pepperoni Rolls and West Virginia
While researching this recipe, I discovered Wild and Wonderful West Virginia. The origin of the Pepperoni Roll lies in West Virginia and as if that wasn’t shocking enough, the ultimate connoisseur of the Roll happens to be my friend’s brother, Bob Heffner. While Heffner can be an ordinary name, I knew it was Mike’s brother when I realized:
- the web site tag line said, direct from Fairmont, WV and
- I saw Bob’s house-my closest encounter with a house that could be featured on World’s Most Extreme Homes on HGTV
Living in North Carolina with family in Ohio, I had been through West Virginia dozens of times; not usually stopping other than to gas up and maybe a quick visit to the Tamarack.
My friend Mike and I were on a business trip visiting schools in West Virginia. Since Mike’s family lived in Fairmont, it was a place our boss insisted we stay for a cheap overnight. Unfortunately, I don’t recall eating pepperoni rolls on our visit. I do remember Bob’s house, lovely family, and the Fairmont Wal-Mart which left us speechless and desperate for a workout!
Bob Heffner has a plethora of information on the Pepperoni Roll and its history. The Rolls are thought to be the creation of Giuseppe “Joseph” Argiro at the Country Club Bakery in Fairmont in 1927. Bob provides several recipes on his website and here is mine which is not the purest in form but I gave up Martha Stewart about 2 sons ago!
1 bag of frozen dinner rolls
1 roll of pepperoni-skinned (or pre-sliced for less oily and therefore less tasty)
Pre-heat oven to 350
slice pepperoni in lengths that will fit inside your roll
flatten out the roll and place two to three strips of pepperoni inside the dough and wrap up sealing the edges.
Bake according to the roll directions.
I like to make Pepperoni Rolls when there are going to be a lot of kids around because they’re a good food on the run.