JUNE 14, 2012 THAI PIZZA
Today’s supper is THAI PIZZA (pg. 145)–a favorite of this family. The same friend (Rene) that gave me the recipe for the Poppy Seed Dressing introduced us to Thai Pizza. I own the California Pizza Kitchen Cookbook, and have my own variation of their recipe. I was interested in trying a pizza that drizzled the peanut sauce on top, as I spread it on the pizza like a marinara sauce.
Let’s start by dicing up some fresh ginger. But before we do–a short cooking class. Ginger 101 coming up.
Ginger root is actually a rhizome. Ginger can be stored “fresh” three main ways. 1) The easiest is in a zip loc bag in the crisper of your frig. 2) You can also plant the rhizome in earth and let it grow, then trim all the new sections as you need them. (I have not done this or spoken with anyone who has. Let me know if you try it.) 3) You can also drop sliced fresh ginger in vodka or brandy to preserve it. The advice about storing it in sherry was mixed. (See here for more info.)
Ginger not only has an edible rhizome, but it the south, it is used as a landscaping plant. I remember shopping at Publix (a southern grocery store) and seeing 50 feet of blooming ginger running along the outside wall.
(photo from here.) This is variegated ginger, and not the exact ginger inside the grocery store, but usable.
“Not the spice ginger, the variegated ginger has beautifully striped green and yellow foliage and underground stems that you can use as a spice ginger substitute.”
And here is a good site if you would like to grow your own ginger.
Ginger can also be dried. We buy it in the spice aisle in the powered form at Thanksgiving time, but it can also be dried in slices. I sometimes buy ginger like this as I don’t always have “fresh” ginger in my crisper.
Ginger is used in both savory and sweet dishes and in both eastern and western cuisines. And here are a few more Nuggets of Knowledge about ginger.
- ” Traditionally, the rhizome is gathered when the stalk withers; it is immediately scalded, or washed and scraped, to kill it and prevent sprouting” (from Wikipedia)
- “In limited studies, ginger was found to be more effective than placebo for treating nausea caused by seasickness, morning sickness and chemotherapy, although ginger was not found superior to placebo for pre-emptively treating post-operative nausea.” (from Wikipedia)
- “Preliminary studies involving the effect of ginger on nausea occurring with pregnancy suggest that intake of ginger may cause belching after ingestion” (Wikipedia)
- “Ginger has a sialagogue action, stimulating the production of saliva, which makes swallowing easier.” (still Wikipedia)
- And if you ever were or still are a Little House on the Prairie fan, you might remember that one time Laura brought her Pa Ginger water when he was threshing wheat to drink instead of water as water left a heavy stomach. (The Long Winter Chapter 1, page 8) Here is a recipe for Ginger Water. (from here.)
1Dissolve the sugar and ginger in the vinegar.
2Shake with cold water.
3Serve chilled by itself or mixed 1:1 with ginger ale
But back to Thai pizza. Julienne some carrots. Chop some peanuts. Mince some cilantro.
Slice up two grilled chicken breasts. And grate some mozzarella (or just open the bag.) This is cooking mise en place–or with everything in its place. I have all the stations ready for assembling the pizza. I just need the peanut sauce to drizzle over the top.
I used the blender for the peanut sauce, but you can also use a food processor. The peanut sauce requires, garlic, fresh ginger, soy sauce, fish sauce, peanut butter, and Thai sweet chili sauce. The fish sauce smells like the name, but surprisingly it makes the sauce taste great. Remember, the best Caesar Salad dressings have anchovy paste in them.
The pizza is baked without the carrots and cilantro. They are added just after baking.
Then the peanut sauce is drizzled on. I used a zip loc bag and snipped the end off as I didn’t have any empty squeeze bottles laying around. It worked fine. The extra peanut sauce I used as dipping sauce for Chicken Satay.
I also made a Hawaiian pizza because A) The kiddos love it. B) We need more than one pizza to feed this family. C) One kiddo doesn’t eat Thai pizza. D) Left over pizza is a good snack.
And after supper and clean-up, we made samples of all the crafts we planned on using at our Backyard VBS and at the Michigan Family Camp.
The sand art in a bottle was loved by all. I saved bottles for an entire year, and I am very thankful for the three extra shelves in my pantry now that both VBS and Camp is over. The funnels came 3-4-A-$ (three for a dollar) at Dollar Tree, the bottles were “free”, and the sand was about $8/ 10 lb. bag at my local Hardware store. The colored sand was Crayola brand.
While we were making the samples this odd procession went down the street.
It was three Dumpster Divers checking out our street for Finds. The lady/wife? in the trailer was obese and was being pulled on a trailer by a bike.
That was our THAI PIZZA day.
And since we are back from a tangent, let me add that I am currently reading Anna and the King of Siam by Margaret Landon first published in 1943. This book inspired the musical “The King and I.” I will write-up a proper book review in another post, but typing about Thai pizza and reading a “Thai” book was too much to not comment on.
(Sorry for ending this post with a hanging preposition.)
I think I left you hanging on.
Here is a better sentence to close with.
“Thanks for stopping by”
P.S. Were “the bottles laying around?” or were “the bottles lying around.” I couldn’t decide. Are the bottles being personified and therefore they are “lying” (even though they were stored upright) Or are the bottles being place or “laid” on a shelf. Tell me!