Thai food is an original and rich amalgam of aromas, subtle blends of herbs and spices and contrasting textures and tastes. It contains flavours and techniques that are familiar from Chinese, Indian and Japanese cooking, but they have been so skilfully combined and refined that the resulting dishes have a new and exciting character. Whether searing hot or subtly mild, the guiding principle in Thai cooking is harmony. Fundamentally an aromatic marriage of centuries – old Eastern and Western influences, the chief characteristics being who cooks it, for whom it is cooked, for what occasion and where it is cooked. In short Thai dishes can be extremely personal to the cook, how they are refined for particular tastes, how they befit a special function or festival and where they originate. The cuisine has its roots in a waterborne lifestyle, with aquatic animals, plants and herbs as major ingredients. So here is the recipe:
- Refined flour (maida) 1½ cups + for dusting
- Yeast 20 grams
- Thai red curry paste 2 teaspoons
- Sugar 1 teaspoon
- Olive oil 1 teaspoon + for drizzling and for greasing
- Onion finely chopped 3 teaspoons
- Garlic finely chopped 1 teaspoon
- Lemon grass finely chopped ½ teaspoon
- Mushrooms cleaned and roughly chopped 16-18
- Salt to taste
- Fresh coriander leaves chopped 1 teaspoon
- Mozzarella cheese grated 1 cup + 2-3 tablespoons
- To make pizza dough, mix yeast with sugar and little lukewarm water in a small bowl and set aside to activate.
- Put refined flour in a large mixing bowl. Add yeast mixture and knead into a soft dough with sufficient water. Cover with a damp muslin cloth and keep it in a warm place for ½ hour to prove.
- To make filling, heat 1 teaspoon olive oil in a non-stick pan. Add onion and sauté till it turns translucent
- Add garlic and lemongrass, mix well and sauté well. Reduce heat, add red curry paste and mix well. Add little water and mix again.
- Add mushrooms, salt and coriander leaves. Mix well and cook till the mushrooms turn soft. Switch off heat and cool down to room temperature.
- Preheat oven to 180°C. Grease a baking tray with olive oil.
- Dust the pizza dough with flour and spread it out a little with your palms. Roll out into a thin square or rectangle dusting with flour. Discard the thick edges, if any.
- Place the rolled out dough on the greased tray and prick it all over with a fork to avoid the dough from rising.
- Spread 1 cup grated cheese evenly on it. Spread mushroom mixture in the centre evenly. Drizzle some olive oil on top and sprinkle 2-3 tablespoons grated cheese on it.
- Put the tray in the preheated oven and bake for 25-30 minutes.
- Remove from heat, trim the edges, cut into sticks and serve hot.