Wednesday, September 1, 2010

JJ's Birthday Dinner

Enjoying the simple things in life is an art form and JJ has mastered. I could spend all day preparing a fancy meal from Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking, but when it comes to JJ's favorite meals that would be a waste. My husband is an all- American and his favorite dinner time special is pizza and beer. So for his birthday I thought I could make it special with a BIG beer and Thai Chicken Pizza.

A Kona Longboard (22 oz.) for JJ and a Blue Moon for me!

Beer and Thai Chicken Pizza

The Thai pizza is really delicious and easy to make. Here is the recipe:

20 ounces  prepared whole-wheat pizza dough, (see Shopping Tip)
1/4 cup  smooth natural peanut butter
3 tablespoons  water
2 teaspoons  reduced-sodium soy sauce
2 teaspoons  rice vinegar
2 teaspoons  minced fresh ginger
1 clove  garlic, minced
1 teaspoon  canola oil
8 ounces  boneless, skinless chicken breast, trimmed and diced
1   red bell pepper, diced
4   scallions, thinly sliced
2/3 cup  shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
1. Place oven rack in the lowest position; preheat to 450 degrees F. Coat a large baking sheet with cooking spray.
2. Roll out or stretch dough on a lightly floured surface into a rough 16-inch oval. Transfer to the baking sheet. Bake on the bottom rack until puffed and lightly crisped on the bottom, 8 to 10 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, whisk peanut butter, water, soy sauce, vinegar, ginger and garlic in a small bowl until well combined.
4. Heat oil in a medium nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken and cook, stirring, until cooked through, 2 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a medium bowl. Add bell pepper, scallions and 1 tablespoon of the peanut sauce to the chicken; toss to combine.
5. Remove the crust from the oven; spread evenly with the remaining peanut sauce. Top with the chicken mixture, then sprinkle with cheese. Return the pizza to the oven and bake on the bottom rack until the crust is crispy and golden and the cheese is melted, 11 to 13 minutes.

I make it with a whole wheat crust, here is the crust:


1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
1 cup warm water (110 degrees F)
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon white sugar


  1. In a measuring cup, dissolve yeast and sugar in warm water. Let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes.
  2. In a large bowl, combine 2 cups bread flour, salt, and the yeast mixture; stir well to combine. Beat well until a stiff dough has formed. Cover and rise until doubled in volume, about 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  3. Turn dough out onto a well floured surface. Form dough into a round and roll out into a pizza crust shape.
***You Might need to use extra flour as the dough is very sticky. Also you can use either white or whole wheat flour. 
Cookie Cake
I made JJ an ice cream cookie cake. His family often celebrates birthday with ice cream cake, so I followed tradition with a twist. I used my Mom's famous Save-the-Marriage cake to create these "big cookies". Then I added a layer of vanilla ice cream creating a large Oreo look alike cake!
 To smear the ice cream you have to let it sit out for a little, the only problem is getting it to freeze quickly again. I came out the sides a little.
Happy Birthday JJ!!!

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