Hello, hello! Let’s get right to it…
I grew up over on the east side of Michigan in a little town called Clarkston. Well, it was little back then (or so it seemed to everyone in high school). We didn’t have much in the way of restaurants or really anything in terms of legitimate shopping until I was pretty much in college. You’d have to drive a good 20 minutes or so to find something of interest in the way of food. And the supermarkets left a lot to be desired. Things have since changed, and quite a bit. It’s still a very special town that I’ll always hold dear in my heart, but I don’t envy what’s developed in the surrounding areas. I remember when they first built this massive outlet mall just a short 15 minute drive from the home we had built somewhat out in the country. I remember it well because we used to get a ridiculously amazing night sky out where we lived. And when they built that mall, along with it came a crazy amount of night light from all of the parking lots and surrounding towers. One night looking up at the dark sky, my dad said ‘those lights have ruined our night sky’…
That got unintentionally heavy for a moment, sorry! Where I was going with that before I started down memory lane and an unnecessary path of wordiness, was that my friends and I would have to drive out to different nearby cities if we wanted to grab food together without going to the same old industry chains. This pizza was inspired by one we had at a place in Rochester that I only went to that one time, but the flavors and idea of the pizza have continued to stick with me after 15 plus years. I couldn’t tell you the name of the bar we were at or what toppings were even on that pizza. What I do remember is that the base was this incredible peanut sauce that was unlike anything I had ever had before. And I immediately knew that I’d want to recreate it.
The first time I made this, umpteen years ago, I just bought a bottled peanut sauce at the store and then used a bunch of different vegetables for the toppings. No rhyme or reason. I’ve made it differently plenty of times over the years depending on if I’ve planned or not, and what’s in my fridge at the time if I haven’t. It’s a pretty easily adaptable recipe where literally anything goes. Over time I developed my own peanut sauce that I like to have on hand for any number of things, this pizza included. Oh, and one last little thing about the flavors found here is addition of just the smallest amount of fresh mint and cilantro. They add a certain uniqueness to the combined sweet and spicy elements of the toppings, while making you wonder what you’re tasting that’s surprised your taste buds. If you’re looking for something new to try that’s not only quick and easy, but fantastically good…try this one out sometime. ENJOY!
Thin Crust Thai Chicken Pizza
FOR THE PIZZA
- 1 store bought whole-wheat flatbread
- 1/2 cup spicy peanut sauce, recipe follows (or more if desired)
- 1/2 red bell pepper, seeded and thinly sliced
- 2 radishes, sliced thin
- 1 medium carrot, shredded or sliced very thin
- 1 cup shredded cooked chicken breast
- 2 green onions, sliced thin
- 1 jalapeno, sliced thin
- 1/2 cup fontina cheese, shredded
- 1/2 cup monterey jack cheese, shredded
- 1 teaspoon fresh minced mint
- 1 teaspoon fresh minced cilantro
- crushed peanuts and broccoli sprouts for garnish, if desired
FOR THE PEANUT SAUCE
- 1/4 cup natural salted peanut butter, smooth
- 1 1/2-2 teaspoons liquid aminos, or soy sauce (depending on salt desire)
- 1/2 teaspoon Srichacha
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic chili sauce
- 1 tablespoon unseasoned rice wine vinegar
- 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
- 2-2 1/2 tablespoons water
- 1 teaspoon honey
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a small bowl, mix whisk together all of the ingredients for the spicy peanut sauce until smooth. Set aside.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a Silpat and place the flatbread on top. Use the back of a large spoon to spread the peanut sauce all around the flatbread, leaving a small edge for holding.
- Evenly place the red bell pepper through the jalapeño slices all around the pizza and then sprinkle the cheese and herbs overtop. Bake for 10-12 minutes until cheese is melted and the crust is golden brown. Remove from oven and sprinkle with crushed peanuts, broccoli sprouts, and red pepper flakes if using. ENJOY!