Sunday, July 24

Oaxacan Pizza......and tractor films

Before I begin Mr PK would like it noted he is putting the washing out while I post on my blog. He will then clean the cat litter tray, and the trap in the shower. Your a marvel darling, noted.
Now onto much more exciting things , a Mexican pizza. From Oaxaca to be precise. That's pronounced Wha-ha-ka. you may well already know this, I didn't the first time I saw it...apparently in Oaxaca these are a night time street snack called Tlayudas, that's clae-yoo-das..........I think I'll stick with pizza.

These are truly fantastic, cheap, quick and delicious. I had two flat bread left over from Burritos the other night, and various bits & bobs in the fridge. With not too much effort they produced a great Saturday night dinner, with a bottle of this new NZ ginger beer

The inspiration for this came from one of my favourite cookbooks, Mexican Food Made Simple by Thomasina Miers. Her version uses chicken, guacamole and rocket. Instead I have used grilled fennel, mushrooms, chopped avocado & grilled prawns. As you will see this is a very flexible dish, go with what you like, and more importantly, have on hand.......

Oaxacan Pizzas ( from Mexican Food Made Simple by Thomasine Miers)

I bag/bunch of normal or baby spinach
Knob of butter/splash of oil
Salt & black pepper
2 flat bread (I use fresh ones from my local Mexican, but any flatbread would be fine)
1 fennel bulb, sliced
Handful of Mushrooms
4 spring onions
1 avocado, peeled, chopped into chunks & splashed with lemon/lime juice
Handful of grated cheese (Mozzarella would be lovely, but anything that melts would be fine)
6 kings prawns (or you could use leftover cooked chicken)
Handful of semi dried tomatoes (in summer I would use fresh chopped tomato)
Handful of chopped coriander & parsley

Wash the spinach & shake off in a colander. Heat a medium frypan and add a the butter or oil. Add your spinach, and let it wilt for a couple of minutes. Take out and put back into the colander to cool off, then grab a handful of squeeze out the liquid (spinach has a lot of water!) . Put into a bowl & season with salt & pepper.

Using a griddle pan or the same frying pan, heat up again over a medium heat, then brush the vegetables roughly with oil, and griddle or fry your fennel, spring onions & mushrooms until charred & tender.

Sprinkle your prawns with salt & pepper, or use this spice mix recipe, I like to have in a jar in the pantry. You could also use a shop brought spice mix of course. Chuck your prawns onto the griddle pan/frying pan and cook for a minute or two until charred and pink. Take out and pop onto a plate.

To assemble your pizza use a medium sized frying pan (you can use the same pan for everything in the recipe, just give it a wipe with paper towel before your cook your flatbread) and pop your flatbread into it.
A sprinkle of water helps the flat bread heat up. When it is browned on the bottom, flip over & sprinkle with half your cheese. After a minute or two the cheese will start to melt, top with half of your spinach, then lay half of your grilled vegetables on top. Sprinkle over the chopped avocado, 3 of your prawns, some semi-dried tomatoes and a sprinkle of herbs.

Allow to heat for a minute of two, then fold one half over onto the other and slide onto a plate. Slice and serve with a ginger beer, chilli beer, beer beer............whatever.

There are lots of variations to this, if you don't have spring onions, some red onion finely sliced and doused in lime juice would be ideal. If you wanted to make this vegetarian simply omit the prawns and use a salty feta sprinkled over just before you fold. Griddled fish or Chorizo would also be fantastic. For an extra kick some chopped chilli sprinkled on just before serving is great too.........

My nephew is making this for his cooking night this week, if he can make it anyone can.......:)

Tractor films? About six years ago Mr PK and I went to see a movie at the film festival, I cant recall the name, but it was a Finnish film about a paraplegic who is travelling to the firm who made the tractors involved in his accident. I wont say it was terrible, ............well actually yes I will say that, what a dog.
The lead character was thoroughly unlikeable, the subtitles were in white, which on a snowy background is near impossible to read, and it went on.............and on.
Obviously there were Finnish people in the audience, they laughed away like drains while we struggled to decipher the make matters even worse the Springboks were playing the All Blacks that night, needless to say Mr PK was not impressed. So whenever we see a dodge film, it's a tractor movie. Luckily we have avoided any at this years festival, instead we have so far enjoyed.........

Very funny, 80's Wales never looked so bleak. Cringe in parts, but a clever script, and great casting. Noah Taylor rocking the Jewish carpenter look, yikes........tractor recommends 7.5/10

Taxi Driver
I had not seen this before, so it was a treat to see it on the big screen. Robert De Niro is hotter than ever, the soundtrack is pure 70's funk, and it wasn't nearly as violent as I imagined. Cybil Shepherd, now I get what all the fuss was about, she is luminous in this film. Gritty is such a cliche, I'll get back to you when I have something better.........tractor recommends 7/10

Mysterious of Lisbon
At nearly five hours this would be the longest movie I have ever seen, but I think it is worth the length. The story is captivating, it looks beautiful, and has the time to fill in all the gaps. Just a shame the Civic, while a beautiful theatre, is a bit of a trial for a 6 foot 3 inch husband.....for this it loses a point Tractor recommends 6/10

Jiro Dreams of Sushi
I love documentaries, especially low key ones like this, Jiro has been making sushi for 75 years (the best in Japan according to many), in his 10 seat restaurant in the Ginza subway station, and his passion is captivating. Also an interesting look at father son relationships in Japanese culture. Tractor recommendation 8/10

The Trip
I laughed my head off, witty, funny, the impressions for both leads are beyond clever, see this film! Just a shame I saw the 9.15pm show, again at the Civic, again a bit cramped. Tractor recommends 8.5/10

Still a few more to see this week, plus of course Happy Potter, am I the only person who has not seen it yet??? Any one else been along to the film fest, let me know if you can recommend any more films......?


  1. Great food great tips.Ta;)

  2. that looks tasty, i love thomasina and hate cleaning out the cat litter .. good on you mr pk !

  3. @paula @ pod and 3 peas Ha ha, I must say it's my least fav job too, ewww!

  4. That pizza looks delish :) Bright & light to brighten up a winters evening.

  5. Oh thanks for the film commentaries, I'm looking forward to the film festival hitting Wellington soon, so excited! Jiro Dreams of Sushi and Submarine are definitely on my list.

    I like the look of this dish, especially the fennel and prawns... mmm :)

  6. I am soooo loving that pizza - anything with grilled fennel on it will win me over. Haven't seen that ginger beer anywhere yet, but I now have my eyes peeled xo

  7. Yum! That pizza looks so good! Gorgeous and colourful... and I can't go past anything with prawns.

  8. No, you're not the only one to not have seen HP - I was forbidden to enter the same cinema as my daughter! I also haven't seen any Film Festival films sadly - not sure how that happened as I usually go but I only got the brochure yesterday! Do want to see Bill Cunningham photographer - I've heard it's great (think that was a festival film last year?).

    Anyway, great post - I really enjoyed it.

  9. Well a man does have to work hard to earn the pizza so I think he got off lightly with those chores! Tell Mr P does all the laundry and housework.

  10. Your excellent guidelines will be of great help to many. Nice post. I enjoyed reading it. Thanks!
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