Homemade Pizza for Dinner

Lee and I have been wanting to make homemade pizza for awhile and the first batch was awful.  I think it looked more like pan pizza rather than a normal homemade pizza. We have come a long way since then, and have gotten a lot better, but I still don’t know how to toss pizza dough in the air like the pro.  For the pizza dough we used 1 1/2 cups warm water, 1 package of active dry yeast, 3 1/2 cups bread flour, 2 Tbsp olive oil, 2 teaspoons salt, and 1 teaspoon sugar. We have some left over dough that we keep in the refrigerator, and it’s good for several days.

Canon 5DMkIII, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, f/4 at 1/40sec, EB-0.3step, 50mm, ISO-1600

Canon 5DMkIII, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, f/4 at 1/40sec, 100mm, ISO-1250

We used Mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. for topping.

Canon 5DMkIII, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, f/5.6 at 1/40sec, 67mm, ISO-1250

Lee wanted to make a square pizza similar to Biltmore.

Canon 5DMkIII, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, f/4 at 1/40sec, 67mm, ISO-1250

Canon 5DMkIII, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, f/5.6 at 1/40sec, 105mm, ISO-1250

We put cooked bacon right before it’s done, this is her new favorite pizza topping.

Canon 5DMkIII, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, f/4 at 1/40sec, 67mm, ISO-1250

Canon 5DMkIII, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, f/4 at 1/40sec, 105mm, ISO-1000

Mine didn’t turn out too bad. I’m thinking about investing in a pizza stone, I want my pizza crust to be crusty.

Canon 5DMkIII, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, f/4 at 1/40sec, 67mm, ISO-1250

Canon 5DMkIII, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, f/8 at 1/40sec, 92mm, ISO-5000

And I made Tum Mak Houng (Spicy papaya salad) as a side salad. It actually goes together well.

Canon 5DMkIII, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, f/4 at 1/40sec, 67mm, ISO-1250

Canon 5DMkIII, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, f/4 at 1/40sec, 85mm, ISO-1600

Max didn’t get any, as you can see he’s not too happy.

Canon 5DMkIII, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, f/4 at 1/40sec, 67mm, ISO-1250

Canon 5DMkIII, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, f/4 at 1/40sec, 99mm, ISO-6400

Camping at Green Mountain Park on Memorial Weekend

I’m glad I made a reservation early for camping at Green Mountain Park on Memorial Weekend because the place was packed this weekend. We didn’t get to camp near the creek this time, which gave us the opportunity to camp in different sections of the campground.

They had a spot open when we checked in and it was on the hill. We traded our camper for an RV recently and it is a lot nicer than our old one.

The RV has one slide out, which makes it more roomy.

I like this section of the park, I think it has a better view from up here.

My GI Joe sister came to visit on Sunday and she made Tum Mak Houng (Spicy papaya salad) for lunch.

My sister Bee also came up to visit.

This beats backyard camping.

Bo likes the RV much better since he didn’t have to do the hookup and a lot easier to park.

It’s nice to be able to spend time outdoor, most campers have golf carts to ride around but we walked everywhere and it’s a great exercise.

We spotted a huge dead fish by the rock, I didn’t think they have one this big up here.

The American rhododendrons are in bloom along the foot of the mountain near the creek.

My dad and Lee by the lily pond.

The frogs are huge, and the tadpoles look like fish with legs.

We spotted a black and a brown snakes by the lily pond.

The swimming pools are open and the sign in the background read ‘Warning No Lifeguard on Duty’.

The 3 day weekend was too short, but I’m not complaining.

Photos were taken with Canon T2i, EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens, and EF70-200mm f/4L USM lens.

Pho and Tum Mak Houng

I would never have thought that Pho and Tum Mak Houng (spicy papaya salad) would go well together. We ate at one of my sisters’ house on New Year’s Day. She made Pho and my GI Joe sister made Tum Mak Houng.  Below is my oldest sister helping preparing the meat balls for Pho, she is visiting from NYC.

My sister used celery and green onion leaf for garnish.

Lime for taste

And grilled garlic in hot oil for garnish.

Thai basil for garnish.

Her Pho stock is different from mine.  She used a whole garlic bulb, onion, celery stalks, star anise, salt, 3 types of soy sauce including black soy sauce, oyster sauce,  and beef spareribs. She boiled her Pho stock for 1 – 2 hours.

These are the spareribs from her Pho stock and she served as a side dish.

She used dried noodle and soaked in cold water for 1 hour. Then dipped in hot boiling water for a few second to let it cook.

The black soy sauce gives it a dark color and sweet flavor.

My GI Joe sister made Tum Mak Houng, she is also visiting from NYC. Her dish has a sweet, sour, and spicy flavors. I never knew to add salt to my Tum Mak Houng and is a little heavy to the shrimp paste and fish sauce flavor, which has a strong pungent odor.

We only have frozen chili peppers this time of the year, these are from my dad’s garden.  They do sell fresh chili peppers at the Asian store but she didn’t buy any.

My GI Joe smashed and mixed well the following Ingredients in a mortar and pestle.

1 table spoon shrimp paste
1 table spoon fish sauce
1 and 1/2 table spoon of sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon MSG (optional)
4-6 chili peppers
1 garlic cove

Then add 3 thin slices of lime

1 cup cherry tomatoes

Smashed and mixed well with the rest of the ingredients.

Add about 2 handfuls shredded papaya or approximately 3 cups, smashed and mixed well with the ingredients.

Tum Mak Houng tastes good with Pho as a side dish when it is extra spicy. I shot a video at my dad’s house today and it’s too funny, not sure if I will post or re-shoot the video. It seems that everyone wants to be in the video.