Habanero Pizza Sauce – The Sauce that Bites Back!

If you want to ruin delivery pizza for yourself forever, start fooling around with making your own crusts and sauces.  New York Pizza and Pasta at 7123 Sunset Boulevard used to send at least two pies my way every week.  The delivery guy once saw my face so often he’d chat me up at my door like I’d been best man at his wedding.  Well, New York Pizza and Pasta’s delivery menu has been replaced on my refrigerator door with my recipes for homemade pizza dough and this habanero pizza sauce.  That’s how often I’m making them both these days.

This is a pretty standard sauce recipe with the exception of the habanero which kicks things up a notch.  But not too much.  Those who like to avoid foods that make their eyes water will not be put off, though they will receive a subtle indication with each bite that there’s something sneaky going on.  It’s just a pinch of heat that won’t linger on the tongue but will definitely make its inclusion known.

Homemade mozzarella is next!

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Chipotle Chicken and Apple Pizza… and Christmas

Pizza with apples is both surprisingly tasty and also a daring “rule breaker,” like when you were a kid and made a sandwich out of wheat bread and Fritos and it brought you closer to God.

I’m a crazy Christmas whore.  At least that’s what you might label me if you were a mean person.  And even if you did, I’d be okay with that.  I’m no stranger to being called names, you know.  In fact, regularly in elementary school, mean kids would scratch out the R’s in both my first and last names on my lunch bag, then turn the “N” into a “K,” transforming me from Gary Green into “Gay Geek.”

And they didn’t stop there.  They also called me “Gary Green Bean” “Gary Green Eggs and Ham,” “Gary Gary the Human Fairy,” and my personal favorite, “Faggot!”

Kids really can be cruel, but if I was pressed to admit it, I really don’t see much of a difference between “Faggot” and “Crazy Christmas Whore,” so in this particular case the kids I went to school with were less cruel than they were right on the money.

Even as a full grown man it would be hard for me to argue it, as just today I was sharing with friends at Pinkberry how I had been dieting for a week so I’d look good for the upcoming premiere of The Bachelor. Meanwhile in my head, I was silently booking thirty minutes later in the day to stand in front of the mirror and see what I’d look like with my hair parted on the left instead of the right.  Let’s be honest… a Crazy Christmas Whore is just a Faggot who’s out of season.

I’m almost positive I’m a giant grump outside the month of December. For the rest of the year if you tried reading the sentiment I was presenting on my face, you’d come up with only three options: 1.) “I’m not interested in hearing more from you,” 2.) “Why the hell would we do that?” or, 3.) “Well well well, look who thinks she’s God’s gift to Starbucks.”

Of course, I’ve never gone so far as to ask anyone if I’m coming off as tyrannical and disagreeable as I think, though sometimes MG calls me out for being unpleasant when we’re in public.  If I’m pretty sure he’s going to pick up the check, I agree with him.  We Gay Geeks are always thinking ahead like that.

But I’m most definitely someone you want to know in December.  I might even say hello to you before you can do it to me.  And if I’ve managed to get in at least a good eight hours of sleep, it’s possible I’ll allow you to tell me what you think is currently interesting about your life and the lives of those with whom you interact.  Yep, in December I’m a real cuddle bug.
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Smoked Salmon Potato Pizza with Lemon Dill Sauce: Recipe Swap (With Video of the Most Dangerous Job in Television)

It’s Monday, but hey… it could be worse. You could have a job that includes the words “live television” and “portable rigging.”

Come one! Come all! See the big finale to Miss Vivian’s act while performing on the ABC children’s show Super Circus (1949-1956) below, followed by my interpretation of this month’s Burwell General Store recipe swap.

If you’re hoping for the inclusion of dark red pickled beets, you’ve come to the wrong TvFoodAndDrink.com
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10 Cinco de Mayo Recipes!

If you’re still looking for ways to wow your friends and family with a one-of-a-kind Mexican feast this Cinco de Mayo, here come the Top 10 Latin-themed recipes that should definitely be crowding your table this weekend.

Some are wild, some are mild, but they’re all rich in flavor. More importantly, they all go well with a chilled Tecate or a shot of tequlia. Have a great weekend!

Habanero Pizza

It may look like a traditional Italian pie, but this sauce carries a kick that definitely comes from South of the Border! Those who like to avoid foods that make their eyes water will not be put off, though they will receive a subtle indication with each bite that there’s something sneaky going on. It’s just a pinch of heat that won’t linger on the tongue but will definitely make its inclusion known.

Click here for the recipe

Next… Tomatillo Sauce and Guacamole

Peach and Basil Pizza

This morning on my way to getting coffee, I passed a giant display for Marlboro’s “Dream Big” contest.  I immediately thought to myself, “They’ve discovered a way for me to achieve my biggest dreams WHILE nursing an unhealthy addiction?  F**K yeah!  Where’s the saw for my right arm?”

I would have pursued it further, but the Marlboro website requires you to sign up for entry. And ever since I’ve given up cigarettes, I find I don’t really have the energy to finish things I start.  But that didn’t stop me from looking back over my life and recalling the larger-than-life dreams I once held as a young person… back when anything was still possible, we learned all we needed about safety from a police parrot, and AYDS was just a diet candy!


Come on… let’s hold hands and take a walk down Memory Lane.  A rich, creamy, juicy peach and basil pizza awaits us, along with all kinds of “Gary Green’s dreams” that evaporated amidst more unpleasantness than NBC’s ill-conceived Emeril Lagasse sitcom.

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Salami with Fennel and Asiago Pizza

Salami with Fennel and Asiago Pizza RecipeI’m giving this pizza four stars.  One for every slice of it MG polished off last night.  And they weren’t small slices, either.  They weren’t even reasonable slices.  These were some seriously wide and weighted down wedges!  You really have to respect MG’s tenacity.  He gets the job done!

Underneath that deceptively simple asiago/mozzarella cheese canopy are hiding chunks of shiitake mushroom, aromatic fennel, tangy tomato, onion, and thick cuts of spicy salami.  I had complete confidence in all of these ingredients with the exception of the fennel.  I’d never used it in a pizza before, and I was worried its flavor might overwhelm.  No need to fear.  This pizza was all sorts of savory, rich, and meaty, with just pings here and there of fennel sweetness.

Salami with Fennel and Asiago Pizza Recipe

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Pizza and a Movie #5: Honey, Brie and Onion Pizza with The Jungle Book (1942)

Honey Brie and Onion Pizza Recipe TvFoodAndDrink.com Gary GreenThe Jungle Book 1942 SabuThe Jungle Book 1942 SabuThe 1942 live-action adaptation of Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book offers up an entire menagerie of real-life jungle animals in its opening minutes. Before we meet any of the film’s main characters, we are treated to footage of predatory wolves, mischievous monkeys, lumbering elephants, leopards, bears, hyenas, jackals and a man-eating tiger.  It reminded me of the terrific Disney True Life Adventure documentary series I watched when I was a kid.

The footage is a masterful way to open the story.  Unfortunately, real-life bears, leopards and gazelle are notoriously temperamental when it comes to performing traditional movie duties like, say… delivering lines, hitting their marks and recounting their cocaine addictions to Mary Hart.  So, after these few fun first minutes, the live animals all but disappear, and we spend the next ninety minutes with stuffed tigers, rubber snakes on strings, and an alligator who’s head completely separates from the rest of his body whenever his jaw opens for the camera.  I choose to believe this particular alligator merely suffers from a herniated disc in its neck and just needs some good acupuncture.  I’m still working on an excuse for the fact that I could hear its motor.

The Jungle Book 1942 SabuThe Jungle Book 1942 SabuStill, considering it’s nearly seventy years old, The Jungle Book is a pretty ambitious film. The human actors, once they arrive, do a fairly good job at moving the story along.  And even though most of the animals may be constructed from fiberglass and paint, they still demonstrate more charisma than my actual living cat does any day of the week.

Fat Cat TvFoodAndDrink.com Gary Green

Oh Z, what would become of you in the wild?

Click here for the Recipe!

Pizza and a Movie #4 – Prosciutto Arugula Pizza with Fontina and Berserk! (1967)

The 1967 film Berserk! stars Joan Crawford in her penultimate film appearance as the iron-fisted ringmaster of a circus plagued by a series of increasingly bizarre murders.

If you enjoy your pizza with movies that include garroted high-wire performers, dancing elephants, nails through the forehead, performing poodles, women accidentally sawed in two, underwhelming freaks, and an ending that feels it was decided upon when the producers ran out of money, Berserk! is the movie for you!

Click here for the Recipe!

Pizza and a Movie #3: Texas BBQ Chicken Pizza with Prosciutto and The Black Scorpion (1957)

The Black Scorpion centers on a misunderstood prehistoric creature who is accidentally freed from his underground cave by a volcanic eruption and proceeds to roam all of Mexico in search of friendship and understanding.

Unfortunately, he is unable to find it, so instead he decides to slash his way through thousands of locals, demolish infrastructure, and create economic chaos in an attempt to weaken the peso.

Click here for the Recipe!

Pizza and a Movie #2: Hula Heat Pizza and The Spy Who Loved Me (1977)

It was 1979 when my parents first got cable television for the family… or what passed for cable television at the time.  The nation had yet to be introduced to even the seedlings of the multi-channel services movie fans have piped into their living rooms today.  Before everyone knew HBO, Z Channel, Showtime, Encore or Cinemax, they all knew ON-TV.

ON-TV was what was known as a “scrambled UHF” service, the height of broadcast sophistication at the time.  During the day, the UHF station (channel 52 where I grew up) aired its regular programming grid of Hercules cartoons and William Bendix in Life of Riley reruns.  But at 7 in the evening, ON-TV would begin transmitting recent motion pictures over the air to the station, and the image would immediately scramble on home televisions, the sound cutting out entirely.  In order to watch the movies, a converter box with a single “on-off” knob had to be rented for a whopping nineteen dollars a month.

Nineteen dollars a month.  I was ushered into puberty for the price of nineteen dollars a month.

ON-TV gave me the first opportunity to see movies which my yet-to-hit-double-digit age would have prevented me from seeing in an actual theatre.  And unlike the networks, ON-TV played the films totally uncut and unedited, finally allowing me to obtain a meager grasp of understanding on the subject of sex.  Smokey and the Bandit, Silver Streak, Animal HouseThe Deep… to this day I can’t watch any of them without still experiencing a faint twitch of pre-adolescent Catholic guilt.

It was one regular school night at home when my parents and sister came together in the living room to watch a movie starring Roger Moore entitled  The Spy Who Loved Me, and my mother allowed me to watch with them.  No one else in my family was particularly fond of James Bond, so I had no idea what to expect.  But this was the only movie playing on the only movie channel the family had, so it was automatically an event.

By the time the opening sequence –  featuring not one, but two love-making scenes and a ski chase down the side of an Austrian mountain – gave way to Carly Simon’s “Nobody Does it Better” and the film’s titles, accompanied by a bevy of naked women, swollen in all the right places, trampolining through the air and doing cartwheels on the tops of semi-automatic pistols, I was pretty sure I was watching the greatest motion picture ever produced.

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