There are few things on earth as satisfying as a gorgeous slice of gourmet pizza. Thick Chicago style pan pizza crusts, or thin, flexible New York style pizzas, topped with mushroom, jalapenos and pineapple, and some good, melting goat cheese. Or stuffed-pizzas; with spinach, artichoke and cheese on them. Or caramelized onions, eggplants and wild mushrooms. Ah! Paradise for the average graduate student or techie! Romio’s pizza, California Pizza kitchen or even the more modest Pagliacci have satisfied this hungry gourmand’s life on many an occasion, while free pizza around campus (crappy, greasy but cheesy and satisfying) have come to the rescue on other, more urgent times.
The pizza has come a long way from little eateries in Naples, from being a gift for King Umberto and Queen Margherita, across the Atlantic, to becoming perhaps the most adapted dish of all time. Take a crust, top it with just about any thing, and enjoy the wholesome goodness on it.
But there’s always been a small hole in this almost perfect life of mine. I’ve searched far and wide, but have found only a few choices for good, quality pizza with Asian toppings.
There’s Can-Am pizza, with one or two pizzas with paneer on them, that folks up in Microsoft love, but that’s about it. But what do I do if the stomach craves a paneer jalfrezi pizza? Or a perfectly respectable aloo-saag pizza? How about some wholesome, south Indian pizza masaala? What if I desire some tofu-teriyaki on my crust? I’m sure my wasabi crazy Japanese-American former roommate would love to see a sashimi-wasabi topping. Or how about some Thai specials. I can imagine piping-hot pizza phad thai, or red-curry pizza. Or some delightful Malaysian specials, which we can call panang pizza, or pizza kanai, how about that? And why isn’t there any pizza with kim chi on it?
Here is a huge market, waiting to be tapped. The desi population in the States is over 2 million, and I’m sure my fellow curry-lovers would spend lavishly on these. There are a few million Chinese, Japanese, Thai, Korean and all other hues of Asians all over the place. There must be millions of my fellow Asian peeps out there who crave for this stuff.
It’s time for a pizza-revolution. Goodbye, Papa John’s. I know what I’ll invest in for a future business.