It's The Daughter's last day of exams so I contrived to make a bacon and cheese pizza to celebrate with her. Thank goodness for the freezer and a stash of pre-made pizza dough that I had stored away for just moments like this when I have only 20 minutes to make a meal. It takes 5 minutes to roll the dough (already thawed since dawn)... and top it. Cooking time is 10 minutes.
When all was done I stared at my pictures for a while wondering why my slice of farmhouse pizza (on an uneven base and a mis-shapen rectangle) had managed to look so gourmet-ish... like it was some high class pizza. Then it hit me. It was those radish micro greens and mung bean new sprouts that I had put on top.
The micro-greens topping reminded me of this picture below of a dish topped with micro greens from The White Rabbit. In Singapore, only the most chi-chi restaurants do micro-greens because these greens are extraordinarily perishable after harvest. They're hard to store and become limp in a short time. The window for harvesting is also quite small. Harvest too early and the greens are puny.... harvest too late and the greens are tough. These are very delicate ingredients and since they need to be shipped from overseas, there is a fair amount of wastage because part of the shipment may have to be discarded.
Picture taken from HERE.
See how sparingly the greens are used?
The freight costs, storage costs and
inevitable wastage add up to make
these tiny greens very expensive.
Yet, depending on the type of greens,
they can add inveigling subtle flavors...
like truffle might do ... or lavender honey...
My pizza was huge... see the number of bacon slices needed to top it?
My tray of radish micro greens was good-sized too.
This single tray was enough to top 2 huge pizzas
(with a higher density per square inch than the
White Rabbit dish pictured up above).
I like radish micro greens because they have some kick... like rocket salad. I have very little wastage because I only harvest my greens when I need them... or I make sure I cook whatever is due for harvesting. They're good as pizza toppings.... sandwich innards... stir fries.
So unknowingly... Petunia has cottoned on to a chi-chi lifestyle edible for a fraction of the cost (and what I really mean is a fraction's fraction's fraction) in Singapore's chi-chi restaurants which would charge an extra $10/ dish just for a few strands of aromatic micro-greens that make a boring pizza a bit more interesting to look at, and to eat.
Just wait till I grow enough trays to fill a whole salad bowl of micro-greens and nothing but micro-greens, then it would be just like eating free gold. I'm quite bemused really... it's hard to believe that all it takes is a set of drip trays... seeds... water... sunlight and air. ok... ok... ok... I do have a helper to change the water and rinse the greens daily but I hardly have to even look at them until I feel hungry. It's even less hassle than proper gardening because there is no pest control and no fertilising required.
It seems perverse somehow that something that tastes so good and is priced so high out there in the market, is so EFFORTLESS.