I admit it. The only reason I watched this film is so I would have an excuse to make Pad Thai popcorn. But I was also in the mood for a change of pace. Something big and fun. Ong-Bak isn’t the biggest martial arts film but it is fun.
It’s really great to the classic country boy in the city trope translated into Thai culture. When the the head of a statue sacred to a village is stolen, Ting (played by Tony Jaa) is sent to Bangkok to retrieve it. He meets up with his cousin who has died his hair, gambled his way into trouble and turned his back on his family. Of course the two need each other and team up to find the sacred head.
The tuk-tuk chase was a riot and brought back waves of my short time in Bangkok. What I know of Muay Thai comes from watching MMA fights on television so it was nice to see the core of the style coming out in various fight scenes. The sense of values that comes from Ting are what I really enjoy about the film, the clear sense of good and evil. Insecure bullies pick on women, drugs are for losers, and heritage is important.
It’s very reminiscent of Jean-Claude Van Damme films. Scenes designed only to show you the physical work of the athlete turned actor, the focus of which is geared more toward defense and evasion than brutal beat-downs. It’s not the highest caliber even in the genre, but it’s definitely a fun watch.
This recipe is genius if I do say so myself.
It all started when a friend and I went out to eat on a weekend. The restaurants were so busy and we were so hungry we ended up at a Thai place in the food court at the mall.
I hadn’t had pad Thai in so long that I got a huge craving for it and went to my local Asian market to get the ingredients. This explains why I have a rather large bottle of pad Thai sauce in my fridge and gives you a great hint at just how easy this recipe is to make
- 1/4 cup corn kernels
- 1/2 cup peanuts
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon white sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 limes
Set your oven to 275°
Grease a baking sheet and grind or finely chop the peanuts. The smaller they are the better they will stick.
Put the peanuts into a large mixing bowl. Zest two large limes into the bowl.
Make the popcorn according to your favorite method. I think a dryer popcorn is good here. Something air popped or made without oil in a Nordic ware microwave popcorn popper. Remove the unpopped kernels. Place the popcorn in with the peanuts and mix.
Over medium heat in a nonstick pot add the sugar, pepper, and sauce. Let the sugars dissolve completely and cook for 5 minutes.
Pour the sauce over the popcorn and mix. Put the mixture on a baking sheet and bake for 5 minutes. Turn the mixture. If you can get any fallen nuts to stick to the warm popcorn, now is the time. Turn the oven down to 200° and bake for 10 minutes.
If you have the patience of a monk and can wait until it is cool, or if you get a phone call like I did, it will be delicious. But the few bites I snagged out of the oven were wonderful too. Either way, you may want to double the batch because I guarantee you won’t have leftovers.