spaghetti Tag

THE EGG YOU DIDN’T KNOW YOU NEED – PART I, CARBONARA 2.0

I understand what it’s like.  It’s totally okay.  Happens to everyone.

We venture into unfamiliar, “exotic” markets coming from strange corners of the world, seeing bewildering ingredients for the very first time of our small existence, feeling intrigued, curious, excited even, and then at the end of a good thorough lap we walk out of the markets with our sparkly eyes wide open and our shopping bags, utterly empty.  Hey, I do it all the time, like last week in an Indonesian grocery store, and then again yesterday in this “sports goods” shop?  It’s no fault of our own, actually if anything, only human nature, to take caution with unfamiliarities.  It’s survival instinct 101.  As far as I know, no one has ever died from tomato sauce in a jar or freezer-section pizzas, right?  I guess I’m just trying to say, I can relate.

NESTED WITHIN, IS A JEWEL, DENSE AND COMPRESSED WITH THE ESSENCE OF ITSELF, HIDDEN TO BE EXCAVATED FROM THE BLACK SALTED EARTH

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But growing up from two distinctively different backgrounds and cultures also means that, I too, relate to the other side, perhaps from your perspective, the scary side, the side that is teeming with strange and unfamiliar ingredients, flying pig-parts and deeply rouge sauces that hurt.  Being a Taiwan-born, Canada-fed then New York-aged piece of mind, one foot half-in half-out on all sides for as long as 25 years, naturally, you know for my thighs’ sake, I want to find ways to close the distance between each, a distance that is all but illusions and narrower than anyone thinks.  Because I’m also from the other side that knows stuff that you don’t.  The other side that tries to shout “Hey there’s good stuffs here, really good stuffs, and you should try it!”, but often times in inaudible volume with a world that is too busy to investigate.

It’s not anyone’s fault.  We didn’t shout loud enough.

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MISO CARBONARA W/ MINI SAUSAGE MEATBALLS

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THIS COULD VERY WELL BE, THE ONLY SENSIBLE THING THAT SHOWS UP HERE FOR THIS ENTIRE WEEK…

Jason is going away for this entire week.  This isn’t the first time it happens, nor is it a rare occurrence.  But what you’ll feel differently about this week, not including this particular post, is going to be somewhat of a breakthrough.  Thing is, if you had any presumptions about me, as someone who likes to cook and carries out every meal big or small, with a sense of class and dignity, for the next 7 days, you’ll find your theory… horrifiedly misguided.  Pretty scallion-oil chicken rolls on a pedestal?  Gourmet popcorns to accompany DVD-binging?  Pffff~ pleeease… you’re too cute.

The fault, is mine.  For I haven’t exactly been honest about what goes on in here, when there’s absolutely nobody watching.  Truth is, like comedians being freakishly quiet off stage, cooking for me, is a hobby that erodes with the absence of audiences.  Truth is, what I “cook” for myself and myself only, is inexcusably, for lack of better words, horrendous.  So here I am.  I don’t know where I found such commitment, but I’ve sternly decided that we (as, you and me) have entered a phase in our relationship, where “truth” is required for the hope of a sustainable future together…

Which prompted this new segment I would call, as previously mentioned:  The stuff Shit I Eat When I’m By Myself.

Do not be mistaken that these are products of desperations.  You’d hurt my feelings.  They are all – and it takes great courage to admit – “foods” that I sickeningly and hopelessly, love to eat.  Regardless the fact that you may find them only socially excusable, if I was a college student who just spent the the last $20 on alcohol school supplies.  Some of them may be accompanied with a “recipe”, as others may, thankfully, not.  But whatever you will take away from this, I hope that they at the very least, entertains you.

So enjoy this one before “The Shit” hits the fan, the last proper dinner I made before the “audience” decided to leave me to rot in the land of culinary-ruin, creamy and nutty miso carbonara with tiny sausage meatballs.  For this could very well be the only sensible thing that shows up here for this entire week.

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PRE-DEPARTURE MICROWAVE MADNESS

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Despite the level of embarrassment that I’m sure will hit me the moment I get back from Paradise (Tuesday!), I still decided to send this truth out there. The truth that once in a while, on some particular full-moons and/or… the night before a long trip away from home, there’s absolutely no excuse for my primitive behavior. And if that’s the kind of entertainment that delights you, here it goes.

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Cured Roe aka Botargo

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My fabulous friend Sharon recently opened a fabulous wine bar in Taipei called Whinos, and I had the pleasure of visiting her awesome little space the last time I was around and needless to say, it was FABULOUS!  It is chic but warm, cool but inviting, intimate and private but bubbling with mingling chatters.  It was everything I look for in a little-spot-to-call-your-own that’s tucked in a city corner, and I’m totally envious happy for her.  You know how sometimes you hold a little dream but not-you, instead a friend who obviously has more guts and awesomeness to pull it off before you did, and you couldn’t help but feeling overwhelmed with envy best wishes for them?  That’s how I feel.  My utter jealousy happiness for her total fabulous-ness.

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Octopus 8/2

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HuuuuuGE~!  And, no.  I couldn’t help it.  I know I’m supposed to be nurturing baby tartlets, or summer fruitcakes, or at least an icy cocktail because that’s just the kind of things people like to lust over this time of the year.  Not some giant 8-legged sea monster that they rather watch strangling the Empire State Building, than laying dead in their kitchen sink.  But, no.  I.  Just.  COULDN’T.  Help it.  Have you ever tasted a great octopus?  If pure culinary bliss doesn’t do the trick, let me appeal to sentiments.  This beauty instantly brings me back to my fond memories of that wonderful and sunny day in Nice, when Jason found a specialty food shop that gave us the most succulent marinated octopus to snack with on the way strolling back to the hotel.  And I thought to myself, “Nevermind craving this back home because I would NEVER find a quality, freshly octopus… ”  Well… hello there~.

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Best Thing Out of a Can

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I’m back from my 11 days trip to Hong Kong and Taiwan and find myself dealing with something that I assume everyone’s familiar with. The fridge is and should be vacant or otherwise nurturing some… organic, furry things.  Oooonly-a-few-days-expired dairies usually get tossed in the trash after reason finally overthrows desperation (hopefully).  Remaining options hover between the 24hr McHot-line or Mr. Cup Noodles.  Don’t get me wrong.  They are both great contributions to mankind and deserve a standing ovation, but guilt is calling for something homemade.

Boy do I have a solution for this.  One of my absolutely favorite pasta and it makes in no time.

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