Pasta seems much more interesting to eat when they’re all twisty or fun-shaped. That’s why I can’t wait for payday, because I’m planning to buy that Hello Kitty macaroni from the J-grocery ksolaris featured in her most recent post. Since it’s still a few days too early, I purchased a bag of my favorite tri-colore fusilli instead, and whipped up a spicy pasta dish I sort of invented one afternoon when I was hungry.
â€¢ Tropical fruit cocktail containing pineapples, red papaya, nata de coco, and peaches
â€¢ Mini-ukoy (bean sprout and shrimp fritters) with butterfly-shaped tofu, sadly it didn’t come out as clear as I would’ve wanted; blame it on the batter. (More info as well as recipe here.)
â€¢ Strawberry containers of a soy / vinegar / garlic / sugar dipping sauce for the ukoy.
Tri-colore fusilli with fresh tomatoes, dried herring, fresh basil and pepper flakes. Yes, the name keeps changing because I haven’t really picked out one yet, but trust me, it’s delish.
â€¢ Yakult! (With real live lactobacilli shirota strain!)
â€¢ Heart-shaped garlic bread, made with homemade garlic butter. I’m kinda lukewarm about bentotv because I’m not really seeing stuff that I haven’t seen on bentolunch yet but I have to admit, I liked the stickers on plastic baggies / cling-wrapped stuff idea. Since printed clingwraps and baggies aren’t sold much here, using stickers is a novel way for me to inject some cuteness to lunch.
Tri-colore Fusilli with Tomatoes, Tuyo, Basil and Chili Pepper Flakes v. 13 September 2006
2 tbsp olive oil
3 cloves garlic
1/2 tsp chili pepper flakes (lessen if you like it less spicy)
3/4 cup diced fresh tomatoes
3 tuyo (dried herring) fillets, shredded
1 tsp fresh basil, cut into strips
3/4 cup tri-colore fusilli (or any dried pasta you prefer)
1 tsp salt
1. Bring to boil enough water to cook your dried pasta. Add a little oil and a tsp of salt then cook per package instructions. Cook pasta only til just al dente.
2. Lightly saute garlic in olive oil. Remove before it browns. Add chili pepper flakes, saute a bit before adding the tomatoes.
3. Add shredded tuyo, then keep sauteeing until tomatoes are mushy. Add basil.
4. Add your pasta to the pan, including a few tablespoons of the pasta water to make the sauce a bit more liquidy.
5. Saute until pasta is well coated.
If you don’t like shredded tuyo (chances are, unless you’re Filipino, you don’t), you can substitute it with bacon bits, tuna, chopped mushrooms, or whatever meat you wish to add. You can even skip adding anything if you’d like to keep it vegetarian.