Filipino Spaghetti. What is this and how is it different from the Italian classic version we know and love? Well, this Filipino favourite is very popular at birthday parties and fast food chains like pride of The Philippines, Jollibee, serve it as a menu staple. Defined by its bright red sauce, which has a base made of Tomato Sauce, Tomato Paste and Banana Ketchup (tomatoes were hard to come by during the war!) and also its distinctly sweet flavour, we’re sure you’ll love this if you have a sweet tooth. Also, its protein is a sweet Filipino sausage called Longganisa – or sliced hot dogs – and pork. Stop judging. Don’t knock it till you’ve tried it! This is actually great!
450g Spaghetti 2 cups Tomato Sauce 1 cup Banana Ketchup or Tomato Ketchup 1 can Tomato Paste 8 small Longganisa, sliced 1/2 lb ground pork 1 small onion, minced 2 cloves garlic, minced 2 tbsps Brown Sugar 2 tbsps Oyster Sauce
3 tbsps unsalted butter Sea salt and pepper, to taste 1 cup grated Cheddar/Mozzerella
1. Prepare Spaghetti till al dente. Strain in colander and set aside, reserving a ladle-full of liquid from pasta
2. In large skillet, sautée onions and garlic.
3. Add Longganisa and pork. Fry till ground pork is browned. Drain fat.
4. Add Tomato Sauce, Ketchup and Tomato Paste, plus 1/4 cup water. Stir.
5. Add brown sugar, salt, pepper and oyster sauce and stir.
6. Bring mixture to a boil and simmer low heat for 30 minutes covered, stirring occasionally.
7. In large skillet heat butter and reserved liquid from pasta till boiled.
8. Add spaghetti and toss, ladleling-in a couple scoops of the Tomato mixture. Season with salt and pepper. Mix evenly and remove from heat.
9. Transfer spaghetti to large dish and pour sauce on-top.
10. Garnish with shredded cheese and serve.
Creamy Seafood Bake. We’re still of the firm belief that cheese and seafood go well together. Something hearty, flavourful at every bite and decadent for this cold winter weather.
2 lbs Manila Clams, scrubbed
300g Tilapia, cut into chunks
1/2 450g package of Capellini
3 cups Baby Spinach
3/4 cup 18% cream
3/4 cup Mozzarella and Cheddar, shredded
1/4 cup white wine
4 cloves garlic, minced
3 tbsps butter
2 strips bacon, chopped
2 tbsps flour
1 stalk green onion, minced
1 tbsp White Truffle Oil
Sea salt and pepper, to taste
Parmesan Cheese, grated
1. Prepare pasta till al dente and strain. Set aside.
2. Pre-heat oven to 375°F.
3. In large skillet, sautée bacon, garlic and green onions in butter.
4. Add cream and reduce heat to medium-low to a simmer, stir-in spinach.
5. Once spinach has wilted, add Tilapia and clams. Cover lid and cook about 5-6 minutes or till clam shells open. Do not overcook.
6. Stir-in salt, pepper, wine and truffle oil. Turn off heat.
7. Place pasta in baking dish. Spoon seafood and sauce over top of pasta.
8. Sprinkle cheeses on-top and garnish with Cilantro.
9. Turn oven to broil mode, broiling for 5-6 minutes or till top of mixture is golden.
Meatballs x Pasta. Fall means comfort foods and our favourite always has been Spaghetti & Meatballs. Of course now that we’ve grown-up we’ve found little ways to elevate and make it a bit more sophisticated. We hope you like our take!
17.6 oz Alfetra Pasta (i.e. Vesuvio) 1/2 lb medium ground beef (or lean if you prefer, medium makes for more tender results) 1/2 lb ground pork 1 cup Panko Breadcrumbs 1 can crushed tomatoes 1 can tomato paste 1/2 cup whole milk 1/4 cup grated Parmesan Cheese 3 tbsps unsalted butter 4 slices of Mozzarella/Havarti Cheese, sliced into small squares 1 egg 1 red pepper, seeded and diced 1 white onion, minced 8 cloves garlic, minced 1/4 cup chopped Parsley 1/4 cup chopped Basil 4 Bay Leaves 4-5 Anchovies in oil 2 tbsps organic raw sugar 2 tbsps Truffle Oil Sea salt and Pepper, to taste
1. In large bowl, use hands to mix ground beef and pork, egg, half of onion, parsley, basil and garlic, Panko, milk, Parmesan, 1 tbs of truffle oil, salt and pepper. Roll into about 20 meatballs, stuffing each with a bit of cheese slices.
2. Cook in Air Fryer at 400F for about 9 minutes, dividing meatballs in two batches. Transfer to platter.
3. Cook pasta in salted water until al dente. Reserve a few ladles of the water for later. Strain pasta.
4. In large sauce pan, sautee on medium-high heat the remaining garlic, onions and red pepper, in 1 tbsp truffle oil.
5. Add tomatoes and paste and about 1/3 cup of water. Bring to boil.
6. Add bay leaves, anchovies, sugar and remainder of parsley and basil.
7. Add in meatballs, season sauce with salt and pepper and reduce to simmer. Cook for minimum two hours on low heat, stirring occasionally.
8. When ready to plate, take a large skillet and on medium heat, melt butter. Toss-in pasta and season with a bit more salt. Pour-in a couple ladles of reserved pasta water and add a bit of chopped basil, stirring gently.
9. Pour a couple ladles of sauce from the meatball mixture into the pasta, again stirring gently. Remove from heat.
10. Plate pasta. Spoon meatballs and sauce on-top of pasta. Garnish with Parmesan and basil.
Pad Thai. Who doesn’t love Pad Thai? You can actually make this at home rather easily. I don’t love Bean Sprouts, hence I didn’t include them in my version, but if you do like them, you can add in 1-2 cups. You can substitute shrimp for chicken breast or thigh pieces. And I get some people just don’t do Shrimp Paste and Fish Sauce as they are pungent, but truly you’re not a fan of Pad Thai if you don’t enjoy those essential notes which make it authentic.
1/2 package of Rice Noodles 12 Jumbo Argentinian Shrimp, shells removed and deveined 1 block of firm Tofu pat-dry and cut into small cubes 1/2 cup cashews, crushed 1/2 sweet red pepper, sliced thin 3 tbsps Tamarind Paste (if you absolutely can’t find, then ketchup it is) 3 tbsps Brown Sugar 2 tbsps Oyster Sauce 2 tbsps Fish Sauce 2 tbsps Rice Vinegar 1/2 tsp Sambal Sauce 1/4 tsp Shrimp Paste 2 eggs, beaten 1/2 white onion, minced 4 garlic cloves, minced 2 stalks green onion, chopped 1 lime, sliced in wedges Cilantro, minced Olive oil Sea salt and pepper
1. In bowl, coat tofu cubes in a drizzle of olive oil. Air-fry at 380°F for about 12 minutes, stirring once. Divide in two batches if too crowded. You also can deep fry in oil till golden for same effect. Set aside. 2. Soak noodles in a large pot of hot water for about 7 minutes till noodles are “cooked”. Drain noodles, but ensure they are not out of water for more than 10 minutes as they will dry and harden. 3. In small bowl, mix fish, tamarind and oyster sauces with sugar, rice vinegar and shrimp paste. Set aside. 4. In large skillet, heat oil on medium-high heat. Sautée red peppers, green and white onions and garlic (also sprouts if you like) till caramelized. 5. Add shrimp and cook 1-2 minutes till slightly cooked. Shift with spatula to side of skillet. 6. Add whisked eggs and scramble with shrimp, pepper and onion mixture. Once almost cooked, shift to side of skillet again. The trick is not to cook the eggs and shrimp too well just yet. 7. Toss-in tofu, half of cashews and bowl of sauce and cook till you get a bit of bubbling. 8. Toss-in noodles and coat in sauce entirely. Heat for about 2 minutes and remove from skillet. 9. Transfer to plate, layering shrimp and tofu on-top of noodles. Garnish with lime wedges, cilantro, more cashews and some green onion. Serve.
Pasta with Shrimp and Mussels in Wine-Cream Sauce. This is one you save for someone you love a lot! The way the juices from the mussels and shrimp infuse into this gorgeous creamy wine sauce is perfection. Be careful not to overcook your seafood. You want to remove this from the heat as soon as they’re cooked.
Ingredients: 450g spaghetti, cooked 2 lbs mussels, scrubbed clean and soaked in salt water 1 lb shrimp 1/2 cup white wine 1/2 cup 18% cream 1/2 cup whipping cream 4 tbsps unsalted butter 4 tbsps flour 1 white onion, minced 5 cloves garlic, minced Handful of Cilantro, minced Sea salt and pepper
1. Cook spaghetti till Al Dente. Strain and set aside.
2. Sautée garlic and onion in butter on medium-high in large skillet till onions are translucent.
3. Drain mussels after soaking in salt water 20 minutes.
4. Add mussels, cream, wine, half of cilantro plus generous sprinkling of salt and pepper.
5. Cover with lid for about 10 minutes. With about 3 minutes left, add shrimp. Cook till shrimp are red, careful not to overcook.
6. In small bowl, make a slurry with equal parts flour and water, mixing till smooth.
7. Mix flour slurry into butter sauce bit by bit till sauce thickens and remove from heat. Coat shrimps and mussels in sauce.
8. Take large serving fork and spiral spaghetti into a ladle and transfer onto plate. Add mussels and shrimp onto pasta, garnish with cilantro and sprinkle with Parmesan Cheese. Serve.
Jumbo Shrimp Pasta in Pesto. Few things are as decadent as Seafood on Pasta. And it can be prepared so quickly! If you can find jumbo Argentinian Shrimp at your Grocer, it’s definitely worth it for this. I stock-up on my Trader Joe’s every time I visit the U.S., but you can use whatever basil-based Pesto you like in this.
Ingredients: 454g Spaghetti 190g jar Trader Joe’s Genovese Pesto (or your favourite) 15 jumbo Argentinian Shrimp, shelled and de-veined 1 cup Arugula/Spinach mix 4 tbsps unsalted butter 12 Grape Tomatoes 5 cloves garlic, minced 2 red chillies, seeded and minced 1 tbsp basil, chopped Sea salt and pepper, to taste
Parsley, minced for garnish Parmesan Cheese
Cook pasta till al dente, set aside.
In large skillet, heat butter on medium-high heat. Sautée garlic, tomatoes and chillies.
Sautée shrimp, adding salt, pepper and basil, till just cooked – do not overcook. Set shrimp aside.
Add Pesto to skillet and stir evenly.
Toss-in spaghetti and season once again with sea salt and pepper. Coat in pesto and butter mixture.
Reduce heat to low and add arugula/spinach mixture, mixing gently till just wilted.
Use large serving fork and twirl spaghetti till you get desired serving size and guide with a large spoon onto plate. Top with shrimp, parsley and Parmesan cheese. Serve.
Meatless Sausage x Peppers. This is a hearty Italian classic which I felt could’ve been replicated with a plant protein. You easily could swap it out for meat sausage and that’s totally cool! I chose a tiny pasta, Tubetti, to sop-up all the liquid here, that way none of the flavour in the sauce gets lost. This has got a bit of kick, so you can omit the chillis if you like and use the non-spicy Yves Sausage as well. You’ll most definitely have leftovers! 🇮🇹
1 green, yellow and red pepper each, seeded and sliced thin
1 450g package of Pasta
1 package Yves Spicy Italian Veggie Sausage, each sausage cut into six pieces
1 pint mushrooms, sliced thin
1 small onion, minced
1 can crushed tomatoes
5 cloves garlic, minced
2 red chillies, seeded and minced
1/2 cup red wine
Sea salt and pepper to taste
Handful of chopped basil
Parmesan Cheese, grated
1. Cook pasta in salted water, drain in colander. Do not rinse.
2. In large skillet, heat oil medium-high heat. Brown sausage pieces on both sides. Remove from skillet.
3. Add more oil, sautée garlic, onion and chillies till translucent.
4. Add peppers and mushrooms. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cook till fully caramelized and pan has some brown bits.
5. Add wine and cook down till some of liquid is gone. You can add a bit of water if there isn’t much liquid there.
6. Add tomatoes, basil and sausage into pan and bring to boil.
7. Reduce heat to low and simmer 30 minutes.
8. Add pasta to the skillet and coat evenly, allowing pasta to soak-up sauce. Add one more round of salt and pepper.
9. Scoop onto plate. Garnish with cilantro and top with Parmesan Cheese. Serve.
Creamy Baked Lobster x Cheese. Cheese and Seafood I’ve been told are a big no-no, but rules were meant to be broken, especially when they taste this spectacular! Enjoy this decadent dinner, which is a lot more simple to prepare than you’d think.
2 lb lobster, cleaned and sectioned (reserve a tablespoon of Tomalley)
450g package spaghetti
4 cups Baby Spinach
1/2 cup shredded Old Cheddar
1/2 cup shredded Mozzarella
1/2 cup 5% cream
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 stalk green onion, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 strip bacon, diced
Sea salt and pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons flour
Grated Parmesan Cheese
Cilantro, chopped to garnish
1. Prepare spaghetti, cooking till al dente. Strain in colander. Place spaghetti in a deep 13×9″ tray.
2. Boil water and cook spinach till it wilts, drain and gently squeeze out water. Place aside.
3. Preheat oven at 375°F.
4. In sauce pan, melt butter and sautée garlic. Add bacon and green onion, salt and pepper. Cook till bacon is done.
5. Add spinach, cook one minute and add-in cream. Bring to a slight boil. Add tablespoon of reserved Tomalley (fatty goop) into sauce and stir throughout.
6. Mix 2 tablespoons of flour and mix with equal parts water to form a thick, smooth paste.
7. Add a bit of paste into cream sauce, stirring till sauce reaches a thick consistency. Remove from heat.
8. Arrange lobster pieces on-top of spaghetti. Sprinkle sea salt, to taste.
9. Pour cream sauce over lobster pieces.
10. Combine both cheeses together and sprinkle over lobster. Then sprinkle some grated Parmesan.
11. Bake for 25 minutes, till cheese turns golden. Remove from oven, garnish with cilantro and let sit for 15 minutes before serving
Meatless Lasagna. Growing-up I had Lasagna maybe twice. Being from a Chinese family, we rarely ever ate Italian other than my Dad’s take on Spaghetti, which though not bad, was Tomato Paste and Ketchup-based with ground pork, peas and carrots. You can imagine the shock of my classmates who got introduced to Hong Kong-style Spaghetti at my sixth birthday party!
My Mom was excited that I asked her to help assemble my Meatless Lasagna and I’m glad I got to show them a proper Lasagna. No processed cheese, LOL. 🧀
You cannot tell this is meatless. It’s got the same heartiness and flavour a Meat Lasagna has. Everyone should be pitching-in their part and reducing our carbon footprint. Eat meatless once a week. This is an easy way to do it!
9 Lasagne noodles
2 packages of Yves Original Veggie Ground Round
1 can of crushed tomatoes
1 can of tomato paste
2 cups of shredded Mozzarella
1/2 tub of Ricotta
1 pint of mushrooms, sliced
1/2 yellow pepper, diced
1 white onion, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon organic raw sugar
Salt and pepper to taste
Grated Parmesan Cheese
1. Boil noodles till al dente. Place aside in a tray and drizzle a bit of oil on them to prevent from sticking.
2. In medium-sized sauce pan, sauteé garlic and onion. Add-in peppers and mushrooms, cook till mushrooms wilt. Season with salt and pepper.
3. Add-in Veggie Ground Round.
4. Cook about 5 minutes on medium heat.
5. Add-in crushed tomatoes and tomato paste. Add 1/4 tomato paste can of water.
6. Bring to boil and add sugar.
7. Reduce to low heat and simmer 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
8. Pre-heat oven at 375°F.
9. Prepare a 13 x 9″ tray, ladle some of the tomato mixture in, covering bottom.
10. Layer 3 Lasagne noodles on-top.
11. Add layer of Mozzarella, followed by dollops of Ricotta, covering surface.
12. Add 3 more noodles. Ladle some tomato mixture on-top, then Mozzarella and Ricotta.
13. Repeat steps 10 to 12 again.
14. Add 3 final noodles on-top. Ladle tomato mixture on-top. Cover with Mozzarella.
15. Cover tray with foil and bake 35 minutes.
16. Remove foil and bake 10 more minutes.
17. Cool 20 minutes and serve.
Meatless Miso Mac & Cheese. Take your Kraft Dinner and elevate it with this amplified take on a comforting favourite! The combination of cheese and miso you’d think would be too salty, but this is a perfect marriage. KD has a bad rap but it has a healthy serving of protein, aids in iron absorption and contains minerals that help with boosting metabolism, your immune system and brain function. 🧀
1 box Kraft Dinner
2 tablespoons butter
1/3 cup milk
1 tablespoon Miso paste
1/2 package Yves Original Veggie Ground Round
6-8 large white mushrooms, sliced thin
8 grape tomatoes
1/2 white onion, chopped
1 cup Arugula
1 stalk green onion, chopped
1/4 cup old white cheddar, grated
Salt and pepper, to taste
1. Prepare Kraft Dinner, cooking noodles. Strain in colander.
2. In skillet, sautée mushrooms, onions and tomatoes in oil. Season with a bit of salt and pepper.
3. Stir-in 1/2 tablespoon of Miso paste, continue to fry until vegetables wilt.
4. Add-in meatless Ground Round and stir-fry for about two to three minutes on medium heat.
5. Prepare cheese sauce in a medium-sized sauce pan that is oven-safe. Melt butter and 1/2 tablespoon Miso paste in sauce pan. Add packet of cheese powder and milk. Once sauce just is about to bubble, turn heat off. Fold-in macaroni and vegetable/ground round mixture. Mix evenly till sauce is dispersed.
6. Stir-in Arugula gently till dispersed. Grate old cheddar over the top.
7. Broil mixture 5 minutes in oven. Allow to cool and serve.