Thursday, March 5, 2009

Spam, Scallops and Spaghetti

First up: SPAM. Mom chopped up my left-over spam from the other day's musubi and mixed it with scrambled eggs, creating Spam & Eggs (now, she just needs a drop of green food coloring to make it Dr. Seuss-ian). Steamed chicken, shiitake mushrooms, choy sum and rice accompanied the dish.

Savona Serverware

Numero Dos: "Scallops" refers to the carefully scalloped edges of these hand-painted Mediterranean pasta bowls. These happen to be made in Portugal. No two bowls are exactly alike. Warm teal, honey and blue hues are painted in an intricate pattern, typical of the ancient Italian majolica Renaissance style. The earthenware ceramic is fired twice, preserving its brilliant colors.

Yes, it's okay to color outside the lines.

Making pasta with Mom.

Mom's a big fan of Lydia Bastianich. She followed Lydia's tips on making the spaghetti a chewy al dente that doesn't get clumpy or lose its elasticity. The trick is not to throw out your pasta water! When the pasta and sauce are almost thoroughly cooked, add a little starchy pasta water (the one you cooked the pasta in) and a tad of extra virgin olive oil to the mix. These two steps help the spaghetti and sauce stick together and retain its shape. The last thing you need is sauce falling off dry pasta (and into your shirt, no less). Lydia's technique led to zero saucy mess-ups. Here's to stain-free clothes!

Twirling makes me feel cool.

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