It had been a while since I had last updated this website. 1stly, my Mac is still down. It refuse to power up and I guess I really need to save up some money to get a new one. 2ndly, I went on a short trip to Manila. It is a fruitful trip with lots of great food and finally took up the courage to reconcile with my loved ones I'd left behind.
I improvised this dish along the way and this is what I'd ended up with. I was still in the Chinese New Year mood while creating this dish, so I literally threw in lots of Chinese themed ingredients. You can call me weird. But when it comes to Chinese noodles, it has to be handmade and when it comes to pasta, I prefer manufactured packaged ones. Fresh pasta just doesn't have that chewy texture from the packaged ones.
You must be wondering why penne outta so many varieties. I chose penne cos the sauce will get stuck in the nooks and crannies. Those are the most yummilicious parts, don't you agree? I am not sure if the sauces are 100% vegan, so I will just keep this vegetarian. You can totally make this 100% vegan by replacing the sauces out with vegan ones. I know it is a little too late, but I hope you will give this fusion dish a try.
Canola / Peanut / Vegetable Oil, For Frying
Shallots Thinly Sliced, 3
Garlic Thinly Sliced, 2 Cloves
Ginger Finely Julienned, 1/2 Inch
Light Soy Sauce, 2 TSP
Dark Soy Sauce, 1 TSP
Chinese Black Vinegar, 1/2 TSP
LaoGanMa Spicy Chili Crisp, 2 TBSP
Pickled Bamboo Finely Minced, 2 TBSP
Sesame Oil, 1/2 TSP
Toasted Sesame Seeds, Pinch
Sea Salt, Pinch
Penne Pasta, 2 Servings
CaiXin Coarsely Sliced, A Handful
Scallions Finely Sliced, A Handful
Cast Iron Skillet / Pan
Add about 1/2 inches of oil into a skillet over high heat.
*To check if the temperature of the oil is ready, place a wooden chopstick into the oil.
If bubbles start to form, the temperature is ready for frying.*
Gently add in shallots.
As soon as the shallots start to brown, remove from heat and drain off excess oil in kitchen paper.
Next, add in garlic.
As soon as the garlic becomes aromatic, remove from heat and drain off excess oil in kitchen paper.
Add in ginger.
As soon as the ginger start to brown, remove from heat and drain off excess oil in kitchen paper.
Prepare the sauce.
In a large mixing bowl, add soy sauce, vinegar, chili crisp, bamboo, sesame oil and seeds.
Mix until well combine. Mix, mix, mix.
Prepare the pasta.
In a large sauce pot, add water to about 1/2 full.
Add in enuff sea salt until the water tastes like the ocean.
Bring the water up to a boil.
Add in penne pasta and cook until al dente.
Remove the pasta from the pot and transfer into the mixing bowl with the sauce.
Add in a couple of TBSP of the pasta water.
Mix until well combine and pasta is well coated with the sauce.
In the same pot of water, blanch caixin for about 30 secs.
Remove from the pot of water and set aside.
To serve, place pasta onto serving plate.
Add caixin on the side.
Garnish with the fried shallots, garlic and ginger.
Lastly, sprinkle some scallions over the top.
Repeat the steps for the remaining pasta.