Wednesday, 17 August 2016

Pasta. Italian? Thai!


It was a Saturday morning. I did not go to work. I needed to spend some time at home and focus on my housekeeping and cooking.

You can't have it all. You go to office, your house goes to hell. You stay at home, your backlogs haunt you on Monday morning. Bah!

As usual, I prepared my partner's breakfast and I contemplated lunch. Nope, I was not going to serve him what was in the freezer. That is weekday food. Let's make Saturday food a bit different. Or I could leave him to his own devices.


Since I had already defrosted some minced meat (for another dish) and I bought a whole lot of Thai Basil (for planting), why not make a Thai Basil Pasta? It's an easy dish that tastes very good.


Hope these survive.
So. I got to work. I soaked and washed the basil. Then I removed the leaves, throwing out those that were bad. After a few rinses, I drained them in a colander. The stems? I soaked them in a jar of water.


Another pot for added insurance.

As for the minced meat, I simply seasoned with fish sauce, soya sauce and a good dash of pepper.


To cook, I boiled up some spaghetti and while all that was going on, I sauteed some minced onions and sliced garlic in the wok till fragrant and threw in the minced meat. Stir, stir, stir until the meat was no longer pink.

I added a little water and left it to simmer covered. When the spaghetti was done, I drained and rinsed it under running water. I also reserved some of the pasta water and added that to the meat which by then was almost dry.

In with the pasta and some seasoning and toss. Last bit was to throw in a whole lot of basil. Continue to stir until the basil is wilted. The smell was wonderful!


Remember, what makes or breaks this pasta are two things - (1) Fish sauce and (2) Thai Basil, loads. You must have these two ingredients for amazing aromas and flavors.

So here's my recipe with no measurements. Hey, who measures stuff in the kitchen at 5:00am, huh?

Thai Basil Pasta
Recipe source : Phong Hong

Ingredients :
- Minced meat
- Big Onion, minced
- Garlic, sliced
- Thai Basil leaves, lots
- Fish sauce
- Soya Sauce
- Dark soya sauce
- Pepper
- Spaghetti

Method :
1. Season the minced meat with fish sauce, soya sauce and pepper. Set aside.
2. At this point, you can start boiling the spaghetti.
3. Heat oil in wok and saute onions until translucent.
4. Add garlic and continue to saute until onions and garlic a slightly browned.
5. Add minced meat and stir fry until meat is no longer pink.
6. Add some water (not too much) and simmer the meat covered.
7. Check on your pasta. Once done, reserve some of the pasta water and drain spaghetti. Rinse under running water to present it from sticking together.
8. Check on the meat, it should be almost dry by now.
9. Add the pasta water and spaghetti. Toss to mix with the minced meat.
10. Add soya sauce, fish sauce and some dark soya sauce.
11. Lastly, toss in the Thai basil and continue to stir until leaves are wilted.
12. Serve. Add some pepper, if you like. It will enhance the flavors even more.

28 comments:

  1. A thing i like about homecooked Spaghetti is that can add whatever ingredient we like...

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    Replies
    1. Yes, can make it into anything you like...

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  2. I like to eat Thai basil. I am just ok with a little fish sauce as some fish sauce is more sweet than spicy sourish. Just wondering how dothese two taste like together?

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  3. Basil is one of my least favourite herbs but I'm sure the dish is delicious to those who love basil. This pasta dish is difficult to find in cafes coz you used minced pork (I assume)...haha! :D Your last sentence jolted me....5am?....who cooks at 5am!! >_<

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    1. You can omit the basil then :) Well, I cook at 5:00am! Sometimes earlier than that. Crazy huh? :D

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  4. Oh my! Your Thai Basil looks so pathetic. Hehehehehe!!!! I've got bushes of that all over - most things I planted died - this one sprouted out on its own and it keeps sprouting, here there and everywhere.

    Looks like spaghetti tossed with kaprow kai. I would like that!

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    1. hah..hah...yah so pathetic. But to be fair, they were just planted and they looked much perkier today. Hopefully they grow :)

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  5. Thai basil and fish sauce are a nice combination. I wonder if deep fried Thai basil would work as a 'garnish.'

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    1. Oh yes, I did think of the deep fried basil leaves. They would look very pretty.

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  6. Hi Phong Hong,

    I wish that your basil will grow well... We are always lucky and unlucky growing basil. Lucky in the way that they grow very well during summer but unlucky because they are always eaten by caterpillars before we harvest them!!! Hmmm...

    Nice Thai-style pasta... Hope that you can cook this pasta with your home-grown basil :)

    Zoe

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    1. Thanks, Zoe! I must promise myself to look after them because the previous batch all died due to neglect :(

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  7. I planted new basil but none survive. Now left an old basil which would not survive for long.

    Love your Thai basil pasta.

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    1. Oh dear. Must be due to the hot weather? Mine were once so lush and beautiful but all died :(

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  8. jiayoh...hope they grew beautifully

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  9. Seeing your basil pasta, I am going to fry my rice in basil again in a short while.. now hungry after seeing your post.. :)

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    Replies
    1. Oh, I must try it with rice too, eh?

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  10. yes, at 5am, one should be in the bedroom, not the kitchen! unless you do your food prep in the bedroom! :D ahhh, this looks like a tasty pasta. can suggest to ampersand for their next menu change ;)

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    1. I know...I know...hah..hah...I am weird that way :) Ampersand does have their version of this pasta. I tried it once, it was good but that day they must have run out of basil, so that part was missing.

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  11. I'm not even out of bed at 5am, let alone cook or measure stuff. Why the heck do you need to prepare lunch at 5am on a Saturday anyway, if you're staying home???

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    Replies
    1. The lunch was for my partner and he was working that day hah..hah...

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  12. Not really used to the taste of Thai Basil

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    Replies
    1. Some people find the smell and taste too strong.

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  13. Wow! This is good. I can imagine the fragrance from the Basils! They make the taste delicious too.

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    Replies
    1. It's very good. Feel like having two bowls!

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