Chef Bag Hag… A Cooking Show?

Haha what a misleading title. No, the bag hag is not going to have a cooking show. So peeps who actually trained to cook can save their violent protests of “why does she have a show when she can’t cook?” LOL. Yeah yeah. Master Chef I am not. Kitchen goddess only when hell freezes over, so never LOL. But seriously though, ever since I got back from San Francisco, I’ve just been so inspired to cook, so much so that I spend an hour a day at the local supermarket (haha convenient excuse not to go to the gym LOL). And then I come home to cook 😉 But no, I haven’t crossed over to preparing fine dining dishes just yet. No molecular cuisine 😉 Just hearty, easy- to- prepare meals only– actually mostly pasta, so don’t be surprised to see the weight gain on me– carbs!!!

Over the week, I have prepared Trofiette pasta with zucchini and pumpkin sauce, bleu cheese garlic wagyu burger with melted comté (wah I feel like a sophisticated chef because of the sophisticated sounding dishes– beats saying mac and cheese or cheeseburger hahaha). However, throughout all the kitchen commotion, I forgot to take proper before, during, and after photos– also because I have been leaving my phone in the bedroom most of the time when I am home with family. So yeah, no prep photos, no ootd *hahaha be grateful for that*, only had one of when the dish got plated, seconds before everyone dug into it.

I didn’t even manage to take a better photo too– of that dish, the chicken katsu with carrot curry. I shot it hurriedly as the chicken simmered in the hot plate. Because everyone was hungry LOL

Ok, so it didn’t really look that delectable… haha well it tasted like how it looked LOL. Bland hahaha!! But woohoo no leftovers after I served it! Kitchen tip #1: let the family get seriously hungry first before serving them the food you cooked. Because however mediocre the taste of your cooking may be, you will be sure to have clean plates after– they’ll devour it all out of hunger (oh, and keep the dog out of the dining room to be sure that the human fambam ate it– and not the dog haha).

So yeah, up until today, no food prep photos, and definitely no Chef Bag Hag OOTD *hahaha be grateful for that*, only the finished plate, seconds before everyone dug in.

I made a very simple bucatino pasta with alio, olio, formaggio, & peperoncino. Bucatino is pretty similar to spaghetti, only slightly thicker because this is tubular pasta– ideally the best kind of pasta to use especially for saucy ones.

I normally use spaghettini for this but since I wanted the sauce to be cheesier, I decided on bucatino. That and also because we ran out of spaghettini (haha this was the main reason why bucatino was used). I’ll share my recipe with you peeps 🙂

I can’t give you exact measurements because I really cook without them and just gauge it on my own, so for that I have to apologize, but here goes…

To boil the pasta, some use 1/2 parts chicken stock, other 1/2 lightly salted water. But I want to work with a light vegetable stock so I boil the veggies with the pasta.

For the vegetable stock to boil pasta, chop or dice the following:

  • 2 carrots
  • 1  2 inch thick slice of squash
  • 1 whole apple
  • 2-3 stalks of celery
  • 8- 10 garlic cloves, peeled and lightly pounded (no need to chop)
  • 1 small onion, peeled and halved
  • 1 large tomato

Boil water in a pasta pot, then add the veggies above. Add salt to taste (I love Himalayan pink salt for this). Once the veggies have been thoroughly cooked (the carrots become soft) take veggies out and set aside (you can still use them to make creamed soup).

While the veggie soup stock boils, put in the pasta, and let pasta cook according to instructions indicated on packaging. Check to ensure pasta is cooked al dente. Then drain.

For the sauce of pasta, you need the following:

  • 10 finely chopped garlic cloves
  • Freshly grated parmesan and/ or manchego cheese (lots of it)
  • Peperoncino or Chili flakes
  • Chopped parsley (fresh preferred)
  • Extra virgin olive oil

Pour a fairly generous amount of olive oil onto a large pan in low to medium heat. Add 3/4 of the finely chopped garlic. Reduce to low heat to make sure garlic does not brown. Add a few tablespoons of the veggie stock/ pasta water. Add salt to taste. Let sauce simmer before adding the remaining 1/4 portion of the chopped garlic. Then immediately after, add the cooked pasta onto the pan, making sure the noodles are coated with the olive oil- garlic mixture. Start drizzling the pasta with the grated cheese while still mixing the pasta. Allow the heat of the pasta and sauce to melt the cheese and keep mixing away. Add the peperoncino chili flakes.  Keep tossing the pasta until it is evenly coated. Taste the pasta to make sure the flavors between salty and spicy is balanced. And when you have finally achieved the flavor, serve the pasta on individual plates and add some chopped parsley to garnish 🙂

Oh and regarding the veggies from the soup stock I asked you to set aside, you can put them all in a blender, add whole milk (and cream if you wish), pulse- blend, then add salt and spices to taste. Heat up the blended soup before serving, and voila, you have cream of vegetable soup! 😉

That’s all from Chef Bag Hag for now. More food posts soon! Happy Sunday, everyone!

P.S. Going back to the title of this post, I do want to share that I have actually been invited as a guest for a cooking show haha– I know, it is hilarious. I am still thinking about whether I will say yes or not though. I can already imagine 20,000 that could go wrong when I’m cooking oncam sooo… *gulp* Stay tuned!! LOL


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