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I’m hungry!

Hello all!

Hope you had wonderful weekends!  I was lucky enough to have some amazing Japanese food – I have been having many dreams of agedashi tofu, stewed pork belly, unagi-don and tempura of late…I’m glad that my cravings were satisfied!

Japanese food is just so fabulous – it’s light, fresh and always very tasty.  Then afterwards, we went to the dodgiest karaoke bar with questionable stains on the couches and we sang our hearts out to Mariah Carey, Green Day, Michael Jackson, amongst other corny artists.  And the coolest part was they had tambourines that would LIGHT UP when you shake them!!!  So awesome!!!

I just came across this recipe for spaghetti carbonara that I HAD to share with you guys.  I’ve always had a special affinity with spaghetti carbonara – my parents, and especially my dad, are very Asian and we would never have Western food when I was growing up however, they would take us to Pizza Hut once in a blue moon where I would gorge myself on the “carbonara” (read: cream with bacon and pepper) sauce at the pasta bar.  Since then, I have discovered real carbonara sauce and boy, what a revelation, especially to a girl who hardly ate Western food!  One of my favourite nights during my backpacking days in Europe was eating spaghetti carbonara with copious amounts of red wine in a beautiful Roman restaurant underneath twinkling fairy lights hung from trees.  I have been seeking to perfect pasta alla carbornara and realised the secret ingredient was not cream, but eggs!!!  I have followed many, many recipes but the best one I have come across is Ferran Adria’s in The Family Meal.  You HAVE to try it.

For 2 people – greedily.

Pop some water on to boil for your pasta – it doesn’t matter which type, I love spaghetti and fettucine but feel free to use penne, or those adorable little cup-type pastas that hold sauce so well.  Don’t forget to salt the water – pasta tastes so much more interesting when cooked in water that tastes like the sea.

Fry 150 grams of pancetta (bacon will do at a pinch) in a couple of tablespoons of olive oil over  medium heat for 10 minutes or until golden brown (but not burnt).  Add about a cup of cream and simmer for 20 minutes – it should smell like heaven and go a light latte colour.  Season with a little salt (a leetle – the bacon/pancetta’s already salty, you can always adjust at the end) and pepper.  While this simmers, mix together 1/2 a cup of parmesan and 2 eggs.  When the pasta’s done, drain and return to the pot.  Add the parmesan-and-egg mix to that deliciously simmered bacon cream sauce and pour over the pasta, working quickly to mix it all in together.

Serve immediately.  Eat this mounted high in a bowl, sprinkled with parmesan cheese and lots of pepper.  If you have it, truffle oil is SO good here.

Pic via here

Gotta love date nights…and this one was absolutely perfect.  We walked into Crosstown Eating House fairly early, with no booking, on Friday night and couldn’t get a table but we were offered a seat at the bar.  I actually love sitting at the bar – you get to chat to the bar staff and waiters, you can see the comings-and-goings of the kitchen and there’s just something so distinctly European about huddling at the bar with your significant other over glasses of wine, plates of tapas and having a good laugh about whatever was tickling you at that moment.

When was your favourite date night?

Whoa, what the?!?!?!  Have you guys tried this?  Abel Gonzalez is the Texan King of all things deep fried.  A Culinary Celebrity symbol (even Oprah had to jump on a plane to Dallas to go see for herself what the deal was), his menu seems unassuming (think deep fried pepperoni pizza, cookie dough and, an ode to Elvis, peanut butter and banana sandwiches) but the real show-stealer is deep fried butter.  You, like myself and Oprah, will be mistaken if you think it’s just a stick of butter, deep fried.  So how does he do it?  Well, you’re just going to have to trek to Texas to find out yourself!

Even though I am staunchly against resolutions, I’m not adverse to a little New Year detoxing – what with the copious amounts of food, alcohol and merriment over Christmas and New Years, my liver and waistline definitely need a break.  I’m always on the lookout for recipes that taste delicious without making me feel like a rabbit or a small bird.  These ones here are just the ticket for satisfying the urge for healthiness without sacrificing flavour.

Chicken salad sandwich

Ultimate Winter Cous Cous and Fried Chickpeas, via here

Salmon with Mustard Dill Glaze