Linguine w/ Pancetta, shallots, zucchini, and homegrown cherry tomatoes

Pasta has been one of my comfort foods going back to small kid time when we used to add bottled Ragu sauce to ground beef and ladle it on a big bowl of spaghetti, then top it with torn up Kraft American cheese slices. The ingredients have significantly improved in the House of Annie (as demonstrated by her recent Linguine alla carbonara). This time, she decided to kick things up a notch.

Instead of the regular bacon, Annie used pancetta. She also used shallots instead of onions. The cherry tomatoes were picked fresh from the garden, as was the basil chiffonade

How do you “kick up” your pasta?

Aloha, Nate

Crepes

Crepes weren’t a big thing for me back when I was growing up in Hawaii. Batter-based breakfasts were usually in the form of waffles, muffins or pancakes – rather bready. Nowadays, I can’t take too much of those dense kinds of foods. Thankfully, crepes are a nice alternative.

Using the “Chantilly Crepes” recipe from Rose Levy Berenbaum’s cookbook “The Cake Bible”, I whipped up a big batch of batter then set to work with the crepe pan. I couldn’t help but notice the browning patterns on the cooking crepe. They kind of remind me of a Mandelbrot set — pretty cool ;-)

I made a pile of crepes for a brunch party the next day.

Spread with Nutella, sliced up half a banana, and topped it off with a few dollops of fresh whipped cream. Yum!

I like crepes because they’re so versatile. You can put all kinds of jams and fruits on top. Annie’s mum likes them with fresh squeezed orange juice and a little sprinkle of sugar. You can even put savory stuff inside…the sky’s the limit!

What do you like in/on your crepes?

Aloha, Nate

Okinawan Sweet Potato

Fall is the season for harvesting sweet potatoes. I’m not just talking about the yellow and the orange sweet potatoes you normally see showing up in pies and casseroles. There is also the Okinawan sweet potato, which is purple like a yam but has almost none of that stringy fiber or gritty mouthfeel.

We picked up these Okinawan sweet potatoes for a good price, about a doller per pound at the Asian grocery these days. Just wrap in foil and bake until cooked through. I love the amazing purple color and the delicate, sweet flavor. There is nothing that can compare.

You can eat them plain like this or mash them up to make haupia sweet potato pie or use them as a filling for spiral pastries (that’s another post).

Have you had these beautiful and delicious sweet potatoes before? Try them!

Aloha, Nate

Korean Pancake

Pancakes come in all shapes and sizes. They also come in lots of different flavors – blueberry, banana, etc. But what about pancakes with meat and veggies? I’m not talking about bacon and potatoes on the side, but actual meat and veggies inside the pancake!

Our friends gave us this package of Korean pancake mix. You’re supposed to mix the batter, then add various veggies and meats to the batter before frying. Annie sliced up some bell pepper and green onion, and also added some shrimp to the mix.
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About Us

My Photo Annie is mistress of the kitchen while Nate is the master of the grill and smoker. We cook the homestyle Asian and Hawaiian foods of our younger days while also exploring the wider worlds of Western foods.

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