Friday, May 10, 2013

Angry pasta primer

Mum has a casual approach to eating out: if you can afford it, and if there's no way in the world you can make it yourself, e.g., yam basket/deep fried squid/deep fried squid in a yam basket, then you shouldn't deprive yourself.

Of course, this shouldn't come at the cost of flavor, and after having one too many mediocre pastas, there is no fucking way I'm going to pay for another one at another faceless "mid-range" eatery.*

The problem with pasta at these places is that it's never al dente. Call me a food snob, but food that doesn't dissolve into a sticky paste that clings to your teeth as you chew it should be the norm.

Pasta always be al dente if you follow the cooking time; you can cook it a bit longer if you like soft food (I won't judge you). What it will never be, unless you boil the everloving shit out of it, is mushy. Even then, I bet it'd still taste good to you because you're not paying RM10 or so for the privilege.

"But," the kitchen n00bs cry, "Pasta sauce is so hard to make!" No, it is not. You have red sauce or white sauce. Red sauces are tomato-based and usually start with frying garlic, sauteing some vegetables, and/or browning some meat. They're simmered for a few minutes (or hours, if you're making a meat sauce), during which time you cook the pasta/write an angry blog/both.**

So, um, meat helps you build muscle. (Jai Courtney via Men's Health UK)

White sauces are dairy-based, and are more fiddly in that you usually make a roux (flour whisked into melted butter until it turns slightly golden)*** before adding cream/cheese/cream cheese.**** Then, you add meat or vegetables you'd cooked earlier.

If you feel ambitious, use "Italian" herbs. You'll know it's authentic when your sauce smells like Domino's. /sarcasm

*The top-range places won't let me in.
**No pasta was cooked during the production of this blog.
***If you're lazy time-efficient, combine the flour with the liquid ingredients, melt the butter, pour in the liquids, and simmer till it thickens. Or, just heat cream with whatever and use that.
****Don't use cream cheese.


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