Shrimp Pancit Canton

Pancit bihon is made out of rice vermicelli noodles and pancit canton is made out of wheat. Pancit Canton is basically Filipino version of lo mein. Ingredients and seasoning are similar so the noodles are the key difference.

I can’t vouch for the authenticity of my recipe, but I can’t promise you that it’s delicious!

Pancit Canton with Shrimp

Serves: 6 – 8
Prep time: 15 mins Cook time 30 mins

*Most recipes had the noodles cooked in broth until the liquid is absorbed. I prefer to cook it separately.

Ingredients

1 16-ounce package pancit canton(Excellent brand recommended)
2 tablespoon canola oil, divided
1 small sweet onion, julienned
3 carrots, julienned
3 celery stalks, thinly sliced diagonally
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 small head of cabbage, shredded
1 pound medium-sized shrimp, shelled and de-veined, lightly seasoned with salt and pepper
1-3 tablespoons soy sauce or to taste
1-2 tablespoons oyster sauce or fish sauce to taste
salt and pepper to taste

Direction

In a large pot, bring salted water to boil and cook the noodles until al dente. Drain and set aside.

Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in a wok or a large saute pan on high heat and swirl to coat. When pan is hot, stir-fry onion, carrots and celery until just softened, about 1 minute. Add garlic and cabbage and fry until the cabbage is cooked down and tender. This could take up to 10 minutes. Salt and pepper to taste and remove the vegetables to a bowl and set aside.

Add the remaining oil, swirl to coat and fry the shrimp until pink.

Add the noodles and vegetables to the wok. Gently mix. Add soy sauce, oyster sauce and salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately or at room temperature. If refrigerated, the noodles need to be reheated.

Macaroni and Cheese Take 3

I have two other macaroni and cheese recipes on the blog and they are both good but… I’ve been looking for something better and I think I found it.  Soso said it was the best mac and cheese I’ve made by far and Peanut proved the point by eating a lot of it.

I adapted this recipe from one on Epicurious by Garrett McCoid.  I changed it up just a little bit by using two types of cheese, Cheddar and Monterey Jack and adding a dash of nutmeg. I put down 14 ounces of cheddar and 6 ounces of Monterey Jack, but that’s really an approximate. I use about 3 to 1 ratio, but it’s all flexible, depending on taste and the quantity of cheese I have on hand. Same thing with the pasta. Elbows are used traditionally, but my family likes Cavatappi/Cellentani or Pipette. I don’t think it matters too much, it just depends on personal taste.

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Macaroni and Cheese

Prep time: 15 mins  Cook time: 45 mins
Serves: 8

Ingredients

Topping (Optional)
3 tablespoon butter
1 cup Panko bread crumbs

1 pound pasta of choice
3 tablespoon butter
3 tablespoon flour
3 cups of milk
14 ounces of extra sharp Cheddar cheese, grated
6 ounces of Monterey Jack, grated
1 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1/2 teaspoon sea salt or to taste
1/2 teaspoon black pepper or to taste
dash of nutmeg or to taste

Directions

In a small saucepan, melt 3 tablespoon of butter for the topping. Stir in the Panko bread crumbs, toss and set aside.

In a large pot of boiling, salted water, cook the pasta until al dente, drain and return to the pot.

In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt the remaining 3 tablespoon of butter. Add the flour and dry mustard and stir the mixture until smooth. Slowly add the milk while stirring constantly until the sauce thickens. Remove from heat and add in the grated cheese and stir until it’s melted. Add the salt and pepper to taste. Pour the cheese sauce into the pot with the pasta and stir gently until the pasta is coated.

Pour the macaroni and cheese into a buttered 9 x 13 baking dish, top with the panko bread crumbs. Bake for about 30 minutes or until the top is light golden brown. Serve hot.

If making ahead, pour the macaroni and cheese into the baking dish and cool completely before refrigerating. It can also be frozen. Just make sure to wrap it carefully. Add the bread crumbs before baking.

Meatless Monday: Broccoli Cavatelli

Broccoli cavatelli (or with any other pasta shapes) is a favorite staple in our house.  We love how it tastes and with some sprinkle of pecorino Romano or parmigiano-reggiano, this simple dish becomes positively divine.

Before I get into the very simple recipe, I want to talk about the type of pasta I use.

I used to make this dish with regular dried pasta, usually farfalle (bow-ties) campanelle (little bells), or cavatappi/cellentani (corkscrews) because I could never find cavatelli pasta in the supermarket.  Shame on me, I only discovered about 3 years ago that cavatelli is sold either fresh at a local Italian deli or frozen in a regular supermarket.  I think there are dry versions, but I have yet to find any.

Either way, while pasta of any shape with broccoli sautéed with garlic is delicious, there is something about cavatelli that turns the dish into a succulent and more a “meaty” dish.  I don’t know if it’s the shape or fresh/frozen factor.  Which is why, I tend to use cavatelli when I’m going meatless.

This dish can’t get any more simple and easy, using just 4 essential ingredients. Broccoli, garlic, pasta and extra virgin olive oil. Oh, and some salt and pepper.Unlike some other broccoli cavatelli recipes, I skip the crushed red peppers because of the kids. I replace the chicken broth with reserved pasta water. I use a lot of broccoli, 3 large bunches of broccoli, including the stems and I chopped them up a little smaller.

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I use a lot of garlic. Some recipes calls for 3 or 4 heads. I take 6 to 8 cloves of crushed and minced garlic.

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I saute the garlic in olive oil until fragrant and just slightly golden. A hint to make clean up easier, I boil the broccoli first, pasta next and then use the same pot to saute the garlic before throwing everything back together. That’s why you see a little bit of broccoli with the garlic in the photo below.

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The final product with some yummy cheese on top.

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This one is from last year, the first time I tried to write up the recipe and just plain forgot to do it.  As you can see from the two photos, because I give my  broccoli a few chops before adding them to the garlic, there is a more blended effect.  There’s broccoli bits coating the pasta and that’s what my family loves.

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Broccoli Cavatelli

Prep time: 10 minutes Cook time: 30 minutes
Serves: 4

Ingredients

3 large bunch of broccoli, head cut to smaller florets, stem peeled and cut into smaller pieces
1 pound fresh or frozen cavatelli
6 to 8 cloves of garlic, crushed and minced
extra virgin olive oil
1 – 2 cups reserved pasta water
salt and pepper
grated pecorino romano or parmigiano-reggiano cheese, optional
fresh chopped parsley, optional garnish

Directions

In a large pot, bring lightly salted water to boil. Boil broccoli until just past al dente but still firm, remove from the pot, drain and set a side. In the same water, cook pasta until al dente. Reserve 2 cups of pasta water before draining the pasta.

Dry the pot before adding 1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil and heat on medium heat. Add garlic and saute until fragrant and it starts turning lightly golden. Add broccoli and saute until thoroughly mixed. Salt and pepper to taste. Add the pasta and 1 cup of reserved pasta water and cook until the water is absorbed. Add another 1/2 cup to 1 cup if more liquid is needed and cook until the pasta and broccoli is tender.

If using cheese, add cheese to taste and mix before serving. Sprinkle a little more for garnish. If not using cheese, just serve immediately with or without fresh chopped parsley.