Saturday, August 31, 2013

Cooking in Korea: Pasta e Fagioli

Cooking in Korea can be tricky. Usually I find myself hankering for something familiar from back home only to realize it requires something impossible to find here, or something that absolutely requires a trip to a store far away. It's very disappoint.

So when I end up making something delicious with "local" ingredients, I know I've found a winner meant to be shared with the internets. Now when I say I made pasta e fagioli (like the Olive Garden one), I should probably use quotation marks and air quotes and all the quotes that exist because this is not a religious adherence to all the pasta e fagioli rules, but rather a delicious, similar-tasting version that's easy to make and with ingredients that are easy to find in Korea.

So the recipe--makes four-ish servings.

All ingredients found at Lotte Mart.

One of the smaller carrots they sell--grated
One onion--chopped.
Ground beef or pork--one package.
Half a bottle of LM brand Rose spaghetti sauce.
Two tomatoes--chopped.
Small pasta shapes--3/4 cup(?)
Parmesan cheese--for garnish.
Tobasco/hot sauce--for garnish.

Saute onion and ground meat until onions are translucent. Add carrot. It'll look like a lot of carrot. Probably too much carrot. Don't be fooled by the excess amount of carrot. Add half a bottle of LM's Rose sauce. Drooling as I think about this sauce... Add tomatoes and a cup of water or two. Remember this will boil down as the the veggies absorb the water. Stir and simmer for however long you're feeling the simmer and the carrot gets soft and delicious and the tomato skins start rolling off. IF you have Italian herb seasoning, go for it. Pepper and salt aren't remiss either. After the simmer is done simmering, add another cup of water (if needed) and the pasta. Once pasta is soft, serve with parm, tobasco, or whatever else you have on hand.

(Not pictured: the boyf, the Loud American, the Canadian 2.0, and myself wolfing down this amazaeballs soup)

**Note: this would probably be a delicious and semi-healthy spaghetti sauce as well. The consistency of the "soup" is rather stew-like/chili-like so get your hearty on. Yumyum.

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