Nigella Law­son

Yummy (Philippines) - - Yummy Shopping -

The pop­u­lar food per­son­al­ity and best­selling cook­book au­thor lets us in on her tried-and-tested kitchen tricks. WHAT COOK­ING TECH­NIQUES DID YOU LEARN WHEN YOU LIVED IN ITALY? “There are three things I re­mem­ber when cook­ing pasta. First, use co­pi­ous amounts of wa­ter to boil the pasta, or else the noo­dles will bring down the tem­per­a­ture of the wa­ter and take too long to come back to a boil. Sec­ond, the wa­ter you cook the pasta in should be as salty as the Mediter­ranean. And third, you must save a cup­ful of the pasta cook­ing wa­ter from the pan be­fore drain­ing and add a spoon­ful as you toss the noo­dles in the sauce to help it amal­ga­mate.”

AF­TER A LONG DAY, WHAT KIND OF FOOD DO YOU LIKE COM­ING HOME TO? “Com­fort food has to be carbs, so a bowl of pasta is an easy fa­vorite. I like mak­ing my meat­balls, too. There’s some­thing about form­ing them in my hands—it’s like full par­tic­i­pa­tion in the joy of cook­ing. I like mak­ing a sim­ple salsa with canned stewed toma­toes. There’s noth­ing like sit­ting on the couch and hav­ing a bowl of chips with salsa.”

ANY TRICKS TO PUT FOOD ON THE TA­BLE FAST? “Just be­cause you’re short on time doesn’t mean you should be short on fla­vor. There’s noth­ing wrong with us­ing canned prod­ucts—even Ital­ians use them! I keep bot­tled sauces in my kitchen and on busy nights, it’s good to know I have those to boost my cook­ing. My phi­los­o­phy is max­i­mum fla­vor for min­i­mum ef­fort!”

WHAT ARE THE BEST THINGS YOU ATE IN MANILA? “I can’t stop talk­ing about cala­mansi! I love its sharp­ness and mel­low­ness. Sini­gang has this won­der­ful bal­ance of sweet­ness and acid­ity. I tried dif­fer­ent ver­sions of adobo: clas­sic, with co­conut, with lots of gar­lic. I had a good inasal in one of the week­end mar­kets, and I'd like to try mak­ing my own puto.”

WHAT SUR­PRISED YOU ABOUT FILIPINO CUI­SINE? “The food en­com­passes all the cul­tures that have in­flu­enced it. I didn’t ex­pect it to have such a broad ar­ray of dif­fer­ent fla­vors— from Span­ish to Asian—or to be as di­verse. When you come to a coun­try and you taste their food, you’re also tast­ing the cul­ture.”

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