Monday, 26 October 2009

How To Tuesday: Spicy Peanut Pasta

Happy Tuesday!
I'm Jill, a member of our Etsy Ireland team, and owner of a little Etsy shop called Blue Serendipity Designs. I thought it would be fun to teach our readers how to cook something really yummy, unexpected and perfect for these chilly autumn days: Spicy Peanut Pasta--a Thai fusion dish. It's one of my very favourites.

Now, let me preempt this recipe by saying that I am both a California native and a vegetarian. This has a huge impact on my cooking style. In my world, things like tofu, couscous, quinoa, black beans and falafel are everyday staples. When I first met my fiance and started cooking dinners for the both of us, I realised that my Californian-vegetarian diet is pretty far from your standard Irish fare. He is super fussy, and I quickly learned that (well, to him at least), if a meal didn't have meat and spuds in it, it wasn't really a meal. So naturally, I was a bit trepidacious when making this for him for the first time, seeing as how it has neither. Guess what? He loved it! Woo hoo! A dish even the fussiest of the fussy will like!

Spicy Peanut Pasta
Serves 6-8
For smaller portions, halve the recipe, but I have a feeling you'll want leftovers.


16 oz. (a big bag) dry penne pasta
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
4 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
2 big cloves minced garlic
8 oz. (about 1 mugful) stock -- beef, chicken or vegetable
300g peanut butter (This is nearly a whole 340g jar.)
100ml tamari or soy sauce
3-4 tablespoons lemon juice
100ml (or a big, big squeeze) honey
1 tablespoon red pepper flakes
1/2 bunch spring onions, washed and chopped
1 whole bunch coriander, washed and chopped
1 red pepper, washed and diced
1 small can sliced black olives (optional)

Put on your favourite cooking music, wash your hands and make sure you have all the ingredients.

Put the kettle on to boil water for your stock. Pour a mugful of hot water and mix in your stock cube (or that new fancy gelatin stock if you have any), making sure to dissolve all the little granules. Peel and grate both the ginger and garlic. Heat 2 teaspoons vegetable oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Toss in your ginger and garlic and saute for 30 seconds.

Add the stock, peanut butter, tamari/soy sauce, lemon juice, honey and red pepper flakes. Simmer for 7 minutes, stirring. Remove from the heat and keep warm.

Meanwhile, boil a big pot of water for your pasta. Use the biggest pot you've got. When it comes to a rolling boil, add the dry pasta and a wee bit of oil to prevent the penne from sticking together. Cook according to the directions on the package. Do not overcook. We want the pasta to be lovely and al dente, not rubbery and gross. Remove the pot from the heat when cooked and rinse in lukewarm water. Drain the pasta and return it to the pot.

Chop the spring onions, coriander and red pepper. The red pepper should be diced into about 1 cm squares.

Pour the prepared sauce into the large pot with the drained pasta. Mix well. Add spring onions, coriander, red pepper and olives (if you're using them). Mix well again. Adjust seasonings to taste. This tastes great hot or cold and makes excellent leftovers, as the sweet/spicy taste intensifies overnight. Mmmmm...


  1. Yumm-yum-yum !!!...gonna have to try that. Thanks.ox

  2. sounds lovely!!!
    i am trying that too!

  3. Helloo Jill's dad! thanx for tuning in! :)*

  4. Jill! I have been missing this since we left Flag, in '05. Yippie! I'm makin' it tonight.