It was a quiet weekend. A prelude to what's going to happen next year... With Nics in college and Izzy out on a trip this weekend, it was just the three of us: my hubby, my son Joey and myself at home. This must be how it will feel starting September of next year when Izzy leaves for college... hmmm I still can't get over the fact that my eldest child is no longer with us and another daughter will be leaving soon. Indeed, it is painful to think of but it is inevitable.
My girls tease me a lot about how I will be hit hardest when my son Joey leaves for college. This is because they feel that my favorite child is Joey. And I can't blame them, he is my unico hijo... People say that the relationship between mother and son is special, similar to how a father is close to his daughter... and I agree. I saw it in my mom. I have 4 brothers and my mom has a soft spot for each of them. Not that my sister and I were less special but her relationship with them is something unique, something that is hard to explain. I remember when my brother Fr. Gerry would come home from the seminary, my mom's face was always aglow... and his favorite food would always be served...
I admit that I enjoy my son's company. This is because he is as funny as I am. He would always say I'm the jester of the family, although I feel he comes in a very close second, hahaha. I love to sing when I cook and he would mimic me closely, especially when the kitchen is very quiet. He would hide behind our kitchen counter and would spring out of nowhere and surprise me saying, "What you cooking Mum!". And how he would love this because I still get surprised every single time. Everyone loves Joey,ask the younger cousins in the clan who their favorite cousin is, and hands down they would say it's Kuya Joey.
I love cooking for Joey because he would judge the food as honest as he could. If I were a Top Chef contestant he would be Chef Tom Colicchio. He would "judge" my food as honest as he could... and when he truly loves the food he would always hug me. Need I say more why I love him?
For this dish, my inspiration is my son Joey, as his favorite is pasta. I took the longanisa (Filipino cured sausage, traditionally served for breakfast) out of the freezer and thought of making ... yep a pasta dish for the 2 men in my life. The dish was approved by them, no they didn't say "oh so delish" but in their own masculine manner they said, "this is really good"... and as a bonus, the compliment came with hugs from them both.
The longanisa didn't overpower the whole dish. I thought I was able to avoid this by using a "secret" ingredient, which of course is no longer a secret, LOL! But yeah, the secret ingredient is my Mama Sita Barbeque Marinade. I added this ingredient so as not to have the longanisa as the only "foreign" or "Filipino" ingredient, with its distinct taste, in an Italian recipe. And true enough Mama Sita provided the "magic", as it cascaded the sweet and sour taste that it gives... that's why I love Mama Sita Barbeque Marinade, it always does wonders when I want to perk up my food. It's like having an old reliable grandma around. She's there when you need her...LOL! Btw, that's an Impromptu Diva tip, to always have marinades or other sauces in stock, so that when you need to whip up something new, it will always be handy!
longanisa (I used the Vigan Longanisa)
1/2 c water
2 small cans of tomato sauce
red and green bell pepper
2 medium tomatoes
2 tbsp olive oil
4 cloves garlic (minced)
1 medium onion (diced)
4 tbsp Mama Sita Barbeque Marinade
1 package of ziti
Cook the pasta as directed.
Heat a separate pan, add water and the longanisa. Let the water dehydrate. Brown the longanisa in all sides. Using the same pan, add the garlic and onions. Pour in the tomato sauce. Let it simmer. Add the sliced tomatoes, red and green bell peper. Give it a stir. Add the Mama Sita barbeque marinade then add the black olives. Pour it over cooked pasta. Sprinkle with toasted garlic...