Which spicy food preparations could be enjoyed by the whole family?
- Hot and Spicy Tuna Pasta
- Spicy Chicken Fried Rice
- Spicy Garlic Mushroom
Filipinos express their love for food through so-called “food tripping” adventures and experimenting of different cooking techniques. But what better way to enjoy the passion for food with family than to prepare homemade ulam recipes?
Rather than serving the same fried chicken or fish time and again, level up the feast by trying out spicy food preparations. Everyone has a knack when chili is involved in their meals, and some would prefer an even hotter dish because our sensory perceptions differ when tolerating the spice level of what we eat.
Yet, most fear the word “spicy”, especially children. They think that it’s dangerous to eat these kinds of food because it hurts when they first taste them, but you can actually introduce your children to spice by controlling the level of spiciness of dishes. So, what are different spicy lutong Pinoy recipes you can cater to the whole family? Here are some ideas:
Hot and Spicy Tuna Pasta
Pasta is always a child favorite be it in parties or a meal request at home, so why not prepare them just that using hot and spicy tuna? This way, they are also eating healthy while enjoying their comfort food. Check out how to cook this here!
- 1 180-gram can Mega tuna, hot and spicy flavored
- 1 400-gram pack spaghetti
- 2 tablespoons oil
- 1 medium red onion, peeled and thinly sliced
- 4 cloves garlic, peeled and thinly sliced
- 3 tomatoes, thinly sliced
- 1 180-gram canned Mega tuna flakes in oil
- Boil a pot of water to cook the spaghetti by following its packaging instructions. Drain, and set aside.
- Heat oil over a medium heat pan and sauté onions, garlic until softened and translucent.
- Add in tomatoes. Stir until softened.
- Add both kinds of tuna, and cook until thoroughly heated. Season with salt and pepper.
- Serve by tossing it in tuna mixture
Spicy chicken fried rice
What better way to introduce spicy flavor to children, but in mixing two of their Filipino favorites—chicken and fried rice? This child-friendly meal which allows your kids to indulge in the bursting flavors of different ingredients with mild chili flavor. Check out its recipe below:
- 3 tablespoons butter, divided
- 2 eggs, whisked
- 2 medium-sized carrots, peeled and diced
- 1 small, white onion, diced
- ½ cup frozen peas
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 4 cups cooked and chilled rice
- 3 green onions, thinly sliced
- 3-4 tablespoons soy sauce (to taste)
- Heat ½ tablespoon of butter in a large pan with a medium-high heat until butter melts.
- Add egg. Cook till scrambled. Remove the egg afterwards, and transfer to a separate plate
- Add a tablespoon of butter to the pan to melt.
- Add in carrots, onions, peas, and garlic. Season with salt and pepper. Saute the mix for about 5 minutes or until onions and carrots are soft.
- Increase heat to high, and add in the remaining butter. Stir until melted.
- Immediately add the rice, green onions, and soy sauce. Stir till combines. Stir for about 3 minutes until the components are thoroughly mixed. Add chicken and eggs, then stir to combine.
- Remove from pan. Serve warm.
Spicy Garlic Mushroom
Nothing like a unique and healthy menu to serve the family with spicy garlic mushroom. It’s also a great way to educate kids to eat mushrooms aside from the usual dishes they find it in. Usually, mushrooms could be found mixed in other dishes, but with this recipe, it highlights the flavorful element of mushroom alone.
- 1 can 280-grams Mega Prime pieces and stems mushroom
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 1 ½ teaspoon + 4 teaspoon vegetable oil
- 5 garlic cloves
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon red chili powder or cayenne powder
- 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- Salt (to taste)
- Coriander or cilantro leaves, chopped for garnish
- In a blender, add 4 teaspoons of oil, garlic cloves, lemon juice, red chili powder (or cayenne), pepper flakes and water (approx. 2 tablespoons). Blend to form a smooth paste. Do not add too much water.
- Heat 1 ½ teaspoon of oil into a pan on medium heat. Once heated, add onions, salt it, and sauté for 6-8 minutes or until translucent.
- Add the paste prepared from the blender with a small quantity of water (not exceeding 2 tablespoons). Sauté it until the raw smell fade completely. This may take 5 minutes.
- Add the chopped mushrooms and mix well till it gets coated in the mixture. Cook for another 5-7 minutes. Oil should separate. Garnish with the chopped coriander (or cilantro).
- Serve warm
Adding spice beyond the recipe
You could make any dish spicy even if the family’s meal for the day doesn’t incorporate chili while preparing food or you’re just the type of person who wants their meal hotter. Beyond cayenne or chili powder, a sprinkle of red pepper flakes might well do the trick, or freshly-cracked black pepper where you could feel the sting in the back of your throat. Hot sauce, such as Tabasco, does not only apply to your favorite pizza, but on all variety of food.
Make sure to control the spice level of dishes being prepared. Keep in mind that children need to be slowly inducted to spicy food, and that bringing out too much heat in any of the recipes mentioned may traumatized them instead of making them appreciate the meal, especially the essence of incorporating chili to food. Remember that everyone differs in chili tolerance so keep the spice level on mild to ensure the whole family could enjoy the meal.
The perfect way to bond with the family is through meal times with great food and a pleasant way of preparing them. A little spice in the preparation educates children and takes them out of their “comfort zone” of the usual flavors they taste, and it also pleases family members who crave for hot and spicy.