Tag: pasta

Shroom Chorizo Pasta Sauce

I’ve had a long standing love affair with chorizo, so when I saw this chorizo ‘bolognese’ by Donna Hay I had to make it. I loved it, but as much as I love fat, it felt a little too fatty for me. Grinding up dry-cured sausages like that also felt a little wasteful. So this seemed like the perfect candidate for veganizing.

Mexican vs Spanish chorizo

As you may know, I’d already worked out a spice mix to make a Mexican chorizo for my chorizo tofu tacos. I’d wager to say that Spanish chorizo is a bit smokier, earthier and headier where Mexican chorizo is a little brighter and lighter on the flavor spectrum. I used this recipe as my Spanish chorizo base.

Inspired by the Lucky Peach mushroom mapo tofu recipe, I used a mix of mushrooms as a base. I used a mix to get some different textures in, as you would find in a dry cured sausage. You can use any mix of mushrooms, as long as there is a little variety in textures.

But then… DISASTER

After I soaked the dried shiitake I got my food processor out, chucked all the shrooms in and turned it on. Except… nothing happened. My food processor is deceased, kaput, a goner. Sad. I had to chop my mushrooms by hand, so the sauce looks a little chunkier in these photos than I’d imagined.

A large red pan with a dark wooden handle is filled with rigatoni pasta with red sauce and bits of mozzarella, there is a wooden spoon poking outside of the pan and there is a red lid half covering it. There is a small white bowl with blue rim filled with more pasta off to the bottom of the photo, with a bamboo handle sticking out of it. All are placed on a cement backdrop.

Vegan chorizo pasta sauce

Dorothy Porker
A mushroom chorizo pasta sauce inspired by Donna Hay's chorizo bolognese.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Soaking time ( if using dried mushrooms) 30 mins
Course Dinner, Lunch, Main course
Cuisine Vegan
Servings 4


  • Large bowl + small plate for soaking shiitake (if using)
  • Food processor (optional)
  • Large frying pan
  • Large saucepan for cooking pasta


  • 2.5 oz - 75 g dried shiitake see notes
  • 5 oz - 150 g fresh shiitake see notes
  • 5 oz - 150 g oyster mushrooms see notes
  • 2 T - 30 ml olive oil
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary leaves only, optional (see notes)
  • 1 1/2 t - 7.5 g sweet smoked paprika see notes
  • 1 t - 5 g medium (smoked) paprika see notes
  • 1/2 t - 2.5 g hot smoked paprika see notes
  • 1 t - 5 g dried oregano
  • 1/4 t - 1 g dried chili flakes I like chipotle flakes
  • 2 cloves garlic crushed and finely chopped
  • 1 t - 5 g MSG optional, but it really amps up the umami
  • 1 t - 5 g salt
  • 1/2 c - 125 ml red wine
  • 14 oz - 400 g tinned tomatoes chopped
  • 2 T - 30 g brown sugar
  • 14 oz - 400 g pasta of choice
  • cheese of choice optional, I preferred parmesan over mozzarella
  • freshly ground black pepper for finishing


If using dried shiitake

  • Put the kettle on, place 2.5 oz - 75 g of dried shiitake in a large bowl, cover with hot water and a small plate to ensure they remain covered and leave to soak for 30 minutes before draining and removing the stalks. Be sure to keep the drained water, because it makes a great foundation for mushroom risotto or soup and keeps well in the freezer.

Make the vegan chorizo pasta sauce

  • Place the soaked and drained dried shiitake (stalks removed) in a food processor with 5 oz - 150 g of fresh shiitake and oyster mushrooms and chop until it forms a rough pulp. You can also do this by hand.
  • In a large frying pan, heat 2 T - 30 ml of olive oil, add the leaves of 2 sprigs of rosemary and cook for 30 seconds until fragrant. Remove the leaves and set aside.
  • Now tip your mushroom pulp into the frying pan along with 1 1/2 t - 7.5. g sweet smoked paprika, 1 t - 5 g medium (smoked paprika), 1/2 t - 2.5 g hot smoked paprika, 1/4 t - 1 g of chili flakes and 2 cloves of chopped garlic along with 1 t - 5 g of MSG and salt. Stir for 5-7 minutes until the mushrooms have browned and most of the moisture has cooked out of the mushrooms.
  • Add 1/2 c - 125 ml of red wine and cook for 30 seconds. Now add 14 oz - 400 g of canned and chopped tomatoes and 2 T - 30 g of brown sugar, bring to a simmer and leave to cook on a low heat for 5-6 minutes until the liquid has reduced.
  • While this is happened, cook your pasta according to the packet instructions. Be sure to reserve 1/2 c - 125 ml of its cooking liquid when you drain the pasta and stir this through the sauce.
  • I prefer to mix in the pasta with the sauce before serving and top with the crisp rosemary leaves, coarsely grated parmesan and freshly ground black pepper, but as far as finishing flourishes go: you do you.


Some notes:
  • You can use whatever mushrooms mix you like, all fresh works just as well, just be sure to get some different textures in and end up with roughly the 12.5 oz - 450 g of mushrooms (dried shiitake become heavier once soaked).
  • The rosemary really ads an extra depth of flavor, but if you need to skip it no harm no foul.
  • The different paprika's really make a difference in this recipe, budget wise if you can't go wild on smoked paprika's I'd invest in smoked sweet paprika and then go non-smoked for the other two (or even skip the hot all together and up the chili flakes instead).
  • The alcohol in the red wine will be reduced away in the sauce so this is safe for kids and people that avoid alcohol, that said if you'd prefer to be safe rather than sorry it's fine to skip it. 
Keyword donna hay, easy vegan, pasta, pasta sauce, vegan

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Super Easy Pasta Puttanesca

When I first moved to London I studied with German former male model who vastly improved my appreciation of pasta by cooking me pasta with two of the most basic tomato based pasta sauces.

The first was just onions, garlic and tinned tomatoes. Finished with some basil and mozzarella.

Prostitutes pasta

The second was this here pasta puttanesca, which stirs people into fits and giggles because its name literally translates to ‘prostitutes pasta’. But let’s be fair. All the hard work sex workers do and the shit they get for it from the rest of us means they’ve got to eat good.

So live your best life and make this pasta. I promise the anchovies in this aren’t scary, think of them as super salt. No matter how many I’ve put in, my puttanesca never tastes overly fishy. Trust me, I’ve tried.

Once your belly is full, please donate to the Dutch Emergency Fund to help Dutch sex workers cover lost income from the Corona-crisis.

How do I eat pasta puttanesca?

Pasta puttanesca is a main and doesn’t need anything else. A nice helping of red wine and as much grated Parmesan and freshly ground pepper as your plate can carry will do nicely however.

An overhead shot of a white enamel plate with a blue trim on top of a blue background. The plate is filled with spaghetti, red sauce and capers. To the left bottom of the plate is an empty tomato tin, scattered at the bottom right are some capers and anchovy filets. There is a fork at the side of the plate. At the top Dorothy Porker has written PUTA in spaghetti.

Super Easy Pasta Puttanesca Recipe

Dorothy Porker
Pasta puttanesca is a pungent umami laden affair that should be a go-to meal for anybody that loves quick and easy meals made from store cupboard items (and anchovies).
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Course Dinner, Main course
Cuisine Italian
Servings 2


  • Big pot for cooking pasta
  • Heavy based pot to make the sauce
  • Sieve
  • Grater


  • salt
  • 5 oz - 140 gr pasta of choice, I'm a linguine girl myself
  • 1 T - 15 ml olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic finely chopped
  • 3 medium shallots finely chopped
  • 14 oz - 400 gr tomatoes one tin - I prefer peeled plum tomatoes myself
  • 1 T - 20 gr tomato puree
  • 1/2 T - 7 ml Balsamic vinegar
  • 1 t - 5 gr sugar
  • 2 T - 40 gr capers less or more to taste, roughly chopped olives also work
  • 1/2 c - 60 gr Parmesan grated
  • 1 pinch salt more or less to taste
  • black pepper as much as you like, freshly ground is best
  • 7 oz - 213 gr tinned salmon or tuna 1 tin drained, optional - please look for ASC- or MSC-certification


  • Bring some heavily salted water to the boil in a large pot.
  • Heat 1 T - 15 ml of olive oil in a heavy based pot and fry off the finely chopped 4 cloves of garlic and 3 shallots until they become translucent. Avoid burning by stirring constantly and lowering the heat if necessary.
  • Once the onions and garlic have started to become translucent, add 6 finely chopped anchovy filets and stir until they begin to break down.
  • Dump in your 14 oz - 400 gr tin of tomatoes and 1 T - 20 gr tomato paste and let sit at a soft bubble for until reduced by about half. This should take 15-30 minutes or so.
  • Now is the time to dump 5 oz - 140 gr of pasta into the salted boiling water and cook it according to the instructions on the packet. I like to cook the pasta slightly under and reduce the cooking time by 1 minute to ensure a little bit of bite. Be sure to reduce the heat a little so it doesn't boil over.
  • After the sauce has been reduced down, add 1/2 T - 7 ml of balsamic vinegar and 1 t - 5 gr of sugar, stir and reduce down further, for a minute or 2.
  • Taste and season with salt and pepper. Because of the salt contents from the anchovies I generally find this doesn't need a lot of salt, if any.
  • Stir in 2 T - 40 gr of capers and drained 7 oz - 213 gr tin of tuna (if using).
  • Drain the pasta, mix with the sauce and serve with a good helping of freshly grated Parmesan and black pepper.


This sauce keeps for about 3 months in the freezer, double-up the recipe if you have the time and store some in the freezer so you always have a quick meal at the ready.
Keyword anchovies, easy pasta, Italian food, pasta

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Oven-Baked Kimchi Mac and Cheese

As I did in the spring, I am participating in The Little Plantation’s Eat Capture Share Challenge for fall. This is a food photography challenge with different weekly themes. I like the challenges she creates. Someone else feeding me ideas helps me think of new ways to approach photography.

The core ingredients for kimchi mac and cheese, kimchi, macaroni, egg and cheddar slices

Americanos – Blue Jeans and Chinos Coke Pepsi and Oreos

This week, the challenges are all based on well-known TV shows around food. To be honest the last time I watched a Guy Fieri show was probably over a decade ago. I didn’t even sit down to watch Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives until after I took these photos. But once I did I was reminded of why I love the show. And American food in general.

I’ve always had a fondness for the USA. It probably has something to do with being a pop culture floozy and the fact that most of the music, literature, films and TV shows that got me through some really tough years are American. The sense of escapism that the American Dream never really delivers on will probably never entirely leave me. False hope is hope to, you know?

A close up of some kimchi mac and cheese

Team America

I’m always disappointed when Europeans shit on America. If we didn’t speak all these different languages and were broadcasting our absolute worst to the world no one’d like us either. Hell is other people. They don’t need to be American for that.

I am even more disappointed when I meet people who claim American food is terrible. Like a co-worker who spent a good 4 weeks cruising California and claimed she hadn’t been able to find one single fresh vegetable. In California.

If you can’t find good food in America, let alone fucking California, that is entirely on you.

Dorothy Porker Eats on Google Maps

If you are one of these people, please go find yourself some Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives to watch. Bourdain of course also works. Or use my nifty Dorothy Porker Eats Google map to get you to places that are good.

A map of the world

Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives

What Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives reminded me of. Beyond it being the reason me and Marloes Coenen ended up at Beer Belly experiencing Death By Duck. Is how America absolutely rules when it comes to comfort food. When it’s good it’s greasy, comforting, lovingly prepared and fresh as hell.

What’s the beef?

I get why people frown at Fieri. Which vaguely reminds me of a guy I dated in the mid-90’s who never really grew up. And maybe opening a restaurant in Times Square and having something called donkey sauce on the menu wasn’t the best idea.

But any guy who has spent a large part of his time platforming hundreds of small independent restaurants is at least doing a little bit right.

A picknick table with a slab of kimchi mac and cheese on top

Finally, I get to the point: kimchi mac and cheese!

All of the above is only tangentially related to the recipe below, which is kimchi mac and cheese! I always wanted to make kimchi mac and cheese, so when me and Nombelina set up a play date where she’d take care of the ribs (and burgers, and cheese, and cookies) and I’d take care of mac, it was the perfect opportunity to finally get it done.

I used an old recipe for a 70’s style mac and cheese as a base. And double the cheese (as one does) and use cream instead of milk if that’s what’s in the fridge.

I think the next time I’ll leave out the bacon and have it with some nice nice thick cuts of Korean pork belly Squirrel’s of a Feather-style on the side.

Variations on kimchi mac and cheese

If you want to make this using your own kimchi, you’ll also need this (store-bought is fine too):

You can use the below as a blueprint for any veg and cheese combo that tickles your fancy. The foundations are the pasta, milk and eggs. You could even omit the eggs and make a more sloppy unctuous mac and cheese instead. Make a roux with the milk and equal parts flour and butter if you’re going this route. The type of cheese(s!), veggies, spices and protein turn it into whatever the hell you need it to be.

Because kimchi already has onion and a lot of other flavors going on, I didn’t add any onions or garlic. The classic has 150 grams of grated onion and a couple cloves of garlic, because everything kinda should.

A close up of some kimchi mac and cheese

Oven-Baked Kimchi Mac and Cheese

Dorothy Porker
A solid oven-baked umami rich kimchi mac and cheese recipe that can easily be turned into any other kind of mac and cheese, but honestly: why would you?
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 45 mins
Course Dinner, Main course, Side dish
Cuisine American, Asian, Fusion, Korean
Servings 4 -6 people


  • Frying pan, optional - if adding bacon
  • Oven
  • Large pot with lid for boiling pasta
  • Small food processor, optional
  • Small saucepan, for unctuous mac and cheese
  • Ovenproof dish


Bacon optional

  • 1 t - 5 gr gochujang fermented Korean chili paste, get this from an Asian supermarket
  • 1 t - 5 gr honey
  • 1/2 T - 7.5 ml soy sauce
  • 1 c - 150 gr thick unsmoked bacon cut into cubes

For the mac and cheese

  • 2 1/4 c - 225 gr macaroni or other pasta of choice, I'd steer clear of the stringy and flatter variaties
  • 1 c - 250 ml milk other (non)-dairy variaties or cream also work
  • 4 c - 400 gr cheap cheddar slices the kind your mother warned you about, you can use less or a totally different cheese if you prefer
  • 1 c - 150 gr kimchi more to taste, other vegetables also work
  • 1/2 c - 45 gr breadcrumbs to top, optional but it does add a nice extra texture

Solid or unctuous?

  • 2 large eggs use this for a more solid pasta bake, as pictured OR
  • 2 T - 30 gr butter use this for more unctuous mac and cheese
  • 2 T - 30 gr flour use this for a more unctuous mac and cheese


If you are using bacon, ideally do this the night before

  • Mix together 1 t - 5 gr gochujang, 1 ts - 5 gr honey and 1/2 T - 7.5 ml soy sauce in a bowl. Add 1 c - 150 gr of bacon cut into cubes and leave to marinade ideally overnight or at least for 1 hour.

If you are using another kind of vegetable

  • If you're adding a different kind of vegetable than kimchi, please make sure this is precooked. Either saute it in some olive oil or butter until soft, or boil it until fully cooked. As the possibilities are kind of endless I will not leave instructions here on how to do that, but the internet is your friend.
  • I murder the kimchi because hot bits of liquid logged kimchi are unpleasant to bite into, but a lot of other sauteed or precooked vegetables will be comfortable kept in bite-sized pieces.

Make mac and cheese

  • Preheat your oven to 350° F/ 175° C.
  • Strain the marinade from the bacon cubes and fry them up in a dry frying pan or skillet until the edges start to crisp. Set aside.
  • Cook 2 1/4 c - 225 gr of pasta al dente according to packet instructions.
  • Use a small food processor to grind 1 c - 150 gr kimchi down to a pulp, if using. You can also use a knife for this. You can keep it in larger pieces or grind down half and keep half in bigger pieces, etc, but I prefer to grind it down completely, because kimchi is cabbage so it’d just be hot pieces of boiling water floating around in your mac and cheese, which doesn’t appeal to me.
  • Drain the pasta and throw it into an ovenproof dish.

For a solid pasta bake

  • Beat together 2 eggs with 1 c - 250 ml milk.
  • Mix the kimchi, bacon into the pasta with 4 c - 400 gr of cheese until all the cheese has melted from the heat of the pasta.
  • Mix the beaten eggs and milk into the pasta mixture until well-combined.
  • If you like a crunchy topping add a layer of breadcrumbs before placing it into the oven.
  • Bake for 30-45 minutes until solid and golden on top.

For an unctuous mac and cheese

  • Melt 2 T - 30 gr of butter in a small saucepan. Once the butter has melted, stir in 2 T - 30 gr of flour with a wooden spoon and stir like a motherfucker, until the mixture has started sticking together and coming off the bottom of the pan. This is what's known as a roux.
  • Now pour in 1 c - 250 ml of milk and keep stirring until this sauce starts to thicken slightly. It needs to coat the back of the spoon for you to be ready for the next step. This will take 5-10 minutes.
  • In an ovenproof dish mix together the pasta, kimchi, bacon and cheese sauce until well-combined.
  • If you like a crunchy topping add a layer of breadcrumbs before placing it into the oven.
  • Bake for 15-20 minutes until the top has turned golden and the sauce is bubbling up the sides.


Kimchi mac and cheese will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for about 3 days. You can reheat it in a skillet or frying pan with some oil.
I find unctuous mac and cheese isn't as nice to reheat as you lose a lot of the sauce on the first serving so any leftovers tend to be on the dry side.
Keyword American, Asian food, asian recipes, cheese, kimchi, Korean American, mac and cheese, macaroni, oven bake

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Gochujang and Parmesan Pasta

Nothing pairs better than cheese and gochujang (sorry wine). The first time I learned this was when I made Lady&Pups gochujang, mushroom and cheese pasta.

Some variations on the theme

I simplified it quite a bit and usually skip the shrooms because pasta, but I won’t stop you if you want to add some veggies. I think peas would also go nicely with this.

A plate of Korean inspired pasta with gochujang and Parmesan

Gochujang and Parmesan pasta

Dorothy Porker
This recipe combines the gentle heat of gochujang with the umami of Parmesan for a rich, creamy, spicy and satisfying pasta.
Prep Time 10 mins
Cook Time 11 mins
Course Dinner, Main course
Cuisine Fusion, Italian, Korean
Servings 1


  • Large pot for cooking pasta
  • Small skillet or frying pan


  • pinch salt for the pasta water
  • 3 oz - 80 gr pasta of choice, I use linguine
  • 2 T - 15 ml olive oil
  • 4 small shallots finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic finely chopped
  • 2 T - 15 gr gochujang
  • 1 T - 7 gr flour
  • 1 c - 250 ml cream (nut)milk will also do
  • 1 c - 125 gr Parmesan grated, divided in two
  • 1 slice cheese whatever you have laying around, preferably something younger, mature cheeses don't melt as well, if at all
  • ground black pepper to taste


  • Prepare your 3 oz - 80 gr of pasta according to the instructions on the packet. I like to cut the suggestions cooking time by a minute to ensure extra bite.
  • Heat 1 T - 15 ml of olive oil in a small skillet or frying pan. Add 4 finely chopped shallots and 2 cloves of finely chopped garlic and glaze until translucent. This should take 5-10 minutes.
  • If you're adding a vegetable, now would be a good time to add them the shallots and garlic and cook until soft. This excludes peas, which are best added at the last minute just to warm them through.
  • Stir in 2 T - 15 gr gochujang and 1 T - 7 gr flour for roughly 2-4 minutes and then add 1 c - 250 ml of cream. Keep stirring until the sauce starts to thicken.
  • Lower the heat completely. Add 1/2 c - 65 gr of Parmesan and 1 slice of whatever cheese you have laying around. If you're using peas this is the time to add them, I'd suggest about a cup's worth.
  • Your pasta should be done now. Drain and mix in with the sauce to finish.
  • Top with the remainder of the Parmesan and ground black pepper.
Keyword easy pasta, gochujang, korean, korean fusion, Lady and Pups

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