Sausage and Pepper Orrecchiete

After the wedding party, I took the bus home with some friends, entered my apartment, took a despairing look around, and went directly to my room, closed the door and pretended that my living room and kitchen didn’t exist. I stayed in bed late, finally getting dressed and walking straight out of the apartment with my eyes closed because the mess still didn’t exist, and only to go to the theatre in Sanlitun and watch an early matinee showing of the Hunger Games and eat popcorn and gummy bears and cherry coke for breakfast.

I lead an exciting, healthy lifestyle.

After the movie ended, I decided I probably couldn’t pretend that it didn’t exist anymore, and had to at least mop up the worst of the frosting spills. And I was perilously close to not having any clean bowls.

Much cleaning ensued, after which I wanted a light little supper. This is easy and quick enough to make on a weeknight, and I made a large enough batch for lunch for four days at work.

1/2 pound ground pork
1 tsp fennel seeds, toasted
Pinch of sugar
Salt and pepper to taste
2 cloves minced garlic
Dash of Shaoxing cooking wine.
1 chopped pepper
1/1 onion, chopped
1 cup of sliced mushrooms

Mix in the pork with all the herbs and flavorings. Let it sit and soak in the wine while you boil water and chop the vegetables. Add pasta to water and in a pan, heat up some olive oil and saute the mushrooms. Add the onion and let cook until onions start to get translucent. Remove from pan, and add in the pork mixture, or crumbled sausage. Brown the meat, then add the vegetables back in, including the green pepper.

Drain the pasta, toss everything together with some more olive oil and a generous lashing of grated parmesan. I ate this along with some bread spread with ricotta, sea salt, and fresh cracked pepper.

Then I went to Brussels bar to meet some friends for a Firefly themed evening, because I am just that awesome. And Captain Mal is just so darn pretty, and who would want to miss out watching a large projection of him?. It was a pretty cool evening. I’d never been to the bar before, but it’s a nice space with a bg projector screen where they played a few episodes. The owners had come up with a few Firefly themed menu items: fresh bao and stew (not really a departure from normal Chinese cooking, I think it was the mother of either the Chinese wife or waitress or ayi that had made the buns), “wife soup” that was really just ge da tang (which means Pimple Soup, because the dough bits look like pimples, but it’s deceptively tasty). And for drinks they offered Ice Planet (a lychee-liquor based ball of ice with other sweet additions), Shimmerwine (Prosecco with grenadine and other flavors), and Mudder’s Milk, milk with whiskey and a few other ingredients. Aside from the massive amounts of mosquitos attacking us, it was a great place to hang out, and when the electricity went out for twenty minutes, the bartender came round and gave everyone a free beer, an attitude I heartily appreciate, and because of it, I will most likely return.


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