Pasta is well loved all over the world, and Japan is no exception. In fact, we have a huge range of Japanese style pasta dishes that we call "Wafu Pasta" (和風パスタ). Give your pasta a unique twist with this butter and soy sauce flavoured pasta with Japanese mushrooms and bacon!
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Spaghetti of the World
While historians may argue about the origin of pasta, the fact is, if we hear the word "pasta" we automatically think of Italian food right?
Well, to be honest with you, Italian cuisine has always been one of my favourites, and it's probably the most popular type of Western food in Japan.
Other than Japanese (of course), I think I actually make Italian food the most at home and I love experimenting with pasta and pizza especially.
Pasta and spaghetti dishes have traveled all over the world and have been recreated and adapted in a lot of different countries. No matter where you go, each country has their own unique way to make pasta, right?
And Japan is no exception. In fact, there are a whole load of Japanese-y spaghetti recipes which we call "Wafu Pasta" (和風パスタ).
Wafu Pasta is the name we give to pasta dishes that are made with classic Japanese flavours and ingredients.
Some examples would be using a variety of Japanese mushrooms or seafood such as uni (sea urchin) or cod roe.
Other popular wafu pasta ingredients include nori seaweed, shiso leaves, soy sauce, dashi and bonito flakes. All of these flavours are unique to Japanese cuisine and will surely be a surprise to eat with pasta!
Popular Pasta Dishes in Japan
There are many popular wafu pasta dishes that are made in family homes on a regular basis. Here are some examples:
- Spaghetti Meat sauce (スパゲッティミートソース)
- Spaghetti Napolitan (スパゲッティナポリタン)
- Cod Roe Spaghetti (たらこスパゲッティ)
- Ankake Spaghetti (あんかけスパゲッティ)
- Soy Sauce Mayonnaise Spaghetti (しょうゆマヨスパゲッティ)
- Japanese Style Mushroom Spaghetti (和風きのこスパゲッティ)
Today, I'm sharing a recipe for the last one on the list, Japanese Style Mushroom Spaghetti.
Japanese mushroom spaghetti is not made with tomato sauce or cream sauce, instead it's flavoured with butter and soy sauce! Butter and soy sauce is a golden combination. It's a little rich, mildly salty and perfectly balanced with a hint of umami.
We also often add bacon to the dish.
A few tips to make delicious Butter Shoyu Pasta
- Cook the pasta so it's "el dente". This means it's still firm to the bite. To achieve el dente, we cook the pasta a minute or so less than the packaging states.
- In my recipe, I recommend using two or more types of mushroom. This adds different elements of flavour and also makes the texture more interesting. I personally use shimeji and eryngi mushrooms, but other Japanese mushrooms you can use are shiitake, maitake or enoki. If you can't find these, then it's okay to use your choice mushrooms.
- You should use unsalted butter for this recipe, the soy sauce will add enough saltiness. If you use salted butter, you could end up with pasta that is too salty.
I hope you enjoy this pasta dish with a Japanese twist! 🙂