Updated: Aug 23, 2019
By now you've discovered that the eponymous Esther of Garden of Esther is not Italian - I'm Malaysian. What most Americans don't know is that many Malaysians have Chinese ancestry and as a result our cuisine is heavily influenced by Chinese traditions.
To paraphrase Anthony Bourdain: Any time you get the Chinese and the Italians all agreeing on something, it's pretty clear it's a really good idea.
Bourdain was talking about food of course. If you were to examine the food cultures of both China and Italy, you'd find a fair amount of common ground. Noodles, for example, are a mainstay in both places and my dad's love of noodles was one of my inspirations for starting Garden of Esther (although the noodles I grew up with were Asian, not Italian).
Garden of Esther recently threw a little pasta party, but this time instead of serving Italian style dishes we went with an Asian theme. Noodles have an amazing versatility!
We took a lot of pictures of the food, but, alas, none of the people. I promise there were people! In fact, there were hungry people, because every morsel of food was eaten. No leftovers!
And there's no secret to making any of this at home no matter what your ancestry. Give it a try! Search the internet! Maybe curry laksa will become a new favorite in your house, too!
So the next time you say to yourself - there's nothing new I can do with pasta - think again! Instead of Italian, try it Asian-style.