3 Easy Dishes You Can Prepare, Even If You Don't Know How to Cook

You don’t have to be a culinary genius to make them!


(SPOT.ph) Instead of ordering in for Christmas dinner, surprise your family with the most unexpected gift of all: a Noche Buena prepared by you!


Don’t worry—these three dishes are kitchen noob-friendly—and tasty! Prepare to serve seconds, and get your ears ready for the compliments.



Fish en Papillote

Don’t be intimidated by the name; you just have to wrap everything in paper and pop it into the oven. The result: a flavorful dish that will impress at the dinner table. 


Here’s what you’ll need: two 20-inch pieces of parchment paper, two 200-gram dory fillets (completely thawed), salt and pepper, three tablespoons Contadina Pure Olive Oil, three cloves garlic (sliced thinly), and one lemon (sliced).


Spread the parchment paper flat on a baking tray. Place one piece of fish in the center; season with salt and pepper. Top with half the lemon and garlic, then drizzle with olive oil to add a fresh, fruity note to the dish. Fold in the edges of the paper and seal tightly by crimping the sides. Repeat the same procedure with the remaining ingredients. Add capers or top with Contadina Diced Tomatoes for a more vibrant dish!


Bake the wrapped fish in a preheated 350°F oven for about 15 minutes; the paper will puff up. To serve, carefully rip open the wrapping. This dish serves up to six people.


Tip: No parchment paper? Use foil instead. No oven? Use a steamer.



Caprese Pesto Pasta Salad

Here’s a localized version of an Italian classic. Use bottled pesto, and most of the work is done! Go for Contadina Pesto Alla Genovese Pasta Sauce, which combines the flavor of feshly-picked Italian basil, Grana Padano, cashew, and pine nuts. Aside from the sauce, you’ll need 200 grams of Contadina Penne, a 14-oz. can of Contadina Diced Tomatoes, 150 grams of kesong puti (sliced into cubes), five basil leaves (sliced thinly), and salt and pepper.


Cook the pasta according to package directions; strain and set aside. In a large bowl, toss together the pasta, pesto, tomatoes, kesong puti, and basil. Season with salt and pepper. Plate with more tomatoes and basil and you'll have a dish that will have everyone smacking their lips for. This dish serves six to eight people.



Sausage Pesto Pasta

This is a favorite among many, so here's how to add a flavor-packed, pesto twist to it: You need one 500-gram pack of Contadina Spaghetti, two Hungarian sausages (sliced into half-inch pieces), one tablespoon of Contadina Pure Olive Oil, one 6.7oz bottle of Contadina Pesto Alla Genovese Pasta Sauce, half a cup of grated parmesan cheese (or more, for topping), and salt and pepper.


Cook the pasta according to package directions, and set aside half a cup of pasta water. Strain the pasta and set aside. Next, heat the olive oil in a pot over medium heat. Add the sausage and cook for three minutes or until brown. Add the pesto sauce to the pot, then add the cooked pasta, pasta water, and cheese. Remove the pot from heat, then toss the pasta to distribute the sauce.


Season with salt and pepper to taste, and top with more cheese. This dish serves six people.


Instead of going out with friends and family members, surprise them just this one time with a homecooked meal. Remember: Using great top-quality ingredients makes life easier. Made from premium imported ingredients only from the best sources all over the world, Contadina products help you turn simple dishes into holiday favorites. Make sure you use only the best to make Noche Buena even more delicious and memorable. Happy holiday eating!


For more cooking tips and ideas, visit Contadina.com.ph.

This article was created by Summit Storylabs in partnership with Contadina.
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