Self Quarantine Recipe: Aglio Olio Fusili with Garlic Prawn

Self-quarantine due to COVID-19 can be very stressful. Especially if you’re used to eating out with friends and munching on those fancy food on shopping malls or hawker’s districts.

Don’t get me wrong—I don’t claim to be a professional cook, or even a half-decent cook for that matter. All I know is that while I had a lot of time at home, I started reigniting my cooking hobby, and managed to whip up several menu that might help you out.

aglio olio
This is the one I made

That being said, all these stuff are relatively easy to make, so I’m pretty sure everyone can make it. I also try to restrict myself with ingredients that are not hard to come by—so more people can try out at their own kitchens.

Anyway, without further ado, please find the recipe below:

Aglio Olio Fusili w/ Garlic Prawn

(serves 1)



Pasta & Sauce

  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped (adjust depending on your preference)
  • 1/4 onion, finely chopped (optional)
  • 150 grams Dried Fusili Pasta (or you can just eyeball the portions using a plate, seriously)
  • 4 Tbsp Olive Oil (the normal one; not the light / virgin)
  • 15 grams unsalted butter
  • Red Pepper Flakes / Chilies as needed
  • Powdered Parmesan Cheese to taste (I use a hefty sprinkling)
  • Salt & Blackpepper to taste


  • 5 medium sized-shrimp / 10 small sized-shrimp, peeled with tail on, deveined.
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp Olive Oil
  • 15 grams unsalted butter
  • Red Pepper Flakes / Chilies as needed
  • Salt & Blackpepper to taste

How to Make:

  1. In a large pot, boil water (salted) until it comes into a rolling boil. I don’t really measure the amount of salt I put in, but probably around 1-2 Tbsp.
  2. Once it comes to a rolling boil, put in the dried pasta, and cook 1 minute less than the recommended cooking time on the package. (Or you can just try out a piece. The pasta should be soft but still have a slight bite into it).
  3. Now let’s make the toppings first. Pull out a frying pan, drizzle with olive oil, and put in the garlic while the oil is cold. This is important. Turn on the burner on low heat and keep an eye on those garlic—we don’t want to burn them.
  4. Once the garlic becomes fragrant, put in the shrimp, making sure to pat them dry before frying. Add the red pepper flakes, salt, and pepper to taste.
  5. Once the shrimp changes color to pink, turn off the heat, and stir in the small amount of butter. Wait for the butter to melt, and set it aside in a dish.
  6. By this time, your pasta would be done. Drain the pasta well, saving a bit of the cooking water in the process. Set it aside.
  7. In the frying pan used to fry the shrimp, drizzle olive oil, and add garlic when it’s cold.
  8. Set the burner on medium-low. Once the garlic becomes fragrant, add in the onion and red pepper flakes. I tend to salt the pan slightly at this stage (don’t ask me why), but you need to stir the oil with all the fragrant goodies until it’s all well-incorporated.
  9. Once the onion pieces look translucent, drop the pasta into the frying pan. Stir well, and make sure all the pasta pieces are coated in the glorious oil.
  10. Add salt, pepper, and parmesan cheese to taste. Cook for an additional 3-4 minutes. Then turn the heat to high, and continue cooking for an additional 1-2 minutes.
  11. Turn off the heat, add butter, stir in. If the pasta is too dry, you can add the pasta cooking water, but this is completely optional.
  12. Plate your pasta in a bowl/plate, and spoon over the garlic shrimp toppings.
  13. Voila~ dinner is served.

Please note that while I used Fusili, you can definitely use other kinds of pasta. Spaghetti has got to be the most popular option here, but I ran out of those. As a self-proclaimed home cook, I had to make do and use whatever I had on hand—hence the fusili.

Photo by Immo Wegmann on Unsplash

You can also add other toppings. On some days, I like to enjoy my aglio olio with added sautéed mushrooms, but that’s a recipe for another time. In any case I hope you can try out the recipe (if you can even call it a recipe), and feel free to let me know how yours turned out!

Happy cooking, everyone.

Where to find

Goodreads | GPU | Gramedia Digital | Grobmart


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