Shiso pesto pasta with sauteed mushrooms & marinated fish roe

Sorry it’s pasta again…

The last two weeks had been very busy but special, my secondary schoolmate, Cynthia came to stay with me all the way from sunny San Francisco to snowy Basel. I guess if she knew that it would snow here, she would have changed her mind. It was a pity that it had been snowy pretty much throughout her stay. Nevertheless we had a great time, we laughed our heads off day and night, having late nights, watching movies and TV, wine tasting in Alsace (Andlau and Colmar), needless to mention of course wine and dine.

Cynthia is a chef as well as in the restaurant business, I was so lucky that I did not need to cook in the last two weeks but can still sample a lot of yummy food. She is very kind to demonstrate a lot of her signature Asian fusion dishes and share her cooking tips with me. It has widened my horizon and I hope I can cook outside the box in the future. Baby Marc was so good those evenings that he was almost able to sleep through and allowed us to enjoy the dinner quietly. Hubby was also very nice to me that he let me go out for the last few days during her stay and took care Marc for me.

She brought me a lot of goodies from US: self-dived uni (sea urchin) and abalone, hamachi (sushi fish), sake, magazines and baby stuffs. Half of her luggage was all for me, I was so amazed how she managed that. If you are interested, you can see what I have eaten in Flickr.

When we went shopping in Basel and Zurich, Cynthia kept saying everything in Switzerland are really much more expensive than in the US except the 3Cs: cheese, chocolate and CIGARS!!!

Anyway after she had left, I have to cook for ourselves again. One thing I have learnt is that I can make use of the herbs more efficiently without wasting them. The other day I was so happy that for the first time I found Shiso leaves Perilla) in the Asian market here, I did not know what I could do with the whole pack and just bought it because I love shiso. We used the shiso to garnish the sashimi but there was still a lot left so I made a Shiso pesto and have used it in pasta and fried rice.

Serves 2


  • 125-150g dried spaghetti
  • 100g mix of steinpilz mushrooms and champignons
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp fish roe or uni (sea urchin)

Shiso Pesto

  • 1 cup packed fresh Shiso leaves (also called Perilla), discard stems, washed and pat dried, briefly chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, cut into small pieces
  • 1/3 extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • 1/4 cup parmesan reggiano cheese


  1. Make in advanced the shiso pesto by whizzing all the above using a handheld mixer. Store in a food container.
  2. Sauté the mushooms with olive oil and garlic. In the meantime, cook the pasta as instructed from the pack.
  3. When the pasta is ready, toss in 1-2 tbsp shiso pesto and mix well, Layer the sauteed mushroom on top and spoon 1 tbsp fish roe in the middle. Serve immediately.



9 thoughts on “Shiso pesto pasta with sauteed mushrooms & marinated fish roe

  1. Janet, I love shiso, and did not know that was called perilla. The pasta looks delicious, so exotic…something that I’d love to have right now. Beautiful shot of the pasta 🙂

  2. I tried to plant once but did not work, maybe I did it wrong, I heard just sprinkle on top of soil instead of inside the soil to let them germinate, is this right?

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