Pasta has always been one of my favorite food. When I am sick, I yearn for spaghetti. For some reason, spaghetti was the only thing I could stomach when I was hospitalized with dengue two years ago. Pasta was also one of my pregnancy cravings, but then again, even when I was not pregnant, I always preferred pasta over rice. So as a pasta lover, I was thrilled to join the celebration of World Pasta Month 2016 with Doña Elena Pasta Al Dente as one of the bloggers of Mommy Bloggers Philippines.

Doña Elena Al Dente Pasta, the only Artisan Quality Italian Pasta brand in the Philippines, has been pioneering this gastronomic celebration for three years now. This 2016, the National Pasta Month Celebration highlights an exciting challenge among Mercato Centrale food vendors as they participate in the Doña Elena Al Dente Ultimate Pasta Challenge where they featured their originally crafted meal combinations of their specialty dishes and Doña Elena Al Dente Pasta.

All food enthusiasts were able to witness an epic and pasta-licious culinary cook-off last October 14, 2016 at the Mercato Centrale, Bonifacio Global City in Taguig. Pasta connoisseurs were invited to purchase a Pasta Passport for a minimal purchase of P100. The passport served as their exclusive pass to enjoy free Doña Elena Al Dente Pasta products and appreciate the entertainment band and program hosted by the radio and TV host, Jamie Fournier.

Passport holders of the event were also able to taste and vote for the best pasta dish from the eight pasta-licious dish entries of the Ultimate Pasta Challenge participants and five beautifully designed pasta artwork from the Pasta Art competition.

“This culinary gathering highlights the universal love for pasta. We aim to bring more people to appreciate pasta and into recognizing how this dish has been part of our lives. It allows us to present to our Filipino consumers a variety of dishes that they can enjoy Doña Elena Al Dente Pasta with. We will continue bringing them great-tasting authentic Italian pasta,” says Rachelle Chang, Product Associate.

Made with 100% durum wheat semolina, Doña Elena Al Dente Pasta is crafted with bronze dies which leave rough ridges on the pasta, helping sauces cling better thus making it more flavorful. It is available in five variants - Fusilli, Spaghetti, Fettuccine, Penne Rigate, and Lasagna.

Participants of the Ultimate Pasta Challenge are the following: The Grill and Pasty Shack (Salted Egg Pasta), Kusina ni Cha (Cream Based Fettuccine with Mussels), Chicago Pizza & Pasta (Salmon & Spinach Fettuccine), Chef Bab’s Sisig and More! (Creamy Sisig Pasta), Raclette Cheese Scraper (Raclette Truffle Fettuccine), Aces Cuisine (Deep Fried Smoked Chicken Lasagna), Edgy’s Foodtrip (Aglio E Olio Garlic Chicken), and Hairstylist’s Menu (Pak na Pasta).

The Doña Elena Al Dente Ultimate Pasta Challenge is co-presented by Masflex, Tecnogas, Fujidenzo, Whirlpool, May Sparkling, Franzia, Don Lucio Wines, UP Piccola Italia; and in cooperation with its media partners: Appetite Magazine, Breakfast Magazine, Business Mirror, Business World, Cook Magazine, Malaya Business Insight, Manila Bulletin, Mommy Bloggers Philippines and wheninmanila.com.

Four participants braved the Pasta Eating Contest where the first person to finish a bowl of pasta wins!

Aside from the mouthwatering and creative pasta dishes, I also enjoyed a Leodora’s bento box.

I spent my night with one of the winners of the raffle draw activity and the winner of the pasta eating contest. It was a pleasure meeting people who loved pasta as much as I do.

The Colosseum pasta art drew the most votes among the Pasta Art competition.

To cap off the event, the winners of the Doña Elena Al Dente Ultimate Pasta Challenge were announced. The grand winner goes to Aces Cuisine. Chicago’s Pizza & Pasta takes second place as well as the people’s choice award while Hairstylist’s Menu finishes off in third place.

The night was a total enjoyment, not only because I won one of the raffle prizes, but also because I enjoyed the new and creative pasta dishes. Basking in a celebration of pasta was truly a delight especially in the midst of fellow pasta lovers!

You can find this outfit on my Ethnic Meets Galaxy in a Crossroads of Prints post.