Pasta with jam sauce

With West Collins, son of actor Misha Collins, AB’97, cooking requires a deep interrogation of the word “edible.”

Carrie Golus, AB’91, AM’93 (@carriegolus)

Misha Collins, AB’97, and Victoria Vantoch, AB’97, have two children: son West, 6, and daughter Maison, 4. Judging by their YouTube cooking show, Collins and Vantoch also have a superabundance of parental patience and good humor.



Episodes of Cooking Fast & Fresh with West! typically begin with a trip to the grocery store, where West roams/runs through the aisles, selecting random ingredients. He combines these ingredients in novel ways, while Collins assists and supplies deadpan cooking-show narration. (Vantoch tends to stay behind the camera.) “This phase is really important,” Collins explains as three-year-old West squeezes butter between his fingers and smears it around a skillet. “You can’t take shortcuts … this part can take five to seven minutes.”

The most recent episode, posted last May, of Cooking Fast & Fresh with West (and Maison)! focused on extreme baking. “Content Advisory: Graphic Culinary Violence,” the video description warns. Both a drill and a circular saw are involved.

Collins, who has a taste for the madcap, runs a charity scavenger hunt, the Greatest International Scavenger Hunt the World Has Ever Seen (GISHWHES). (Collins and Vantoch were enthusiastic Scav participants.) Item #38 on the 2014 GISHWHES list: “Prepare West Collins’ Pasta with Jam Sauce and have a noted food critic review it. It must be a qualified, published critic.”

“The sauce was pleasingly robust, fruity but not too sweet,” Providence Cicero, Seattle Times restaurant critic, wrote about one team’s dish. “Its many ingredients were well-balanced, although I failed to detect much cheesy flavor from the goldfish crackers. I particularly liked the chocolate and orange notes.”




  1. Mix a small amount of the carrot juice into the canned tomato sauce then mix a small amount of the canned tomato sauce with the bit of carrot juice in it into the jam. Then gently add a bit of the jam with tomato sauce and carrot juice mixture in it back into the carrot juice. Repeat.
  2. Pour all remaining ingredients into the large mixing bowl. Wearing goggles, beat vigorously with one beater inside the bowl and one outside.
  3. Boil until thick and brown. Serve immediately. Serves 3.

Watch the original video on YouTube.

Video stills courtesy Misha Collins.