Sunday, October 31, 2004


A friend’s son is celebrating his birthday and my friend requested that I cook laing for her. I feel privileged to cook for her. Why not? I feel important. More importantly, the son is my inaanak. My friend just gave birth three weeks ago and she badly needs my help. I also like it when friends express what they want from you without any hesitation. So here is her request.

2 cans of coconut milk
½ lb of pork
1 tbsp of finely chopped ginger
3 tbsp of alamang
chilies (depending on how hot you want your recipe to be)
3 pcs of taro root, cubed
2 lbs of fresh gabi stalk and leaves, stringed and cut in about 2 inches long
about 100 gms of flaked tinapa

In a pan, render the creamiest portion of the coconut milk (about half of the can) into near oil like consistency. With that, sauté the pork, ginger and the alamang for about 2 minutes. Add the taro root and cook for about 10 minutes adding the remainder of the coconut milk ½ can at a time.

Add the gabi stalk and leaves and cook on medium heat for about 15 minutes or longer. Add the flaked tinapa and cook for another 2 minutes. The flavour improves when left in the fridge overnight.

Friday, October 29, 2004

Apo Hiking Society

You might be wondering why I have this in my food blog. I was preparing to post some recipes when I stumbled on this site of the Apo Hiking Society while blog hopping. Listening to their songs brought tears in my eyes and a longing to go home to the Philippines if only I could. For my non-Filipino readers, Apo Hiking Society is a well known group in the Philippines. If you go to their website, they've been giving Original Pilipino Music (OPM) for the last 3 decades. I was in my elementary grade when I first heard them sing. They do have good English Songs among them, Anna, Show me a Smile, When I Met You. One English song I love very much is "Love is for Singing". If only you understand Filipino I would recommend that you listen to their "Pumapatak ang Ulan".
What I like in them is they always carry lively vibes wherever they go and whatever they do. Even their songs portrayed classic everyday situations then. While listening to their "Kabilugan ng Buwan" I felt the warmth of my husband's love..naks naman. When I looked at their current photos, they did look older than when I last saw them. Jim was cutest of them all. I think when I was a teenager, I had a crush on him.
Now I can listen to their songs while blogging. Sorry, no recipes for tonight but at least there's music we could all listen to.

Sinigang sa Miso

How to bring your sinigang to the next level? Try this.
My readers make me curious about so many things, this one included. I posted something about Miso Soup and 2 readers had different things to say..Santi remembered his Lola’s sinigang sa miso and Sari was asking if the miso paste I used was the same as the one we use for sinigang in the Philippines. I had no answer for Sari except to try and find out. Try, I did and Sari, it worked.

I was feeling lucky. I had white fish in my freezer and I had some baby bok choy leaves from a previous recipe so I tried experimenting. You see, the miso we use in the Philippines is dehydrated and in pouches. The miso I had was the paste. Both come from the same base of soy beans. My experiment turned out to be what everyone was wondering about..sinigang sa Miso.


1 tbsp of olive oil
2 cloves garlic
½ coarsely chopped onion
½ coarsely chopped tomato
2 tbsp of miso paste
4 cups of water
about ½ lb of white fish (you can use any other fish like bangus, etc.)
about 1 lb of green leaves (I used baby bok choy)
½ medium radish, cut in circles
sinigang broth
2 tbsp of miso paste
salt to taste

In a deep sauce pan, heat oil. Saute garlic, onion and tomato until limp. Add about 4 cups of water. Let boil. Dissolve miso paste in boiling water. Add fish and cook for about 5 minutes. Add radish and cook until tender crisp. Add green leaves and cook for about 1 minute. Season with Sinigang broth and salt. Serve hot.
Tips: The miso soup is salty so you might want to taste your soup first before seasoning it with salt.

Thursday, October 28, 2004

Pata Tim

I have been itching to post this but never got the time to do it. I have been on the road for a few days now. The trip is not really that far. It’s a 30-minute drive from where I live but I’ve never really been used to getting off our locality to get to a client’s. I walk to work everyday and so driving on the freeway during rush hours is really stressful. I hate the fact that I have to wake up half an hour earlier and get home half an hour later and I have to cart my working paper files, (basically my office) with me. Fortunately, I go there a few days once a year. Not bad. This year, it seemed that it took me forever to have my part done that I had to go back more than once. I felt like I was there the whole week.

I cooked this Pata Tim a few days ago but never really had the chance to post it until now. What I love about this is I basically leave it in the slow cooker for a few hours without any hassle and when dinner is ready, all I need is to add the vegetables. I am used to having this with “Mustasa” but for some reason I couldn’t find any in my favorite stores. I substituted the mustasa with Rappini because of the bitter taste of Rappini but it did not turn out to be a popular one for my family so I had to redo it the next day with baby bok choy. It was redone one more time the day after the next day with potatoes. My family seem to be getting used to non fatty meats these days and they didn’t quite enjoy this like they used to.

About 3 lbs or more of pork hocks
1 tsp of star anise
1 tbsp of finely chopped ginger
1 tbsp of finely chopped garlic
½ tsp of peppercorns
¼ cup of soy sauce
¼ cup of brown sugar
1 ½ cups of water
5 tbsp of kecap manis
1 bundle (about 1 or more lbs of baby bok choy), washed

Put everything in slow cooker for about 5 hours

Just before dinner, heat the pan and put the washed bok choy in and cover pan. Usually the bok choy leaves get cooked with their own juice extracted from their stalks. If they turn dry which is unlikely before they get cooked, add sauce from the pork hocks. Add the cooked hocks including sauce and let boil. Serve in a serving platter. It’s as simple as that.

I cooked it first this way. My kids thought the hocks locked scary and the Rappini too bittery.

The only thing different from the way I used to make it in the Philippines is I had kecap manis from Indonesia that my sister in law brought as pasalubong to us when she came to visit. It had the flavor of star anise and I really do not have any idea of any recipe I could cook to make this useful. It turned out fine.

Wednesday, October 27, 2004

Inihaw na Baboy

Last Week Sassy featured Inihaw na Baboy from a restaurant they went to to celebrate her and brother-in-law’s birthday. I was drooling with no end until I had it. Pork is readily available in all grocery stores here except that the rind and fat have been trimmed off already.

My husband who usually doesn’t go with my whims surprisingly agreed to drive me to a Vietnamese store that sold pork bellies with rind. I bet you he must have been craving too. I do not remember preparing inihaw at home. My friends serve them on parties but we haven’t been to any of our friends’ parties lately.

My ingredients:

¼ cup soy sauce
dash of ground pepper
4 tbsp of lemon juice
1 tbsp of finely chopped garlic
1 lb of pork belly, sliced in pork chop sizes and about 1/3 inch thick

Mix first four ingredients. Marinate pork in mixture for about 2 hours. Broil for about 8 minutes on each side or until cooked. Flame broil it for 30 seconds once cooked. Slice in serving pieces and serve with suka ng sili.

Can you hear my grill sizzling?

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

Special Chicken Mami (not)

I was jumping for joy when I saw a fellow blogger from Baguio surfaced, just as I jumped for joy when I first learned I could now interact with other Pinoys all over the world. What was even exciting was we both graduated from the same university. My husband and I both graduated from the same school but he was 2 years ahead of me.

There are nights when we’re in bed that we spend hours and hours remembering our childhood. Just to name some odd things between him and me: he was my older sister’s classmate in high school but he could not recall having my sister for a classmate. There was a time when we were still dating that he mentioned to me his classmates and those names rang a bell. They were my sister’s. My husband is a low maintenance person. When you go to a party and leave him in the corner for 3 hours, you will still find him there. That explains why he couldn't remember my sister.

While in university, it must be in my third year that his name was written all over the bulletin boards around the campus..he was a national board placer, a third placer (**wink,wink**). Yes, that’s how our school pays tribute to deserving students. I do remember reading his name but it has never crossed my mind that he will be my husband someday. I never knew him at all.

I met him at work 3 years after and my story about us begins and ends here. Back to the nights we remember our school, for some reason we seem to remember a funny thing about the cafeteria at Diego Silang, a central building in our campus. Chicken Mami as I recall was the cheapest we could buy with our meager allowance, for me anyway. For the chicken mami though, there were 2 choices, the regular and the special. Funny how my husband and my observations about the chicken mami differed.

My friends loved listening to the lady who would normally shout our orders to the people in the kitchen preparing the food. She would shout “isang chickin mami, ispicial” or "flying suser, isa". Our group actually got reprimanded by our dean for laughing at the lady. She was our friend though and Manang remembered me when I went to the university last year to get a copy of my credentials..a little older now but she remembered me!

However, my husband remembers this in a different way. If it was an ordinary mami, all you got was the stock, a few shredded chicken meat and the noodles. If it was a special mami, it came with a few slices of green onions and boiled eggs. I bet you, you could never order that for Php 4 now. Phew, how we've aged!

When I visited Watson’s blog, I promised to tell him about this story, so here it is WATSKY! Cheers! My kids said it was so unlike me to serve them plain mami like that. I usually throw in vegetables. Well, the legend of chicken mami at Diego Silang was retold for the nnth time when we had this.

Sunday, October 24, 2004

Supreme Brand Sotanghon Soup

I found this covered on our kitchen countertop last week. You could tell I haven't been doing a lot of cooking lately. It is the season. Some mornings, my daughter usually cooks for his brother soup. Sometimes bread is not appealing to her but she knows my rule that nobody skips breakfast so she'll think of something else. I am a late riser, that's my excuse. But...this was not cooked by my daughter. I found out later that my husband bought this from the Filipino store in those redi cooked bowls where you just have to add boiling water to it and you'll have a soup in a jiffy. He saved this for me apparently. Curios of course, I had it. Not bad but I think it was ful of MSG. Mine is usually peppered with veggies.

Miso Soup

I guess you can call this a comfort soup. There are days when the members of my family just feel so filled or we don’t feel like having anything except a warm, soothing soup that will keep us filled until the next scheduled mealtime. There was no grocery shopping for me this weekend. It was just so chilly outside. We experienced the first hailstorm of the year. After being used to a bright, sunny summer, I will have to condition myself to a dark wintry 4 months ahead of me.

I have nothing against winter. I love the four seasons in fact. I love the thought that every three months, something new comes up. I love the fall. It slows me down after a sunny season full of activities. I love winter. It reminds me that I need to give myself a needed rest. I love spring. It gives me meaning to a new life. Flowers start blooming, birds start to come out. And then summer comes. I love tenting in the wilderness, the picnics by the seaside, the short travels and outings with friends. The cycle goes on and I still haven’t told you how to cook my miso soup.

You will need:

About ¼ cup of firm tofu
About 2 tbsp of green onions finely chopped
About 4 cups of water
About 5 tbsp of miso paste

Boil water in a deep saucepan. Dissolve paste in boiling water. Add Tofu and turn stovetop off. Serve in soup bowl topping it with green onions. Isn’t there comfort in the thought that you get this warm soup on lazy days like I had last weekend?

Saturday, October 23, 2004

Fried Trout

Somebody stole some slices of the tomato before I was able to take a picture of this :-)

All turkeyed-out, I started craving for fish. Trout and Salmon are so much in season these days. I bought two tiny ones supposedly to be steamed. When we got home, I realized we didn’t have onions and the rest of the stuff to cook these the way I normally do so I decided to try frying them instead.

What I used:

1 egg, beaten combined with about ½ tsp of salt
½ cup flour
olive oil for frying

Heat oil in pan. You will know that the pan is ready for frying if the oil produces a crispy boiling sound if you sprinkle water in the heated pan. While heating pan, prepare fish for frying. Dip fish in egg mixture and drench in flour and drop fish in heated oil. Each side should be fried for about 5 minutes or until brown. Serve with tomatoes and onions if desired.

Turkey Fried Rice

Okey, okey, I know you guys are turkeyed-out just by reading my post. Allow me though to post just this one and we’ll call it the end of my turkey story for now. For now because I still got some in the freezer.

The ingredients I used here are all leftovers. I had one, just one piece of chorizo sausage left. Of course I also had the turkey meat. Well, one rainy night last week made me too lazy to think of what to prepare for dinner. The mounting containers of leftovers in the fridge made me feel like getting rid of what’s inside the fridge altogether.

I had lots of small containers of cooked rice. In one corner, I had the chorizo. On the other, a small container of corn and in the freezer is about ¼ cup of green peas. Huh, what about putting them all together and coming up with fried rice? Not bad!


1 tbsp of olive oil
1 chorizo sausage coarsely chopped
1 cup of turkey meat
1 clove of garlic, finely chopped
½ coarsely chopped medium onion
about 4 cups of cooked rice
about ¼ cup of corn
about ¼ cup of green peas
salt to taste

In a pan, heat the oil. Put chorizo and cook until brown. Put chorizo on the side of the pan. Cook garlic for about 1 minute or until garlic turns lightly brown. Add onions and turkey meat. Add rice and cook for about 5 minutes. Add corn and green peas and cook for another 2 minutes. Season wit salt. I used a dash of paprika to add color to it. I had this for lunch the next day.

Turkey Quesadillas

Filling should only be half cooked or only for a short time so that you could feel the crispiness of the peppers and the onion.

Don't forget to spread the shredded mozarella cheese and you'll be fine.


After that tummy filling turkey dinner we had came the unending saga of how I was going to make the leftovers into useful meals. Left with a few quesadilla wraps from my Shrimp Quesadillas I decided to make Turkey Quesadillas. I deboned the legs and chopped the meat coarsely.

My ingredients

1 tbsp of olive oil
About 1 cup of chopped mushrooms
½ medium red bell pepper chopped coarsely
½ cup medium green bell pepper chopped coarsely
½ medium onion chopped coarsely
1 cup of coarsely chopped turkey legs
1 tbsp of cumin powder
1 tbsp of paprika
1 cup of grated mozzarella cheese
tortilla wraps

In a pan, heat the oil. Add all the first 8 ingredients and cook for 1 minute. Spread the veggies on half side of the wrap, top with grated cheese and fold the wrap.

Bake at 250 in oven toaster for about 8-10 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Serve with sour cream.

Monday, October 18, 2004

Turkey Dinner

Looking for Thanksgiving Day ideas? How about this turkey dinner we just had? Turkey Dinner is definitely an acquired tradition and taste for my family. Not a popular occasion for Filipinos to trade their marvelous foods for. For one thing, the stuffing is something foreign to us. On the other, we find the turkey a little bland compared to chicken which we're used to.

I believe in the saying that “When you’re in Rome, do what the Romans do”. I can experience Filipino dinners anywhere, anytime of the year but not the excitement of celebrating Thanksgiving Day with a Turkey once a year. There are only 8 countries celebrating Thanksgiving Day according to the history book I read and I happen to be in one of them. I'd like to have something to share when my officemates talk about what they had and who they were with on Thanksgiving Day. Their stories are the same over and over, year after year but it must be just the spirit of Thanksgiving that they get so excited about it. I love to celebrate it with the thought of bountiful blessings we've had over the years. Lastly, I would like to make sure my kids are not ignoramus about this when they spend dinners with other people in the future.

I Filipinized my turkey dinner as usual. I modified my stuffing from the usual bread crumbs with sage, rosemary and thyme to rice with sausage. I got the idea from my officemate when we were deciding what to do on our boss’ 50th birthday. A suggestion was stuffing the turkey with rice and sausage. I offered myself to look after it. I first fried the sausage(fresh chorizo preferably), with onions, and garlic and then the rice. I seasoned it with Club House Garlic Plus Seasoning and a tablespoon of herb de provence and lots and lots of dried parsley. Oh, it was heavenly. My officemate was quite surprised that my stuffing turned out to be so good. When she suggested rice with sausages, she meant the raw sausage and cooked rice mixed together and stuffed in without cooking it first. (You can add ham, smokies and other sausages you can think of if you want)

We skipped the Brussel sprouts part. For the life of me, no matter how I will try to change the process of cooking these cabbage looking thingys, (no offense meant to JMom) it’s not going to work out with my not-so-fuzzy family members. I myself hardly like it, I tried. I substituted it of course with canned corn, carrots and spring mix salad.

We had a bit of cheese nibblers and some pickles and boiled sausages for appetizers but when the bird is served right in front of you, would think of having the appetizers?

Our big bird, between 5 and 6 lbs was baked for 3 hours or a bit longer and basted with its own juice once in a while. Others put bacon on top. I think we only had about 1/4 or 1/3 of it and kept the leftovers in the freezer. I make the leftovers into Sotanghon Soup (have you ever thought about that before?) and Barley Soup. The turkey serving was topped with cranberry sauce. Sounds funny alright because of the cranberries' sweet taste but hey, I tried it with gravy and it wasn't as good. There must be a reason why cranberry was chosen to go with Turkey. My son will make turkey sandwich out of the leftovers for sure.

After our big dinner, we had pumpkin pie with a dollop of whipped cream and English tea. The pie was not homemade. For the amount of work you have to do to make one, I went for the commercialized one. BTW, the pie in the picture is my son's. It was not just a dollop of whipped cream. He actually put tons and tons of it.

Sunday, October 17, 2004

Shrimp Quesadillas

Coming home knowing your husband wasn’t going to me home just made me lazy to prepare dinner. I decided to prepare Quesadillas. They were definitely easy to prepare.

1 tbsp of olive oil
About 1 cup of chopped mushrooms
½ medium red bell pepper chopped coarsely
½ cup medium green bell pepper chopped coarsely
½ medium onion chopped coarsely
1 cup of cooked shrimps chopped coarsely
1 tbsp of cumin powder
1 tbsp of paprika
1/4 cup of coarsely chopped cucumber

1 cup of grated mozzarella cheese
tortilla wraps

In a pan, heat the oil. Add all the first 8 ingredients and cook for 1 minute. Spread the veggies on half side of the wrap, top with grated cheese and fold the wrap.

Bake at 250 in oven toaster until cheese is melted. It’s supposed to be grilled but cooking for 3, I was too lazy to turn the grill on. Besides, the grill was outside and of course it was cold.
Serve with sour cream.

Bocconcini Cheese Ball and Vegetable Dips

Entering the store with organic foods, I was so enticed on eating vegetables. Afterall, I was still feeling shitty (pardon me). I am not infanticipating but I must have had something that just turned my tummy upside down and maybe, just maybe the morning headache.

I prepared a few cauliflower florets and broccoli crowns with celery sticks and baby carrots. Oh well, a couple of cherry tomatoes too if they count. Ranch was what I had in mind for the dressing but I only had Thousand Island.

Of course I saw this familiar Bocconcini Cheese Ball. It was introduced by a Swiss officemate who has long gone back to Switzerland. I tried it but it was not as good. I must have loved this cheese because of the company when I first had it.

Balimbing, Mangosteen, Saba and Passion Fruit

My weekend didn't work as planned. We originally planned for a turkey dinner last weekend. Before I knew it, husband was working overtime and was not coming home until 12:00 AM. Besides that, I woke up early Saturday with a terrible headache. My husband kept on blaming me for not using my pair of glasses. He wanted me to wear them on and go back to bed. I haven't heard of anyone sleeping with their glasses on except my Uncle who used to work so hard and would usually fall asleep on the couch while watching TV. Anyway, I went back to bed after drinking aspirin and woke up at 11:00 am refreshed and headache gone or so I thought. Since hubby was working I thought of going shopping. There was a mall newly opened a few minutes away from us. Kids knew what they were going to be into if they went with me so they pretended they had lots of homework. I decided to take it easy and take the bus instead of driving. In the new mall, there was a store selling purely organic foods. Not that I go for purely organic foods but I was quite surprised with what they had. This cost me over $6 but I wanted to show my kids what these were.

Of course when I bought the saba I already had something to try in mind. Sassy had this but she had it fried. I tried brushing the saba with butter and baked them in the oven toaster instead of frying them. I simmered about 6 tbsp of honey and 1/4 homo milk for the topping. It was alright but I will try it with something else when I go to the Filipino store. (I forgot to put the cinnamon)

Friday, October 15, 2004

Fresh Lumpia

Something my daughter cooked. Definitely the pro on "crepe" making and the paalat sauce. Using Let's Cook with Nora, she has modified this according to our taste. She had difficulty in making the wrapper but has finally gotten comfortable in making them herself without my assistance.

Vegetable Filling

3 tbsp. olive oil 3 cup cabbage, shredded
2 cup string bean, julienne ½ cup onions, chopped
2 tbsp. patis ¼ ground pork
1-cup potatoes, julienne 1-cup carrots, julienne

Put oil in frying pan.
Add onions and cook until transparent.
Add ground pork and cook for until lightly brown.
Add potatoes and cook until soft.
Add carrots and cook until soft.
Then add string beans, mix and add cabbage.
Sprinkle patis through out vegetables for taste.

Home-Made Lumpia Wrapper

2 eggs
1 cup water
½ cup flour

Combine all three ingredients in a bowl.
Brush frying pan with a little oil and heat.
Spoon batter into pan and tilt it to spread the batter evenly on pan.
Lift off wrapper when done.

Lumpia Sauce or Paalat

1/2 sugar 1 tsp salt
1 tbsp soy sauce 2 tbsp cornstarch dissolved in ¼ cup water
2 cups broth 4-6 cloves garlic, finely chopped
peanut butter

Blend first 4 ingredients together and bring mixture to a boil.
Add cornstarch to thicken mixture, and then add peanut butter.3. Sprinkle with chopped garlic and serve on top of lumpia.

Wrap fillings adding a piece of lettuce to garnish. Top with Paalat.

Lemon Meringue

My daughter baked this at her Foods Class. Although my kids share the same passion for cooking, my girl is better at baking, my son is better at making our kitchen messy. There is also the "weather-weather" factor here. Depending on the weather, they could be so interested in cooking but most of the time, they prefer to stay in their room. On days they show interest, heck I'll let them. I need a day off afterall. There is just one rule they have to adhere to..clean up after your mess or you get to be the kitchen helper for the day. It's nice to start them early in life. This is lifted from her school's Foods Class recipe book.
Graham Cracker Crust

1-cup crumbs (250 ml)
1/3 cup melted butter (75ml)
¼ cup sugar

Press into greased 8” or 9” or into smaller foil pie plates.
Then chill for 5 minutes.

Filling(the recipe calls for 2/3 cup sugar but she's learning from me)

1/2 cup sugar (150 ml) 3 egg yolks
¼ cup cornstarch (60 ml) 75 ml lemon juice
¾ cup warm water (200 ml) 2 tsp. margarine (10 ml)
Zest of lemon

Mix sugar and cornstarch in top of the double boiler with a wooden spoon. Gradually add warm water and cook over boiling water stirring constantly until mixture thickens, and almost boils. Remove from heat. Beat egg yolks, lemon juice and zest of lemon in a small bowl. Slowly add yolk mixture to cornstarch mixture, stirring constantly. Return top of double boiler to heat, stir until thick. Remove from heat and blend in margarine. Pour into baked pie shell.


3 egg whites
Pinch of cream of tartar
3 tbsp. sugar (45 ml)

Beat egg whites with cream of tartar until frothy. Gradually beat in 2 tbsp. sugar and continue beating until stiff and glossy. Pile meringue onto pie filling. Be careful to seal meringue to the crust all around the edge to prevent shrinking and weeping. Swirl or pull up point for decorative top. Bake 8-10 minutes at 350 or until delicately browned.


Yes, Puto. They were home-made alright but out of a pre-mixed box. I also used my egg poacher which wasn't a bad idea. I will tell you how I made them just the same.

Thursday, October 14, 2004

Shrimp Wonton Soup

This is what my kids are going to have for tonight. I am going to visit a cousin who is suffering from CA and my kids find it morbid to even think about the fact. In short, they don’t want to go with me. Dad is on afternoon shift so it will be just the two rugrats left to fend for themselves. My daughter said she can just cook wonton with shrimps and vegetables. I trained them well, can you tell?

This is one picture I took a while ago. With frozen wontons, I could come up with a lot of ideas. I incorporate a lot of vegetables. I can also add some shrimps or when I get too fancy, I put barbecued tenderloin. But the basic how to is here.

1 lb of ground pork3 pieces of Pilipino longanisa(skinless)-optional
1 onion chopped finely
dash of ground pepper
1 clove of finely chopped garlic
4 tbsp of soy sauce
1 egg
1 tbsp of sesame oil
wanton wrappers
vegetables of your choice
a block of knorr seasoning or 1 tbsp of oxo shrimp seasoning

green onions, finely chopped

Mix the first 7 ingredients, except the wanton wrappers. Stuff the wrappers with about 1 tbsp of the mixture. Freeze extras for rainy days.

Boil about 2 cups of water. Put frozen wontons in. Let boil. Season with concentrated stock of your choice. Add Shrimps. Let boil until shrimps turn pink. Turn off stove and add vegetables if you them crisp. Let stand for about 5 minutes. Serve topped with chopped green onions and ground pepper if you wish.

Of course they have the adobong pusit and the guinataang pusit but I will hear about it later when I get home tonight..I have a feeling that I will have to finish everything myself.

Wednesday, October 13, 2004

Adobong Pusit

I know, I will never hear the end of this. The smallest portion I could buy was 1 kilo in ice block. I had to thaw the whole thing. I can not put the other half in the freezer because the quality will deteriorate for one thing or it will eventually get freezer dried on the other. I decided I’d cook half into guinatang pusit and the other as adobo instead. We can’t take this for lunch. I could just imagine how my officemates will give me a bad time because of the smell if I did bring this so we’ll see how my family is going to deal with these two recipes in the coming days. You’ll find out.

3 tbsp of olive oil
½ kilo of fresh pusit (well cleaned)
½ coarsely chopped medium onion
½ coarsely chopped tomato
Dash of ground pepper
2 cloves of finely chopped garlic
10 tbsp of soy sauce
10 tbsp of vinegar
1 tbsp of sugar

Put everything in a pan. Let boil and then simmer for about 15 minutes. It’s that simple. If you know how to cook any kind of adobo, pork or chicken, you can do this too. It wasn’t spicy. I should have put some but it’s too late now.

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

Spicy Guinataang Pusit

Intrigued by Tito Rolly's message on my other blog, I attempted to cook this. Another First Time, First Served. How spicy can you get? Well, our ears were burning hot! The recipe tomorrow.
I’ve never tried cooking guinataang pusit before so as soon as I read Tito Rolly’s comment, I got curios. He mentioned “spicy adobong pusit and foods with gata” and so I thought of a good combination. Spicy Adobong Pusit? I cook adobong pusit but not spicy.. and then another idea..what if I cooked it with coconut milk and make it spicy? I tried "goggling Guinataang Pusit recipe I could follow but couldn't find one, so here I am, posting my experiment. Believe me, it worked.


1 cup of coconut milk
½ kilo of squid, drained and cleaned (including the ink or your guinataang squid will be black)
½ medium onion, finely chopped
½ tomato, coarsely chopped
about 5 green sili (spicy ones)
2 dried red sili (chopped, depending on how brave you are)
1 cup of coconut milk
salt to taste

When I cook something with coconut milk, I always turn the creamiest part of the coconut milk into oil, where you let the cream boil until it is reduced to gravy like thickness and consistency, and rendering a bit of oil in the process (I’ll call this semi-oil muna).

Once it has turned into “semi-oil”, add the onions and sauté for about 1 minute. Add the tomato and the green and red sili. Cook for about 1 minute. Add the squid, stir and cover the pan. Simmer for about 10 to 15 minutes. Cooking it longer will make your squid tough.

The taste improves if left in the fridge overnight.

Chicken Sandwich

Well, I have a guest blogger, my son and he's claiming 100 % propriety on this one. He made the sandwich and he wrote the recipe. He wants to be a chef one day. (Hmmm, I don't know about that). His elective is Home Ec or specifically Foods. His first recipe was bruschetta.


Baked Chicken
Mashed Potatoes
Tomatoes, Sliced
Lettuce Leaf
Dijon Mustard
Two Slices of Bread

Spread mayonnaise on the bread slices. Spread the mashed potatoes. Strip the chicken and lay on top of the potatoes.

Slice tomatoes into round slices. Slice the pickles lengthwise. Lay tomatoes and lettuce and pickles on the other slice of bread.

This is good for lunch after a big party with lots of leftovers.

Manong Ken's Carinderia and a Little Bit of Nostalgia

In search of authentic Filipino dishes? You might find this helpful. He describes in detail how Filipinos toiled to make a fiesta succesful. I am so glad that he's kept this over the years. This is the closest authentic description of how Filipino cuisine is that I found from binayong saging to the early history of how Filipino dishes are prepared. You will appreciate what he's been saying on his site if you grew up in the Philippines during my time.

My kids would probably not appreciate this because they've only been to my mother's hometown once and that was when they were 2 & 3 y/o (over ten years ago). The rice paddies are probably non-existent anymore. I heard the creek that runs through my lola's house has dried up a long time ago because of irresponsible fishing and all sorts by the townfolks. Fishing was something I always looked forward to as a young kid. Any fish caught was simply cooked as pinangat. Hito was always broiled and cooked as either sinigang or "pesa" style. Now, I heard people fished with the aid of dynamites.

Making kakanin took my relatives overnight to do. It was always fun though. People cannot probably imagine how it is to prepare food without electricity now but fifteen some years ago, my relatives would be pounding yams, boiled bananas and cassavas in the dark (well with the aid of lamps we called Petromax). Refrigerator was not heard off so I kinda wonder now how kakanin never went bad for about 2 days then.

I do not know but it was not always the food that mattered. We always looked forward to the long trip, the stop over for lunch, fruits bought by the highway, seaside scenery, the carabao ride, fruits direct from the tree, things I never experienced in the city. Being a city kid, everyone would like to invite me for dinner. I would expect the same dish over and over--boiled eggs and chicken for as long as I was there. I had an Uncle who as soon as he learns that we are on our way to the province, he would right away go fishing for us. He would come and fetch us from the bus stop(a little modern term for lack of a better word) next town or about 2 hours by kariton. I probably wouldn't like to be on a kariton again for fear of backaches but my kids might love to.
My lola has grown old. She's been brought to Manila so my Uncle could look after her. She however went back to the province now. According to her, she wants to die there. She's turning a hundred in June next year. The roads of course have improved. There is electricity now and they don't pump water by hand anymore. And so I end this with a note of nostalgia.

Spaghetti Meatballs

This is one of my favorite stuff to freeze. The kids can just cook the pasta if they need to, thaw the frozen sauce, heat it in the microwave and I wont have to worry about them. I had to work last weekend and so this came in handy.

Whenever I can avoid frying, I try to. My meatballs were not fried. I cooked them in the toaster oven.


About 2 lbs of lean ground beef
1 medium onion, finely chopped,
5 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
2 eggs
4 tbsp of flour
¼ or less soy sauce
1 tbsp of dried parsley
1 tbsp of dried oregano
2 tbsp of olive oil
½ medium onions, coarsely chopped
2 cans of 400 ml tomato sauce
salt to taste
Cooked spaghetti pasta per packaging instructions
Parmesan Cheese
Garlic Bread

Mix the 8 ingredients together. Form meatballs into about a jackstone ball size or smaller. Arrange in a cookie sheet if you are baking them in the oven, otherwise in the pan that came with the toaster if you are using the toaster. You might have to do two batches if you are using the toaster. Bake for about 20 minutes or until cooked.

In a pan, heat the olive oil. Saute onions until translucent. Add the cooked meatballs. Season to taste. Add the Tomato sauce and simmer for about 20 minutes on low heat. Sometimes, I add green and red pepper but I had none when I cooked this. Whenever I go vegetable freak, I add brocolli and carrots but it isn’t a popular one for my loyal tasters.

Serve hot on top of pasta. Top with parmesan cheese. Serve with Garlic Bread and salad.

Monday, October 11, 2004

Mushrooms, Tomato and Onion Omelette (Omelet)

I grew up to have known only the following omelets: Potato, Tomato and Onion, Tortang Talong until I got out of the Philippines and have widened my cooking horizon. (Naks!). Oopps, I forgot the sardines omelet.

I always try to incorporate vegetables in my recipes whenever I can and this is one way of doing it. I got this idea from a Caucasian friend of mine.


2 tbsp of olive oil to sauté vegetables, 4 tbsp to fry eggs
½ onion, chopped
½ tomato, sliced
about 6 pcs of medium mushrooms, quartered
about 2 tbsp of finely chopped green onions
4 eggs scrambled
salt to taste

Heat oil in a pan and add onions. Cook until translucent. Add tomatoes and cook for about 1 minute. Add mushrooms and green onions. Season. Set aside.

Using a Teflon pan or the same pan (cleaning it first), heat oil. Spread ½ of the scrambled eggs and cook for about half a minute. Add half of the cooked vegetables in the middle. Cook for another half a minute. Fold one side towards the other. Cook each side for about 1 minute. I prefer the stove to be on medium heat to make sure the inside of the omelet is cooked.

Do the same for the other half. Serve hot with salt and pepper.

Friday, October 08, 2004

Stuffed Pork Tenderloin with Asparagus, Mushrooms and Snow Peas

Stuffed Pork Tenderloin
For the Pork Tenderloin

pork tenderloin2 cloves of garlic, chopped finely
dash of ground pepper
¼ cup of soy
lemon juice

Using a paring knife, starting in the middle, shave meat lenghtwise down the tenderloin keeping 1/4 inch thickness at all times until meat lays flat. Others call the process “butterflying”. Marinate with the 4 ingredients above for about 30 minutes.

For the stuffing:

2 tbsp of olive oil2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
½ onion, finely chopped1/4 red bell pepper, diced
1/4 yellow bell pepper, diced3 Tablespoons - celery, diced1 1/2 packed cups of cooked rice 1 tbsp dried parsley3 Tablespoons - green onion tops, minced
1 tbsp of Club House Garlic Plus Seasoning

Heat oil in a pan. Add garlic and cook until fragrant. Add onions. Saute for about 1 minute. Add the peppers and the celery. Add the rice and mix well. Season. Turn off stove and add the parsley and green onions. Let cool for about 10 minutes.

Spread the rice stuffing over pork and roll up to create a pinwheel. I do not secure it with toothpicks of strings. Rather, I wrap the tenderloin in a tin foil to keep the tenderloin from drying. Bake at 350 for 20 minutes. Remove tin foil and brush tenderloin with your favorite barbecue sauce and bake for another 5 minutes. Remove from oven and let stand for about 5 minutes. If tenderloin is not cooled, the tendency is that the stuffing will crumble. Slice pork and serve with your favorite sauce.
Some tips: Sometimes I add sausages in my stuffing. Others use apples. Others also use bread crumbs. I prefer rice. In fact when I bake turkey, I use the same stuffing but I add more ingredients to my stuffing.

Asparagus, Mushrooms and Snowpeas
There’s actually more than asparagus, mushrooms and snow peas in this recipe.

Here’s what is in my recipe:

1 tbsp of olive oil
½ sliced onions
1 bundle of asparagus, cut into about 1 ½ inches long, discarding the tough part
200 gms of mushrooms, quartered
½ red pepper, diced
¼ yellow pepper, diced
1 cup of bean sprouts
200 gms of snow peas, stringed
Salt to taste

Heat oil in a pan. Add onions and sauté until onion is translucent. Add mushrooms and asparagus and cook for about 1 minutes. Add red and yellow peppers and cook for about 1 minute. Season with salt. Add snow peas and bean sprouts and turn oven off. Cover pan and let it stand for about 5 minutes.

Thursday, October 07, 2004

Chunky Seafood-Potato Soup

Autumn is here! Bring out your soup recipes. Here's mine! This is a modification of a recipe one of my officemates made. If I followed the actual recipe, it would have been so thick, rich and creamy because she used cheddar cheese and whole cream milk. I’ve improved on the kind of milk I use in cooking. I have kept to a minimum the use of Campbell’s Cream of whatevers to enhance the taste of my food. In the past, I thought I could never live without Campbell’s soup.

Well, I have also substituted ham with mixed seafood and imitated crabmeat. I plan to have the richer version though for Thanksgiving.

What you need:

2 tbsp of olive oil
1 small onion, coarsely chopped
3 medium new potatoes peeled and diced.
1 stalk of celery cut in about ¼ inch long
½ cup of mixed seafood
½ cup of imitated crab meat
1 cup of water
3 cups of skim milk
Salt to season

In a deep saucepan, heat oil. Add onion and cook until translucent. Add potatoes and cook until tender adding a bit of water if necessary. Add celery and cook for about 1 minute. Add the seafood.

Gradually add water and skim milk making sure that milk does not burn at the bottom of pan. Season. Simmer over low heat for about 15 minutes stirring frequently. Serve hot.Preview of what's coming!

Tuna Melts

Here's a quick fix when you have no leftovers for lunch the next day.

When there are no leftovers, these tuna melts will definitely look like you’ve taken your time to prepare them. Not really. As I said, these are quick fixes. All you need are slices of bread, a can of tuna, a dab of mayonnaise, finely chopped celery, finely chopped green onions, dash of salt and pepper. Mix all the ingredients together except for the bread. Spread over slice of bread. Top with grated cheese. Put in oven toaster and bake until cheese melts. Tadaa!! Delicious

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

Beef Ampalaya

I am not sure how many of you are really looking forward to this recipe. Ampalaya or bitter melon is not one that is pleasant to eat for some. I am fortunate that my kids do not complain or whine when I serve them this one. When I had this first, I had doubts that it was even going to be an acceptable dish so I prepared something else just in case. Lo and behold, my son ate it like it was an ordinary dish and never made a big fuzz out of it. If there’s one thing that my son would not swallow, it is the ocra. It is the opposite for my daughter. She loves ocra. I think between my daughter and my son, they both can live under one roof when I’m not there to cook for them anymore.

For some, they blanch the ampalaya first before they incorporate it with the beef. I cook the ampalaya directly.

1/4 cup of soy sauce
dash of ground black pepper
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
1 lb of round steak beef, sliced thinly
4 tbsp of olive oil
½ onions, coarsely chopped
2 pcs of ampalaya ring sliced
1 tsp of corn starch dissolved in about ¼ cup of water

Mix the first 4 ingredients together and use it to marinate the beef for about 15 minutes.

Heat 3 tbsp of oil in a pan. Saute marinated beef (more like frying) for about 3 minutes on each side. Set aside.

In the same pan, use the remaining oil to sauté the onions. Once onion is crystallized, add the ampalaya and cook for about 4 minutes or until cooked. Add the beef and the dissolved cornstarch. Stir until cornstarch is mixed consistently with the beef and ampalaya. Season and serve hot.

Wonton Soup

Sometimes known as wanton, I think this is just not enjoyed by Chinese. The Vietnamese serve this too. This is one of the easiest to cook that’s surely going to please any kind of crowd. With just over a pound of ground pork, you can make siomai, lumpia and wonton soup for a group of four anyway.

What I usually do is make the stuffing, wrap them accordingly(siomai, lumpia or wonton), pack them tightly and freeze them. Rush hours abound at home and they make good emergency responses to hungry tummies or tired mommies.

Here’s what you need:

1 lb of ground pork
3 pieces of Pilipino longanisa(skinless)or chinese sausage(finely chopped)-optional
1 onion chopped finely
dash of ground pepper
1 clove of finely chopped garlic
4 tbsp of soy sauce
1 egg1 tbsp of sesame oil
wanton wrappers
vegetables(your choice)
a block of knorr seasoning or 1 tbsp of oxo shrimp seasoning
green onions, finely chopped

Mix the first 8 ingredients. Stuff the wonton wrapper with about 1 tbsp of the meat mixture. I wrap the whole mixture and freeze some.

Boil about 4 cups of water. Drop the wontons in boiling water and let boil for about 5 minutes. Add vegetables and cook for about 4 minutes or until vegetables are cooked. Season. Serve hot. Garnish with green onions and ground black pepper.

I personally use carrots, cauliflower and brocolli. Others use green leafy vegetables. I serve about 4 pieces per person and I find it that it is a meal in itself. I often add coarsely chopped shrimp meat.

Never thaw frozen wontons. Boil them frozen because the texture of the wrapper deteriorates once thawed.

Gai Lan with Oyster Sauce

Gai Lan or in my receipt it was Gailon belongs to the variety of brocolli. I have not actually seen anything like this in the Philippines. It must be grown in China because we’ve come to know about this at a Chinese Restaurant. They are being sold in most grocery stores except that you wouldn’t buy it if you do not know how to handle it. Noticing that this was a familiar order by a lot of Chinese at our favorite restaurant, we asked the waitress and so she gave us a short background about this and how it was being cooked.

My family is a family of inquisitive and daring people. We try anything and everything except for the snake blood that BongK is talking about. Believe me, my kids have tried adobong palaka already. Well, there are other exotic foods out there that we are saving for daring days.

There is nothing extra ordinary about cooking this. If you know how to boil kamote tops, you will know how to cook this too. No, this is not boiled. This is cooked in its own juice, if you may.

All you need:

1tbsp of olive oil
1 bunch of Gai Lan,
2 cloves of finely chopped garlic
5 tbsp of oyster sauce

Trim the Gai Lan like you would with camote tops, separating the stalk from the leaves and discarding the tougher stalks.

Heat the pan and oil. Put the Gai Lan, stalks first then the leaves and cover the pan. Cook for about 5 to seven minutes checking occasionally to make sure that ypu are not overcooking one side of the leaves and undercooking the other. Add the oyster sauce and garlic. Serve hot.

I believe that this is a good source of Folic Acid, helpful in carrying iron to your red blood cells.

Monday, October 04, 2004


I cooked this last weekend. It's been a slack Sunday for me. Maybe not, but I have been meaning to cook this for a long time so I tried to pick a good time. Back in the Philippines, I would patiently pound the shrimp heads and shells with pestle and mortar to extract the needed taste for my sauce. I would also extract the color off the atsuete seeds, never mind if the colors stuck to my fingernails for a week even if I washed them ten times.

Now, I could hardly find atsuete here. The shrimps come deveined or shelled and Mama Sita's Palabok Mix come in boxes. The instructions on how to cook palabok of course are found at the back of the packet. If you followed the instructions, sure you will come up with a palabok but not as good as mine (**wink**). I do more than what is at the back of the packet.

For four people, these is what you need:

1 pack (250 gms) of Palabok Noodles
2 tbsp of olive oil
½ to 1 lb of lean ground pork
1 cup of coarsely chopped shrimps
1 pack Mama Sita Palabok Mix
1 pack of Chicharon, finely crushed
4 boiled eggs, sliced
1 (about 200 gms) pack of flaked tinapa
8 calamansi
Patis to taste
1/8 cup of finely chopped garlic
Green onions sliced finely

Boil the Palabok Noodles in six cups of water for about 15 minutes. I want my noodles really cooked. Drain noodles and set aside.

Heat 1 tbsp. of oil in a pan and brown the ground pork. Set aside. In the same pan, add the remaining oil and sauté the garlic until brown. Set aside. In the same pan, cook the tinapa flakes for about 3 minutes. I have a feeling that the tinapa was not cooked so I want to be safe. I do not put oil on this because the flakes absorb a lot of oil. If you wish, you might want to add a bit. I set it aside in a separate bowl. In the same pan, roast the chicharon for a few minutes to give your palabok a crunch. Set aside.

In the same pan, put the browned ground pork and the shrimps. Cook for about 1 minute. Mix the palabok mix per packaging instruction and add to the ground pork. Let it boil gently and stirring constantly to avoid the mix from forming into lumps. Your sauce should be smooth. Turn off your stove and add half of all the ingredients you set aside earlier. The rest are saved for garnishing. Mix the sauce with the noodles and pour in a serving platter. Top with the saved garnishing and green onions. Add a zing to it with calamansi. Sarap!

What you should know about why I had my certain way of preparing this dish: Others use sliced pork but you know the people who get from the serving bowl first pick the sahog and if you happen to be the last one to be served, you will be left only with the noodles. It doesn’t happen in our family but because I love bringing this in potlucks where it usually happens, I got used to using ground pork. Also, I mix the noodles with the sauce because of the same reason I mentioned earlier. Some do not want the fat that goes with the Chicharon. In my case I separate a bowl for me without the Chicharon.

Sunday, October 03, 2004

Buffalo Wings

We’ve tried banishing fried chicken on our list for a few months now, including Kentucky Fried Chicken and Chicken Nuggets from McDonald’s. No offense meant to those who love fried chicken. I'm sure you guys know what I mean. We’ve also had a lot of success in skinning our chicken before cooking it or baking it. However, there are days I have to admit that we give in to our self-imposed discipline. The lady boss(I call her that) said the Oriental Salad goes well with Chicken Wings. Well, who am I to disagree. If I'd been a health conscious person now, she is 5 times more. If she can have chicken wings with skin, why can’t I?

I just used the “Bag ‘n Season” buffalo wings seasoning. I’m no Gourmet Chef when it comes to concocting dips for this or seasoning for that. But this was nearly comparable to the chicken wings of Pizza Hut and a lot cheaper, way, way cheaper. It was just a shake and bake thing. I followed the instruction at the back of the packaging and baked it at 350 for 40 minutes. PRONTO!!