Thursday, June 30, 2005

Strawberry Smoothie

Just around the block where we live is a newly opened Bubble Tea store. When I first tried its stuff, I was totally hooked to it. You see, we live just "across the bridge". That's how we intimately call our place when we talk to our friends who live at the other end. Across the bridge from us is very Metropolitan, where real business happens. On our side is where all the people working in the metropolitan area go home to at the end of the day. We are centrally located in this city.

Back to the bubble tea store. Because we live right in the heart of the city, after dinner, we'd go out for a walk and more often than not, spend a few bucks at this bubble tea store. I once watched intently how they made their smoothies. Well, there was nothing complicated about it. A tablespoon of caramelized sugar, strawberry flavored syrup, a few strawberries, a few ice cubes and a couple of tablespoons of Coffeemate Creamer. Turn the blender on for about 2 minutes and voila..sttrraaawwberryyy smooothie!

Coffee Creamer? Oh, so that's why it was so tasty! That just put me off actually. I love fresh milk in mine. So what I did just before the onset of summer where strawberries were in abundance was bought tons of strawberries and froze them. I am guessing that they will be gone just before autumn. My son has become an expert on preparing this that just right after dinner, he'd be offering to serve you a glass of strawberry smoothie.

There is no set measurements when making a smoothie but here's a more or less workable guide:

To make 4 glasses you will need to put the following into the blender:

12 pcs or more of frozen strawberries
4 glasses of 1% milk
a few cubes of ice cubes

Turn your blender on until the strawberries and the ice cubes have turned into what else but a smoothie?

I do not add sugar to our smoothie.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Beef Kaldereta

All Filipino Foodies have this in their blogs. It's one of the more popular recipes you'd ever encounter in every Filipino gathering, believe it or not. Oh well, where I am anyways.

I should not be posting this but I still would like to add this to my collection of recipes for my children's sake. My daughter is not really into cooking and everytime I ask her to prepare some ingredients for me for a particular dish, you'd hear her whine about how she doesn't know what should be in this and that recipe. Thanks to our ever improving technologies. Well, now she doesn't have any alibis anymore. All I ask her to do is log in to the internet and get it from my blog. Brilliant, huh? She's more into baking, and yes and she can follow instructions to the dot.

My son is more the daring type who wants to believe that he can do it just by watching me. Well, it doesn't turn out to be that easy. I still see him go into my blog for instructions so here you go guys, have fun cooking this recipe.


2 tbsp of olive oil
2 lbs of top sirloin cut into cubes
6 pcs of bay leaves
1/4 tsp of peppercorn
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 medium onions, quartered
1 500 gm can of stewed tomatoes
2 pcs of medium potatoes, peeled and cubed
2 pcs of medium carrots, cubed
1 tsp of sugar
about 200 gms of olives
100 gms of green peas
Red peppers (see my note below)
salt or soy sauce to taste

Heat oil in a saucepan. Add beef and saute until brown. Add the bay leaves, peppercorn, garlic and onions. Cook for about 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add water and stewed tomatoes. Cover pan and let boil. Lower the heat to a minimum and simmer for about an hour or two or until beef is tender.

Once beef is tender, add potatoes and carrots and simmer for about 10 minutes. Add sugar, olives and green paste. Add salt or say sauce to taste. I added about 3 tbsp of liver spread but this is optional. Usually the taste improves if left in the fridge overnight.

Note: When I served this, I realized I forgot to add something and my husband quickly added that I should have added red peppers. So there you go guys.

Saturday, June 25, 2005

Lunar Rhubarb Cake

This is a long overdue promised recipe to Mrs. Tweety. Unfortunately, I lost my recipe when I moved offices or shifted to a new computer, I do not know which is which. Anyhow, it took me a long time to ask for a recipe from my boss' wife. As soon as I got it, I right away baked it and decided to post this right away for fear that I might lose the recipe one more time. I know Rhubarb Season is now over but hopefully Mrs. Tweety, you will still find some rhubarbs in your Mother-in-law's backyard.

Since I have been making this for a long time, my boss' wife just dictated the measurements over the phone.

I heard that the reason why this is called lunar rhubard cake is once it's baked, the top resembles the crater of the moon. I haven't been there so I cannot attest to that. I can only say that this recipe is a hit.
Here we go Mrs. Tweety:

You will need:

For the cake:

1/2 cup of butter
1 1/2 cup of white sugar
1 egg
1 tsp of Vanilla
2 cups flour
1 tsp soda
1/2 tsp of salt
1 cup buttermilk
2 cups of chopped rhubard (about 1 cm)

For the topping:

1/4 cup of butter
2 tsp cinnamon
1 cup of brown sugar

Cream butter, sugar and egg. Add Vanila. In a separate bowl, mix flour, soda and salt. Add to the creamed butter and sugar adding 1/3 of the butter milk at a time. Dredge rhubard in flour before folding into the mixture. Pour mixture in a 9 x 13 greased pan.

Cut butter in brown sugar and cinnamon powder until the mixture resembles coarse oatmeal. Spread evenly on top of cake mixture and bake at 350 for 45 minutes.

Thursday, June 23, 2005

My niftiest toy

Yes, you read it right. This is my niftiest toy. I love cooking hamburgers on coal but only when I am outdoors and the weather is fine. There are days when it's raining and I simply want a homemade hamburger.
This one is smokeless and teflonated so I don't have to worry about cleaning so much afterwards. What's cool is this is dishwasher safe.

The downside? I can't cook sweetened barbecues. They burn right away.

I have had a few experiements with this griller. I also cooked longganisa and various sausages here.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

I am a true Filipino

This season at blogkadahan, our topic is about being a Filipino. Guess what? It's my turn, so I'll see you there.

'just to let you know too, we played a game at blogkadahan. I started a story, Tito Rolly picked up my last line and added his own until we were able to come up with, i'll say a short novel. It was funny and fun at the same time. Each individual came up with his/her story that highlighted his/her personality.

The story is not over yet. If you were going to add to our story, how would you have done it? Maybe you can give me an ending to this story.

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Manggang Hilaw

So how else is mango eaten? If it's not ripe, we Filipinos eat the mango with bagoong or salt. Mangoes are sour when they're not ripe yet.

There is this belief that the first indication that a woman is infanticipating is when she craves for "mangga'ng hilaw". For me it is all myth. I heard it before that the craving for sour things has something to do with the biological changes in your body when you are expecting or even when women are about to go through their monthly cycle. I will have to leave that to the people who have something to do with Science.

These mangoes were apparently green when they were shipped from Mexico. I knew I was in for luck when I saw them still green. Oh they might be expensive if I had to convert my money into Philippine peso but there was just no comparison between saving your money as opposed to having the most sought after fruit during this season.

(O hayan Manong manggang hilaw na ako, me bagoong pa).

Friday, June 17, 2005

Dessert Comes First

Check this out. Another foodie. Well actually, a food magazine writer. She thinks dessert comes first before the main course. How 'bout that? She specializes in dessert reviews from what I gather from her site. Unfortunately, I will only have to look at the pictures. I can't have a cake bigger than my palm. Blame it on slow metabolism and age. I will just have to find out where to go to for the best desserts while in the Philippines.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005


These avocadoes were smaller than the medium navel oranges that we bought. I was telling my children that in the Philippines, these avocadoes would have been 3 times this size. What was amazing was how expensive these avocadoes are where I am. A piece was almost equivalent to Php 45. In the Philippines, I could have had as many as I wanted for free, right in my grandmother's backyard.

Back in the Philippines, avocadoes are eaten as a dessert. Right, where you just add sugar and evaporated milk in the middle where the seed came from and then scoop the flesh with a spoon, making sure that by the time your done eating, the milk and the sugar are gone as well. I have yet to think of a time when we used it in salads. As I moved outside of the Philippines, I discovered that you can do other things with avocadoes other than having it for dessert.

Others make guacamole for chips, some use them for sushi and still others mix them in salads. My father mushes them though in a glass complete with condensed milk.
Avocado is high in cholesterol but it is the good cholesterol we are supposed to have. Phew!

Monday, June 13, 2005


Sometimes it is more expensive to prepare this at home than to buy it from your favorite restaurant. However, we were so desperate to have something to munch on while watching TV one night and I just threw in whatever I found in my fridge.

I love preparing Greek Salad and so it wasn't difficult to find tomatoes and olives in my fridge. I also was in luck to find a teeny weeny bit of sour creme from a lasagne I earlier cooked. I'm also a lover of Ceasar's Salad, thus the bacon bits. Melted cheese!!! Yes, that's what I missed. It was fun and I am sure my family did not mind.

Remember to put the chips in the oven toaster for about 10 minutes at 250 just to keep them crunchy. Finely chopped green onions and mild salsa add a lot of zing to your nachos. Chili Beans are also helpful. If ever you cook chili con carne and have some left-overs no matter how small the amount is, I recommend that you put them in a Ziploc and toss them in the freezer. They might come in handy on desperate nights when convenience stores are already closed and you're just craving for nachos.

Friday, June 10, 2005

Seafood Kare-kare

This is one of my memorable dishes when I was dating my boyfriend, now my husband over 17 years ago. This is easier to cook than you think.

You see when you're cooking the beef Kare-kare, the one that really takes your time is making your meat tender. Here, all you have to do is steam your shells and any other seafood you would like to add like squid and shrimps and then add them to your kare-kare base.


10 pieces of mussels
10 pieces of clams
10 pieces of prawns
1/4 cup of slices of squid (the one you normally use for calamari)
1/4 cup of abalone (optional)
or any other seafood you want to add

10 pieces of long beans cut into 1.5 inches long
1 medium eggplant
1/4 tin of canned banana blossoms
4 tbsp of peanut butter
1 pack of Mama Sita Kare-kare mix (yes, I cheated), diluted in about 1 cup of cold water

Steam the seafood for about 8 minutes or until shells slightly open. Set aside.

In a saucepan, saute the eggplant and long beans for about 5 minutes. Add the banana blossoms. Add the diluted kare-kare mix and the peanut butter. Let boil for about 1 minute and then reduce the heat to avoid the mix from concentrating at the bottom of the pan and getting burnt eventually. Add another 1 cup of hot water. Sitr in the steamed seafood. Cover the saucepan and let it simmer for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Serve hot.

And I made sure that Techguy will not ask me about the bagoong again. Don't forget to serve your kare-kare with bagoong like the one above. (Okey ba manong?)

Thursday, June 09, 2005


To some who are not familiar with this recipe, 'thought this might help

And you thought that poutine can only be ordered at A & W or New York Fries? Think again. This poutine was homemade with whatever I can grab from the fridge. This was my son's bowl. It's a crime to our palate but there is such a word as "splurging" which we're entitled to once in a while.

I had a bag of fries in the freezer for quite a while and I thought I needed to get rid of it without throwing the bag into the garbage. Well, I also call myself lucky because I had quite a few bacon bits from a Ceasar Salad I prepared for our office lunch earlier; hmm....leftover gravy from a pot roast dinner and a bit of mozarella from a burger dinner, some green onions too? Phew, New York Fries call this "The Works"..I call it "Mommy's work

Words of caution: You can add anything you want. My picture is only a guide. Diced tomatoes can help. A little bit of olives as well. Lotsa cheezeee.. Just don't forget that too much carbo is not good for you. And don't come back to me saying that there is such a word as "splurging" because I told you there was so.

Sunday, June 05, 2005

Black Eye Beans with Katuray

I was a little bold with this recipe. I cooked some black eye beans with a piece of smoked hock the night before but forgot to buy the vegetables appropriate for this kind of beans (if there is such a term). In the meantime, I asked daughter to prepare some katuray and tomatoes as a side dish. Daughter obliged but we were both running out of time. In half an hour, we were supposed to be at her school for a concert. It was too late to run to the grocery store to buy some vegetables.

I tried being creative. I sauteed the tomatoes and onions and then added the beans and the sliced hocks. I added the katuray and seasoned the dish with bagoong. Ah, I am glad I did it. It was such a perfect combination.

Friday, June 03, 2005

Salmon and Halibut Fish Trims

When I first moved to this other side of the world, the world's western hemisphere quite a few years ago, fish heads and tails were being discarded or sold for fishing or crabbing purposes. You can even get them for free from the fish market if you were friends with the vendor.

Time surely changed. As more Asian immigrants arrived, the vendors have learned that there was gold in these trims. I used to frequent a tourist spot downtown for these trims. However, last summer, I was stunned that they were sold out first thing in the morning on sunny weekends. It used to be that the trip was all worth it. We had to take a ferry from our parking across to the island.

Anyway, someone asked me what I was going to do with all these "nothing-but-fish bones" thingies when I was buying them. I told her that I could cook a lot of dishes like salmon adobo, fisherman's stew, and many more. They were not mere fish bones. They were salmon and halibut fish bones and lots of flesh on them. The fishbones on the picture was enough for a potful of fisherman's stew.

I gave her my blog address and told her to go see my recipes. I hope I have contributed something to humanity by doing this.

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Tuyo't Tinapa atbp

Another meaning of "indulgence" to me. Tuyo (salted dried fish), tinapa (smoked fish), itlog na maalat (salted eggs) and kamatis. Tuyo is ideal when the weather is balmy or rainy and cold. These are best eaten without using any cutleries. Yes, you got me right. You eat them with bare hands. Make sure you wash your hands and have a chair where you can raise your leg while savouring these food...'nd lots of water to wash the saltiness of the tuyo.