Friday, May 29, 2009

Cooking squid is like cooking beef. You either cook it real fast or really, really, really long. Cooking in high heat is the secret for making this squid crispy.

In a bowl, mix flour, all spice, salt, pepper and chili. Dredge the squid and then shake off excess. Fry on high heat and drain on lots of paper towels. Serve with chili soy sauce + calamansi. I think this would make a nice pulutan but since I don't drink, we had this for dinner. Enjoy!


Thursday, May 28, 2009

Nowadays, I try to think up meals that I can cook in the morning (without rushing too much) so that they'd still be hot by lunchtime, thanks to our lunch bag that keeps meals hot for 4-6 hours. It's from Biokips. I don't like nuking my meals anymore as they tend to dry up.

Here's one of those quick meals. I'm sure most of you already know how to cook this but for those newbies, here goes. Saute some onion rings in oil. Fry some sukiyaki cut beef for about 30 seconds on medium heat. Pour the soy sauce-calamansi mixture and simmer. Pour on rice or pack in a separate container. I poured this on the rice to make the rice yummy by lunchtime.

We've been loving trifles nowadays. We have at least one trifle a week. Here's a twist to my original one.

The bottom layer is still Mandarin oranges. The second layer is mango yogurt. The top layer is Nestle Fitnesse cereal. And that yummy looking block is chocolate! Dark chocolate from Canada, pasalubong from Kitschy Daydreams.

I'm still thinking about other trifle ideas. I'll be sure to post them when I'm finally able to make them with this crazy schedule of mine.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

When I was a kid, I didn't like eating anything with gata or coconut milk. My grandmother is from Bicol and when we went there when I was 10, I had no choice but to eat gata dishes. My grandma cooks a mean laing and other ginataan dishes like langka and veggies. She taught me how to cook gata dishes which fortunately, MB loves.

This is a ginataang dish that I didn't get from her. It's made up of squash, eggplants and kangkong. I also added some shrimps.

Saute some garlic, onions, ginger in a little oil. Add the kakang gata then let simmer for awhile. Add bagoong. It would be better if you had the real thing, bagoong made in Bicol. Then add the squash and the rest of the coconut milk. When the squash is almost done, add the eggplants and shrimps. You can also add the kangkong stalks if you want them to be a little tender then add the kangkong leaves.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

No, the patties are not burnt. I just like well done burgers. I want them really brown outside, almost black. If you taste them, they don't taste burnt at all. I think the reason for this color was the chili and Spanish paprika.

For the Jamaican Patties, put some ground beef in a bowl, season with salt, pepper, chili, Spanish paprika, nutmeg and thyme. Add some breadcrumbs and mix. Form into patties then fry.

For the potato wedges, wash and scrub the potatoes thoroughly. You don't want to eat dirt do you? Cut them up into wedges. Season with salt and pepper and oregano. Fry in butter or olive oil.

I think that's leftover herbed rice. I didn't want to eat this with rice that time. It's just that there were still some leftover rice and so not wanting it to go to waste, I had some. This would be best with burger buns though or if you want, you can just have the patties and the potatoes plus some steamed veggies.

Monday, May 25, 2009

That's just a fancy name for stuffed chicken breast fillet. I will not bother too much about the name nor origin of this recipe as I didn't like it that much. So why post it? Because some of you might like eating chicken with just plain rice. I don't. I need some soup or side dish to go with it. Another reason is that, you can serve this during parties. Just slice 'em up and serve with sauce and mushrooms in butter or steamed veggies and whatever it is that would taste good with chicken. You can also make rice ala Sbarro or a rice pilaf.

Cook some ham and slice some tomatoes and melting cheese. Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Make a deep slit on one side of the chicken. Stuff the ham first then the tomatoes then the cheese. Dip the chicken in beaten eggs, dredge in flour seasoned with salt and pepper. You can also season the flour with different herbs and spices. Make sure that the opening of the chicken gets coated as much as possible so that when you fry it, the stuffing won't leak out. I fried one side of the chicken first then the opening. Use tongs to hold the chicken and be very careful with this part. Then lastly the other side. Serve with catsup.

Love, love, love Japanese food! Except sushi that is... Don't ask why.

Mix light soy sauce, sake, sugar (I used brown sugar) and a little water in a bowl. Fry the beef slices in a pan in a little oil, medium heat. Make sure to remove the beef when it's already done otherwise it will end up tough. This usually takes about 30 seconds or so. I also added some chopped onions. You can omit the onions if you like. I just happen to like the combination of beef and onions.

In the same pan, pour the sauce. Arrange julienned carrots, wombok pechay slices and vermicelli in sections so that they don't mix or overlap with each other. Simmer. When the vermicelli is done, add beef and onions. Wait about a minute until the beef is heated through. Top on rice. Again, by lunchtime the sauce was already all over the rice. Yum!

Friday, May 22, 2009

I smile every time I see this pic especially on thumbnail view. They look like talking to each other or laughing. Like the laughing buns of Chef Shell in Cooking Master Boy. Hehe..

So, here's how to make my "laughing buns." Fry some bologna, about 4 slices. Make some scrambled eggs and cut a few slices of quick melt cheese. To assemble, place lettuce in the bun. This bun is a crusty poppy seed bun. Then fold bologna slices in half so that they would fit in the bun. Top with quick melt cheese and scrambled eggs. Serve with fruit juice.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Aside from the regular baon or packed lunch supplies, I also have a stash of Bento accessories. Here's one of those. These are cute animal cocktail picks which I used to hold together this breakfast pita wrap. Toast the pita for a few seconds then slice into two. I then spread some Miracle Whip on the pita, placed a lettuce leaf then a breakfast sausage then rolled as tightly as I can then locked with the picks. That was a good morning indeed.

Shrimp dishes are my specialty because I absolutely love shrimps! But as chefs say, you are only as good as your ingredients. That was true in this case. I'd say that we have gambas 2-5 times a month. One grocery day, I decided to save some money and buy the Cold Storage brand packed shrimps. I examined the contents of one bag of shrimps and decided that they were big enough for gambas. I thought that if they shrunk, it would only be a little. To my horror, they became soooo tiny! I kept adding more shrimp to the pan to make enough for two so I ended up with only half a bag full of shrimps. So much for saving... I calculated that one bag would be enough for 3 dishes. Turns out, the shrimps were full of water that's why they shrunk. Lesson learned.

This is my version of gambas. Heat some olive oil in a pan. Saute some garlic until brown, add the shrimps. Season with chili or spanish paprika or both then some sliced green chilis (siling haba), patis and some liquid seasoning. Top with sliced leeks. It's that easy! This is what I cook when I'm too lazy or too tired to slave away in the kitchen.

The only good thing about this was the taste.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

This is so easy and not to mention quick to make. Fry some garlic and beef Stroganoff in a pan. Make sure that the oil is hot and the stove is set to medium heat. You want to fry the beef fast otherwise it will get very tough to chew. When done, remove from pan. In the same pan dissolve cream in about 1/4 cup water then simmer. Add mushrooms and season with salt and pepper. Finally, add the cooked beef and top with parsley.

I put this on top of the rice so that the sauce will be absorbed by the rice. When lunch came, the rice tasted absolutely delish!

I don't like eating rice for 3 meals straight. As much as possible, I avoid that. It's not a health thing. I just feel that there's so much variety in food out there that always eating rice would deny me of tasting other foods. = )

Boil chicken (cut up in little pieces) in milk, garlic, onions, bay leaf, salt and pepper until cooked. Drain. In a bowl mix flour, paprika, nutmeg, salt and pepper. In another bowl, place some egg whites. Dredge the drained chicken pieces in the flour mixture, then dip in egg whites then coat again with the flour mixture. Fry in medium heat. If done right, you'll get crunchy chicken. Serve with fries seasoned with salt or you can also use a mixture of herbs and spices to season your fries. Maybe I'll post that next time.

This is all we ate. Well, I guess we had a couple of slices of bread as well but that's because we just wanted to finish off the bread before it expires. But this already is a meal in itself. Serve with very cold ice tea while watching a movie. It's like watching a movie in a mall and eating take out food but cheaper!

*Sorry for the pic. We were so eager to eat that night that we only remembered to take a picture when we were almost done. That just proves how good this meal was. = )

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

This will be a very short entry. Remember the bagoong rice we had for baon? We still had some leftover green mangoes and cucumbers and since we both loved it, I decided to fry the lonely matambaka fish in the freezer and voila, another baon for another day.

You can read about the first bagoong rice baon here.

My ultimate comfort food is soup - plain, with noodles or pasta or with rice as in arroz caldo. It was a rainy evening and so I decided to have soup for dinner.

Melt butter in a pan then fry some sliced Hungarian sausages. Remove from pan. Saute some garlic and chopped tomatoes in the same pan. Pour some chicken broth or in my case, some water seasoned with Maggi Magic Sarap, light soy sauce and about 2 shakes of Maggi Savor. Add pasta shells. When the pasta shells are done, add the sausages and season with oregano and rosemary. I ran out of rosemary and so I used thyme. If it's still bland, sprinkle some salt. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese before serving. I served this with slices of crusty bread.

My only peeve about this recipe was it was too spicy! It was my first time eating Hungarian sausage and I didn't know that it was spicy. I don't eat hotdogs because for some reason I can't digest them. So I'm quite ignorant with the types of sausages out there. Not knowing that the sausage was already spicy, I added some pepper to the soup. Man, was it spicy! MB loved it though. I'm going to make this soup again and use another type of sausage and remember to taste it first before adding pepper. = )

I loved how this dish tasted. What I don't like is how oily the beef was! You can even see it on the picture and this is after numerous attempts to strain all the oil out. I bought the ground round beef at SM Makati. I used to buy my meats there then shifted to Landmark then decided to buy again at SM. At first I thought it was just a one-time thing but then when I bought beef again last week, it was still too oily. I'm going to buy beef at Landmark from now on.

Enough of my rants and here's the recipe. Place the ground beef in a bowl. Season with light soy sauce, ginger, garlic, mirin, hoisin sauce. Mix. Add some flour. Saute the beef and break all clumps. Pour oyster sauce and add carrots and red bell peppers. When the vegetables are done, add some shredded wombok pechay and garnish with leeks. Serve with lots of rice.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Who doesn't know this classic all day breakfast? Besides from being very simple, it is also a very filling and satisfying meal.

Saute some garlic and onions in a little oil. Add the ground beef and wait until the beef is cooked or until all the liquid is gone. Add some chopped carrots and let simmer for about a minute. Pour some tomato paste and mix. Season with salt and pepper and in my case, a little sugar. I don't like raisins and nothing will balance the acidity of the tomato sauce so I added sugar.

Fry some eggs and saba bananas and chow down!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Saute some garlic in oil until fragrant. Add rice then mix. Make a well in the center and pour some beaten eggs. Wait until the bottom is cooked then mix with the rice. Season with some Maggi Savor and spring onions.

Chop some tomatoes. Fry some danggit. Serve with Sukang Pinakurat.

Simple eh?

I was toying with the idea of having bagoong rice for baon. But all I had was the leftover chicken pinatisan. Bagoong and patis? Will it work? You betcha!

Saute some garlic in oil. Add cold rice. Mix (or mash) to separate the grains then add bagoong. I add bagoong to the rice instead of vice versa because bagoong tends to splatter with direct contact with oil. Mix until all grains are coated with bagoong. Transfer to your lunchbox.

I also put some julienned cucumber and green mangoes with the chicken on top of the rice to make it look more authentic. Bagoong rice in Thai restaurants normally serve this with pork, mangoes, chillis, cucumbers, etc. Migraine Boy requested for more bagoong and so I topped the green mangoes with more bagoong.

One of the best lunches ever!

This is a different take on pinatisang manok. It is cooked much like adobo. You will be needing onions, ginger, garlic, Thai fish sauce, chicken cut into small pieces, whole peppercorns and bay leaves.

As usual, I boiled the chicken first to ensure that all the pieces are cooked through and that no smell of blood remains. In a bowl, mix Thai fish sauce, ginger, peppercorns and bay leaves.

Saute some garlic and onion rings in a pan then add the chicken. Fry until brown. Pour the sauce and let boil. When boiling, lower heat then simmer until almost all liquid is gone.

Serve with hot rice. We didn't finish everything on the plate. Want to know what happened to the leftovers? That's next.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

I don't like boring baons. And I especially don't like cold and dry packed lunches. This meal is good whether hot or cold and is very simple to make.

Mix some soy sauce and calamansi juice in a bowl. Set aside. Fry some bangus fillets in oil. When almost brown, add the onion rings. When the onion rings are limp and cooked through, add the sauce.

I used this as a topping because I want the rice to absorb the sauce. Yum!

Monday, May 11, 2009

I'm going to make this post as quick as I made this breakfast. All you need is canned mandarin oranges, mango yogurt and muesli. The muesli consists of oats, nuts, figs, berries and dark chocolate.

To assemble, get a clear glass and place some mandarin oranges at the bottom. (I don't have one that doesn't have edges and so I used this glass). Then pour some yogurt and lastly, muesli. If you have a bigger glass just make more layers by alternating the yogurt and muesli.

What a great way to start the day!

This is one of my very few attempts at cooking fish that isn't fried. I thought the recipe was simple enough that screwing up was not an option. = )

Mix Thai patis, calamansi juice, grated ginger, mirin, sweet chili sauce and black pepper in a bowl. Put cleaned Lapu Lapu in foil. Make sure that the foil is big enough to cover the whole fish and not let the sauce leek out.

Pour the sauce over the fish. I turned the fish over so that every inch will be covered with sauce. I even poured some in the cavity.

Steam for 12-15 minutes or until the meat is flaky. Top with tomatoes and cilantro. I don't like cilantro thus only the tomatoes are visible.
I served this with the classic tomatoes and green mango salad with bagoong. It was a light but satisfying Sunday night dinner.

Will I do this again? Definitely!


Thursday, May 7, 2009

So I had a very nice date with MB last Friday. As I said in my previous post, we had lunch at Max's. One of my orders was pancit canton which was a bad idea because it gave me a stomachache like crazy. I'm very sensitive to food and oil. If I get some bad food or re-used oil in, it normally requires me to curl up in bed because of the pain or a trip to the bathroom when I'm lucky.

Anyway, I didn't want anything heavy to eat for dinner and so I told MB that I would just cook some arroz for me and I'd cook something else for him. Being the sweetie that he is, he said arroz caldo is good enough for him as well. And so we had mock arroz caldo for dinner.

Traditional arroz caldo would normally require malagkit (glutinous) rice, kasubha and a whole other bunch of ingredients. But since this was an "emergency" I made it like this.

I sliced some chicken breast fillet, sauteed some garlic and ginger until they were fragrant then added the chicken pieces. I poured about 5 cups of water and let it boil. I dropped 1 chicken cube (cheating!) and some patis (fish sauce). I then mashed some rice and mixed them in. Don't be shocked. I was sick, cut me some slack. I usually let this simmer until the rice is soft enough but this time, I needed to eat ASAP and so I didn't add any more liquid and when I felt it was good enough to eat I placed some in a bowl and topped it with spring onions. It took a while for me to take the pictures and so the rice has absorbed most of the soup that's why you can't see the soup anymore in the picture. But there was still some leftover soup at the bottom. I think I was really sick that night because I couldn't even finish my bowl. What happened to the leftovers? Had it for breakfast come Monday morning. The cats loved it too.

Every once in a while, I will post some topics aside from food, which I believe are worth mentioning. Last Friday, we had lunch at Max's Greenbelt. Upon getting the check, the waiter asked me if I wanted to buy a bookmark. I almost said no when he told me it's for cervical cancer awareness and it's only 5 pesos. So I asked him to give me two.

Cervical cancer is the second leading killer of Filipina women in the country. I don't know if other restaurants offer the bookmarks but the next time you stop by at Max's please avail of the bookmarks. You're 5 pesos might save a mother or a sister or a wife from dying. Let's do all we can to help save our women.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

We had this for baon late last week. I just tossed all the leftover ingredients like half a pack of baby corn, 1 bell pepper, etc. together to come up with this dish.

I still had half a pack of Vietnamese vegetable noodles and so I decided that the dish should revolve around that. I checked the ref and found the following: half a tray of baby corn, 1 green bell pepper, 1 carrot, 1/4 head of cabbage. I didn't want a soupy dish because the noodles get mushy fast but I also wanted something with a bit of liquid because Migraine Boy and I like to have some soup when we're eating something fried or dry to balance things out. This is what I came up with.

I cooked the noodles according to package directions separately. While that's cooking, I sauteed some garlic and onions in a pan. Added the carrots, bell pepper and baby corn then added about a cup of water. I also added a teaspoon each of chili-garlic sauce and hoisin sauce then let it boil. I then added the shredded cabbage. When the veggies were done, I added the cooked noodles. Mix until all the noodles are coated with the sauce. And oh, I also seasoned it with salt and pepper and some light soy sauce.

We had this with some fried chicken. Not bad for leftovers, eh?

If you read my blog from time to time, you might have read my attempt at making Southern Style Chicken. Here's another twist to that recipe.

In the first recipe I marinated the chicken in milk. This time, I boiled the chicken wings first to remove most of the blood and the fishy smell (langsa). I'm very particular about my chicken. If I smell a little blood or taste something odd, I stop eating. I give it to my cats. I want my chicken (as well as beef) well done.

I mixed some flour, cornmeal and Italian seasoning in a bowl. Added some salt and pepper and dredged the chicken wings in this coating mix. Then off they went to the frying pan.

This was even better than the first one! (In my opinion). I love how the skin became crispy and the meat was not too tender but not too rubbery as well. And the bones, oh the bones... You could eat even the small bones of the wings! They were crunchy, like Max's spring chicken.

I will definitely make this again in the future.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

This is one of our baons last week. I apologize for the delay. We didn't have internet during the weekend. I prepared this the night before so all I had to do the next day was pop this in the microwave.

First, some pointers on the sauce. I used 2 methods for this recipe and they both work. The first one is, I just chopped up some tomatoes and removed the seeds. Then I sauteed some garlic in oil. (EVOO is better) then added some sliced chillies. I then added the chopped tomatoes then added about half a cup of water. I let this boil. I then added the shrimps and the leeks, seasoned the whole thing with salt, pepper and spanish paprika then lowered the heat and let it simmer until cooked.

Number 2. I boiled the tomatoes until the skin burst then removed the seeds and placed them in a blender. I like my sauce a little chunky. Then follow the same procedure as above.

Verdict: The rice was bitin!

Here's this week's grocery list. Please note that the succeeding entries that I will post will still fall under last week's list (unless otherwise indicated).

Meat & Poultry
Hungarian Sausage P110 for a pack of 5
(0.782 kg) Chicken 101.66
1/2 k Ground round beef 91.80
1 tray Beef stroganoff 105


1 Lapu lapu Red Table 164.70
2 Matambaka 42.12
Boneless bangus 63.92

Fruits and Vegetables
6 lemons 76.50
1 bunch spring onions 7.50
3 Red bell peppers 14.60
1 can Mandarin oranges 21
Wombok pechay 21.50
2 Cucumber 13.95
1 Indian mangoes 7.88
Calamansi 18.48
Carrots 18.33
Ginger 10.75
Tomatoes 22.40

2 Yogurt 24.55 each
Shell pasta 68.75
Bagoong 58.65
Tomato paste 20.70
Whole wheat bread 34
Thai patis 16
2 Fresh milk 24.95 each
Cream 38.95

2 Crusty Poppy Seed Roll 12 each from French Baker

Total P1270.34

Monday, May 4, 2009

I was running late one day last week and so I decided to prepare a very easy breakfast. On hectic days, I still insist that we eat breakfast before leaving the house and on those days I get a simple fix.

Toast some whole wheat bread, fry some ham slices and serve with milk. You can also serve this with some fruit such as apples and oranges. You can also make this into a sandwich. Spread some mayo or cream cheese on a slice of bread then top with lettuce, ham and apple slices. Fast and filling. Enough to get you through until lunch break.

I will pause from posting food related stuff to give space for Tengteng. I guess you've already seen this in the news but for those who haven't, here's the gist of story.

Tengteng is a one-month old kitten at UP Diliman who survives on random acts of kindness from the students, guards and the people in the vicinity. One afternoon, this monster named Joseph Carlo Candare took her life and bragged about it on the web. I don't want to reproduce his blog entry as he might think we bloggers are making him more famous for his writing or are admiring his writing skills (or lack thereof).

As you know, I have cats. It's not like I detest dogs. I just like cats better and I think my personality jives well with cats. You might also have a pet and whatever that might be, I know you share the same feelings as I have - love, respect, care for these living creatures. They might be a lower creation than us, but they have rights too. I respect cats and dogs, even stray ones. I admire them for being fighters, for being able to survive in a world that also houses the likes of Joseph Carlo Candare. I would like to say things that shouldn't be published but I won't. For I am an educated person and a Christian. And as a Christian, my greatest weapon is my prayers and so I will pray for this monster and hope that nobody else will follow his footsteps.

Please visit this link to sign up for the petition to give Tengteng the justice that she deserves.

Here's another breakfast that's very easy to prepare. It's a twist on the regular corned beef breakfast.

First saute some onions in a little oil. Add the corned beef. In another pan, blanch cabbage strips. When the corned beef is almost cooked, add the cabbage strips and mix. Make a sandwich then pop this in a panini press and voila! Breakfast that's filling and easy to make. I don't have a panini press and so what I did was put the sandwich in a pan then I pressed one side, flipped it then pressed on the other side. Serve with some freshly squeezed orange juice


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