baguio country club carrot loaf, 240baon

Another pasalubong from my sister. I had this for breakfast last Sunday. I like this waaay better than the cheese bread although it still has some faults. The flavor is not what I expected it to be. I think a little salt in the batter would have made wonders. The walnuts were a bit bitter. Other people would probably say that this needs to be sweeter. I’m not a big fan of sweets so the sweetness is just okay for me. It wasn’t dry. I ate this cold, straight out of the fridge. That’s how I like my cakes. This is more on the bread side but I still treat it as a cake. I will probably eat this for breakfast for the next few days. I’m thinking bacon would go well with this and a glass of milk.
My sister went to Baguio, Ifugao, etc. last week. She brought home a bunch of goodies including this:

baguio country club cheese bread, 240baon

It’s supposed to be a cheese bread but it’s filled with walnuts and dried fruit. It’s like a fruit cake inside. I didn’t like this. I like sweet and savory but this was just terrible. I like dried fruits as my grandma makes a mean fruitcake and she uses the same ingredients. I just didn’t appreciate this. It really tasted weird for me. The filling just does not go with the bread.
It wasn’t always easy for us growing up. My mom lost her job a few times because of some office politics. My mom is a single mom as my biological father left us when I was 5. The last time she lost her job was about 11 years ago. We had to make a lot of sacrifices. I stopped school to work, I quit my medications because they were too expensive, etc. Aside from that, we didn’t get any help from relatives who, when my mom still had a job were all relying on her to feed their families and basically live. We had to struggle, we had to endure daily hardships. I was in-charge of grocery shopping and cooking food and of course, I had very little budget which I would have to stretch until the end of the week. There were times when I would skip a meal just so we can still eat at night or the next day.  This went on for 8 years. It was very hard but with God’s grace, we overcame.

During this time in my life I learned a lot especially when it comes to stretching meals. Here is an example.

noodles with veggie soup, 240baon

It looks weird, I know but it’s delicious. I used pasta for this which I cut up into smaller pieces. I then cooked it in chicken broth and added veggies. It’s your usual sopas but with pasta noodles. I served this with some sweet, sticky sesame chicken:

sweet sticky sesame chicken, 240baon

Looking back, sometimes I still think how we made it through. There were days when we only had 100 pesos and I would have to find a way to make a meal out of it for the next several days. Come to think of it, our lives only got better just 2 years ago. That’s when things started to turn around for us. I’m really glad that that chapter in our lives is over but I am also thankful that we went through it because I really learned a lot and yes, I became much, much stronger.  I am no stranger to hardships but that was really tough. We are still experiencing a lot of ups and downs but at least there is always food on the table and the bills are always paid on time and everybody is healthy.
I still can’t spend a lot of time in the kitchen so I plan meals that are quick and easy to cook. Here’s an example:

stir-frid veggies, 240baon

fried chicken, 240baon

Simple fried chicken and stir fried veggies. I will never buy fried chicken mixes again as this simple recipe is good enough for us.
yellow shrimp rice, 240baon

I wanted to eat paella but we didn’t have the ingredients for it plus it takes too long to cook so I made do with we had. This is a very easy to cook dish. You only need rice, chicken broth, garlic, onions, red bell peppers, shrimps and hard boiled eggs.

Saute the garlic and onions in oil. Add the bell peppers. Add the rice. Make sure that the rice is coated with oil. Pour chicken stock and water. Add turmeric, salt and pepper.  Bring to a boil. Don’t leave the rice mixture as it can easily dry up. Add water or stock as needed. When the rice is almost done, add the shrimps. Stir constantly so that the rice won’t stick to the bottom.

I served this with hard boiled eggs.

yellow shrimp rice with egg, 240baon

I ate it with bacon the next day:

yellow shrimp rice with bacon, 240baon
Saucy beef, 240baon

I am slowly regaining my strength and I am glad that the doctor gave me permission to walk around the house and go down a  few times a day. When I’m feeling strong, I try to do a bit of cooking. I didn’t cook this dish but I did the marinade. It includes:

  • light soy sauce
  • oyster sauce
  • rice wine
  • rice win vinegar
  • sugar
  • chili powder
  • sugar

These is sukiyaki-cut beef, by the way. I asked my husband to fry them when he got home. I told him to add flour to the marinade first, mix and then fry each piece. I also told him to add some sliced onions. I don’t know what he did because I was expecting a different result. I think it’s because he loves sauces and soups so much that is why this dish ended up saucy. It was good, nevertheless. We tried so hard to resist finishing the dish because he needed a portion to bring to work the next day. I will be recreating this dish tonight using stroganoff-cut beef. 

For dessert, we had our favorite ice cream of the moment:

selecta chocolate chip, 240baon

Selecta Chocolate Chip
ham and malunggay omelet, 240baon

As I am not able to cook regularly, we have a lot of leftovers in the ref. One morning, I decided to make a ham and malunggay omelet. Yes, it sounds weird but if you like malunggay you will surely like this.

This is pure yolks only. I am allergic to egg whites. Beat the egg yolks and season with salt and pepper. Add the malunggay. I cooked the ham pieces first and then poured the egg-malunggay mixture. I had this for breakfast with the garlic fried rice that my mom cooked. I should say that she has perfected the fried rice. = )  This was really delicious and so filing! I was only able to finish half of it and ate the other half for breakfast again on another day.
cheesy tomato spaghetti, 240baon

We were watching Guy vs Rachael last week and one of the challenges was to cook a tomato-basil pasta dish. I was inspired and so I cooked my own version for dinner last week.

This is a very simple pasta dish. I just sauteed some garlic and onions then added ham pieces. I forgot to include the mushrooms so I added them the last minute. I then poured 2 packs of Del Monte tomato sauce Filipino Style (because MB loves it) and then added one brick of all purpose cream. I seasoned it with salt and pepper and added dried oregano and basil. I also added some parmesan. This was cheesy and creamy and delicious! Just the way my husband likes it.

caramel cornetto, 240baon

I am lactose intolerant but sometimes I can tolerate regular ice cream as long as I don’t eat too much. Cornetto is one of those. I was really excited to try the Choco Caramel Cornetto when I saw it on TV so one Saturday, MB went to the nearest 7-11 and bought me this for pasalubong. Too bad that it was already so melted when he got home. It’s really too hot outside. I was only able to eat a portion of it but it was good. I would definitely buy this again. When I get better, I would stock up on Magnum Brownie and this one.
beef with mongolian sauce, 240baon

This is an old recipe of mine but I tweaked it just a little bit. I first seasoned the beef (stroganoff cut) with salt and pepper and dredged them in cornstarch then flashed fried them.

In a bowl, I mixed together light soy sauce, hoisin sauce and honey. I then sauteed some garlic, ginger, leeks and red bell peppers. I added the sauce. Once the sauce thickened, I turned off the heat and poured it onto the beef. This was so delicious! Next time I will add chili powder to the sauce and sprinkle everything with toasted sesame seeds.

My husband cooked some vegetable soup and he served that with this beef dish.

eggplant, squash and malunggay soup, 240baonn

This is just a simple soup made with eggplants, squash, malunggay (moringa) and chicken broth. It was hearty and healthy!
My sister went to Thailand again last week. I asked her to bring me some food for pasalubong. Here’s what she got for me:

calbee, bitsandtreats

I always need my Calbee fix! This is my sister’s favorite as well so I know she won’t forget this. This is a new version as it has flowers aside from the regular sticks. It’s still soooo good!

calbee tom yum, bitsandtreats

She also got this in Tom Yum flavor which I’m scared to taste. I will post a review once I open this.

angry birds snack, bitsandtreats

This is a really funny snack! My sister had an Angry Birds phase so it was no surprise that she got this. This is cuttlefish flavored. Mom said it didn’t taste good. I tasted one ball and immediately agreed. I gave these to my cats and they loved it!

cashews, bitsandtreats

I’m on a cashew phase and I love the cashews from Thailand so I asked her to buy me some. I don’t know if this tastes good but I will blog about it soon.

hello kitty soft jelly candy, bitsandtreats

Finally, these Hello Kitty candies. I asked her to buy me the hard and chewy ones but they were out of stock. These are soft jellies covered with sugar. I already opened one and they taste okay. They’re not too sweet. One pack has orange only, another has strawberry only and another pack has a combination of both flavors. These are very cheap and they’re great for pasalubong!
Because of the heat, we seldom eat rice in our house that is why we have a lot of leftovers. One night last week, I decided to make some fried rice.

eggplant fried rice, 240baon

This has scrambled eggs, eggplants and leeks. Next time I will omit the leeks as the flavors clash. I used light soy sauce for the seasoning. I also added some Thai chili shrimp to give the eggplants some flavor. We at this with chicken adobo.

chix adobo, 240baon

Nevertheless, we almost finished the whole bowl. MB brought the leftovers for lunch the following day.
naan pizza, 240baon

This photo reminds me of aliens and spaceships. I asked my mom to make me a naan pizza using the leftover tomato soup as sauce and adding ham and onion rings. My mom does not cook so I have to give her specific instructions on how to prepare my meals. I forgot to tell her to cut the ham into small pieces but I guess this was okay. It’s unique and it will all end up as mush in my tummy anyway. = )

Appearance aside, this was delicious. The tomato sauce (soup) went really well with the cheese in the naan. I would ask her to make this again for me when my husband buys me naan again. Oh, the naan is from Bread Talk, by the way. I had this and a glass of very cold grape Gatorade for lunch. Yum!
soy-calamansi chicken, 240baon

MB fried some chicken last Sunday night. These were marinated in soy sauce, calamansi juice, garlic powder, pepper and a bit of honey. These were delicious! I just wish the chicken was marinated longer so that the flavors could seep into the meat better. Only a portion of the meat had flavor but I really didn’t care as it was still delicious!
greenwich glazed crispy chicken, 240baon

MB had some food delivered last Saturday from Greenwich. He had pizza, I had this glazed crispy chicken.

I didn’t have high hopes for this but it turned out to be tasty. The rice was a surprise as well as it was cooked nicely, very uncommon with fast food and take out food.

I love that the glaze is not too sweet and not too salty. After a few bites, I tasted the original flavor of the Greenwich fried chicken and wondered if it really was a good combination. Nevertheless, I finished my food because I was famished! Yeah, I would order this again just to see if I really, really like it.