Monthly Archives: November 2009

Salmon, Oysters And Baby Potatoes

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About to be baked pink salmon

Salmon is my new beef. I love the fresh and nude taste of this salmon. Literally, melted in my mouth, today’s power lunch was made of salt, pepper, garlic and this salmon– foiled and baked for 20 minutes at 350 c. Now, was that the easiest, simplest superstar meal you could possibly have?

To go with the baked salmon as siding, I boiled a few pieces of baby potatoes,  drained once cooked and assembled  inside  a piece of aluminum sheet for baking. Of course, that after I seasoned them with  salt, pepper and a teaspoon of butter. The potatoes went with half a cup of green peas, too. Such that:

The second dish was three-cheese baked oysters. The cheeses: cream cheese, quick-melting cheddar cheese and some grated parmesan. In a skillet, heat in butter 3 cloves of minced garlic, then add 3 tbsps cream cheese, 2 tbsps heavy cream, 1/4 cup whole milk and 1/2 cup quick-melting cheddar cheese. Adjust to desired consistency by adding whole milk. Season with a bit of salt and pepper. Stir continously until thick.

Once cooked, top cheese mixture on open faced oyster shells. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese on top. Garnish with chopped rosemary. 

 Bake for 20 minutes at 350c. Serve hot:)

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Spicy Grilled Chicken Wrap

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Tortilla is my new rice. I eat a lot of food that well goes with it– chicken, beef, pork and yeah, even tuna. Oh, how I devour my wraps each and everytime I make them. I just love, love biting into those freshly warmed tortillas like crazy.

Today, I wanted to make some chicken fajitas. I scoured the ref for guacamole and sour cream and found my mental ingredients list for those all crossed out. So, I settled for the sidings-less version of that. It was great just the same.

Okay, let’s bring it on. You will need to grill three chicken breasts, seasoned with salt, pepper and some lemon squeeze.

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Meantime,  chop 1 big onion, mince 4 cloves of garlic and julienne one red bell pepper.

Once chicken is cooked, slice and set aside.

In a skillet, saute garlic, onion and bellpeppers in olive oil. Add sliced grilled chicken. Add 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper powder, 1/4 teaspoon cumin and 1/4 teaspoon taco seasoning.

Actually, the cooking could stop here.

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See? Yan pa lang ulam na! Kanin na lang! Haha! Hey no, we have a mission! Gimme the wrap!

Assemble the filling on a freshly warmed tortilla wrap. Add cheese if you wish.

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Roll over both ends of the tortilla bread and eat with your eyes closed:)

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Bonding Over Easy Pastillas De Leche

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Sam was extremely looking forward to whipping up some pastillas de leche today. Almost in a mantra fashion, she kept saying, “My work is to pour and mix, my work is to pour and mix! Let’s do the pastillas now, puleeeeease!”.  NOW was her operative word and that got me running to the nearest grocery to get the ingredients.

Okay, pastillas project was finally underway. She was ready to grind away and have fun at the same time.  Happiness was written all over her face:

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She poured, mixed and packed some of the pastillas. For twenty minutes, she left the Disney Playhouse channel that momentarily seemed less significant than making pastillas.

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Bonding over cooking and food has been one of my greatest moments with my daughter, Sam. My heart jumps for joy at the site of those bright eyes over the prospect of  “cooking with mommy”.

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I get overwhelmed each and everytime I hear her proudly announce to family and friends that we cooked and that she immensely enjoyed it.

Ahh, simply priceless.

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Pastillas De Leche:

2 cups sifted powdered milk

1 can condensed milk

Sugar for coating

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Mix  powdered milk and condensed milk. Mix well. Let settle in the ref for 5-10 minutes before molding or kneading by hand.

Form into balls or tubular shaped pastillas. Roll into sugar.

Wrap in cellophane.

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Cheesy Chicken Sticks

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Inspired by my friend, Aileen Lara, and an HRM student from PUP during a chefwars competition, I created a dish that will make parties extra exciting, elegant and gastronomic with these cheesy chicken sticks on the table. The crunch on the exterior just ends up getting chewy and everything nice inside with that cheese peeping hello to you as you make that big bite.

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Just a sidebar, the choice of cheese is a bit crucial. Mozzarela sticks tend to melt right away the moment it hits the pan. Should you decide to use it, make sure you freeze it a bit first before you use it for cooking. Other soft cheeses like kesong puti, feta, brie, etc. tend to behave in the same manner too. Cheddars like the sharp ones and medium sharp are likewise as vulnerable to quick melting. Personally, I’m fine with Eden cheese. Heehee, I hope I don’t get a flack for choosing the ‘unexpected’ choice. There.

The green chillies are actually optional. Yes, you have the option to make it yummier! Ha! I love, love the lethal cross of the cheese’ saltiness and the kick of chillies, rolled into one and made crunchy by the parmesan-crusted lumpia wrapper.

So, are you hungry now?

Okay, here goes the recipe:

6 lumpia wrappers, small

6 slices cheddar cheese, sliced horizontaly 1/4 inch thick on all sides

1/2 breast of chicken, seasoned, boiled and sliced

1 egg, slightly beaten

1 tsp flour

1 cup Japanese bread crumbs

1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese

6 pcs green chillies (siling pang sigang), SEEDED OR BE READY TO BURN YOUR TONGUE!

oil

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1. Arrange sliced cheese and chicken inside green chillies. Close both ends of wrapper and roll with the filling.

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2. Meantime, in a separate bowl, combine egg and flour. Mix to form a batter. Dip the lumpias onto the batter.

3. Dredge in the breading mix (to do this, combine Japanese bread crumbs and parmesan cheese). Deep fry until golden brown. Pat dry on napkin and serve immediately.

My Little Chef!

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Chocoholic!

Here goes something my little one and myself love to bond over– food and all the fun that goes with it. The past few days saw Sam helping in the kitchen when she tried her hand (literally) at baking some soft, chunky and chewy chocolate chip cookies that would not stay in the cookie jar for long and the other project, whipping up some white chocolate lollipops that our dear family friend Mae Ramos taught us how to make.

Sam greasing the pan for the chocolate chips. I got the sense that she enjoyed more brushing on some shortening as opposed to brushing watercolor on paper!

Sam was extra giddy as I officially announced to her that we were to make chocolate chip cookies. Like always, she just HAD to do the mixing. She loves, loves, loves to mix practically anything “mixable”! Ahhh, starting ’em young eh? Well, kinda.

Future pastry chef?

Her faves include our carrot cake and now, these cookies.

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Soft, chunky and chewy chocolate chip cookies

Next on our to-do-list was our white chocolate lollipops– in ring and candy cane shapes.

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Serious. Very serious!

 These are lovely!!!

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White chocolate ring lollipops

Our first time to do these chocolate delights.

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White chocolate sugarcane-shaped lollipops

Our dear family friend gave us pointers on how to make this goody possible. Quite simple I might say. So easy that even kids can do their culinary obras by way of doing this.

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Sam was uber delightful just sprinkling the toppings!

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The little chef!

She had the finished products given to cousins and titas soon after. Okay, next project please!