Everyone has a favorite type of congee. I love the Filipino version, called arroz caldo, which in typical Filipino form, can be eaten at all times of the day – breakfast, lunch, dinner, or merienda (well, more like a small meal between meals. Hobbits would love us!), or snack or as a side dish or opening item! My family’s version is very garlicky and ginger-y. If you want to reduce the salt, use a low-salt chicken broth and omit the chicken broth cubes. Some folks like putting toasted, crispy garlic and onions on top, or chopped up green onions, or, in my case, cubed, fried tofu. Experiment with toppings if you like, but you might find that my recipe is flavorsome enough.
My family looooves this, because it results in such a flavourful and tender meat dish. It’s also a bit expensive because of the use of whole jars of ingredients (at least, over here in Australia) so it’s a treat. For folks who are looking for a quick, easy main to serve for a crowd of guests, this is a good recipe to go for (and is similarly easy to scale down.)
Back when I lived in the Philippines, we would make rum balls. We experimented with different methods, but the one we liked best was the one made with ground up and crushed chocolate cream wafers. We found that the wafers absorbed the alcohol best, and after a few days of resting in the fridge, they were absolutely divine! Making these was a social activity, not too different from making dim sum as a group, and we’d chat away while working at crushing the wafers and later, shaping the dough. Continue reading
Sometimes you need a simple meal that, as Rhys puts it, ‘fills the hole.’ This took a bit more proper cooking than the previous Gamer Wife recipe, but really, didn’t take that much effort either.
I make no secret of the fact that I am a gamer, and that a lot of my work also requires me to be in front of the computer (or Cintiq) and sometimes, the work here is very hard to interrrupt! Or the party grind session.
I call this chicken bake this because I realized one afternoon, after immersed in Lineage II that I hadn’t thawed any meat and the children had just come home. This meant – oops – that dinner would need to be ready, or at least cooking by the time Rhys got home! My darling man would be tired and hungry, and my pride refuses to not at least have some food warm and ready!
Quick, light and easy, this soup suits both cold nights and summer days back in the Philippines. Some versions include using diced Tender Juicy Hotdog (which resembles the red-covered frankfurter, but tastes different) or diced ham. This is the simplest version in the family and is also a nice side dish, especially if the chicken is cut into even smaller cubes.
It can also be made with chopped up store-bought roast chicken meat, cutting down the cook time even more.
Nilagang Baka, or “boiled beef” belies the very delicious and richly satisfying soup that results from the ‘mere’ boiling. Best done with cheaper soup bones with meat still clinging to the bone and with cheaper cuts of beef, my prefered method is to add all the ingredients together and simmer for at least four hours in a large stew pot.
Because I have a large family, when I make this it’s a huge batch, with leftovers that the kids like to have later on. You can reduce the amount of ingredients as needed (Or, for single-person amounts, 1 osso bucco, 1-2 corn cobs, a handful of cabbage, one large carrot, a handful of beans, and two medium potatoes, 1 beef broth cube!)
This chicken recipe uses a can of cola, orange soda, or Mountain Dew as a base. I’ve also used this as a recipe base for a slow cooker pork roast (adjusting the amount of ingredients to suit.) This was a huge hit with the kids and adults alike.
One of the things I like to eat here in Australia are meat pies. They fit in your hand, are a full meal in one, are served warm, and with a drink can be very satisfying. I’m also fond of pasties for the same reason. I mean, a food you can eat with one hand and a book or magazine in the other is tops for me.
Japanese Curry Bread is one of those delightful concepts where they took a good thing to an entirely new level. Instead of baking the stuffed bread, they dip it in egg, coat in panko bread crumbs and deep fry. Result: Crispy, savoury stuffed doughnut filled with comfort food. How could I not try this? I’ve technically eaten something like this in the Mini Stop shops back in the Philippines, but the dough left my mouth feeling dry; too much baking powder, perhaps? Nevertheless, they were filling, and cheap. But that’s all the way over across an ocean, and I’m in the Land Down Under. So, after my brother-in-law introduced me to a manga called Addicted to Curry, I resolved to make my own. I’m not as obsessive about curry as the folks in Addicted to Curry are, so I use the pre-packaged Japanese roux.
I’m lazy, so mashing bananas until they’re of a suitable consistency doesn’t appeal. However, I do love banana bread, and the kids don’t always get to eat all the bananas I buy for their lunch boxes. Blending the wet ingredients together also mixes them together more thoroughly. I like the use of soured milk or sour cream; it gives the banana bread a slight tang. If you don’t like it you can definitely substitute plain milk.
The picture above was taken only after half the loaf was eaten. Kinda forgot to take the photo; warm banana bread is irresistible. I bet these would make utterly delectable banana cupcakes.
It’s been years since I made some; and none since I moved to Australia. So I made some. The meat mixture makes a good meatball too, but will need some breadcrumbs as binder. Consider the recipe below as a basic starter, and feel free to add other vegetables and seasonings and ingredients for your own lumpia.
I also put in how I wrap them, in case anyone needs a step by step. I hope it helps ^_^
The most common and popular adobo recipe seen around tends to revolve around pork belly or leg chunks, or pork AND chicken. Traditionally, fatty chicken and fatty pork = adobo especially for travelling, because Filipino style adobo was a cooking method that resulted in a dish not too dissimilar to English potted hare – with the broth thickening to jelly and the fat sealing the top of the jar. In a country where the heat would result in spoiled food while travelling, adobo was king, and still is one of the ‘traditional’ dishes to take with you to the beach picnic.
I’ve been doing a lot of running around on errands so I haven’t posted recently. My blood sugar dropped a lot so I found myself craving sweet things.
So I decided to take the plunge and made meringues for the first time.
Sounds silly I know, but I’ve had this thing about being afraid of screwing up the egg whites. I had a box of egg whites in my fridge that I bought and felt, if I never take the risk, I’ll never do it!
One of the easiest Filipino desserts for me to make here in Australia is Leche Flan. The kids love this recipe, but as you can see in the image, the caramel isn’t very dark. That’s because of my family’s preference, so you may need to experiment with the caramel to get it as dark as you like.
I hope you enjoy making this! This is a busy mom version; traditional Leche Flan uses carefully separated egg yolks, careful hand beating with a whisk, and strains the mixture through cheesecloth several times, resulting in a silky creamy flan. I’m rather lazy and want my delicious treat with minimal effort; my answer to this is to tap the bubbles out and use either a blender or mixer.
As part of their holiday ‘fun thing’ I taught my eldest how to make chicken wonton filling / chicken meatballs. Eldest boy helped wrap up a few, but I had to take over or else we wouldn’t have dinner on time! Happily my little budding hearth witch mastered the wrapping of wontons quickly. We still have meat so we’ll make a packet of wontons to freeze, and make meatballs out of the rest.