I GET PERSONAL: My New Year’s Eve Celebration, In Pictures

Pizza and flowers? Yes please.

One of a few chocolate bars gifted by our Japanese neighbor.  I love Meiji, specially the milk chocolate.  Yum yum!

Cheese pizza.

The little man of the house with his slice. 

Yellow Cab Pizza and Lay’s (super delicious- I am addicted) potato chips. Win win win!

Assorted sweets.  

Sliced bread.

The wine.

Mango Torte cake by Red Ribbon

Kaldereta.

Dunkin’ Donuts always remind me of my childhood days when my father arrives from his job every weekend and always have a box of this.  

Buttered Puto and Brownies, both from Goldilocks Bakeshop

The ham.

Lumpiang Shanghai, courtesy of my mother.

My all-time favorites:  Pansit Bihon and dinaldalem, an Ilokano specialty.  

In the Philippines, we love our spaghetti sweet.  This was a gift from one of our neighbors.  

Hotdogs and marshmallows.

Wine and sugar. Wine and sugar. Wine and sugar. My routine waiting for the New Year’s countdown.  I seriously need an intense detox right now.

Of course, the party isn’t popping without my baby girl Duli.  

I’m no good when it comes to fireworks shots, so please bear with me.

It feels great doing this.  New Year, new hopes, new aspirations, new beginnings.  

D

I COOK: Very Easy Pasta Bolognese

https://fbcdn-sphotos-b-a.akamaihd.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/315750_4100024942277_1374052720_n.jpgSunday is LOVE.  I enjoy staying in, reading my Sunday newspaper and just spending time with the family, catching up on my newsletters, and watch some TV.  Of course, cook something good for the family.  Today’s recipe is Pasta Bolognese.

All you need:

1 pack McCormick Bolognese Pasta Sauce Mix (40g)
1/3 cup tomato sauce
1/4 kg ground beef
200g pasta (cooked according to package instructions)

Instructions:

1. Dissolve the sauce mix in tomato sauce. Set aside.
2. Brown meat in oil.
3. Pour in Bolognese mixture. Simmer until sauce thickens.
4. Serve over freshly cooked pasta.

Yum!

Happy Sunday everyone! x

I COOK: Buckeyes NOT.

http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8345/8234997332_3a32671924_b.jpgIt was gonna be the most delicious dessert of the week- turned out I failed and was not able to achieve making a decent buckeye.  It was fun though, I guess I just need to really use the right ingredients next time- BUT it doesn’t mean it tasted bad though.  My new recipe “FAKE BUCKEYES” is actually very yummy.  My mother said so, my little boy said so, my brothers said so.  So I’m still a winner.

Happy sweet weekend everyone! x

I COOK: Fruit Roll Ups

http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8066/8232221818_c676d74339_b.jpgIt’s a holiday in the Philippines today, we celebrate the birthday anniversary of one of our nation’s heroes: Andres Bonifacio.  Staying in with the family, I decided to make some merienda.  Something easy and budget-friendly.  I present to you:  fruit roll ups.  Enjoy, and happy weekend everyone!

INGREDIENTS:

1/2 cup cream cheese, softened

2 tbsp white sugar
Fruit cocktail: combination of pineapple bits, apples, banana, etc.
2 pc eggs, beaten
18 pcs medium lumpia wrappers
2 cups Japanese breadcrumbs

PROCEDURE:

1. Mix together cream cheese and sugar.
2. Fold in the fruit bits. Set aside.
3. Wrap every tbsp of cream-fruit mixture in lumpia wrapper. Then seal edges with beaten eggs. After that, dip in eggs and roll in breadcrumbs to coat all sides.
4. Deep-fry until golden brown. Drain on paper towels .

NUMBER OF SERVINGS: Makes 6 servings

Happy eating! x

I COOK: (Leftover) Siomai Stir-fry.

Every late afternoon, a siomai vendor walks in my street and I swear, he has the best dumplings ever!  I’ve tasted a lot of siomai, and I am pretty sure this is the best I I have tasted (well so far).  I can finish 10 pieces in one seating.  That’s how beastie I am when it comes to siomai.

Which directs me to the food I cooked for dinner tonight.  Now, I feel really proud of this, because for the first time (for an amateur like me) I have cooked something that’s not from my food magazine, or recipe books.  I don’t have a particular name for it, for now, I am just gonna call it Siomai Stir-fry.  Sounds normal, eh?  I basically used some leftover siomai as additional ingredient in my simple recipe.  Make sure to have enough steamy rice handy, because this one’s really really good.

Here are the ingredients:

2 cloves garlic, chopped
½ yellow onion, diced
Siomai
1 1/2 tbsp butter
Long green beans
Carrots
Lucky Me Nam Nam fine seasoning

For the sauce:
2 tsp oyster sauce
1 tbsp fish sauce
2 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp sugar
2 tbsp water

INSTRUCTIONS:

Combine the ingredients for the sauce and mix well. 

Then heat the butter in a wok over moderate heat and cook the garlic and onions. Turn the heat on high and toss in the leftover siomai. Give a quick stir, mix in long green beans and carrots, Lucky Me Nam Nam seasoning. Stir some more then add in the sauce.

Serve warm with steamed rice. Quick and easy!  Happy eating.

I COOK: Thai Basil Chicken

Just before you attack me with some professional cooking comments, I just want to make it clear that I am just a regular food lover who happens to now and then have the energy to head to the kitchen and cook something from my recipe book, or magazines.  That’s me.  I am very amateur in all food-sense, so please be gentle, okay?  :)  I won’t even go ahead and list ingredients here and there, instructions 1, 2, 3, because well, main reason why I write this and have this category “I COOK” is to simply showcase you something I made, which for an amateur like me is already a source of pride.  Especially if the people I cook for loves what I made, it really brings pleasure.

I know I still need to learn more: cooking techniques, ingredients familiarization, measuring, etc.  I tend to shy away from meat right now because I am not very confident with it yet, on when it is really done and ready to eat- it’s one aspect I really have to learn more.  But as they say, experience teaches you best so I guess I just have to keep cooking and cooking and then eventually will find answers along the way.  For now, enjoy my Thai basil chicken (without the chilis because of my GERD issues).  It’s so easy to make that tomorrow, I am thinking of substituting the chicken meat with tuna and just because I wanna try it, remove the corn starch and the basil leaves with green string beans.  Let’s see how it goes.

Until then, happy eating…

D.