Seafood Tomato Soup
Initially I was planning to make calamares from the two large fresh squid that G’s parents gave us, but because both of us were down with the flu, I decided to make a hearty tomato soup with freshly chopped carrots, tomatoes, onions, garlic, yellow bell pepper, squid and fish balls. I sauteed the garlic and onions in olive oil, then simmered them with the rest of the vegetables in a cup of white wine before adding a can of tomato paste, shrimp broth cubes, and four cups of water. Added the squid and fish balls last, then served the soup with a sprinkling of dried thyme.
Last night, I cooked a quick and easy chicken curry for dinner using a pack of curry paste, a can of coconut milk, chicken, potatoes and carrots! A lot of short cuts, I know, but still perfect if you get home late from work and just want a filling meal!
4 days of non-stop, pouring rain.
2nd day working from home, with slow Internet access.
1st dinner last night of a comforting bowl of steaming hot arroz caldo cooked by me.
Recipe adapted from Jun Belen
Photo taken using my iPhone
Chicken and Mushrooms in Oyster Sauce
When I was in high school, Tuesday nights meant that we had Chicken and Mushrooms in Oyster Sauce for dinner. Well, who says I can’t bring this tradition back? For my version I used Shiitake Mushrooms (instead of canned button mushrooms) and topped it with steamed broccoli. And instead of just oyster sauce, I mixed a bit of hoisin sauce, soy sauce, minced garlic, salt and pepper, plus chopped chives.
Two thumbs up from G, and from me as well!
“Apple Pie” Oatmeal
Weird fact about me: I’ve been having oatmeal for breakfast since I was 7 (except when I’m traveling and oatmeal isn’t available). My sisters hated oatmeal when we were younger (and still do to this day), while I was the one who never really minded.
Nowadays, I usually mix mangoes into my daily oatmeal, but today I felt I needed something special. So I made “Apple Pie” Oatmeal. I mixed 1/2 cup of old fashioned oatmeal with some water in a bowl. Separately, I cut an apple into thin slices and arranged them on the oatmeal. Finally, I mixed 2tsp of brown sugar and 1 tsp of cinnamon and sprinkled it all over the apples. Then I cooked the whole thing in the microwave for 2 minutes on high. I left it for another 2 minutes inside, then voila! Easy peasy special breakfast for me!
Cooked dinner two nights in a row, during a weekend at that! I simply sauteed garlic with chicken marinated in soy sauce, hoissin sauce, sesame oil, brown sugar, salt and pepper, then served the chicken on a salad of greens, with boiled sweet corn on the side.
A lazy Saturday at home means a lazy dinner. I sauteed garlic, tomatoes and brocolli, then pan fried some burgers and eggs for two. Does not necessarily make for a pretty photo but it was delicious.
I grew up eating the type of Mac n’ Cheese you find in those blue cardboard boxes (guilty pleasure, I know), but I think it’s about time that I made the real thing.
This is probably the most expensive Mac n’ Cheese dish I made because I bought my cheese (white cheddar and gruyere) from a deli, but it was worth a shot! For the topping I mixed some cheese with panko bread crumbs, which made for a nice thin crust that covered this rich and creamy pasta dish.
I served the Mac n’ Cheese with pan seared beef covered in thyme and pan fried shrimp, along with broccoli. We got the beef and shrimp fresh from G’s dad, so both were very flavorful. I wish I had a grill to cook these in next time though. Next time!
Here’s the recipe for the Mac n’ Cheese:
Macaroni and Cheese
Note: I cut this recipe in half because the original recipe is way too much for two people to handle!
After so many months of preparing for the wedding, G and I finally have a non-hectic day all to ourselves. What better way to start the weekend with delicious Nutella Mango Crepes?
I used Martha Stewart’s Simple Crepes recipe but made a little changes, as you will see below. The best thing about these crepes is that I can put in as much Nutella and mangoes as I can, unlike store bought crepes where they scrimp on the delicious fillings and you eat mostly crepe (okay, except for my favorite crepe places like Cafe Breton and La Creperie).
Summer means extremely hot and humid tropical temperatures, but it also means that sweet golden mangoes are in season! Yum!
We had some crepes leftover, so I wrapped each crepe in plastic wrap, stacked them on top of one another, then stored them in a ziplock bag in the fridge.
Here’s the recipe:
Nutella Mango Crepes
Inspired by our tonkatsu dinner at Yabu, I decided to make pork tonkatsu for our dinner tonight. I don’t really have a proper recipe for this but I used 1/4 kilo of pork, cut into slices then tenderized, 3 tablespoons of panko bread crumbs, 1 egg (beaten), and 2 tablespoons of all purpose flour with salt and pepper. I then dipped the tenderized pork into the flour mixture, then the beaten egg, then the panko bread crumbs. I didn’t want to deep fry the pork, so I fried the pork in a pan on medium heat, then I drained them and finished baking them in the oven. In hindsight, I should have baked the pork for 5 minutes instead of 10 minutes as they came out a bit tough to chew. But they were juicy nonetheless and had a crisp crust. Instead of serving them with shredded cabbage (which we didn’t have), I served them with carrots and broccoli and super yummy Bulldog tonkatsu sauce.
Back to the Basics: How to Boil Rice
(without a rice cooker and without making it stick to the bottom of the pot)
Without a rice cooker the past 2 weeks (you really don’t know what you’ve got until it’s gone!), I had to find a way to cook rice without it sticking to the bottom of the pot. Which definitely happened in my fifth grade home economics class…never boiled rice without a rice cooker after that incident until now!
As with all simple how-tos, I turned to eHow.com for some advice. I wasn’t a big fan of the taste of butter in my rice so I substituted it with olive oil…and it worked like a charm! I also added some chicken stock for more flavor.
I learned that pierogi are Polish dumplings traditionally filled with potatoes, though they can be filled with other ingredients too. So today after Sunday mass, I bought potato, potato & onion and potato & cheese pierogi and made them for lunch.
I first placed water with a bit of salt on medium high heat, then when it started to boil, I placed the pierogi in the pot (without overcrowding the pot). Once the pierogi floated to the surface, I let them boil for an additional seven minutes before transferring them to a strainer to drain.
Another great way to make them is to melt a little butter into a pan and let them simmer in the butter until they’re browning!
Macaroni and Cheeseballs
This is the love child of Spaghetti & Meatballs and Mac & Cheese.
Perfect way to end a day when you oversleep for an hour (!?!), skip breakfast because you are rushing to make it to an 8:00am meeting, and run around the office to attend 7 other meetings/telephone conferences for the rest of the day.
Because of my semi-zombie state, I was not able to take more photos. But I simply used Martha Stewart’s Fried Mozzarella recipe and added it to my pasta dish of tomatoes, yellow bell peppers, parsley, and sliced chicken.
…or you can simply call it, “Baked Tilapia with Spinach-Blue Cheese Pasta”. Up to you.
I am no doctor (maybe a doctor quack) but I believe that fresh parsley, tomatoes, spinach, tilapia, olive oil, and garlic are food that’s good for your heart. Sadly, blue cheese is something that must be taken in moderation as it does have more fat and sodium, so I only used a bit of it for this dish.
I really wish I had a proper recipe for this dish, as I literally just took whatever I had in my fridge and put them all together. Here’s my best recollection of how I made last night’s dinner.
1. Preheat oven to 450F. Drizzle olive oil onto a foil-covered baking sheet. Arrange fish on the baking sheet, top with a bit of salt, pepper, tomato slices and chopped parsley.
2. Bake the seasoned fish the oven for 10-15 minutes, turning the fish in between.
Spinach-Blue Cheese Pasta
1. Boil the pasta according to the package instructions. Drain and lightly coat the pasta with olive oil to prevent it from sticking together.
2. Saute the garlic in olive oil, then add the spinach. Season with salt and pepper.
3. At the last minute, stir in the diced tomato and chopped fresh parsley, then remove the pan from the heat. Mix the veggies into the pasta. Serve with a sprinkling of crumbled blue cheese.
4. Give yourself a pat on the back for treating your heart right. :)
Today was just like any other day. I woke up, went to work, and after work I made dinner.
And just like any other day, when I make dinner, I just check whatever stuff I have in the fridge/pantry then put random stuff together. It really helps that I have a steady supply of proteins, veggies, herbs and spices ready.
But I guess what made this day a little different is the little surprise when G got home. :)
Hope everyone had a great vday or anti-vday, depending on how you see it :)