Monday, December 27, 2010

Happy Holidays! :)

Merry Christmas everyone! :)

Here's something our family gave to our relatives for this holiday season - Banana Chocolate Chip cupcakes with Chocolate Buttercream. As always, Banana and Chocolate go well together, thus we have these cupcakes, and how much more good will it be if you top some chocolate butter cream on it? :)

I used my favorite Banana Chocolate Chip bread recipe for the cupcakes. Then I just reduced the time to 20 minutes, rotating the pan halfway. 1 recipe makes about 15 cupcakes. The chocolate butter cream recipe was inspired by two recipes.

It's still a busy time now and hope to be back soon!

Have a blessed, healthy and happy 2011! :)

Monday, September 27, 2010

Home Made Pan de Sal

Isn't it a such wonder to be able to make your own bread? I have been inspired by several people whom I think have considered bread making from home a passion and another level of therapy. I believe I can consider it the same- after so many repeats of this well-loved Filipino Pan de Sal.

During my childhood, I used to wake up with either fried rice or pan de sal on the table. I love them both of course. Fried rice has always been part of my breakfast list until now. As for pan de sal in this present time - as much as I love to have it all the time, there is no panaderia/bakery nearby. I much more like having newly baked pan de sal than having commercial ones in stock. In the neighborhood where I grew up, when you walk out of our street, there's plenty of bakeries left and right! Oh boy, who would not want to wake up smelling freshly baked bread?

Glad I found this easy recipe from Panlasang Pinoy. Kuya Vanjo is a genius. His recipes and videos are very helpful and easy to understand. Makes you feel like some sort of an expert already. Thanks Panlansang Pinoy!

This version below has a little more sugar since I like my pan de sal sweet ;) I arranged the recipes in parts and in order of the procedure.


1 tbsp white sugar

2 and 1/4 teaspoon active dry yeast

1 ¼ cup fresh milk, warm

2 cups MAYA all purpose flour

2 cups bread flour

½ cup white sugar

1 tsp salt

1 tsp baking powder

5 tbsp butter, melted

1 tbsp cooking oil

1 piece raw egg

Approximately 1/2 cup flour for dusting flat surface

1 cup bread crumbs for coating


1. Prepare about 3 baking pans with wax paper. Set aside.

2. Combine the yeast, 1 tbsp sugar, and warm milk and stir until the yeast and sugar are fully dissolved (Set aside and continue the rest of the steps. Mixture will be bubbly and frothy in about 10 minutes, just in time after you have prepared the other steps!)

3. In a large mixing bowl, combine the dry ingredients starting with the MAYA all purpose flour, bread flour, 1/2 c sugar, salt, and baking powder. Mix well with a whisk.

4. Add the melted butter, cooking oil, egg and yeast-sugar-milk mixture in the mixing bowl with the dry ingredients then mix again until dough is formed.

5. In a flat and floured surface, knead the dough until the texture becomes fine.

6. Mold the dough into a ball. Cover the mixing bowl with a damp cloth and let the dough rise for at least 1 hour to 1 hour and a half in a warm area.

- You may opt to prepare the dough in the evening for a "slow rise" in the fridge (covered with cling wrap) until the following day.

7. After the rising process, put the dough back to the flat and floured surface and divide into 4 equal parts

8. Roll each part until it forms a log

9. Slice the log diagonally or horizontally (These slices will be the individual pieces of the pan de sal)

10. Roll the sliced dough over the breadcrumbs and place in a baking tray with wax paper. Sliced part facing up! (make sure to provide enough space between each sliced dough because they will have a second rise)

11. Cover the prepared dough slices with a slightly damp cloth and set aside for another 15 to 20 minutes for the second rise.

12. while the dough is on its "second rise process", pre-heat the oven at 375F or 190C

13. After the second rise, pop them in the oven and bake for 15 minutes. You can rotate your pan de sal tray on the 10th minute to achieve an even texture and color.

14. Turn off the oven and bring out the freshly baked pan de sal. Makes about 35 to 40 pieces.

Best served with butter and jam or marmalade, bacon on the side and your favorite coffee or hot chocolate!

I made wheat pan de sal once - the dough is heavier and it needed more moisture and more time to rise and bake than using bread flour + all purpose flour.

Making pan de sal almost every week brings value added cheers and fun at home, especially to my little big boy who likes bread...

and discovered he likes kneading it too :)

Here's to wishing more opportunities or should I say stolen moments of MYOB (making your own bread) and eating them too :)

Will be here again soon :)

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Adobo Flakes and Blog's 1st Birthday!

It was just last year when The Happy Tummy Kitchen blog was born. And my first entry? Adobo. So how about paying tribute to my all time favorite dish on my blog's first birthday? This time, it's all flaked up! I have been experimenting on adobo flakes for quite sometime and thought I have figured out an easy way to do it - without having to use forks and fingers to flake the meat.

I prefer to use pork as most would use chicken for adobo flakes. I use the big pork cuts from the grocery - either Lomo or Kasim, boil them or pressure cook them first to make them really really tender, drain the liquid (store stock/broth for future use in freezer) then start cooking your adobo, the way you like it, just simmer until it becomes a little dry, mix, mix, mix and press the meat with your cooking spoon/cucharon. If the meat is really tender, it will eventually loosen up and become thready/flaky and will fry in its own oil :)

You might also want to try the sandwich version. Just ready 2 bread slices: layer 1 slice, then put mayo side up, adobo flakes, 1 lettuce leaf , about 2 tomato slices, then 1 slice of bread with mayo spread side down... then potato chips on the side. Lovely. :)

Sharing with you a photo of my sandwich, back in 2008:

Yep, that's moi!

How time flies! It has been 365 days since I started this little hobby. I wish I could have shared more during the past months. Forgive me for my promises were broken, my goal of reaching a hundred recipes in 1 year - gone with with wind hehehe but it's not over of course! For now,there are just so many things to take care of. I do wish that soon when all things fall into place, there will be much more time again to doodle my little dishes-worth-sharing-with-you :)

Thank you to the amazing bloggers who have been my source of inspiration and got my drive to start my own food journal. And to my good friends who drop by, thank you so kindly! :)

See you soon! :)

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Lemongrass Chicken Barbecue

Goodbye March and hello there April - well, it's already almost goodbye too. I didn't know it would take me this long to come back here. Well, aside from my clingy little boy getting clingy-er everyday, there's still a lot more going on. Happenings so nice to know and chat about. Some you'd rather not even think about - though they haunt you in your sleep blah blah blah! :P

I need to get back to my sanity. Like right now. So, here I am again. I don't have any more excuses!

Before I continue - I just want to share some blessings during the past month: Archie got me a flat screen for my PC as a
"wala lang" gift (MS Excel is more fun!) , a long keyboard wrist pad with massage beads (because I am scared to have carpal tunnel syndrome) and a small LED light lamp (so I can sneak in my station while the little boy is asleep and no big lights on!). Yey! Thank you bunnywabbit! :)

Ok back now.

My kitchen adventures have been intensified because of this wonderful magazine, and great food blogs and recipe sites. I have always been using usual Barbecue commercial marinades but when I found this, I felt like I have to try it right away, and it was a success indeed!

Lemongrass Chicken Barbecue
original recipe: page 30, Yummy Magazine Jan/Feb 2010

8 pcs boneless chicken thighs/breasts, trim excess fat and cut into 1 1/2 inch pcs
salt and pepper to taste
3 tbsp finely chopped lemongrass/tanglad
3 tbsp minced garlic
2 tbsp spring onions, chopped
3/4 cup barbecue marinade (I used Mama Sita's)
2 tbsp brown sugar for a little sweetness (optional, not part of original recipe)

- lightly season chicken with salt and pepper. I had mixed chicken thighs and breasts (Archie likes white meat, while I like red)
- in a bowl, mix together lemongrass, minced garlic, spring onions and barbecue marinade. You may want to add brown sugar if (like me) you like your barbecue sweet :) Mix well.
- Pour marinade on chicken and mix altogether with your clean hands. Marinate for at least 6 hours or overnight.
- Skewer chicken , about 3 to 4 pieces per stick, grill over charcoal or grill pan, for about 5 to 6 minutes skin side down, then for another 3 to 4 minutes, on the other side. Brush chicken with left over marinade once in a while, while grilling.

For my friends who use turbo broiler - this is my homework. I shall update you all as soon as I get this done! :)

This is something new and something to look forward to on the next grilling session!

Belated happy summer to all. The heat is really scorching hot, so is the barbecue!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Banana Chocolate Nutella Smoothie

This was inspired by our team's ever memorable team building trip in wherelse but there (?!)

For a little twist, I combined peanut butter and Nutella for a more nutty action.

For 3 medium sized cocktail glasses, I used:

3 ripe lacatan bananas
about 1/2 cup of nutella
about 1/2 cup of peanut butter (local - Lily's peanut butter. Love it to bits!)
about 3 cups full cream milk
1 tsp of vanilla
brown sugar - I suggest you drop a teaspoonful one at a time and do your taste test.
1 cup of crushed ice

Lucky you if your blender can crush ice really well!

Mine cannot crush thoroughly so I manually shaved ice through my manual ice shaver! Yes, like pawis-steering.

For more creamy texture - if you have vanilla ice cream handy, by all means add a scoop!

What to do: mix them altogether in your blender and slurp-slurp-slurp! (Or you may opt to chill it longer)

The heat is definitely ON!
How's your aircon doing?

I have been to this wonderful promised land for just four times and been ordering Mango Shake like there's no tomorrow on the first three trips. Just for kicks, I tried this on my fourth visit and so glad I did. Of course, I will still have my Mango Shake - but now I know what else to get on my 5th, 6th and so on...

BORACAY, 'til we meet again!

Vegetable Samosas (Not so!)

I have been craving for Max's veggie lumpia bites that I have tasted during Cana's christening and Archie and I thought it's something close to Samosas. (Cana: my God daughter, daughter of my friend and former boss)

Tutal, it was the weekend and I had a little bit of time to do it since Javie was taking his siesta and Archie is sleeping the day away.

I know, I know they don't look exactly like the real samosas :P they are bordering empanaditas or triangular lumpia. Hehehe.

This was my first ever attempt to use Phyllo pastry, so please forgive me for violating her rights and not giving her some justice. I wanted to make some Baklava but I do not have enough goodies for it so I decided to make it into something healthy.

However, this did not come out really right - Aesthetically speaking. It appeared in other shapes and sizes and the ones on the photo are the nicer ones, mind you.

I wish I read more carefully on how to thaw it as it is indeed a delicate kind of pastry. I wish I researched more BEFORE I made these. This was too much excitement in action!

Being too excited/gullible is my weakness. Sad to say.

But I am happy to tell you that the filling recipe is really good. I just added some chopped cabbage and used chicken broth instead of vegetable stock. Then I wrapped them in various ways since the pastry is really breaking already, I was on panic mode. Then I fried, drained then placed on paper towel to absorb excess oil.

On how to wrap samosas properly, please watch this.

Therefore I learned.

So in the future, I shall be more diligent in following package instructions, get away with food waste and save money! Or else, use lumpia wrapper :P

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Stir Fried Beef Strips and Peppers

While brain is still functioning on second wind motion, the little boy has gone to his dreamland of Backyardigans and Diego, and Archie is at work,
I am now having my unexpected nevertheless enjoyable Me time.

Since it is a bit chaotic here lately, I
have to make adjustments. And menu planning is part of it. Or is there such a thing now? :P

It's all about stir-fry's in some days! I am happy that I have a couple of recipes handy. And some of them, have been tried, tested and already made for a couple of times!

One of our favorite stir-fry recipes is Chichajo's Roast Pork Belly Stir-Fry. Way back, I remembered myself looking at its photo. It made me salivate as I also like eating Liempo (Pork Belly) very very much. My first attempt on it was during the holiday season of '08 using left over lechon cebu and we just loved it. I know, some may tell me I should have made Sinigang or Paksiw na lechon out of it but hey I had no regrets at all! And after a couple of days - due to recipe hangover, I made it again with left over Christmas ham! Wonderful! I believe you can just use any meat for that matter and I can say the recipe is universal. And it does not call for just left overs, of course. So here is a beef version of it!

Choose meat of really good quality and have your butcher slice them in thin strips, please. If you are in a situation like mine - my beef was not that good enough as it has unfriendly, uncooperative grains. The "cut through the grain" did not work for this batch. I discovered it because half of it was used for beef tapa. A blessing in disguise. So I decided to pressure cook my beef slices first, drained them (kept broth in freezer for future use), and sliced them to strips. They became really fork tender after the pressure cooking. Yahoo!

Stir Fried Beef Strips and Peppers
(inspired by Chichajo's recipe of Roast Pork Belly Stir-Fry)

1/4 k beef sirloin strips, sliced thinly
Cooking oil
1 small white onion chopped
6 cloves of garlic, finely chopped (I like it with lots of garlic!)
1 red bell pepper, cut into strips
1 green bell pepper, cut into strips
1 tsp of soy sauce
1 tsp of Knorr liquid seasoning
Pepper to taste
Extra Knorr seasoning (optional)

Sauté onion, garlic and pepper strips until soft but not wilted. Color check the peppers and make sure they are screaming Christmas.

Toss in the beef strips, stir fry for about 2 to 3 minutes or until beef is cooked

Add the soy sauce, seasoning and pepper, toss again, turn off fire, then VOILA!

* For my dear friends who are not meat eaters (anymore), please try it with chicken strips and let me know what you think! :)

While Archie and I loved our first version of it with lechon, we absolutely like this version too! We love the sweet aftertaste of the beef and peppers! Serve it on top of a bowl of hot rice....and Iced tea! I had a second serving by the way. More than enough to last the day!

Did I say I was gonna go on a salad diet at night time?

Now, off to dreamland!

Nytie Nyt Y'all! :)

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Mama's Boy

Whoa!!! It's almost MARCH?!! And I said I will write often! Now what on earth have I been busy with?

Having a 2 year old is one of the things that's keeping my day action-packed. It's just a surprise my little boy suddenly became really
really clingy. Yah you can say that again, like BOOM!

Me time" is currently not so used in my book right now - my me time a.k.a. blog time, reading, watching TV or DVDs, other errands and the list goes on and on...

As for
"Us time", Archie and I see to it that we have that no matter what happens! ;)

Javie is now on his "mommy addict" mode. It' on-going for the past 7 weeks. He somewhat developed this strong sense of time that he knows when I am about to start work and when I should be back. He follows me almost everywhere I go. He rants when he could not see a morsel of me. It's really cute as he looks and sounds funny when he looks for me. I find it cuter when I see his delight when he finds me. He giggles, jumps/skips and says "Mommyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy!" As if I was a balikbayan who didn't come home for years!

Though during the "rush hours" here (rush hours at home - this term I learned from my friend Sally), it can be itty bitty frustrating.

As told by relatives and an online source, having a clingy toddler is natural and common. So Archie, I and the Ates are trying our best to make things work for all of us and make Javie understand that Mommy needs to be
just a bit away for a while! And the "a bit away" I am talking about my dear party people is just being one room away from his room. For the benefit of your imagination, okay, I counted the steps from my work area to the doorstep of his room, it's roughly 10 steps away. Malayo ba? :P

We are really finding ways on how to manage/deal with it positively! We just really hope that soon, Javie will be a bit "OK" if I or Archie will be away for just a while, that we won't have to sneak out and that his Ates, his toys, crayons and pens will suffice and keep him busy and happy.

Sometimes, I miss the little freedom of doing what I like in my own time and pace. I miss putting check marks on my To-do list. And yah-I miss cleaning up my brows twice a week. Which now, I can only do once a week! *LOL*

Earlier I said that he follows me almost everywhere I go: So name it. bathroom, bedroom, work area, garden and yes, you guessed it right, in the kitchen.

Before he is already satisfied by simply watching me cook. Now, he wants to do what Mommy is doing:

Or at least close enough...

HEhehehehehe. NOw should I buy him his small kitchen gadgets?

But you see, I won't have it any other way. I know in the future things will change and he will not be this way again. So I am savoring this time :)

That's my cute, clingy, sweet and funny little boy.

Just a little mommy moment :)

Friday, February 5, 2010

Going Greek: Romaine Lettuce in Greek Vinaigrette

Archie and I have just started to be a little more adventurous in dining in new restos - despite almost 8 years of being together (4 yrs dating + 3 yrs and 8 months of being married) - I guess we we're just kinda lazy to do that. Or maybe just too happy with the usual? Anyway, I am just so glad that it's never too late. And yes, we're having fun! :P

As you noticed, we're late bloomers in Greek food appreciation. On our first CYMA dinner last March of '09 (Thanks to Madame, Russel, Kate and Noel for taking us there!), we definitely liked everything we ordered, especially their Roka Salata. After that night, we came back for it a couple of more times. I guess that's how we are when we really like something from a resto.

Archie is an avid salad eater so after much thought he said - the base dressing is a simple vinaigrette but it has a fruity twist. It took a while for us to discover the right additions to finally figure it out! Thanks to Sheila, of course! :)

The ideas for the dressing is inspired by the recipe from Yummy Mag Jan/Feb 2010 Ish page 76. Some sweets have been added to achieve the fruity twist in it.

Using romaine lettuce only is just fine, just as I did, but if you can mix it with arugula, go ahead if you can grab some in the market or grocery.

For the dressing, mix:

1/2 tbsp of garlic powder (for fresh finely minced garlic, use about 2 tsps only as it is too strong, unless you want it that strong, add some more)
1/4 cup of Balsamic Vinegar
3/4 Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper

Whisk them altogether in a bowl, then add the sweets:

5 heaping tbsps of honey
2 tbsps of Raspberry Jam*

*Sheila said CYMA's got raspberry in it besides honey. So, I went to the grocery and grabbed a jar of Smuckers Raspbery Jam. Swak!

Mix them well until you see that the mixture becomes thick. Pour it over your salad greens, toss and top with the following:

Sun dried tomatoes
Candied walnuts
Shaved Parmesan Cheese
Fresh ground pepper

It was my first time to make candied walnuts and it was no joke! I used this as my guide. Whew!

It's great to know that I still have room for learning and appreciating new dishes and more room in my tummy for eating!

After the holidays, I know, I SEE and I FEEL that I have gained weight. Now my OPLAN is to TRY to eat salad only at night. Goodluck! :)

Happy weekend to all! Valentine's day is coming! Heart! :)

Monday, January 25, 2010

Banana Caramel Cookie Crunch

This one I learned from a good friend who is now happy in heaven. She came up with this in a retreat some decade and a half ago I guess, where she was OIC for the food committee. Just because she was left with very few resources, she came up with this fun and easy to make dessert. Funny this can be a Banoffee pie's neighbor!

And so I learned that you have to make do with what you have in the kitchen and you'll see that you can make something spectacular out of them.

On the photo you see:
Crushed chocolate chip cookies / Any butter cookie you like

1 Ripe Banana (lakatan)
Caramel syrup
Chocolate Syrup (Hershey's or Clara Ole, or melted chocolate!)

*When my friend shared this with me, she said she used Chips Ahoy, ripe lacatan bananas and melted Hershey's chocolate!

No official measurements! Just assemble it in any order you desire!

I like to assemble it this way:

In a plate or cup, put the crushed cookies, then sliced bananas, pour the caramel and lastly the chocolate syrup!

You may also opt to add a little vanilla ice cream or whipped all purpose cream, and instead put them in a small clear glass to make it appear like a trifle, plus a cherry on top! :)

This one's for you Sab! I know you are smiling down on us!

Alright everyone, dig in!!! :)

*this is an addition to my Banana festival moment. Simple, pero ROCK! bow!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Puffy Shrimps in Sweet Mayo-Coconut Sauce

Happy New Year everyone! :) I would like to start my first entry this year with something just out of the kitchen (and into my tummy) - yes, just today. Real time!

Have you tried Tin Hau Restaurant's Shrimps with Sliced Almond and Mayonnaise?
If you have tried it and liked it, just like myself and my colleagues, you might want to try this recipe at home. I can say it's a bit bit close to Tin Hau's
(minus the presentation. Hehe.)

I really don't know how Tin Hau made theirs... Lucky and blessed, sometime ago, my Mommy Tess told me to try something similar to it but using candied walnuts as garnish rather than almonds. Since I don't have candied walnuts, at least I have the almond slivers available. Thanks to our nearby Cocoa Pantry :)

For more ka artehan, I would like to name it Puffy Shrimps in Sweet Mayo-Coconut Sauce.

Here goes:

First make your Cream sauce:

2 tbsp mayonnaise
2 to 2 1/2 tbsp condensed milk
2 tbsp coconut cream/ gata

mix them together and whisk until all flavors are incorporated. Set aside.

If I may suggest, start heating your cooking oil in your deep frying sauce pan before preparing the batter to save time and to have your shrimps "deep-fry" ready.

For this recipe, I used about 2 cups of canola oil in a small sauce pan.

For the Shrimps:

about 1/2 kilo medium sized shrimps - peeled and deveined (Suahe)


About 3 6 tbps flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 pinch of salt
About 3/4 cup or less of ice cold water

UPDATE 1/18/10 - after much recall over the phone with Andrea --- for the flour, I remember I used 3 heaping tbsp of flour, double checked it with measuring spoon and it turns out to be about 6 tbsp . You might want to add another teaspoon of flour (to the 6 tbsp) if you want to achieve a little more pasty consistency

Mix dry ingredients and add the ice cold water little by little until dissolved and becomes paste like.
(realization w/ Andrea: like elmer's glue texture!)

Throw in the shrimps into the batter and set aside.

By this time the oil may be already hot and ready for the shrimps -

Throw in shrimps one at a time (do not over crowd them) and wait for about 2 minutes until you achieve a light golden brown color, then drain (Repeat process until all shrimps are cooked.)

REMINDER: Please be careful not to include your fingers.

Once done, mix them right away with the sauce, garnish with slivered almonds, or any nut you like (like my Mommy Tess, she uses candied walnuts) or serve as is. :)

The trick to having your shrimps stay puffy and crisp is to have your batter really ice cold, deep fry it, drain it, mix quickly w/ cream sauce and serve it immediately. AS IN PRONTO!

A new year is always equal to one having his/her own new year's resolutions... and one of my many many resolutions this 2010 is to do my best to make more new meals... and to write more. Here.

Everybody Happy!
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