Sunday, August 28, 2016


Aside from Sinigang sa Bayabas, the other ways I like my bangus belly are fried or pinaksiw. One day, I decided to combine both cooking process just because.  So here it is.
  • 400 gms boneless bangus  belly
  • 500 ml   sukang paombong (vinegar)
  • 250 ml   water
  • 50  gms  ginger (peeled, sliced)
  • 4 cloves  garlic 
  • 1 pc        siling haba 
  • 1 pc        dried laurel leaf
  • salt to taste
  • whole peppercorn
  • Cooking oil

  • Arrange the bangus belly at the bottom of the pan
  • Place the ginger, garlic, siling haba, laurel leaf and pepper corn
  • Pour the vinegar and water
  •  Let it boil. Add salt to taste.
  • Once it boils, lower the heat and let it simmer for 5 minutes
  • Remove the bangus and set the broth aside.
  • Heat oil in a pan.
  • Once hot, fry the bangus belly with the ginger and garlic.
  • Serve with the paksiw broth as sawsawan (dipping sauce)

Saturday, August 20, 2016


This restaurant with a long name occupies a small space at the HRC Building along Rada St. in Makati. The cozy place seats about 20 persons and I heard is always full on weekdays.

The menu is simple and a straightforward selection of heirloom recipes. My friends and I started off with the complimentary pan de bonete, a traditional dinner roll popular in Southern Luzon served with locally made mantekilya, salsa fresca and sinantolan (fermented santol fruit). 

We sipped the tangy calamansi-lime to freshen the palate for the entrees.
First up was the Pako Salad. Pako (young fern) picked from the mountainside is washed and blanched, topped with kesong puti (white cheese made from carabao milk), julienned singakamas (turnips) and drizzled with a calamansi-based vinaigrette.
We tried out a truly Filipino food combination: Sinigang na Baboy, Adobong Pusit and Fried Lapu-lapu with Mango.
For the Pork Sinigang, the food servers will let you taste a sample of the broth to get your approval for the level of sourness. The pork cuts were chunky and tender (but the fatty bits were not melt-in- your-mouth the way I usually like it) and served with slices of gabi (tuber), sitaw (string beans), okra and kangkong (water spinach). A side of Crispy danggit (salted, dried fish) is partnered with the steaming soup.

I was surprised that the Adobong Pusit was dry but whatever inky stew it had was really tasty.
 The most interesting dish was the Fried Lapu-lapu with Mango. The deep-fried  fish was smothered with an escabeche made acidic with ripe mango slivers and colored with diced red bell pepper.

Next time you're in Makati with friends, try and have an excellent meal at this homey restaurant. I'm sure you'll enjoy it.

The Rural Kitchen of Liliw Laguna
Address: HRC Centre, 104 Rada Street, Legaspi Village, Makati City
Telephone:  02 7798073; +63 9258470493

Thursday, August 18, 2016


The best way to appreciate what a place has to offer is to go where the locals go and eat where the locals eat. In Singapore, eating breakfast very early in the day is an experience that will make you see how diverse the populace of this small city-state is. 

Got the chance to do just that when I met up with a former production assistant who chose to find her luck in Singapore. Hers is a story similar to many educated Filipinas who work abroad to earn more for their children. When I visited her, I found it uplifting that she finds pride in her work as a cashier and food server at the Big City Coffee House, a cafe by the street frequented by blue collar workers, mostly immigrants from Malaysia, Indonesia, Pakistan and India.

They serve different breakfast meals for their multi-cultural clientele. There's Nasi Lemak, a Malay rice dish made fragrant by coconut cream and pandan leaves, it is garnished with dilis (small fried anchovies), cucumber slices, roasted peanuts, boiled egg and sambal (hot sauce made with different chili peppers, spices and fish paste).
For those who want to spice u their mornings, there's Roti Prata, a flour-based grilled pancake dipped in curry.
But I came here for the Kaya Toast Set. My experience with this breakfast treat has been limited to the mall-based franchise Toast Box or Kopi Roti where everything's pretty and served in small ceramic plates. Here at Big City Cafe, the Kopi is served in a class mug and the hot soft-boiled eggs in a plastic bowl filled with tap water to cool down the eggs.

You can order your Kopi (the Malay word for coffee, if you still haven't figured it out) in different ways: Kopi O (Black, with sugar, no milk); Kopi Kosong (black, no sugar); Kopi C (with milk; the "C" stands for Carnation milk).

Once the eggs have cooled down, you crack and peel the egg unto a bowl. Add a dash of salt and pepper.
Then you dip the toasted bread filled with Kaya, a coconut jam made with sugar, coconut milk, eggs, margarine and pandan. The creaminess of the soft-boiled egg puts together the sweetness of the kaya, the starchiness of bread and the saltiness from the eggs. Follow-up each bite or two with a sip of hot coffee then you'll understand why Singaporeans consider this filling meal as their national breakfast.

Big City Coffee House
Address: 15 Kitchener Road, Singapore 208532

Wednesday, August 17, 2016


I've done two classic, general patronage pudding recipes:  Raisin Pudding and Banana Raisin Pudding.  This time, I'm keeping the recipe simple but more adult because I added Irish Cream, a sweet and creamy liquer with an Irish Whiskey base.

1 loaf    White bread, cubed
3 cups   Fresh milk
1 cup     semi-sweet chocolate
1/2 cup  Irish Cream (Bailey's)
1/2 cup  Cocoa powder (sweetened)1/2 cup  Muscovado sugar
1/4 cup  All-purpose cream
1 tbsp    Vanilla extract2 tsps    Almond extract
6 pcs     Eggs


You need 4 bowls to get things started:

In your 1st bowl place the sliced bread (1-inch cubes). You can take out the sides if you want to but I use them since I don't like wasting anything.

In the 2nd bowl, lightly whisk the milk, cream, and liqueur. 

In the 3rd bowl, mix the sugar and and cocoa powder.  Add the sugar/cocoa mixture to the milk/cream/liquer mixture. Make sure to remove lumps.

In the 4th bowl, lightly beat the eggs and add the vanilla and almond extract.  Pour this egg mixture to the milk/cream/liquer/sugar/cocoa mixture. Gently stir in the chocolate chips.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees Farenheit (162.778 Celsius). Grease a your pan (13 x 9 is recommended).  Place the bread cubes in the pan and pour the mixture over the cubed bread. Gently mix in places where you want the liquid to seep into the bread.  Let it stand for 15 minutes to let the bread absorb the mixture.
Put the pan inside the oven for an hour. 

To check if it's ready, stick a toothpick (or a knife) through the middle. If it comes out clean, then it;s ready. If stuff sticks, then put it back in the oven and check after 3-5 minutes.

I like to serve this pudding warm with a scoop of cold Vanilla ice cream. But if you're preparing this in advance,  you can refrigerate it and serve it cold with chocolate sauce and whipped cream.

Friday, August 12, 2016


This one's a surprise. A good surprise.  I grew up knowing that hopia as a  flaky pastry filled with sweet mung beans and that sebuyas tagalog (Tagalog onions) is pungent and has a unique sharp taste. That these two could come together is a surprise. A pleasant one. 
Discovered these when the hubby brought home some. The onions turned sweet and less pungent when cooked. I'm guessing, sauteed then baked in with the pastry. According to the book On Food and Cooking,"When onions and their relatives are heated, the various sulfur compounds react with each other and with other substances to produce a range of characteristic flavor molecules."Apparently, the sulfur breaks out the sugars as well, thus, the sweetness.

I get my packs from the Supermarket but the label says it's from Margie's Cakes and Pastries from Bacolod. 

Margie's Cakes and Pastries
Address: No. 12 Las Vegas St. Las Palmas Subdivision 
Bacolod City, Negros Occidental 6100 Philippines
Telephone: +63-34 434-9375;  +63-34 433-4566

Friday, August 5, 2016


It's late at night and I can't sleep. So what do I do? I surf the web and find funny stuff which will probably keep me up more.

Mikey Bustos' "I Go To Palengke" 
This well-produced parody f Meghan Trainor's "All About That Bass" will take you a a quick tour of a palengke, what we flips call the wet market.

Comedy Laugh's "Funny Clips | Foreign When Eating Balut!"
Title says it all. This is how Filipinos torture foreigners who are brave enough to try balut, fertilized duck egg. The word "swallow!" has never been so abused.

Googlee TV's "Funny Filipino Chef at the Benihana l London l Amazing Hand Tricks" 
Food and entertainment are the two things we Pinoys are good at wherever you may find us around the world. Chef Charles Miguel proves that.

Megan Batoon's "How to Cook: Lumpia"
Most Filipinos have a get-together to concide with Manny Pacquiao's fights. During the almost but not quite epic Pacquiao-Mayweather fight, this spunky Fil-Am tried to make Lumpia.  
R. San Guilmo's  video of "Rex Navarette - Hot Dog and Filipino Cuisine"
Stand-up Rex navarette talks about the Filipino obsession with hotdog.