Crispy Tofu
30 January 2011, 3:35 pm
Filed under: Cooking, General

Tofu according to health practitioners supplies a variety of protein, calcium, vitamins and protects the body against health conditions including heart disease, cancer and beneficial to women in both peri-menopause and menopause stage, etc. The isoflavones in tofu act as a form of estrogen in the body.

Again, the recipe is taken from my over-used recipe book, The Best of Food Magazine.

2 blocks tofu (firm)
2 egg whites
1 cup Japanese bread crumbs
Cooking oil

Pat tofu dry with paper towels
Slice tofu into squares
Dip in egg whites
Coat with bread crumbs, taking care to cover surface completely
In a wok, heat cooking oil
Fry tofu, a few pieces at a time until coating becomes crisp
Drain on paper towels.

*serve with either Teriyaki sauce or Vinegared sauce


Lomo’ing at the Market
12 March 2010, 10:35 pm
Filed under: Fruit/Plant, General

Like a little boy with a new toy, Hubby was aiming an iPhone indiscriminately all over the place last Sunday at the RC Sunday Market. I am used to him holding the shopping bags by my side (thank you Mama Diding, you have trained him well) as I made my usual stop from one stall to the other.  He was by my side the next minute then all of the sudden he was amongst the slow moving crowd along the busy corridor.  On several occasions, I made several stops and waited for him until he reappeared.  He acted like our youngest daughter who strays away and roams on her own at the shopping mall, unconsciously going by the golden rule numbers 5, 6, and 10 all the time.

Unwary stall owners continued to trade business while he acted like a Health Inspector observing proper food handling hygiene and suspiciously snapping photos as he went along the corridor.

Then he proudly showed me the ‘artwork’ he did while we were at the Sunday market.  He was practising Lomography and showed me the 10 Golden Rules of Lomography.  Eight out of ten Golden Lomography rules are familiar and of interest – father and daughter doing their normal day to day affair.

Ten Golden Rules of Lomography:

1. Take your LOMO with you wherever you go
2. Use it all the time, at any time – day or night
3. Lomography does not interfere with your life, it’s a part of it
4. Get as close as possible to the objects of your lomographic desire
5. Don’t think (William Firebrace)
6. Be fast
7. You don’t have to know what’s going to be captured on your film
8. You don’t have to know what’s on the film afterwards either
9. Shoot from the hip
10. Don’t worry about rules

Hubby was in Melbourne and showed me a photo of another method of cooking his favourite.

Eggplant Fries

Baby eggplants – cut into even strips
Dip in seasoned flour (flour, garlic powder, parsley, salt, and black pepper)
Fry in batches for about 3 minutes or until golden brown.
Drain on paper towels and add salt immediately while still hot.
Tzatziki dip or  vinegar dipping sauce  (optional)

Soups, soups, and more soups
13 January 2010, 9:51 pm
Filed under: Family, General, Soups

Weather conditions have been consistent over the past weeks, unlike how my children have been behaving over the school holidays. Monsoonal showers, storms and heavy rain at times overnight — the weather warning advises.

Pressure due to boredom developing and is expected to deepen over the next few days. Isolated drama and teenage depression in the coming weeks might occur – my tip-off.  While the two little ones are looking forward to their swimming lessons every afternoon, the teen-ager is bored to tears.

Two more weeks to go and things will hopefully return to normality.

Mongo soup, Chicken sopas, and Beef soup

Humba with Chinese Sausage and Nokus (dried squid)
8 January 2010, 9:10 pm
Filed under: Food, General, Pork

A Filipino author and professional cook described humba as “a dish simmered in a pot for several hours to bring out its melt-in-the-mouth texture.” Need I say more? Traditionally, or I should say my family’s style of the dish consists of pork, soy sauce, sugar, vinegar, and bay leaves. My constant visit to the Internet as a self-confessed food blog browser has taken me to what I would call Filipillions (as in million and gazillion) of Filipino recipes, another indication that like me, many Filipinos are consistent in their quest to perfect the amalgamation of Malay, Spanish and Chinese influences which is Filipino.

So why are Filipino dishes not as popular as Thai, Vietnamese, Indian, when it comes to international cooking shows and cookbooks? My initial query here.

This recipe is pieced together from other pork stew recipes.

1 kilo pork rashers – cut into serving-style pieces
2 Chinese sausages – sliced
3 medium-sized fried nokus – cut in half
½ cup water
½ cup rice wine vinegar
½ cup dark brown sugar
50 ml soy sauce
4-5 garlic cloves, crushed
3 whole cloves
1 star anise
1 tsp whole black peppercorn
1 bay leaf
a handful of dried lily flowers – soak in warm water before cooking
salt to taste
1 chicken stock cube

Place all ingredients in a large saucepan and bring to the boil.
Simmer until the pork is tender.

Two more bottles for the fridge
30 December 2009, 3:46 pm
Filed under: General, Wine/beverage

Two bottles of red wine are joining previous year’s Christmas gifts — one from hubby’s friend and one from my boss. The fridge door is incapable of holding eight bottles any longer so I tenderly laid them down on their side on the first level in the fridge.

We received a few wine bottles as gifts over the years and we store them to preserve their goodness for when the desire to consume them occurs. We have a bottle each of red and white half consumed which I use for my cooking experiments. I searched on the internet for tips on how to store wine at home. Wines have been stored in wine caves and underground cellars for hundreds of years. Wine vault, wine cellar, wine cooler, wine rack, and wine cabinet are the many ways to store wine for aging purposes and to conserve their goodness. It is also advised to always store bottles on their side, to keep storage temperature moderate, to avoid spots with constant vibration and light — simply to keep it cool, keep it in the dark and keep it still to safely store wine at home. An article warned that storing wine in the kitchen refrigerator for more than week or so is not a good idea as the temperature may flatten the taste of wine. There is also consideration on other smells – smells from left-over food, fruits, vegetables & cheese – which could affect the taste of wine.

As acquiring wine vaults, cellars, coolers, racks and cabinets are not at the top of our shopping list, my bottles of wine are in danger of losing flavour.

Christmas gift by the big boss
15 December 2009, 9:25 pm
Filed under: General

The big boss at work has scheduled for a short meeting on Thursday, 17 December. Another wine?

Bring a Plate
4 December 2009, 8:35 pm
Filed under: Family, Food, General

A different one this time, was the unanimous decision for this year’s family Christmas party.   The family is taking time-out from the over-used dishes constantly prepared and laid on the table during parties for the past years.

Cooking lechon at the back of my sister’s place was suggested; which means seafood sinugba is not far behind – with the coal from the lechon.  Scanning the pages of my recipe books for an uncommon dish is not easy.  Indian, Thai, Singaporean, Vietnamese, Malaysian, Indonesian or Chinese?

I have started to conduct a series of experiments for my contribution to this year’s Christmas festivities. The Indian tomato rice and the masi, which I think is the Cebuano adaptation to the Chinese new year sweet dumplings, are not bad.