"Filipino food is a fusion of different flavours which evolves through various influences like Spanish, American, Chinese and other Asian countries. As we adapted and concocted these dishes it has created diverse flavours that are uniquely Filipino seasoned and spiced by our rich culture".

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Vegetable and Tofu Sotanghon Soup

Vegetable and Tofu Sotanghon Soup

Here's a hearty and healthy soup to keep you warm on this cold season...

What you need:

150g sotanghon noodles
1 block of tofu, sliced into small cubes

1 medium sized carrots, cubed
10 pcs string beans, chopped thinly
about a cup of chopped baguio pechay (or cabbage)
1 small red bell pepper, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
1 liter stock (chicken, shrimp or vegetable stock)
1 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
salt and pepper, to taste
green onions, for garnishing


  • Heat oil in a pot. Saute onions and garlic.
  • Add stock. Let boil.
  • Toss in tofu, carrots and sotanghon noodles. Season with salt and pepper. Cook for about 5 minutes. 
  • Add in the rest of vegetables. Cook for another 2 minutes. Turn off heat.
  • Serve hot. Garnish with green onions.

This post is linked to : ErecipeCards

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Pineapple Honey Glazed Ham

Pineapple Honey Glazed Ham

I haven't tried baking a home-made ham. It takes a lot of preparation so I'm not up to it yet. I usually have the store bought glazed ham, the purefoods fiesta ham in particular. It's already tasty and nice flavored by itself, but I do want it coated with a richer glaze. So I always rely on with this favorite homemade glaze I've tried for quite a few years now.

Some store-bought hams comes with a small pouch of pineapple glaze. But that wouldn't be enough for the kind of glaze  I want. I want the sweet glaze to compliment with the salty flavor of the ham.  So here's what I do..

  • In a heated pan, mix together a cup of crushed pineapple, 1/2 to 1 cup of pineapple juice, 1/3 cup honey ,  2 tbsp brown sugar, one clove garlic (finely chopped), 1 tsp dijon mustard and a pack of pineapple glaze from the ham package (if any). Cook and let the mixture boil. Set aside.
  • Place the ham in a baking pan, and add some sliced apples around the ham.
  • Pour about half of the glaze mixture over the ham.
  • cover the pan with aluminum foil.
  • Bake the ham at 175°C (oven must be preheated before baking) for about 30 minutes.
  • Remove the foil, put the remaining glaze into the ham, leave the pan uncovered and bake for another 30 minutes or until you achieved your desired golden glaze.
  • If preferred, you can put the juice from the ham drippings (from baking) and the baked apples in a blender for a smoother gravy. Or just leave it as is and serve.
  • To serve, garnish the ham with cherries and fresh pineapple, apples, peaches or any fruit you want.
     Happy holidays everyone!

This post is linked to :  eRecipecards

Friday, December 16, 2011

Leche Flan with Coffee Caramel

Filipino Catholics headed to church very early this morning as today is the start of the Simbang Gabi, a nine-day novena which starts from December 16 to December 24. 

As quoted from Wikipedia : 

"The Simbang Gabi originated not just out of devotion, but also due to practicality. In the early days of Spanish rule, it was the customary tradition to hold novenas in the evenings during the Christmas season. However, the friars and the priests saw that the people attending the novenas were tired and numb from work in the fields, even though they continued to want to hear the word of the Lord. This was because in the Philippines, an agricultural country, families started their day even before the sun would rise to avoid the inhospitable temperatures in the fields. As a compromise, the clergy began to hold Mass early dawn when the land would still be dark, a break in tradition prevalent in Spain and her Latin American colonies.
Filipinos came by the countless multitudes to the Simbang Gabi. Afterwards, it became a distinct feature in Philippine culture to celebrate Holy Mass at such a rather early time. In time, Simbang Gabi became a symbol for Sharing, in both hardship and happiness, for the largely Catholic nation."

Philippines is distinctly known as country with the longest celebration of Christmas. As early as September (which is the first day of "ber" months), you'll hear christmas carols. And we usually put down the parols, Belen and other christmas decors after the celebration of Epiphany or January 6, which marks the end of Christmas season.
The long days of celebration gives us also a long list of preparations. And one thing that wouldn't miss is the list of our favorite noche buena foods. So, what's on your list? Let me guess. I'm sure this one has always been a part of your feast, the Leche Flan. Though christmas or not, this is one of our favorite desserts... never mind the calorie load. Hay! But this this so delicious. So creamy. So sweet. Personally, I like using egg ducks for the flan. Ducks eggs are larger than chicken eggs and tastier. Traditionally, we use steamer to cook this. But I prefer using the oven. And here's the twist to the flan, I topped it with coffee caramel. Here's how i do it... 
Lechen Flan with Coffee Caramel

10 eggs yolks (i used duck eggs)
2 cans 370ml evaporated milk
1 can 300ml sweetened creamer ( or condensed milk)
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp calamansi juice ( i wonder where the lemons are, the grocery ran out of it. But instead of lemon rind, i used  calamansi juice to remove the slight pungent smell and taste of the eggs. and it makes the flan smoother)
brown sugar, about 1 cup
1/2 to 1 tsp coffee, or as preferred

  • I used 2 oblong molds (llanera) and 6 small round molds for the above flan mixture.
  • In a saucepan, let the sugar caramelize over low heat.( Or you may use the llanera itself instead of saucepan, if you'll be using  about 1 or 2 llaneras only). Continuously stir, until the sugar melts. Then add coffee. Then spread the caramel evenly on the bottom flat layer of the molds. The more caramel you put on it, the sweeter the leche flan will be. So pour in just enough to cover the bottom of the molds.
  • Set aside the molds. Let cool.
  • In a bowl, put the yolks, beat slowly. Then add evaporated milk, condensed milk, vanilla extract and calamansi (or lemon rind if you're using one). Mix slowly. Avoid creating bubbles. Just mix it nice and slow.
  • Strain the mixture with a fine strainer for a smoother flan.
  • Then pour the flan mixture into the molds (llaneras). Then cover each mold with aluminum foil.
  • Steam for about 30 minutes.
  • OR, If using oven:
    • Pre-heat oven to 190°C 
    • Place the molds in a larger baking . Then fill this large pan with hot water, with almost halfway level to the sides of the llaneras.
    • Bake for about 1 hour or until the flan is firm.
  • You can tell if it's cooked through inserting toothpick, if it comes out clean then it's cooked.
  • Let the flan cool. Then refrigerate. It sure is worth the wait. 
  • To serve, gently turn the mold upside down. Now you see, the sweet golden caramel on top and some dripping on the sides.
  • Enjoy a melts-in-the-mouth leche flan!
A creamy, delicious, melts-in-the-mouth Leche flan

This is my recipe for the Kulinarya Club, which tasks us to share one of our star recipes for Noche Buena. This simply is it, my leche flan coffee caramel. My family's Noche buena isn't complete without it. Seafood Paella has also been part of my family's Christmas dinner tradition. My daughter has started to like glazed Ham (she even calls it "the noche buena") so I guess we won't be skipping with that, too. I would also like to try the Kinulob na Itik (deep-fried duck seasoned with secret spices ) which is one of Victoria, Laguna's specialty . There's a new branch near our place, so I might as well try it. they said it really tastes good.
But let us not forget, whatever food we prepare, the more delicious and sweeter it is when it's shared with the whole family. Let us not also forget the real essense of Christmas spirit which teaches us to love, to share and to forgive. Let the brightest Star of Christ  shine among us all.

This post is linked to :  eRecipecards ,  Food Trip FridayFood Friday

Friday, December 02, 2011



Igado is one of the best tasting Filipino food, with its salty-sour flavor. Originally this is an Ilocano dish, wherein pork meat and pork innards (heart,kidney and liver) are stewed in soysauce and vinegar.
Well, some might find this kind of irky with the mention of those innards :), but this is a one must-try dish.
Oh, Ok! you're not much of those in your meal, so we'll opt out some. In this recipe, we'll just be using the tenderloin and the liver (relieved , huh?). I guess Igado wont be Igado without the liver, since Igado in spanish term is Higado
This is how my father used to cook this dish. String beans and lots of green chilis are used instead of green peas.

1/2 kg. pork kasim , cut into strips (or use tenderloin)
1/2 kg pork liver, cut into strips
1/3 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup vinegar
1 red bell pepper, julienned
5 green chilis, chopped (more or less, as preferred)
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 red onion, chopped
2 bay leaves
2 tbsp oil
1 1/2 cup water
salt and pepper, to taste

How to prepare:

  • Heat oil in pan. Saute onions and garlic. Stir in pork tenderloins. Stir-fry until light brown.
  • Add soy sauce and water. Cover and simmer for about 10 minutes or until meat is tender.
  • Add pork liver, vinegar, bay leaves, bell pepper and string beans. Season with salt and pepper. Add some water if it dries up. I personally like it with more sauce.
  • Cover and cook for about 5 minutes or until liver is cooked (don't over cook the liver).
  • Stir in the green chilis.
  • Serve with steamed hot rice. enjoy!

This post is linked to :  eRecipecards ,  Food Trip FridayFood Friday

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