Noodles and Salad, Part II

UdonPalabok16 Very excited to share these birthday recipes! They turned out really well and my husband really enjoyed them! As I mentioned in the last post, I made Cobb salad, my husband’s favorite salad, and pancit palabok with udon noodles and smoked salmon. Why noodles and salad?  We always celebrate birthdays with pancit! As for salad, my husband loves to eat salads. Get ready, this post is picture heavy!  Continue reading

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Doughnut Day!

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 Happy National Doughnut Day 2014!

Every year, we celebrate this day dedicated to doughnuts! Remember celebrating with me last year with vegan baked donuts? This time, I’m at my parent’s house for a week and I think we are avoiding fried food, so this year is another baked version. I don’t have my donut pans here so we had mini donut muffins filled with apricot jamContinue reading

Chicken & Waffles B.L.A.T.

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Happy Memorial Day Weekend! Been busy in the lab trying to help get some data for a grant that the professor (who I work for) is submitting by the end of the month, hence my lack of wordpress activity. This post has been saved as a draft for about a month! But here it is, in time for Memorial Day! Maybe you are having a picnic, brunch, or other get-together this holiday. A waffle sandwich might hit the spot!

Recently, there seems to be a resurgence in waffle popularity. Nowadays, people are coming up with new dishes using waffle irons. Sorry, the wonut is a bit too over-the-top for me. Nevertheless, I am down to try my hand at waffle sandwiches, as kooky as that may sound. A couple of weeks a go, on a bus ride home, I was thinking about chicken and waffles and craving it. I thought to myself, how about a chicken & waffle B.L.A.T (bacon, lettuce, avocado, tomato) sandwich with sourdough cheddar and chive waffles!? Continue reading

Kale-nola?!

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Sometimes you can’t help but be angry or irritated. It just happens. Some stupid little mistake can make you blow a gasket. You just want to scream! There have been times where I have reached for that bag of chips or box of cookies when I am upset about something, but I’ve found another cure for the bad mood — kale-granola aka “kale-nola”Continue reading

“Ancient grain” pancakes (of the thin, roll-able variety)

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Unabashedly simple. No-nonsense food. That’s what pancakes seem to be. Whether they are stacked, spherical, or of the thin, roll-able variety, it is a universal comfort food. I have good memories of my dad making pancakes in the morning, sometimes even on those busy school days. He always makes the best breakfasts and still does. When I was even younger, I still remember my grandmother, who moved to the Philippines when I was about 7 years old, making pancakes and mixing the batter with her hands–no whisk or spatula. She always seems to have the magic touch when she cooks. Her food is always good, including the pancakes. So I have a soft spot for pancakes. While I have fond childhood memories of thick, fluffy pancakes, I am growing to love pancakes in all it’s forms and am a new fan of the thin pancakes, which is more common outside the US. When I first had blintzes with all the different fillings, I was hooked. I had to have rollable pancakes in my repertoire. Now here it is,  a recipe for thin pancakes with “ancient grains.” Continue reading

An unorthodox cream cheese?

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Cashew cream cheese? I’ve been eyeing this type of non-traditional cream cheese for several months now, but have finally have gotten around to making it! Cream cheese is pretty tasty to many people and also my family, especially my little sister, as we have fond memories of large blocks of Raskas (another word that’s fun to say out loud! I’m a fan of those) from Costco.  Nevertheless, it can be fun to try an alternative and be “outside the box” sometimes. Things can get dull under a restrained modus operandi. Being adventurous with food is the passion behind food flavor fascination–embracing both the traditional foods and non-traditional, orthodox and unorthodox. Keeping your cultural roots and comfort foods close, yet going on taste adventures as well. Instead of ordering your regular dish at a restaurant or cooking the same thing for dinner, live on the edge a bit and try something new.  Maybe try this unorthodox cashew cream cheese and a couple of ways to feature it in your next meal! Continue reading

Beet Red Velvet Æbleskiver (pancake puffs)

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Happy Belated Valentines Day!

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Yesterday, for our Valentine’s Dinner we had a wonderful 3-course meal, made by my husband and I. He makes a mean steak, especially filet mignon. Sorry, don’t have pictures of the first two courses, but here’s the dessert:  Beet Red Velvet Æbleskiver with cream cheese filling. Continue reading

Gettin’ orange-y wit it, a Whole Carrot-Mango Smoothie with Mint

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Hot hot heat (remember that band, by the way?)! It was feeling really good outside, autumn-like in San Diego, but I think there’s a bit of another heat wave going on here in SoCal and some storms which make things muggy. This morning, after pumping iron (I’m the type who would rather lift weights and do push-ups than run or do a spin class), I wanted to treat myself to a cool drink.  I really like the “Orange Carrot Karma” smoothie at Jamba Juice, but I wanted to see if I could make one at home. I came upon a smoothie recipe over at Camilla Saulsbury’s blog Power Hungry that had these: Continue reading

When Summer meets Autumn: Zucchini Bread Pancakes & Maple-Roasted Acorn Squash

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With windows wide open and summer skin rests,
Fall pulls back his bow and aims at the crest.

Its cool thin arrow cuts through thick air,
It glimmers like silver and tickles the pear.

Slicing through wheat and brushing the sparrow,

It stirs up the hay that lay in your barrow.

Into the window and onto your breast,
Through thinly spun linen it kisses your chest.

Despite the dream and amongst it all,
You know you’ve been kissed by the coming of Fall.

 –Randy Holden, “A Poem:  When Summer Meets Fall” in Chronogram Magazine

Late last month, my husband remarked that it feels more like fall than summer where we live (SD).  I like the weeks in August (and in other months) that is sort-of in-between seasons. But I do have to say that fall is my favorite season. Since getting married in the fall almost two years ago, I like it even better. Now that I think about it, it’s interesting how the seasons and the weather plays such important parts in our lives. In the food world, it is definitely a tremendous influence.
But I’m still enjoying summer and still enjoying the summer bounty of vegetables and other seasonal fare. Many home gardeners like my dad are having to find ways to use up certain fruits or vegetables that grow like weeds. Zucchinis are notorious for that. I think my mom makes 20-30 loaves of zucchini bread every summer. I visit my parents often and was thinking of ways to use up them up and one way is to make… Continue reading

Happy National Doughnut Day 2013!

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Yay it’s Doughnut Day!

Every first Friday of June is a great odd holiday of National Doughnut Day. We’ve been celebrating this holiday for years. I think it was my husband who brought it up first when we first started dating. Since then, I always keep it in my mind to remember the day and to make some doughnuts. These round bread-y pastries  have always been popular, but in recent years it seems like it’s popularity has skyrocketed. There are even pretzel doughnuts, muffin doughnuts, and I still have to try those “cronuts!” Or maybe if you want to try a new type of doughnut, try some of the pao de quiejo donuts that I made a few weekends ago. With donut maker electric appliances and doughnut baking pans, no wonder these have become more popular, especially homemade. This year I tried a baked version from Official Hungry’s “Eat My Vegan” recipe. I have been eye-ing this for some time and adapted it to a gluten-free recipe. Continue reading

Brunching on donuts de pão de queijo com bacon…Happy Memorial Day Weekend 2013!

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Happy Memorial Day Weekend everyone! We hope you all are getting a chance to spend time with family and remember those who served our country. Though this holiday is synonymous with grilling and eating outdoors, I think it is important to remember why this holiday is significant and why we get together and celebrate. Thank you to all who have served. We appreciate it today and everyday. Cheers to you all!

Like many people out there, we like to spend Memorial Day Weekend relaxing and spending time together. We eat good food and play with the dogs. I think we do this for many other holidays as well. Earlier this weekend I made a brunch dish that would be perfect for this holiday to make you feel happy and in the mood for going outside and/or grilling. Doughnuts of course! Well pão de queijo shaped into doughnuts with bacon added in. Also with a maple bourbon Hollandaise “glaze.” Continue reading

Crispy Purple Yam Tots and a breakfast salad bowl?

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I’ve been a proponent for salads as breakfast fare and was craving one lately. While watching Trisha Yearwood making Garth’s breakfast bowl on her Food Network show Trisha’s Southern Cooking, I suddenly had a craving for a breakfast bowl too. So, that lightbulb thought sparked in my head to combine the two cravings into a breakfast salad bowl with tots, of course. This time crispy purple yam tots for a nod to my Filipino roots. Why would you want salad for breakfast? Try this recipe, tweaking this to your taste if you like, and see for yourself. 😀 Continue reading

Green Smoothie Muffins and Pistachio Milk

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I’m feeling mean green today. In sixth grade, my friends and I would do silly things and one of the things that I did (among other crazy kid things) was perform rap songs. To my friends, I was once “The Mean Green Rapper Crapper” because I was a wannabe rapper and my favorite color was green. So silly, but those were the days of being crazy kids. I was influenced by those times as I was developing a new muffin recipe and an accompaniment to it. I was thinking of using green things that are good for your insides so that they do their job well (LOL yes, alluding to my former rap name). I love zucchini bread and muffins, but wanted to use a different green veggie. Cruciferous kale is big nowadays, so I decided to try it out in a muffin recipe along with banana, apple, and pineapple, which are often found in green smoothies. When I wanted to stop my coffee and caffeine addiction a couple of years ago, I started having tea or a green smoothie instead, often with kale and a few fruit pals. Moreover, I love matcha green tea in green smoothies so I added it here in this recipe. The pistachios are a nice addition as well. Going with the green theme, I also made pistachio milk, which, when paired with these green smoothie muffins, is a mean & green, yet delightful combo. 😀 Continue reading

Carrot and Hazelnut Muffins…with a hidden ingredient

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“The rule is flavor, and flavor rules.”

-Master Breadmaker Peter Reinhart

Okay, I won’t keep you in suspense, the hidden ingredient to these carrot and hazelnut muffins is…butternut squash! These muffins have another secret too…they are gluten-free! But they taste really good! That’s no secret 🙂 A year ago I never thought that I would cook gluten-free foods. I’m not on a gluten-free diet, but I love the challenge of cooking gluten-free, especially in baking, where baked goods usually depend on the chemistry of gluten. I enjoy science, and gluten-free baking is like a science experiment for me, in addition to cooking in general. I realized that even if dishes are gluten-free–if it tastes good and makes you feel good, what’s the harm in that? Thus, I wholeheartedly subscribe to Peter Reinhart’s “Flavor Rule” where flavor determines what I enjoy in a dish, not labels–whether gluten-free or otherwise.

Now, back to the muffins. These butternut squash, carrot and hazelnut muffins were inspired by a recipe I found in Whole Living magazine. It is a great all-around muffin recipe with a nice soft and moist texture. They taste even better the next day, or days later. Makes for a great post-workout snack, after-work/school snack, or even as part of a quick breakfast (though I prefer more savory foods in the morning). I decided to use carrot instead of apple in the original recipe and it was definitely yummy. I think you can pretty much sub or add in ingredients like you would in a normal muffin or quick-bread recipe. Zucchini, banana, and chocolate, you’re next!

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Eggs in Purgatory (Uova in Purgatorio)

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Eggs in Purgatory. Doesn’t it sound a bit creepy? It definitely stands out as a name for a dish (I have a fascination for things with interesting names). In Italian, it is Uova in Purgatorio. Fun to say aloud. Whatever you call it in wherever country, this is a simple yet satisfying dish. Something rustic and comforting that is great for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. It is the traditional dish for Italians on New Year’s Day and I might just have to make it then too even though I am not Italian! Continue reading

Stuffed French Toast with Poached Apples, Pecans and Cider Sauce

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On Wednesday, I thought that it was just another Fall day when my husband texted me in the middle of the day while he was at work, “We should have French toast tonight for National French Toast Day.” I was planning to make French toast aka pain perdu this week for dinner since we got some raisin challah from his Grandma on Thanksgiving. We both love breakfast foods anytime of the day, not just in the morning so it was the perfect day for it. I had some American-style Neufchâtel cheese in the fridge and an extra Granny Smith apple that was not used in the Dutch apple pie that I made for Thanksgiving, so we celebrated the beloved breakfast treat by having Stuffed French Toast with Cider-Poached Apples. It was an excellent way to celebrate the day! Continue reading

Pumpkin Pie Spice Latte – Make it your way!

Fall is finally in full swing here in San Diego after that September heatwave where we had temperatures that went up to about 110 degrees. That was sweaty time, now it’s sweater time! …and time for some yummy hot beverages. I usually drink a variety of teas from our budding tea collection, but I miss coffee now and then, especially seasonal coffee drinks. At times, I like going to local coffee shops and sometimes even Starbucks to get my fix, but I don’t like all that sugar and having to spend too much $$$$ on a drink. Like one comedian said, “You think I want to stand in line at Starbucks and spend that much money everyday? I would rather learn how to make that **** myself!”

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