Sunday, July 31, 2011

Homemade Biscuits

A wonderful lazy Sunday afternoon ... lovely weather... bored out of my wits ... hmmmm what can I do?  I was reading a book and suddenly I was inspired!  The woman baked breakfast biscuits and served it with gravy and sausages.

I googled for a simple recipe recipe and found one.  I went to the kitchen and checked if I have the ingredients to bake a batch of biscuits.  Oh, yes!


2 C. flour
2 t. baking powder
1/2 t. salt
4 T. butter, cut into small cubes
3/4 C. fresh milk

Combine the flour, baking powder and salt.  Add butter and cut in using 2 knives or pastry cutter.  When it resembles like corn meal, add the milk and stir with a fork until well blended.

Scoop the dough using a small scooper into the small ungreased muffin pan.  In the recipe, it says I have to flatten the dough into a disc and use a small dough cutter, too much hassle so I just opted to use the scooper.

Bake at 400F for 8-10 minutes.

Serve with butter, jam, honey or gravy.

I still have the left over gravy from yesterday

and 3 pieces of the sausage links I bought from S and R.

My merienda was sausage, biscuits and gravy with a cup of coffee.

Tita Portia and Wriggly liked my experiment.  Tita Portia said it reminded her of the biscuits she used to eat at the Officer's Club in Taiwan together with fried chicken, gravy, sweet potato pie and banana/apple fritters.

I love baking when the weather is perfectly cool.  A productive lazy afternoon indeed.  Hahaha ... what a contradiction.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Busy Saturday

It was a busy weekend for me.  Even though I had a lot of things to cook and bake, I enjoyed every minute of  it.  I baked a batch of raisin scones for Tita Portia yesterday for her meeting.  She is coming up with a coffee table type of book on beading with almost 50 of her students participating in this endeavor.

The photographer for the book took some photos today and she asked me to prepare something for them.  I love making Chicken Galantina.

I deboned the chicken myself.  Sometimes you can ask the staff of the Magnolia chicken station to do it for you.

I always serve galantina with jellied cranberry sauce.

The salad I put together had blue cheese, black grapes, pears and walnuts.

I should have put the dressing on the side because the guests said it was too much.

Tita Portia asked me to make mashed potatoes.  The fluffy kind.

It was a busy Saturday because aside from preparing the food for Tita Portia's guests, I still had to prepare the lunch for Ate and her family.  It was just a simple affair of Roasted Chicken.

The chicken really tasted as juicy as the picture.  I love this recipe.

I made gravy from the drippings, Sophie's request.

Simple stir fried vegetables.

Hermie cut up the vegetables and mixed them in a bowl.  I told her next time to set aside the leaves so it will be crisp tender when I cook it.

I made molo soup.  I was looking up the recipe in my blog when I discovered I do not have one!!!  I had to look it up in my old hand written personal recipe book.

Molo Soup

1 k. Soup bones
1 whole onion
4 liters water
1 T. rock salt

Boil in water the soup bones, whole onion, peppercorn, and salt for an hour.  Flake the chicken and set aside.

Saute garlic and onion in cooking oil.  Add the flaked chicken, continue cooking for a few minutes then pour in the broth.  Season with pepper and patis.

Molo dumpling

1/4 K. ground pork
150 g. singkamas, chopped finely
2 slices Purefoods Sweet Ham, chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 white onion, chopped
1 egg
1 T. flour
salt and pepper
25 pcs. Ling Nam Molo wrapper

Mix all the ingredients.  Put one tablespoon of filling in the center of the molo wrapper.  You can freeze the dumplings up to this point  or drop into the boiling soup.

Garnish with chopped spring onions and toasted garlic.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

(IMC) Karivan

The first time I have heard of (IMC) Karivan, I thought to myself... what kind of restaurant is this?  I did my research in google and found out that IMC means International Master Chef ... and that Karivan Lau is the Chef and owner of the restaurant.  It is mainly Cantonese/Fusion.

It was that time of the month again.... hahahaha ... not what you are thinking  but time for a luncheon with Tita Portia and the friends of my mom.   We have decided to try (IMC) Karivan along Jupiter St., just  beside Chicken Bacolod and Bel-Air 2 gate yesterday.

It is just a small restaurant so if you are a big group, make reservations.  Good thing I did, the place was packed.

There is a newspaper article posted in their entrance so we tried what was written in the article.  Whenever we have lunch with the friends of my mom,  Tita Portia and I would have our own bill and the others pay for their own.  We can not do a five way split because my Tita and I always order more food than the rest.

We ordered their version of Takoyaki.

I had a cup of Rainbow Seafood  Soup - yes, you can order 1 cup only.

Tita Butchie chose the Pork Belly casserole ... I did not check out the name from the menu.

Tita Mita got the shrimp bomb -  it's like shrimp balls with cheese inside on a bed of crispy fried Kailan.

We also tried the crisp vegetables.  Indeed the veggies were crisp but I prefer more flavor.

Deep Fried Shrimp Temaki

Deep fried prawns wrapped in misua noodles.

Beijing Style pork

It is deep fried battered pork wrapped in pancake with with hoisin sauce, cucumber, leeks and carrot strips.  I make a better version which is my Pritchon.

We just ordered 2 cups of Yang Chow fried rice, one for me and one for Tita Portia.

I would give this dish a thumbs up.  The taste reminded me of the fried rice I used to order from Chinese restaurants.  Nowadays, the yang chow from Chinese restos seem to be so bland and oily.

We had the Mango Sago Pomelo for dessert and we were also given complimentary dessert - red bean soup.

They also have dim sum which I plan to try the next time I am in the area.

Hmmmm .... did I like the food?  I do not know what to say.  It was good, nothing bad about it.  I just forgot, I do not like to eat anything fried.  Still a lot to choose from the menu.  I am not giving up and will give this restaurant another chance.

A special shout out to Janna, our waitress ... she was very good and solicitous.  I wish more food servers are like  her.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Happy Birthday Celine ... and Gina!

My friends and I celebrated Celine's birthday last night in Greenbelt.  Our original plan was to have dinner at the favorite "ng Bayan(i.e. our group)" Chic-Boy along Jupiter St.   But we were upgraded to Mr. Jones!  Gina, the sister of Celine, who is also celebrating her birthday today gave us a couple vouchers and Celine took care of the rest of the bill.

We were so happy because the whole gang was present.  Hahahahahaha you should have heard me singing in my head, "Hail! Hail! The gang's all here!"

Thank you Sherman for taking our picture!

Earlier in the afternoon, I was already browsing the net for the menu of Mr. Jones.  I could not decide what to order, until the last minute.... I had the burger.

I wanted the Big Mama's Bacon Wrapped Meatloaf but it had a side order of fried egg which turned me off. Well, perhaps I can try it next time as long as it is not in the evening.

Sherman had the U.S. Beef Tapa and Garlic Overload.

Guess what Jing ordered?  Bowl of Chili!  No surprise there.  I also wanted it but  we got different kinds of food.

Corry and Mona shared (split into two) Two Dogs on a Bed

and  Mac and Cheese.

  I loved the Mac and Cheese!  I kept on "pilfering" from Corry's plate, there was this distinct taste I am familiar with but could not identify.  I looked at the menu again and it had truffle oil! Hahaha ... because the name of the dish is: Wicked Truffled Mac n' Cheese.  I am not a pasta fan but would order this again.

Mariger's choice was Grilled Steak and Crispy Pear Wedge.  It is their equivalent of Caesar's salad.

Mayette had the Fish and Chips.  Huge slipper sized fish!

Jon's order was the Even Better Yankee Pot Roast.

The birthday girl had the Giant Tacos!!!

I can not remember the name of her chosen dish but it was really huge!!!!

After dinner, we moved to Cerveseria, Greenbelt 3.  It is our favorite "drinking" place.

Not that I drink.  I was kidding them earlier that I will order Frozen Mango Daiquiri without the rum  hahaha meaning Mango Shake!  Corry and I were the only ones who had non-alcoholic beverages.  I tried their Watermelon Green Mango Shake.  ASIM!!!!!  hahahaha  I had to add a couple of packets of Splenda, then it became ok.

My friends and I would like to go back and try their Spanish dishes especially the "cochinillo".  The tapas bar looks like a cozy library with chandelier made of candle wax.

During the weekends they have a dj who plays house or 80's music but not too loud because my friends and I could still hear each other.

The BEST thing about Cerveseria .... I could be in shorts and my Birkenstock!  Hahahaha This is not the place for people who like to dress up and "BE SEEN".  Cerveseria is just a comfortable place to chill out and dine with friends,  hahaha especially people my age.

Everybody had a great and fun night!   Thanks Celine and wishing you and Gina a very Happy Birthday!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Roasted Marrow Bones

A few months ago, I was watching a late night show on cable tv, The Best Recipes in the World.  I found the video, if you want to take a peek.

Ever since then, I told myself that I am going to cook Roasted Marrow Bones!

I have been saving in my freezer a tray of marrow bones from Rustan's... still trying to boost my courage.  It is so scary, in terms of healthy eating. 

But my Ate said she read somewhere in the blogosphere that eating marrow is not bad at all!  I did some research and it was true! 

Hahaha Lia! Who are you trying to convince!

When I woke up this morning, I said to myself.... Today is the day for Roasted Marrow Bones!

I went to Rustan's, Rockwell while pre-heating the oven to 450F.   I bought lemon, shallots and fresh flat leaf parsley for the accompanying salad.

I used my oven proof skillet and roasted the marrow bones for 20 minutes.

I also toasted the sliced baguette in the oven.

Oh wow!  I was so excited!  I did it exactly how they did it in the video.  I scooped out the marrow, spread it on the toast, sprinkled a little rock salt and topped it with the parsley salad.

The taste was interesting .... but after I polished off one toast, I called Hermie and said:   Hermie!!!!!  I need the soup stock pot!

This is the only time I want to shout out to the world " Ako ay Pilipino!" (I am a Filipino!)  I want my Bulalo soup

with rice and calamansi-patis-sili dipping sauce!!!

I  waited for one hour because I boiled the roasted marrow bones with onions, peppercorns and seasoning.

I had a very late lunch, bulalo and KANIN (rice)!!!!! 

Hahahaha  I thought I wanted to be more "cosmopolitan" in my taste in food but I suppose ... not meant to be.

Even though I know the marrow is not bad for my health,

I was only able to eat the marrow from 2 bones.

I even had to heat in the microwave the second bone. 

At the back of my mind, I was still feeling guilty  because it was so sinfully delicious!

As Mark Bittman said in the video:   "If I've gotta go, this is the way to go!"

Sweet Bella - Burgos Circle

The first time I heard of Sweet Bella was when the student of Tita Portia gave her a box of ensaymada from the pastry shop.  Then she and I went to Burgos Circle to take a peek at their store.  

Then... I was with Celine last Monday, her sister Gina gave us a voucher... and today I went back.  I liked the Quatro Funghi Pizza the first time I ate there ... so I ordered a whole pizza! It was just a 9 inch super thin and crispy pizza with button, shitake, oyster and winsu mushrooms.

The cheese was creamy, soft and thick ... unlike the other food chain pizzas  I order once in a while.... their cheese was like candle wax when cold. 

I do not like pizza that much ... I am actually NOT allowed because the cheese would cause vertigo.... plus let us not think anymore of the calories.

But I could not help myself ... I had to go back to Sweet Bella ...  I just had to have their Mushroom Pizza. I did not finish the whole pie.

I wanted to but I just had 5 slices and brought home the remaining three.

Have I told you about the thin crust? I turned it upside down and took a picture.

It is even thinner than Skyflakes!

Maybe I am the only one who likes the pizza... reminds me of Birdhouse Pizza a long, long, long time ago. 

The small dining area is on the second floor.  Sometimes, they would put on French music. 

Sweet Bella has lots of pastries ... It is a dessert cafe.  

There are still other interesting things I would like to try next time.  Who wants to join me?