Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Annual Retreat at The Mandarin Oriental

Mona and I attended the annual retreat of the KST Facilitators sponsored by Barangay Bel-Air at Mandarin Oriental.  We were so looking forward to the lunch at Paseo Uno.  Bishop Mylo Vergara said, as soon as the small group finishes its sharing, they could head to the restaurant.

We were the first group to finish!  There were 5 of us ... Mona, Tita Linda Floro of Buon Giorno and one of the best food stylists, Tita Juda of Costa Brava, Tita May - my neighbor and myself.

Paseo Uno is celebrating the flavors of Iloilo.  The first thing I saw when I entered was my BFF!!!!!  I immediately got all the crispy skin I wanted.  I also got the Binagoongan Alimango,

the crabs came from Roxas City and Steamed Oyster from Aklan.

I also got Prawns with Aligue Sauce


Fresh Lumpiang Ubod.

A bowl of Batchoy but I did not add the meat anymore... I only wanted the hot broth.

There was also a Tempura station (there were regular Continental food for the foreign guests) and got a few pieces.

My dessert was just assorted goodies and cheese.

Tomorrow is the 2nd day of the retreat.  Mona and I already plotted our food itinerary at Paseo Uno.

FUNNY story ..... I told a friend about the retreat and the food we ate and the friend said .... was the topic of the priest Gluttony?!?!?!?!  Hahahahahaha.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Lechon in Exchange for Lumpiang Shanghai.

I promised Kiel that when he comes home from the US, I will make him Lumpiang Shanghai.  He arrived yesterday and today I delivered on my promise and brought just 20 pieces of Lumpiang Shanghai.

When the mom of Kiel, Joy, heard about it, she ordered a whole Lechon!


LOL Well ... that is the story we are circulating why we had lechon tonight.

They also prepared ....

Grilled Prawns

Grilled Liempo

Grilled Tuna Belly

Grilled Vegetables

Prawns Sinigang

Pancit Sotanghon

Lumpiang Shanghai for Kiel

They also had other guests......

Hehehehe Had my picture taken with Arnel ... he is such a nice person!!! 

His wife and kids were also at the Alonzo house.

As usual .... I had a great time and they were all *ribbing* me while I enjoyed nibbling on my plateful of Lechon ribs!!!!

I have to confess though ... it was my second lechon for the day.... this morning... my Kuya bought from Leonardos and asked me to get as much as I want.... I only got a little plateful.

Another day spent with good friends and good food and my BFF LECHON!

PS.... Do not worry about me ... my cholesterol is not high, that is why I can indulge in my favorite food all the time.

Round 3

Round 3!!!! Mona, Jing and I went to Golden Bay Seafood Restaurant today. 

It is already my 3rd time this week!!  I like the dim sum there, it is better than your run of the mill teahouse dim sum.

We ordered a few I have not tasted before.

Yuan Yang Dumpling - Baby Abalone and Crab Roe atop Fish Fillet

Asado in Rice Roll

Giant Meat Pao

Steamed Spareribs

Pan-fried Radish Cake

Then.... my favorites...


Sio Mai

Steamed Chicken Feet

Taro Puff


Whew!!!!  We loved our lunch!!!!  Hmmmmm who wants to accompany me next time???!?!?!

Pork Barbecue

I have been having problems with my PLDT broadband connections lately, so this post is a bit late.  I am here at the house of Joy Alonzo for dinner.  Good thing, I brought my laptop and I can catch up on my postings.

Last Saturday, my family and I had our usual lunch. 

I have not made my all time favorite Pork BBQ in a while.  When Maya thanked me in FB for the recipe I shared with her 10 years ago, I decided to try it again.

Pork BBQ

1 K. pork kasim, sliced thinly
1/2 C. brown sugar
1/2 C. soy sauce
1/2 C. 7 up
1 T. MSG (Maya uses 1/2 Knorr Pork Cube instead)
1 t. black pepper
1-2 pcs. sili labuyo

Marinate the pork overnight in the refrigerator.

Sauce for basting:

1/3 C. cooking oil
1/3 C. UFC ketchup
3 T. marinade

Mix all the ingredients with a wire whisk.

* Some people do not use the marinade for basting since it is uncooked.  My instructions to Hermie was not to baste the pork in the last 5 minutes of grilling.

Our Soup for the day was Chicken Mami.

Chicken Mami

1/2 K. chicken
chicken broth
cooking oil
garlic, chopped
onion, chopped
2 T. fish sauce
1/2 K. fresh mami noodles
green onions, chopped

Boil chicken in water with salt and pepper.  When cool, flake and set aside.

Saute garlic and onion in oil.  Add the flaked the chicken. Continue sauteing then season with patis.  Add the reserved chicken broth and season to taste.

Pour boiling water on the fresh mami noodles, then rinse with cold water.

Add the drained mami noodles to the soup and boil for a few minutes.  Top with green onions.

We also had Baked Tahong.

The favorite of everybody.

Hermie was SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO  bad!!!!  I asked her: Are you trying to kill Tita Portia?!?!?!?!?!

She made two sticks of pork FAT bbq!!!!  And that was what Tita Portia ate!!!!


My secret tip:

I used to have a pork barbecue business, well, I still accept orders but it has to be 3 days in advance.

I tried using the ordinary pork kasim from Rustans but it was still a bit tough on my opinion.  The pork I use for my business is also from Rustans but special order.  I ask the butchers to prepare it for me,  more expensive but it is really super tender.  If you grill the pork in the morning, it will still be tender up to the evening or even when you reheat the next day.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Getting to know my neighbors

I have been living in Bel-Air since the late 70s and I still do not know most of my neighbors.  I see them often in Rockwell, we would say Hello or smile at each other and that was it.

Good thing Tita Menchit, Cindy and I decided to get together for chismis and lunch!

I just cooked my Simple Paella and Baked Tahong.

Tita Menchit gave me organics cookies!  They wanted to bring dessert but since I am diabetic, they just opted to give me other things. Cindy gave me a BIG folding fan! Perfect for this hot weather and an Alice Blue scented candle - Boracay Shores!!!  Thank you!

We had so much fun talking about a lot of things ... from Politics.... to sports.... American Idol .... chismis about our neighbors ... the 60 story condo Rockwell is going to build... old people dying.... in-family squabble re: inheritance  .... LOL ... we definitely talked about the topic of the week - impeachment hearing of CJ Corona.... food ... Boracay and so much more!

I am glad I got to know my neighbors.... lol even if they are 4 streets away from me.

We discovered little things about each other... I especially loved the story of Tita Menchit who punched her classmate when she was in Grade One.  Said classmate called her *fat piggy*!!!!  But if you see her now ....  wow she looks so fit and trim .... she goes to the gym everyday.

Cindy and I both agreed that Boracay is such a wonderful place .. where nobody judges you because of your color or size.

I hope they also enjoyed themselves as much as I did!  Our lunch lasted for almost 5 hours!!!  Well ... when you are having fun ... you do not notice the time.

Lee Kum Kee Sweet and Sour Pork

A very easy Sweet and Sour Pork recipe .... it is actually almost like cheating.

I just bought the Lee Kum Kee Sauce for Sweet and Sour Pork/Spare Ribs and followed the instructions at the back of the pack and tweaked it just a tad.

150 gr. pork, sliced thinly
1/2 t. salt
1 t. sugar
1 egg yolk, beaten
2-3 T. cornstarch
pineapple tidbits, drained
1 T. pineapple juice from the tidbits
red and green pepper
Lee Kum Kee Sauce for Sweet and Sour Pork/Spare Ribs

Marinate the pork in salt, sugar and egg yolk for 20 minutes.  Dust with cornstarch and deep fry.  Set aside.

In 1 T. oil, saute the pineapple tidbits and peppers over high heat. Add about 1 T. of pineapple juice, when it evaporates add the Lee Kum Kee sauce and the fried pork, heat through and serve while hot.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Round 2

Today was a particularly easy day for me, nothing much on my calendar.... just watched the live telecast of American Idol this morning.

After the show, I went again to Golden Bay Seafood Restaurant on Macapagal Ave. for Round 2.  I still had a few dim sum I wanted to taste.

Machang - Chicken with Sticky Rice .... Tita Bebet loves Machang! 

It was my very first time to eat Machang and was so surprised I liked it.

I wish Jing was able to join me for lunch, it was good for 2 because the rice was a bit heavy.  Hello?!??!?!  Of course, it would be heavy... sticky rice?!?!?! It was flavorful and delicious.

Pan-fried Radish Cake with XO

Ohhhh ... so yum .... I felt that each cube was fried in butter!!!  LOL Well, it just seemed to be cooked that way but maybe it was the XO that I could taste.

Steamed Chicken Feet

I would love to order this again!!!  The skin of the chicken feet was so tender!  LOL  Was able to suck out all the meat and the bones were left so clean!

And surprise!!!!!  Boiled Peanuts with the sauce!!!! 

I finished the whole thing to the last drop!  LOL I think I must have licked the serving dish.

Shrimp Rice Roll

I like the way  they prepare the shrimps .... so sweet and plump. 

Just like me!!!!

Complimentary Garlic Peanuts 

They extended the 50% off dim sum promo up to June 30!!!  I want to take my Kuya there, also Tita Portia, Mona as well .... and Jing too!  

BUTTTT I want to go with them one at a time! 

Mona wants to be with Jing, but I told her.....

Mona, the dim sum baskets normally contain 4 pieces, I want to eat 2 of each dim sum all the time. If we are three, then I would only able to eat a piece!!!  Hahahahahaha!

Until my next visit .......... to be continued.

Assorted Sandwiches

Tita Portia asked me to prepare assorted sandwiches for her One Day Paper Crafts Course.

Cheese Pimiento and Chicken Sandwiches  http://liasfoodjourney.blogspot.com/2011/04/easter-picnic-baskets.html

Ham with Guava Jelly Pan de Sal http://liasfoodjourney.blogspot.com/2012/05/ham-with-guava-jelly-pan-de-sal.html

Sophie and Renzo  *helped* me assemble the sandwiches but there was more pilferage than helping! Hahahaha  They particularly loved the Santis Honey Ham.  Renzo, my 6 year-old nephew, asked if I could make the ham sandwich as his baon for his first day of school!  Wow!  And to think before he barely ate!  Now that he is hanging out with his Ate Sophie and Tita Lia ... he is going to get chunkier!!!  Or maybe chubbier?

Hahahahaha Soon .... Karma is a b**ch!

One time, Renzo and I were in the car....

Renzo:  You are chubby.
Lia: Thank you, Renzo!
Renzo: Chubby is NOT beautiful, you know!!!!

Hahahahaha! Where do kids get their ideas?!?!?!

Now ... can you blame me if I do not like kids that much????   LOL But I  still love that little boy.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Ham and Mushroom Crepes with Cheese Sauce

I experimented today with savory crepes using the recipe of Sophie for the batter.  I looked at several cookbooks for the filling and just came up with a very easy one.

Ham and Mushroom Crepes with Cheese Sauce

Batter:  http://liasfoodjourney.blogspot.com/2012/05/cooking-mood.html

1 T. butter
60 gr. ham, chopped
60 gr. mushrooms, chopped

Saute the ham and mushrooms in butter.

Then add the cheese sauce.

Cheese Sauce

1 T. butter
1 T. flour
300 ml. milk
1/2 t. chicken powder
30 gr. quick melt cheese, grated

Melt the butter, then add the flour, keep stirring until the flour has dissolved.  Gradually add the milk.  Season with the chicken powder.  Add the cheese and cook until thick.

Put 1 T. of the filling on the center of the crepe,

then fold like an envelope.

Continue cooking until the crepe is a bit brown.

Serve while hot.

Sophia  loved it!  She said she just did not love it but LOVED! LOVED! LOVED it!

Of course, she is a white sauce kind of person.  I asked Sophia to teach me how to cook her crepes tomorrow.  I really like the way hers turned out.

P.S. (the next day)

Now I  know why the crepes of Sophie are more delicious than mine.

#1 Her non-stick pan is so much better than my pan. Hermie probably used metal cooking utensils.
#2 Sophie told me my crepes were a little undercooked!  No wonder mine tasted like lumpia wrapper!!!  She said, before I flip the crepe over, I have to make sure it is well cooked.  Then the crepes would be light and airy as opposed to dense and rubbery.

Way to go, Soph!