Thursday, May 12, 2011



It's my birthday!!! It's my birthday and it is a fresh and new year for me!  

My day started with a smile... a BIG smile from a big yellow cake my cousin gave me.

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Thursday, April 21, 2011

Ginataang Kalabasa at Sitaw: Squash and String Beans in Coconut Milk

Ginataang Kalabasa at Sitaw with Garlic Rice

Okay, I don't really know how to call this dish in English but that's the closest thing my mind can "translate" it into. Anyway, I did not cook this dish.  I have only made that huge mound of garlic rice on the plate.  My father cooked the ginataang kalabasa and I'll try to cook it one day soon.

I once have heard that "the best chefs in the world are men" and though I believe we women are catching up, I would still agree that some men do cook well.  My father is no chef but I do believe he cooks better than most of us here at home.  I asked him how he cooked this and he told me how he did it but he's betting that I wouldn't be able to make it because I don't know how to prepare the coconut milk.  Hahahaha! I asked him to cut that out from the whole process so here goes, I'm sharing his cooking directions!

Ginataang Kalabasa at Sitaw
  • Sauté garlic, onions and ginger.  Add coconut milk (2nd extraction, gata) and simmer until it smells good! (awwww)
  • Add sliced squash and string beans.  When vegetables are half done, add the coconut cream (1st extraction, kakang gata) and let it simmer until the vegetables are tender.  At this point you could also add dried salted fish to add flavor to the dish.  If you would prefer a vegetarian version, skip the dried fish and season with salt instead. Add a dash of pepper to add more zing to the dish!   
  • When the dish is done, eat it while it's still warm with rice. :-D

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Monday, January 17, 2011

Ginisang Ampalaya: Sauteed Bitter Melon

it's a bitter(sweet) symphony

Ampalaya or bitter melon is a fruit that has a lot of benefits.  Ampalaya can be consumed as food yet nowadays it has become more popular for its medicinal effects especially as an anti-diabetic.  Here in the Philippines, there are some vegetable dishes that include the bitter zing of the ampalaya to make the dishes an amalgam of flavors.

I love ampalaya.  Even though it is bitter, if it is cooked the right way, it wouldn't be as bitter as first perceived.  I love ampalaya cooked with eggs but for this recipe I decided to leave out the eggs and make this dish sort of vegetarian.

In order to make ginisang ampalaya, the following ingredients are needed:

ampalaya/bitter melon, sliced thinly
garlic, minced
onions, chopped
tomatoes, chopped

What I did was heat about a tablespoon of oil in a pan and sautéed the garlic, onions, and tomatoes.  I then added the sliced ampalaya and immediately added salt and pepper and cooked it until the ampalaya became a bit wilted from the heat.  That's all!  It's best served with freshly steamed rice!

Ginisang ampalaya is a healthy dish and it is so easy to prepare you have to try it out!

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