Saturday, 31 October 2015

Maja Blanca (Coconut Pudding)



Tomorrow, Undas or  pista ng mga patay or all soul's day will be observed nationwide.  It's the occasion where our love ones who "went home" to the great beyond are commemorated. And Christian let's all pray for their souls' salvation including ours. And as customary among Filipinos, families and relatives get together during these holidays, so let's pray, eat, be merry, BUT behave. Do not bring liquors to the cemetery tomorrow.  Get it?

Ok now...  Since we are featuring kakanin and Filipino desserts this week, I would like to share to you my sister's maja blanca.

Maja Blanca is a Filipino native sweet dessert that is often served in special occasions, birthdays, Christmases, New Year's day, all saint's and all soul's days, or whatever occasion one can think of as an excuse to make desserts. It is the Filipino version of coconut pudding and was adopted from the Spanish dessert Manjar Blanco.  


Maja blanca is traditionally made from coconut milk, cornstarch, and sugar.  But similar to any dessert and dishes, one cook has his/her own version of maja blanca.  My Sibling #2 is no exemption to this, of course, and she has her own version of the famous maja blanca.

My sister's version of maja blanca is so simple with only three ingredients.  She added coconut milk which was extracted from real coconut, then condensed milk instead of sugar, and also whole corn kernels for added flavor.  

How about you? How do you cook your maja blanca?





MAJA BLANCA (COCONUT PUDDING)
(http://www.myfresha-licious.com/)

Ingredients:
Cornstarch  - 500 grams 
Grated coconut from 1 coconut 
Condensed Milk - (375 ml)
Water- 3 cups

Cooking Procedure:
1. How to extract coconut milk from grated coconut:
Extract coconut milk from grated coconut. Pour 2 cups hot water on the grated coconut then mash the grated coconut for several minutes until juices comes out.  Mash then squeeze as much coconut milk as you can. Remove the coconut meat then pass the coconut milk through a strainer.  Measure only 2 cups. 

Pour another 1 cup of warm water on the grated coconut, mash then squeeze. Remove the coconut meat then pass the coconut milk through a strainer. Set aside to cool down.  Use 1 cup of this. You can use the remaining coconut milk for ginataan dishes, to make ladek / latik, or cook any kakanin of your choice.

2.  Measure 2 cups of coconut milk from the "first squeezed" coconut milk, then pour it on a pan or pot.  Pour the condense milk and corn kernels on the same pan /pot, then bring to a boil on medium fire.  Reduce fire to low then simmer for about 2 minutes.

3. Dilute the corn starch in one cup of "second squeezed" coconut milk (make sure that it is already cold to the touch) then gradually add it to the coconut milk mixture while stirring continuously. Cook in low fire and stir continuously until mixture is homogeneous and thick.

4.  Transfer mixture into a prepared baking dish. Smooth top using a spatula or spoon. 

5.  Let the mixture cool down slightly, cover with cling wrap or aluminum foil (or any cover available). Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or until the mixture is completely cooled down and set.

Slice and serve.



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Thursday, 29 October 2015

Bibingka


Photo credit to Ms. Marisol Nadonga Villanueva

Yesterday, I posted my own (personally developed) recipe on royal bibingka if you missed it, you can check it our her - royal bibingka.  

Since, "All Souls' day and All Saints' day are fast approaching, and it is part of Filipino tradition to serve traditional rice cakes (kakanin) during these occasions, here is another bibingka recipe you can try.

Bibingka,  are one of the many Filipino native delicacies that are made from rice flours and coconut milk.  Bibingka is usually serve during special occasions like pista ng mga patay (all souls' day), holy week, Christmases, and New Year celebrations.  It is almost similar to the muffins of the Western cuisine as bibingka has almost the same crumb texture as quick breads, are also chemically leavened, and are also cooked in dry heat.  


Photo credit to Ms. Marisol Nadonga Villanueva

Bibingka, as earlier mentioned are made from rice flours and coconut milk, other ingredients includes milk and cheeses, and they are "baked" the traditional way, that is, the rice batter is placed on a bibingka molder made of clay, cooked on top and under live charcoals.  With the availability of modern cooking equipment, however, bibingka are now baked inside ovens with temperatures that can easily be controlled.  

I never had the chance of making bibingka even to this moment.  I only buy them.  I love bibingka specially those topped with grated cheese and salted eggs.


Photo credit to Ms. Marisol Nadonga Villanueva

Here is a bibingka recipe generously shared to us by Ms. Marisol Nadonga Villanueva.  She is currently residing in Sorsogon.  Thank you Ms. Marisol for allowing us to share your recipe and pictures of bibingka in our blog.

BIBINGKA
( http://www.myfresha-licious.com/ )

Ingredients :

All Purpose Flour - 1 1/2 cup 
Rice flour - 1/2 cup 
Baking powder - 2 1/2 tsp. 
Eggs - 6 medium
Coconut milk or gata - 1 cup 
Evaporated milk - 1 cup 
Vanilla extract - 1 tsp. 
Sugar - 1 cup 
Butter or margarine, melted 125 grams 

Toppings:
Salted egg
Cheese

banana leaves or cupcake liners

Cooking Procedure:

1. Preheat oven to 180-200C
2. In a bowl, combine all purpose flour, rice flour, and baking powder. 
3. Mix melted butter, sugar, eggs, vanilla, evaporated milk, and coconut milk. 
4. Mix dry ingredients to wet ingredients. 
5. Put in muffin pan with banana leaves as liner. 
6. Bake for 5 minutes at 180-200C. Remove the bibingka from the oven then top each one with salted egg and cheese and then put back in the oven and bake for another 10mins.

If you are cooking the bibingka using larger cake pans,  bake for 20 minutes at 180-200C. Remove the bibingka from the oven then top with salted egg and cheese and then put back in the oven and bake for another 15 to 20 mins.

Before serving, brush the bibingka melted butter then sprinkle with sugar. 

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Tuesday, 27 October 2015

Royal Bibingka


Before I start with this new post, we would like to extend our sympathies and prayers to all our Kababayans affected by the previous tyhphoon Lando (internationally known as Koppu), specially those living in towns / cities declared as calamity areas. We also hope that nobody was affected by the 5.8 magnitude earthquake that happened right after typhoon Lando.  Praying that all the families are safe and dry.  Wishing too that animals in the areas can find safe refuge.  Hoping too that our government officials will do all that is necessary to help out those affected before they focus on campaigning for the 2016 elections (mahiya naman kayong mga politiko kayo!)

Let me inhale then exhale before I proceed (inhaling and exhaling using a brown paper bag)...

Royal bibingka is my favorite pasalubong from Cagayan.  Some of Mami's coworkers during her younger years (she's a retired government servant) were from Cagayan.  Every time they go back to their hometowns, they usually bring back some royal bibingka as presents to my Mami.  We also never fail to buy royal bibingka whenever we go to Tuguegarao City (capital of Cagayan Province)

I love love love the royal bibingka from Cagayan, specially the ones made by Manang Auring's mother.  They are brown in color, topped with toasted grated cheese, and they are sticky and chewy that one has to remove his/her dentures when eating royal bibingka.  



Just in case you are wondering, royal bibingka is a Filipino native rice cake that is made from glutinous rice soaked in water then milled to form an almost white paste-like texture, mixed with brown sugar and coconut milk, topped with grated cheese, then baked in a pugon (oven made from stones or clay) or a small clay oven, which I cannot describe because I haven't seen one yet.  

I don't really  know how to cook royal bibingka the traditional way.  I've been asking friends and relatives from Cagayan but some are clueless and some will have to get back to me.  Well, it had been more than three years since and nobody has gotten back to me regarding the recipe (evil grin) and I have already made my own version two years back. 





What I am sharing to you today is my version of the royal bibingka.  I developed my recipe for royal bibingka based on my sensory memory of my favorite kakanin (rice cake). I had done  many experiments,  wasted several kilos of glutinous rice flour and powdered coconut milk before the Husband and I got the taste and texture that is similar to that of the royal bibingka.  At first I don't like to share the recipe since I was selling royal bibingka before here in Qatar but then again, the reason why I blog is to share our passion and love for food.  



So here it is. As you can see,my royal bibingka is a "mistisa".  Yes, it's pale in color, and not as dark brown as the one's from Cagayan. I used white sugar for my recipe of this royal bibingka.  Maybe if I use brown sugar, the color will be darker.  I'd love to try that next time.  If anyone of you are from Cagayan or from Vigan, please do share your royal bibingka recipe.  I'd also love to see how it is traditionally made.  Thank you people. 

ROYAL BIBINGKA
( http://www.myfresha-licious.com/ )

Ingredients :
Glutinous Rice Flour - 1 cup
White Sugar - 2/3 cup (you can lessen it if you wish)
Coconut milk Powder -  3/4 cup
Salt - 1/8 tsp
Egg, whole - 1 pc
Condensed milk - 1/2 cup
Water - 3/4 cup
Coconut oil - 2 tbsp
Vanilla Essence - 1/2 tsp
Grated cheddar cheese - as desired

Cooking Procedure:
1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees Celsius
2. Mix all the dry ingredients together.
3.  Mix the the wet ingredients together then pour it on the dry ingredients.  Mix well until homogeneous.  Make sure that there are no lumps
4.  Transfer into muffin tins or a round pan with 8" Diameter.

If you are using muffin or cupcake tins, bake the royal bibingka covered with foil for 15 mins.  Remove cover, top with grated cheese, then bake for another 5 minutes or until the cheese melts

If you are using an 8" wide pan,  bake the royal bibingka covered with foil for 20 mins.  Remove cover, top with grated cheese, then bake for another 5 minutes or until the cheese melts

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Monday, 26 October 2015

10 Filipino Native Delicacies for All Saints Day



I apologize if there was no post for last week.  I wasn't able to update our blog because I was in pain.  I find it difficult and painful to sit in front of my laptop even for just a few minutes and to move about the house because of my back pain.  I have issues on my cervical spine and on my lumbo sacral spine but the Ortho and the rheumatoligist I've been consulting, both said that there's nothing serious to be worried about. I just have disc narrowing and bulging on both my upper and lower spine and PT (physical therapy) and some meds will do the trick.  I've been to several PT sessions for my cervical spine, the treatment includes electrical stimulation and cervical traction, but I'm not sure if there is any improvement. My infertility treatment will be starting next month and that is something I've been worrying about.

Any who, things will get better I know (fingers crossed).  I'm getting old (at 38), that's why pain is something to look forward to.  Huh! I should be growing old gracefully, wouldn't I?

Any who, again (evil grin) Next week, Filipinos and the rest of the Christian world all over planet earth will be celebrating All Souls and All Saints Day.  So this week, we will be featuring Filipino native delicacies to give you an idea as to what to cook for the occasion.

To start with, here are 10 Filipino Native Delicacies you can whip up for All Saints Day

1.  Puto - puto refers to the Filipino steamed cake.  Traditionally they are made from ground rice but most of the time they are also made from wheat flour. 
puto cake
These two puto recipes are both made from flour.  Try them  Puto Cake  and Puto .  Let us know which one you like best.
puto

2.  Biko -  Biko is a native Filipino rice cake that is made of steamed or boiled glutinous rice and mixed with brown sugar. We have many biko recipes in our blog that you can choose from.  Mean time, try our Biko with coconut-caramel topping or  biko with calamansi rind.



3.  Inandila  - Inandila is a native Kalinga delicacy that is made from glutinous rice that is milled into a soft paste and garnished with ladek / latik or brown coconut curdles.  Here is the  Inandila  version of our Mami.



4. Palitaw sa Latik - like the inandila, palitaw is also made of glutinous rise, ground to paste consistency, formed into oval shapes, cooked in boiling water, and that they float once they're cooked. That explains the moniker palitaw which is the Filipino term of "to float". Palitaw sa latik is served with a sweet sauce made of latik and sugar. Here's my cousin's Palitaw sa Latik recipe

5. Espasol - Espasol is a sweet rice cake that originated from Laguna. It is made from toasted glutinous rice flour, cooked with sugar and coconut milk, shaped like a tube, and is coated in a brown edible powder. Here is the recipe of Ms. MJ Nucop for the Espasol.

6. Hibok Hibok -  Refers to the chewy, sticky, and gooey balls that are made out of glutinous rice mixed with water and ground to a fine paste (galapong), filled with sweet monggo paste, and cooked in coconut milk.  They are then  served with a creamy sauce made from coconut milk then topped with latik (cooked coconut curd). Here is Ms. Mensie Mendoza Bernardino recipe of Hibok Hibok .



7. Karioka - is a Filipino native delicacy or kakanin that are made of glutinous rice mixed with shredded or grated coconut meat, formed into a ball or flat oval shape or any shape as desired, that are fried and coated with caramelized sugar . Here is our Mami's recipe of Karioka .

8. Tambo Tambong or Ginataang bilo bilo - Ginataan bilo bilo is called tambo tambong in Ilocano.  It is made of glutinous rice flour that is turned into paste, formed into tiny balls, and then cooked in sugar and coconut milk along with sweet potatoes, plantains, and sago (tapioca pearls). Here is our recipe of  Tambo Tambong .-

9.  Suman Moriecos - is a Filipino delicacy that is made of ground glutinous rice mixed with sugar and water, then wrapped in banana leaves, then steamed. Check out Mami's recipe of Suman moriecos -  



10. Cassava Cake Cassava Cake is made with finely grated cassava, coconut milk, and sweeteners.  Some use milk and sugar, some would use sweetened condensed milk. Here is ate Rachel Rosario's recipe of Cassava Cake



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Sunday, 18 October 2015

Nutella Chocolate Chips Bread twist




Caution, please continue reading this post until the last part.  Do not just read the first paragraph only! (evil grin)

I think this will be the first and last time I am going to make use of nutella in my baking UNLESS somebody will request for a baked goody that has nutella in it and will commit to eating every morsel of what I will bake.  May be I will reconsider baking nutella breads.  For now, nutella is out in my list of baking ingredients.



You ask me why? Well, let me tell you a short story.  I made a sweet bread with potatoes in it. The recipe of the bread is  the same as that of the base bread of my ube ensaymada.  If you haven't seen my post on my ube ensaymada, click this link. Basically the bread is not too sweet as I only used about 15% of sugar.  And also used the dark variety of chocolate chips (Callebaut - 44% cocoa mass).  So the culprit is the nutella.  There (evil grin)

BUT... Wait a minute... BUT...but... but... That is on the point of view of old adults who are paranoid about their sugar intake and type 2 diabetes.  This is definitely not for us (evil grin).  You can make this for your kids and I am very sure more than 101% they will love it specially if they are nutella or chocolate fanatics as most kids do.

When we have kids, I'd be baking this again.  I'll surely bake this for my nephews and nieces.  Try it and let me know your thoughts (wink wink)

PS: I was not paid by Nutella or anyone to use this product.

NUTELLA CHOCOLATE CHIPS BREAD TWIST
(www.myfresha-licious.com)

Ingredients:


Dough :
All Purpose Flour (12.5% protein content) - 2 1/2 cups 

White Sugar -1/2 c
Salt - 1/4 tsp
Instant dry yeast (le saf) - 1 tsp 
Water or milk- 1/2  cup (+/-)
Butter flavored shortening - 1/4 cup
Egg yolks, slightly beaten - from 3 eggs

Egg, whole - 1 medium
Potato,boiled and mashed - 1 small

filling:

Nutella
Dark Chocolate Chips

toppings: 
Chocolate Chips

Egg for egg-wash

Baking procedure:

     Fermentation time: 60 minutes
     Dough Scale:  70 grams / 10 pcs

     Resting Time : 10 minutes
     Proofing time :  45 minutes 

     Baking : 180 degrees celsius / 15-17 minutes

1. In a mixing bowl, using the dough hook attachment, on low speed, mix all the dry ingredients 
for the dough including the mashed potato, excluding for the salt. After mixing, add the salt.



2. Pour the water/milk, beaten egg yolks, and shortening then mix on medium speed until gluten develops.  To check if gluten has developed properly, get a small dough and stretch it, if a thin like film forms in the middle and doesn't easily breaks, the gluten is developed.

3.  Cover the mixing bowl with cloth, place it in a warm area, and allow the dough to ferment for 80 minutes

4. Brush your flat work surface with butter. Punch dough in the center and transfer it in your flat work surface.  



5.  Cut and weigh the dough into 10 pcs at 70 grams per piece.  Roll each dough to form a small ball. Rest for at least 10 minutes




6.  Using a rolling pin, roll out each dough to form a 3 x 7 inches rectangle.  Spread  a liberal amount of Nutella then sprinkle with chocolate chips.  Roll in the dough to form a cylinder. 




7. Slice the cylinder-formed dough in two.  Braid it then twirl it. Sprinkle chocolate chips on top. Place the dough on a baking sheet then proof for at least 45 minutes.

8.  After proofing, beat egg for the egg wash then brush the the dough with it.



9.   Bake the bread at 180 degrees Celsius for 15 to 17 minutes or until the top most part turns into a light brown color. 

Cool down the bread before before serving

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Saturday, 17 October 2015

Lauya nga luppo ti Karnero (Lamb Trotters Soup with Pechay)




You might be wondering why we have featured Ilocano meat dishes this week, one reason is that, I want to share the food tradition of the Ilocanos.  Specially that my husband and I are Ilocanos. . Maka-awat ken  makasao  kami ti Ilocano (We can understand Ilocano and we can speak the Ilocano dialect fluently). And we also grew up eating Ilocano dishes.

Lauya literally means nilaga in Tagalo and "boiled" in English. When we say lauya, we refer to a dish that is cooked by plainly boiling it. It doesn't matter whether it is a pork, a beef, a chicken, duck, or other kinds of meats. Usually, salt and/or patis  is the only seasoning.  Some would add spices like bawang (garlic) or lasona (onions).  Root crops are added  like  kamote (sweet potato) which is a common root crop in the Ilocandia, Ilocanos in other parts of the Philippines and other parts of the world would use patatas (potatoes). Leafy vegetables like pechay and repolyo (cabbage) are also part of the dish.

My father, who was also an Ilocano and who's roots are from Ilocos, cooks lauya using fatty pork parts, with or without bones, like the pork belly part and the pig's front legs. Usually he cooks it using a pressure cooker as he was an impatient man (evil grin) He cannot stand the idea of slow-cooking the meat for hours.  My husband on the other hand prefers to cook lauya using meat trotters.  And he likes the trotters cooked until the meat are tender but still chewy.

Since I cannot eat red meat, I usually just enjoy the soup and the vegetables added to the lauya.  

Ala ngaruden Kakabsat, isagana yo ta plat-plato yon ken inapoy ta mangan tayon. 

LAUYA NGA LUPPO TI KARNERO (LAMB TROTTERS SOUP W/ PECHAY)
(http://www.myfresha-licious.com)

Ingredients :

Lamb trotters - 1 kg.
Garlic - 20 cloves
Onions, quartered - 2 medium
Black peppercorns
Pechay leaves
Patis (fish sauce) - 3 tbspSalt to taste
Water enough to cook the meat 

Cooking Procedure :

1. Dump the lamb trotters and water,  at least an inch above the meat, in a pot, then bring to a boil at low-medium fire for at least 30 minutes.  Drain the meat.
2.  Again, place the boiled lamb trotters and water,  at least an inch above the meat, in a pot, then bring to a boil at low-medium fire for at least 30 minutes.  Drain the meat.
3.  Again, for the third time, place the boiled lamb trotters and water,  at least an inch above the meat, in a pot, then bring to a boil at low-medium fire for at least 30 minutes.  Drain the meat.
4.  Lastly, in a pot, dump in it the boiled lamb trotters, water  at least an inch above the meat, and the rest of the ingredients, except for the pechay leaves and salt, then bring to a boil at low-medium fire for at least 1 1/2 hours or until the trotters are tender to your liking.  Add more water as needed.  Adjust taste by adding more salt when necessary.
5. Add the pechay and cook for another 2 minutes.
Serve and enjoy, the soup is delicious

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Thursday, 15 October 2015

Insarabasab



Insarabasab is another authentic Ilocano dish.  It is also a process of cooking that involves cooking the meat over live wood-fire or over charcoal.  The word insarabasab literally means to place something over open fire. This Insarabasab dish however, is different from your grilled liempo or barbecued meat in so many ways.  The part that is mostly used in insarabasab is the face part of the pig including the ears or areas where there are thin layers of fat and meat in it like the pork shoulders.  The meat is not boiled before grilling and they are not marinated in any way.  The meat are usually just washed and are placed over direct fire, first to remove the hairs, and second to cook it for a few minutes until there is no pink color in the meat.

Insarabasab . The meat are diced and seasoned with salt and an acidic solution made of vinegar and/or kalamansi.  It is almost similar to the dinakdakanDinakdakan is another Ilocano dish that is a mixture of grilled or boiled meat and mixed with mashed animal brain or mayonnaise.  The insarabasab however do not use brain.  It is also almost similar to Sisig in so many ways.  Below is an easy way of cooking Insarabasab.

Like kinilaw, dinakdakan, and sisig, insarabasab is a delicious pulutan (beer / alcohol companion). Check our kinilaw recipes ,dinakdakan recipes, and sisig recipes for comparison.


INSARABASAB

(http://www.myfresha-licious.com)

Ingredients:

Pork, shoulder part or face part - 1 kg
Onions, sliced thinly - 1 medium
Green onion leaves - 1 stem
Cane Vinegar - 3 tbsp
Calamansi juice from - 2 to 3 fruit (to taste)
Salt to taste
Black Pepper Powder

1.  Wash the pork and drain.
2.  Roast pork in an open fire until the meat is cooked or once the pinkish color in the meat disappears.
3.  Slice the roasted pork into bite sizes or as desired (check the picture above)
4.  Blend the rest of the ingredients together and pour over the roasted meat.

Serve and enjoy

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Tuesday, 13 October 2015

Ilocano Igado



This week, we will be featuring some Ilocano recipes so if you are interested check us out daily (wink...wink...) I am starting out with this very tasty pork liver & pork meat stew famous among Filipinos as igado.

 Igado is an authentic Ilocano dish  that often contains liver and meat.  It is almost like the menudo of the Tagalogs sans the tomato sauce and hotdogs.  

 Igado is traditionally cooked using pig's liver, pig’s heart, pig's kidneys, and even pig's lungs spiced with lots garlic and slices of ginger, and seasoned with soy sauce, vinegar, salt, and pepper.  But as long as there is liver and pork meat, and seasoned with the spices and condiments I have mentioned, it is igado.

Ilocanos, like us, usually serve this during special occasions.  Below is the husband's recipe of Igado. We also have several recipes of igado in our blog, you can check them here Igado Recipe Collection


 ILOCANO IGADO
(http://www.myfresha-licious.com/)

Ingredients:

Pork Belly, sliced thinly - 1kg
Pig's liver, sliced into strips - 300 g.
Potatoes, sliced in strips - 3 medium
Bell Pepper, sliced into strips - 2 large
Green Peas - 2 small cans
Garlic, crushed and chopped - 10 cloves
Onions, diced - 1 large
Bay Leaves - 2 to 3 pcs
Cane Vinegar - 1/2 cup + 1/4 cup
Soy Sauce -1/3 cup

Black Pepper Powder  to taste
Salt  to taste

Brown Sugar- 2 tsp or to taste
Water - enough to cover the pork
Vegetable Oil - 2 tbsp



Cooking Procedure:

1. Clean the liver by rinsing it in running water. Slice thinly and marinate for at least 30 minutes in 1/4 cup vinegar and a pinch of salt
2. In a pressure cooker, heat the oil then sauté the garlic until aromatic.  Add the onions sauté it until it becomes translucent
3. Add the pork belly, stir until it turns almost brown.
4. Throw in the rest of the ingredients except for the green peas, potatoes, and bell pepper. Cook under pressure for 5-10 minutes or until the meat are tender.
5. Add the potatoes and continue cooking on medium-low fire until most of the liquids have evaporated.  Adjust taste by adding more salt and/or sugar
6. Drain the liver then throw it in the mixture along with the green peas, and bell pepper. Stir and continue to simmer  for at least 2 minutes more.  Turn of fire and cover the until serving time
Serve and enjoy

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