Pork loin chops with cream cheese sauce

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Igme lashed through northern Philippines today. Despite the distance, we were severely affected. Electric power went out around lunch time and was restored around 8.00 p.m.On schooldays, I don't usually cook anything complicated for lunch. It's usually a simple vegetable dish with just myself and the househelp at home. With the househelp gone for a short vacation (to see … [Read more...]

Hotdog on a toothpick

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UPDATE on October 30, 2008:Click here for the recipe of real corn dogs.The proper name is corndog. You can buy them frozen in boxes or you can make your own. They are also sold freshly cooked in parks, amusement centers, malls and supermarket lobbies mostly in small stalls. A favorite with kids, it is basically hotdog dipped in pancake batter then deep-fried until … [Read more...]

Paksiw na lechon


June 17th was my husband's birthday. We had a little dinner party last night to celebrate. Nothing fancy, though. The only expensive item on the menu was the two-and-a-half kilos of lechon. The national food of the Philippines, lechon refers to a whole pig roasted over live coals. Best eaten while the rind is still crisp, with the sweet-sour liver dunking sauce on the … [Read more...]

Beef Siomai Mami


In the Philippines, mami is the popular name for Chinese egg noodle soup. Served with a clear broth and vegetables, mami may be topped with chicken, pork, beef, seafood, steamed dumplings (siomai) or a combination of any of these. Siomai mami is sometimes called wonton noodle soup in Chinese restaurants.The most common filling for siomai is a mixture of ground pork and … [Read more...]

Spicy Beef Kaldereta


My special beef kaldereta recipe--chunks of stewing beef sauteed in olive oil with plenty of chopped garlic, onions and tomatoes then slow cooked in a little water until fork tender. The sauce is thereafter thickened with mashed cooked liver. Wedges of golden fried potatoes, bells peppers and olives are added just before cooking time is up. That didn't sound complicated, … [Read more...]

Escabecheng Tonto


There are two interesting stories that go with this dish. First is the tonto part. Tonto, literally meaning stupid, is the name of the fish. My husband was in Marikina City yesterday and, since the kids were again hankering for fish (we had catfish and tilapia earlier this week), I asked if he could pass by the Marikina public market to buy some. There is an old lady there … [Read more...]


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In Caloocan City where I grew up and where I lived with my husband and kids for six years before we moved to the suburb, there is a Filipino-Chinese restaurant called 7th West where they served pork face Chinese style. The popular name for this dish is halo, literally meaning mixed, so-called because in the original halo recipe, the diced pork face is mixed with other pork … [Read more...]

Stir – fried chicken, mushrooms and peas

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When I first learned to stir-fry the Chinese way, I always added a little sauce thickened with cornstarch or tapioca starch. That was the way Stephen Yan did it in his Wok with Yan. It was from that 1980s TV show that I learned about stir-frying.Stir-fried Chinese style dishes are meant to be consumed right after cooking. They are not designed for reheating. But, … [Read more...]



Despite the adverts that bombard us every single day, I still believe that home-cooked burgers are the best tasting and healthiest. I never make burgers with commercial burger mixes or patties. I choose the beef, have it ground and make my own patties. Good-quality lean ground beef is a good second option. Whichever you choose to use, make sure that the beef is finely … [Read more...]

Baked Eggplants


My 11-year-old changed the dinner menu again. I was planning on having grilled salmon belly but she asked if we could have fried chicken thigh fillets instead. I though it meant she would be in charge of the cooking. I agreed. The chicken thigh fillets were taken out of the freezer and thawed. An hour before dinner time, she and her sister had commandeered my computer and … [Read more...]