Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Clams in Wine

Clams in Wine
Originally uploaded by annalyn.
I like the fact that clams are cheaply sold in the markets here and so I never hesitate in buying even a half kilo for my favorite clam soup or sabaw ng halaan. This simply calls for sauteing the garlic, onions and ginger in oil, adding the clams and pouring in a cup or two of water. The result is a very appetizing soup made possible by the very natural flavors of the clam juice.

On the other hand, I saw a very interesting clam recipe in a food magazine which would make use of the white wine chilling out in our ref. It is a simple, easy-to-make Portuguese dish called Bulhao pato and the recipe is this:

1.5 kgs. clams
2 tbsp. olive oil
5 cloves garlic, chopped
1 glass white wine
salt and ground white pepper to taste
1 pc. lemon, juiced
1 bunch coriander, chopped
lemon or kalamansi wedges for garnishing


1. Soak clams in salted water for a few hours.
2. Heat olive oil in saute pan. Add garlic and clams, and saute for a couple of minutes. Pour in white wine, season with salt and water, and continue sauteing until clams open. Add lemon juice and chopped coriander, saute a little bit more and serve in a platter with lemon or kalamansi wedges.

*** I noticed that this type of cooking is similar to the recipe for Pasta alle Vongole. Just make a few adjustments to to transform this dish into a topping for your pasta and the result will still be incredibly good.

Monday, January 17, 2005

My Favorite Omelette

Originally uploaded by annalyn.

I love eggs, or any food with eggs on them, especially omelettes. Unfortunately, it's not something I always cook, maybe because my kids prefer their eggs either sunny side up or scrambled only. But I like the omelette because it's very easy to prepare and is versatile for breakfast, lunch or dinner.

Here's my favorite recipe:

1 piece onion
3 cloves garlic
2 pieces medium tomatoes
1 can tuna
2 eggs
salt and pepper to taste
oil for frying

1. Saute onion, garlic and tomatoes and cook till transparent.
2. Add tuna.
3. Transfer cooked mixture to egg bowl.
4. In a non-stick pan, heat oil and when hot enough, put in egg & tuna mixture.
5. When almost done, flip to other side and cook also till set.

Originally uploaded by annalyn.
This was how my omelette looked like when it was done. I am quite particular in turning out a perfectly-shaped omelette and what I do is put a plate or pan cover over it when it's ready to be served and flip to the other side. Ergo, you got a round (not folded) omelette.

Puto + Siopao = Puto Pao

Originally uploaded by annalyn.
Even though am not much of a puto fan like my New York-based blog friend JR, I have my favorite puto, or puto pao to be exact.It's at this stall at the Rustan's food court of Harrison Plaza which sells it for only five pesos. A box of a dozen pieces makes for an affordable pasalubong at only P60 or $1.

As you might have guessed, puto pao is a variation from the traditional steamed delicacy because it has a filling, usually asado.

I still have to prepare something like it but luckily, I found one recipe in Food Magazine which might be worth trying:


3 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup cake flour
1 cup powdered milk
4 tablespoons baking powder
2 1/2 cups water
3 pieces whole eggs


2 tablespoons cooking oil
1/4 kilo ground pork or beef
2 tablespoons minced celery (optional)
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon seasoning
pinch of salt
pinch of sugar
pinch of pepper
pinch of MSG

1. In a bowl, combine all-purpose flour, cake flour, milk, baking powder, water and eggs. Mix until well-blended. Set aside for one hour.

2. Prepare the topping: In a skillet, heat oil and cook ground meat until brown. Add the celery, soy sauce, seasoning, salt, sugar, pepper and MSG. Stir mixture occasionally until ground meat is cooked.

3. Pour puto batter in greased small muffin cups about half full. Add a tablespoon of topping in each cup. Steam for 10 to 15 minutes.

As a final note, do tell me how it turned out;)

Monday, January 10, 2005

A new way with shrimp

Originally uploaded by annalyn.
Somebody gave me a pack of Alavar sauce last Christmas which is a famous product of Zamboanga province in the South. My merry giver said this sauce goes well with anything - be it crabs, shrimp and meat.

I haven't eaten shrimps in a long time (maybe because this remains an expensive seafood in Manila) and so decided to cook it with the Alavar sauce. For those curious, Alavar is made from coconut milk and "secret" spices (as the packet says) and is yellowish in color. It is named after a popular restaurant famous for its Zamboanga cooking.

Cooking the dish entailed just sauteing the garlic until brown, adding the shrimps and sort of stir-frying them in the pan till they turn orange. Afterwards, I poured the Alavar sauce, letting it simmer for two minutes. The addition of Philippine green peppers completed this simple yet savory dish.

And yes, you guessed it...this is just one of my culinary inventions. I didn't come prepared with the precise procedures and ingredients. But am sure fellow cooks can picture what am saying here... saute, stir and simmer. Enjoy!

Monday, January 03, 2005

Merry, Happy, Full!

newyears' dinner
Originally uploaded by annalyn.
I've never really liked New Year's celebrations because I dread the sounds of firecrackers on the streets.In fact this time I wanted to check in a hotel with the whole family just so I can have it in peace and quiet. However, a friend said New Year's feng shui required that I stay at home, open all the windows to bring in luck, wear a polka-dotted dress and lay out all the food on the table. So I did!

It turned out to be enjoyable.My son slept through the fireworks but the twins and me had fun dancing after the clock struck twelve. Then, it was time to head off to the table where I prepared a simple feast of the ham and fruits given to me over Christmas, assorted puto, and some of the food I prepared: the tulingan pasta, beef stew and special fruit salad.

Even though it was only the nanny, me and the twins sharing the meal, the simple feast proved to be fantastic.

The tulingan pasta, which is made from the Spanish mackerel fish growing in the Philippine seas, proved to be a revelation. I got the recipe from Chef Dennis of Hotel Pontefino and there's no doubt I'm cooking it again. I like cooking with wine and this tasted absolutely yummy, not to mention so easy to prepare.

The beef stew is an old specialty of mine while the fruit salad was a take-off from a recipe in Food Magazine.



15 ml. olive oil
20 g. garlic, chopped
100 g. shrimps, peeled and deveined
30 ml white wine
60 ml shrimp stock
200 g. spaghetti,cooked
5 g. basil, julienned
15 g. butter
40 g. sinaing na tulingan flakes
40 g. button mushroom, sliced
salt & pepper to taste
15 g. parmesan cheese
2 pcs. lemon or calamansi

In a pan, heat olive oil. Brown the garlic (I love garlic so I add a lot!), then add the shrimps and mushroom.Deglaze with white wine and add the shrimp stock.Toss in the pasta and fresh basil leaves. Add in the butter and remove from heat. Top with the tulingan flakes and parmesan cheese. Serve with lemon wedges on the wide.

**Notes: there was no basil available so i skipped it but the dish still tasted delicious with just the addition of Italian seasoning . The tulingan flakes I bought from a Batangas food vendor but you can try experimenting with other fish, like ordinary tuna.