Friday, December 09, 2011

[Recipe] Peanut-Cashew Kare-Kare

Peanut-Cashew Lare-kare

I first thought about this recipe when I was wandering around the grocery looking for ingredients for my weekend meal (usually I have no time to cook during weekdays and weekends are sort of special because I have time to play around the kitchen). I am still not very familiar with most of the local ingredients here so I was pleasantly surprised that they offered frozen precooked clean beef tripe. I have not cooked kare-kare from scratch before since I always relied on the mixes available back home. Of course, I couldn't resist giving it a twist of putting ground toasted cashew nuts but interestingly enough after doing a quick search on the internet, I wasn't the first one to think of adding cashew in this dish. The recipe below is the one I would have made if I had all the ingredients but unfortunately I haven't had luck finding banana heart just yet and ox tail. Perhaps if I go to the big markets and not just rely what's available in the grocery I would have better luck. I have those small cans of bario fiesta bagoong brought over from home and sad to say my stash is getting depleted fast. I should remember to buy a few of those whenever I get a chance.


1 Kilo Beef Tripe (cleaned and cut into strips) and/or sliced Ox Tail
2 big onions, roughly chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 Cup eggplant sliced about half inch thickness
1 Cup Pechay, roughly hand shredded
1 Cup Sitaw, cut into 3 inch segments
1 Cup banana heart, roughly chopped
2 Tablespoon vegetable oil
1 Beef bullion
3/4 Cup unsweetened peanut butter
1 Cup Toasted Cashew Nuts, grounded using a mortar and pestle
Salt and pepper to taste
Bagoong Alamang (shrimp paste) as side dish


In a pressure cooker, cook the beef tripe or oxtails with some salt and pepper until tender. The cooking time would vary depending on the type of meat and for my case I buy my tripe precooked so I would need about 20 to 30 minutes to make it tender. If cooking oxtail you may keep the stock but for tripe I usually discard the broth and use beef bullion instead for flavor.

In a big pot, saute garlic and onions until garlic is light brown and onions are caramelized. Pour in the beef stock (or stock made from beef bullion of about a litter). Add in the peanut butter and dissolve completely. Add the tenderized meat and then the ground cashew and let it boil while stirring from time to time for about 20 minutes.

Place the banana heart first followed by the sitaw and cook for about 7 minutes, drop in the eggplant and pechay then lower the heat and let simmer covered for another 5 minutes.

Serve piping hot with rice and bagoong on the side. It is meant to be a bit bland and you have to season it with the shrimp paste as you eat. Enjoy!

Sunday, December 04, 2011

[Recipe] Shelled Mussels with Ginger and Spring Onions in Oyster Sauce

Shelled Mussels with Ginger and Spring Onions in Oyster Sauce
I saw some precooked frozen shelled mussels in the grocery yesterday and I thought of cooking some mussels in oyster sauce. It turned out quite nice so I'm sharing the recipe here. I suppose this would work even with fresh mussels on the shell but the cooking time and taste might vary. Fresh mussels tend to release juices when opening up while cooking that has a distinct taste that is sadly lacking from what I have made.

500 grams precooked shelled mussels
Ginger about 2 fingers size, cut into strips
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 bunch Spring Onion cut into 2 inch segments
1 small can of cut button mushrooms
5 Tablespoons Oyster Sauce
1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
Ground black pepper to taste

Thaw mussels and set aside. In a wok, heat vegetable oil and saute minced garlic until light brown. Add in the spring onion, ginger strips and mushrooms. Add the pepper and oyster sauce while continuously stirring. Add the mussels and stir until mussels are completely mixed in. Lower the flame and let simmer for about 5 minutes.

Saturday, October 01, 2011

[Recipe] Ricecooker Shrimp Rice

Shrimp Rice
I am still experimenting on possible recipes that can be cooked using my ricecooker. This time it's actually a rice dish and cooks just about the same time a normal batch of steamed rice cooks.

1 pack frozen precooked peeled shrimps (about 400 grams
1/2 Cup frozen peas, diced carrots and corn
1 medium onion (chopped)
5 cloves of garlic (chopped)
2 cups of rice
4 cups of chicken broth (or just enough to submerge all ingredients)
1 small bunch of Asparagus (about 10 spears) stalks are to be sliced leaving around 1 and 1/2 inches of the tip
1 Celery stalk (diced)
1 Tablespoon of chopped parsley
2 Tablespoon Olive Oil
1 teaspoon ground peppercorn
2 teaspoons dried basil
2 tomatoes (diced)
2 teaspoon fish sauce
Salt to taste (fish sauce is already very salty)
Optional: A few strands of Pandan or Lemongrass leaves for that added aroma (cooked with the rest of the ingredients but removed right before serving)

Measure rice and place in the ricecooker pot (may need to be washed depending on the type of rice bought - some are pre-washed already. Saute garlic and onion in Olive Oil until onions is starting to caramelize. Pour some of the broth in the pan and transfer the contents of the pan to the pot. Place all the remaining ingredients to the pot except for the asparagus tips which you will add only after the rice is cooked. Make sure that the ingredients are fully covered by broth. Cook the rice as you would normally do in a rice cooker, stirring the contents at least once when the broth is already in a running boil. Once the cooker shifted automatically to the keep warm setting, place the asparagus tips on the top and cover the lid. Allow it to steam for another 15 minutes. Check if the rice is cooked and let it remain on the keep warm setting for a while if the rice is still a bit hard on the inside. Serve hot and enjoy.

[Recipe] Rice Cooker Beef and Mutton Stew

Beef and Mutton Stew

I have never cooked anything other than rice on a ricecooker before or a slowcooker for that matter. I have read articles about how you do not need a dedicated slowcooker to enjoy slowcooker recipes. All you need is a ricecooker. That is fine if you only cook rice occasionally but for an Asian that eats rice breakfast, lunch and dinner, when will you have that time to not be able to use your rice cooker for 6 or so hours. 

Having also just moved in to my new house and the rest of my stuff isn't due to arrive for another week, my cooking options are pretty much limited. The first thing I bought after arriving here? You guessed it. A ricecooker! (well actually it was a laptop computer followed by the ricecooker). After cooking rice manually for a few meals I missed the convenience of getting that perfect batch of steamed rice every time. 

This is my first attempt at cooking with a ricecooker. I did it overnight and just added a few additional ingredients when I woke up. It turned out better than I expected. The vegetables did not turn into mush and the meat was quite tender. One thing to note though is that mutton releases a lot of fat/tallow so you will need to remove that after.

1/2 Kilo Beef Spare Ribs
1/2 Kilo Mutton (cut into cubes)
2 big Potatoes (cut into wedges)
1 Cup beef broth
1 small can Tomato Sauce (about 8 Oz)
2 Tablespoon Olive Oil
1 medium Onion (chopped)
4 cloves Garlic (chopped)
5 ripe small tomatoes
2 Tablespoon Soy Sauce
1/4 Cup cane vinegar (or distilled white vinegar)
3 teaspoon Spanish Paprika
2 teaspoon dried basil
2 teaspoon dried mint
1 teaspoon ground peppercorn
Asparagus spears (chopped stalks leaving the tips about 1 and 1/2 inch length)
3/4 cup of frozen mixed diced carrots, corn and peas (if you prefer to use fresh ingredients go right ahead)
Salt to taste
Cayenne Pepper to taste for that extra kick 
(optional: you may want to add red and green bell peppers and some sliced mushrooms to add flavor, texture and color to the dish. I didn't have these on hand at the time but I would have wanted to use those additional ingredients)

In a non-stick frying pan, saute garlic and onion with olive oil until onion starts to caramelize, add in the meat to brown slightly. Add broth to the pan and transfer the entire contents to the rice cooker pot. Add in all of the remaining ingredients ingredients except for the asparagus. Add enough water if necessary just to cover all of the ingredients.

Set to "cook rice" and once boiling just leave on for another 30 minutes. The just switch it to keep warm mode and leave for 5-6 hours.

Remove the fat or tallow accumulating on the top of the pot with a ladle. This is mainly due to the mutton but if you are only cooking beef then it should not be too much. Set it to cook again for 20 minutes placing the remaining asparagus with tips to the pot. Serve piping hot.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Creamy Mushroom and Fish Dish

I was in a hurry so I whipped up something to cook from stuff in the refrigerator and in my pantry. Made from chunks of cream dory fillet, a can of campbells seafood mushroom soup, a small can of sliced button mushrooms, frozen mixed corn, carrots and peas, diced potatoes, knorr fish bullion, fresh milk, salt, nutmeg and pepper. It turned out better than I was expecting it to be.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Orange-Lettuce-Tomato salad with Orange-Lime Vinaigrette topped withFeta Cheese and crushed Walnuts

Orange-Lettuce-Tomato salad with Orange-Lime Vinaigrette topped with Feta Cheese and crushed Walnuts. With both thinly sliced salad tomatos and cherry tomatoes and cheddar cheese slices.

Bought the vinaigrette from a store but I suppose you can make your own. I just love cherry tomatoes :)

[Recipe] Low Sugar Heart Shaped French Toast

Heart Shaped French Toast
Originally uploaded by Jepster
Something you can make for this coming Valentines day. The heart shapes was achieved using a heart shaped cutter (actually more like an fried egg shaper, the one that you place in a pan before you break the eggs - don't ask why I have that in my kitchen). This particular batch is made from a low sugar recipe.

1 loaf Sugar-free wheat bread
4 medium sized eggs
2 teaspoon ground cinnamon powder
250 ml evaporated milk
1 tsp salt
5 packets of Splenda
sugar-free pancake syrup

Cut out heart shaped bread using the cutter. Set aside bread trimmings (no need to waste perfectly good bread - just soak the trimmings on the same mixture later and follow the same recipe). On a shallow bowl, whisk the 4 eggs, add milk, salt, cinnamon and the sweetener and mix well. On a non-stick skillet, heat up some butter on low heat. Dip the heart shaped bread on both sides before placing it in the skillet. Allow a few minutes for one side to get light brown before flipping to the other side. Drizzle with the syrup and enjoy while still hot :)

Happy Valentines everyone!

Wednesday, January 05, 2011

Armadillo Droppings

Armadillo Droppings
Originally uploaded by Jepster
Somebody gave me these for the holidays. The name isn't exactly what you would call appetizing but it certainly grabs your attention. These are actually pecan nut pralines and they are quite good if too sweet for my taste. It took a lot of convincing before some of my colleagues would even taste it.