Wednesday, July 15, 2009


Everyone loves pizza! Who wouldn't? Specially me! I mentioned pizza here.
I took the day off and I baked my own version of pizza. Here are the ingredients I used:

2-Medium sized Pizza crust. Okay, I haven't tried making my own dough so for the meantime allow me to cheat a bit. I had some grated quick-melt cheese. These are indeed quick melt, I had to refrigerate it after grating. I also had some ground beef and Italian sausage boiled for 20 minutes or so. The ground pork clumped together during the process of boiling so I have to crumble it. I had some sliced longganisa, onions and a few minced garlic just to have a little twist to my pizza and spaghetti sauce! Yes, I like my pizza with spaghetti sauce. This one had mushroom bits in it so I don't need to buy mushrooms anymore.

I sliced the Italian sausage. I bought this one from the local grocery and it was expensive! But it looks fancy with all the peepers and herbs inside. I spread the crusts with the sauce. I made sure I didn't place too much. Most of the pizza chefs say so. Then I arranged the sliced onions and garlic. And after topping it up with meat. I came up with two different pizzas!

The left one is the Italian Sausage Supreme and the right one is the local version, the Pinoy Longganisa Supreme Pizza!

After placing them in the oven, I realized I had a few ingredients left. So I used them to make mini pizzas with white bread.

The result turned out really great! The cheese melted wonderfully! The longganisa pizza was sweet and juicy and the Italian sausage had a hint of spice in it. Wow! I was able to bake two totally different pizza! My aunt loved it so much she told me I could run my own pizza restaurant. LOL. Who knows, maybe I would, someday!

Monday, July 13, 2009

My Cousin's Debut

It was my cousin Beige's 18th birthday yesterday. And I am one of the emcees together with my other cousin Ieth. I am glad that I brought my camera, there was so much to see. When I arrived my cousins Red and friend Arch were busy with the last decoration. The theme was something like a luau and beach party combined.

The venue is at Kidz World. This is becoming the official venue for our family gatherings and other stuff. If you could remember we also had a celebration at this post. I was very disappointed actually because I wasn't able to feature the food at the buffet table because I need to do my job as the emcee. We had Kare-kare which was so delicious and the vegetables in it are perfectly steamed and the breaded tofu was so firm I almost thought it was breaded fish fillet. There are more and we even had lechon but unfortunately I had no time to take pictures of the. So I'll just dump these beautiful shots I took from the place.

And below is a 3-layered-cake. Each layer has a different flavor, give-aways (I think) and the 18 Candles.

Okay, there are no food features in this post, except for that cake, but it is worth a share. So please do check out my blog again for more!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Healthy Shabu-Shabu

After going around in circles, finally we found it! Healthy Shabu-Shabu! Shabu-Shabu is a one pot meal where you blanch several ingredients right at your own table. Thinly sliced food is submerged in boiling water or broth or whatever then move in back and forth until it is cooked or simply leave it boiling. The back and forth movement makes a swishing sound. Shabu-Shabu directly translates to "swish - swish", hence the name.

The menu, apart from the cooked meals, are platters of raw ingredients. There are a bunch, actually. As you can see above, there are meat, vegetables, sea food, noodles, etc. It was my first time to eat shabu-shabu style so I was very much excited.

It actually took a while before our orders came in so I took the chance to take a photo of myself, hehe. And observe!

The utensils: there's a small bowl on a plate, 2 small spatulas at the left, one with holes in it. A pair of wooden chopsticks and a ceramic spoon for the soup. At the upper right, is a special sauce for dipping or for soup seasoning. It's pretty much an all-around sauce. As you can see there is a medium sized pot built in the table, that's where everything is cooked by no other chef but yourself. Isn't it nice? Then after a while, the waiter came and handed some more seasonings.

One raw egg, a small plate of minced garlic, spring onions, red and green chilies and an unknown brown paste. My brother said it was bagoong or fish paste, but it didn't taste like one. Then our pots were poured with a special broth. I don't know what it's made of but it's actually good, you could eat it on its own.

As soon as my pot was filled, I immediately seasoned it with garlic and spring onions. You know me, I hate spicy foods so I threw my chilies to my mom's plate. Gahaha!

Then, our orders finally came! Here's what we had..

The first one is a platter of fresh cabbage, lettuce, sweet potatoes, shiitake mushrooms, carrots silken tofu, sliced corn on the cob, fish balls, squid balls, white noodles, clear noodle and crab sticks. The next one is the seafood platter. It includes prawns, salmon strips, chopped squid, scallops and sea cucumbers. And the last one is the beef platter. These are fresh, thinly-sliced beef.

As I sip my papaya shake, I took the time to look around. The ambiance was okay. It did felt like a zen garden though it lacked a few more decorations. I love the wheel fountain. For my first time, I took whatever I can and dumped it in the pot.
Noodles and Crab Stick

Shiitake Mushroom and Squid Tentacles

Salmon and Beef

Add a few more, increase the temperature and let it cook!

I suddenly came up with an idea. I will make my own soup version and give it a name. It didn't took so much time for everything to cook. So I came up with these:
I mashed a few silken tofu, folded in some beef, added a leaf of cabbage, a slice of corn on the cob and topped it off with a giant prawn!
"Oriental Brown Soup"
For this one, I selected anything that has a brownish hue on it. Those that I found were shiitake mushrooms, sea cucumber, some scallops, beef and topped it off with some onion springs.
"Soft Soup Fast"
The ingredients in this one doesn't really have anything in common except for the fact that they are the first one cooked among the stuff I dumped in the pot. Cabbage, tofu and squid.
"Mini Seafood Ramen"
And my favorite creation! I had to arrange the noodles in a way that they won't tangle too much then cut the crab stick into thin sheets and delicately arrange them around the bowl and topped it off with a sea cucumber and some spring onions.

I had too much fun creating bowls, mixing possible combination and experimenting on a lot of stuff that I realized I haven't eaten much yet. When I looked around, there are a few ingredients left so I grabbed a few of what's left and again, dumped it in my pot!

I was enjoying every minute of it! Doesn't it show? Haha!

And for dessert, we had Halo-Halo. Yes, it's Halo-Halo. it's the first time I've seen one with very little shaved ice. A serving only had about a tablespoon of shaved ice and my jaw dropped to my amusement. At first I was disappointed but when I tried it, it was really good! The contrast between the sweetness of the banana and watermelon contrasted well with the zest of the kiwi, grapes and mango. The texture of black gulaman made everything nicer.

I really had a blast with my first Shabu-Shabu experience, I think I ate too much but it's okay, I didn't feel too much bloated because everything is boiled, not fried. Most of the time, I was asking my mom, who is sitting beside me if my sea food is already cooked. Honestly, most of them turn out either completely raw or half cooked! But you know, I can say, I have never ever enjoyed raw food this much since sushi. The most time I had waiting for my food to cook is about 3 minutes and for that, I could also say, Shabu-Shabu is not for everyone. Specialy for those who hate sushi but you'll never know! Try it!