October 29, 2010

Crusty Pandesal

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hamdesal, ham and egg sandwich on crusty but soft pandesal

Sausage, Egg, and Cheese Pandesal
sausage Mcpandesal with egg and cheese

food friday chiclet

The recipe for these crusty but soft pandesal buns is adapted from the hamburger bun recipe in ADVANCED BREAD AND PASTRY by Michel Suas. It has a 12-hour pre-ferment which I thought would make the pandesal more flavorful. And they are specially with brown sugar glazed ham and moist omelet or breakfast sausage patties, egg, and a slice of sharp cheddar cheese.

Crusty Pandesal
adapted from Hamburger Buns


4½ ounces bread flour
2 ¾ ounces water
1/8 teaspoon instant yeast
  • Mix all the ingredients in a bowl until well incorporated. Cover with plastic wrap and allow to ferment at room temperature (65 to 70°F) for 12 hours.
final dough
13 ¼ ounces unbleached all-purpose flour
8 ½ ounces water
1 1/8 teaspoons instant yeast
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 ½ tablespoons sugar
1 ½ ounces soft butter
¼ cup milk powder
very fine bread crumbs
  • In the bowl of a standing mixer with the dough hook attachment, mix all the ingredients except bread crumbs on low until fully incorporated. Increase the speed to medium and knead for 5 to 6 minutes until a soft smooth dough forms.
  • Transfer into a container, cover with plastic wrap and let ferment on the kitchen counter for 45 minutes to 1 hour.
  • Knead lightly then divide and scale to 2 ounces. Cover and let rest for 30 minutes. Shape into ovals and flatten slightly. Dredge in bread crumbs and place on sheet pans 2 inches apart. Cover with plastic wrap, put the pans in food grade plastic bags to proof for 1 hour and 30 minutes.
  • Bake in a preheated 400°F oven for 10 minutes, lower the heat to 375°F and bake for another 10 to 15 minutes or until golden. Let cool on wire racks.

October 27, 2010

Pancake Puffs

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yummy and fun to eat yeasted buckwheat mini pancake puffs

This pancake popper pan caught my eye not only because of the shape but also because it's made here in the good old USA by Nordic Ware. It's very rare nowadays to find kitchen tools with a mark that says "Made in the USA". While at the store trying to justify buying another cooking pan that might end up in the cupboard unused, I remembered the teeny buckwheat Dutch pancake puffs (poffertjes), the similar but slightly larger Danish apple pancake puffs (aebleskiver), and the Japanese octopus balls. Plus, I thought I could probably use it to fry perfectly round meatballs too. And so it went into my shopping cart.*Sigh*

Pancake Popper Pan

Poffertjes (Dutch Mini Pancake Puffs)
1 cup bread flour
1 cup buckwheat flour
1½ teaspoons instant yeast
½ teaspoon kosher salt
10 ounces warm whole milk
1 egg, beaten
2 tablespoons golden syrup
2 tablespoons melted butter
powdered sugar

  • Whisk together the flours in a large bowl. Add the yeast and salt and stir to mix. Add the milk slowly, stirring constantly, then add the syrup and beaten egg. Mix well. Cover with plastic wrap and leave on kitchen counter to rise for 45 minutes.
  • Heat poffertjes pan if you have one, or a skillet or griddle and brush with melted butter. Pour half a tablespoon, or 1 tablespoon for bigger cakes, of the batter and cook until the poffertjes become light brown and dry at the bottom. Turn them with a small fork to cook the other side (I used a tool for making/dipping chocolate candies).
  • Sprinkle generously with powdered sugar and put a small lump of butter on top. Enjoy while still warm.


slightly larger apple filled Danish pancake puffs

2 eggs
1 tablespoon sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
1 cup all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
1 cup buttermilk
2 tablespoons melted butter
powdered sugar
diced apple
  • Beat egg yolks until light and fluffy, then add the sugar and salt.
  • Sift the flour with baking powder and baking soda, then add it to the egg mixture, alternating small amounts with the addition of the buttermilk, as you continue mixing.
  • Beat the egg whites until stiff, then gently fold them into the batter.
  • Heat the pancake popper pan. Brus each cavity with melted butter and drop batter into cups, filling each about 2/3 full. Place some apple in the center of each cavity.
  • Cook over medium heat until browned and crisp on bottom. Turn each cake with a fork to cook the other side. The aebleskiver is done when a toothpick, or cake tester, inserted in the center comes out clean.
  • Remove cakes from pan and sprinkle with powdered sugar, if desired. Best when served warm.

October 24, 2010

Fried Grouper with Sweet and Sour Sauce


Fried Grouper with Sweet and Sour Sauce

Its was a pleasant surprise when I saw small-ish whole grouper at the grocery store. Grouper is usually sold already filleted from ginormous fish. I got the smallest one, although still very large at almost 3 pounds, and over a foot long. While at the store I was already imagining it deep fried on a bed of red and green peppers with sweet and sour sauce just like the ones in Hong Kong restaurants.

I couldn't decide if I should prepare it Chinese-style or Filipino escabeche. They are very similar, the cooking method and ingredients except for soy sauce are almost identical. I guess the Filipino escabeche is another fusion of Chinese and Spanish recipes and became a Filipino dish just like arroz caldo.

I chose to prepare the whole grouper Chinese-style because I haven't had this dish in a long long time. I realized I didn't have a pan big enough to accomodate the big fish; I used my wok which was large enough but I had to tilt the pan several times to fry the tail which didn't become crispy. No problem, the rest of the fish was crispy, perhaps not as crisp as the restaurant's but it's good enough for me. And besides the dish is sooo yummy.

Fried Grouper with Sweet and Sour Sauce
1 whole grouper, gutted and cleaned
sea salt
ground white pepper
all purpose flour, optional
vegetable oil

1 clove garlic
3 large shallots
2-inch piece fresh ginger
1 green bell pepper
1 red bell pepper
1 tomato, cut into wedges, optional
1 tablespoon light olive oil
4 tablespoons sugar, more or less to taste
5 tablespoons cider vinegar
½ cup water
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon sea salt, or to taste
2 tablespoons cornstarch mixed with ¼ cup water.
  • Cut the garlic, shallots, ginger, and bell peppers into matchstick size pieces.
  • Heat 6 cups oil in a large pan or wok on medium high.
  • Pat dry the fish inside and out and make 3 slits across on both sides. Season inside and out with 1 teaspoon salt and half a teaspoon of white pepper. Dredge in flour, if desired; remove excess flour.
  • Deep fry until skin is crisp.
  • While fish is frying prepare the sauce. In a medium saucepan, heat the oil and saute the garlic, shallots, and ginger for 2 minutes. Add the rest of the ingredients except the cornstarch mixture. Simmer for 2 minutes, taste and adjust seasoning, then add the cornstarch mixture. Simmer until sauce is clear and has slightly thickened.
  • Transfer on a serving platter and place the cooked fish on top of the sauce. Serve immediately with steamed or Chinese-style fried rice.

October 22, 2010

Food Friday: McD's Angus Third Pounder with Bacon and Cheese Burger

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McD's Angus Third Pounder Bacon Cheeseburger

I can't believe I ate the whole thing. McDonald's 100% Angus Third Pounder with Bacon and Cheese Burger: a third of a pound of juicy and flavorful Angus beef patty with a slice of cheese on the bottom and topped with mustard, ketchup, slices of crisp sweet red onion, pickles, 3 slices of crispy bacon, and another slice of cheese on a soft but sturdy 5-inch bun. Yummy!

food friday chiclet

October 17, 2010

Matcha Bread Rolls with Sweet Azuki

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Matcha Rolls with Sweet Azuki

I was given a packet of matcha powder, compliments of Obubu Tea, a Japanese matcha producer *Thank you Ian*. The tea arrived from Japan yesterday and today I baked a small batch of bread rolls filled with sweet azuki which is one of my favorite dessert pairings. Three things I love: the mellow but distinct matcha flavor which lingers in the mouth after eating the sweet-ish rolls, the sweet aroma that greeted me when I snipped open the package, and the bright green color indicating top quality. I highly recommend it.

I'm not a green tea expert but for the past 4 years I have been drinking green tea brewed from Japanese loose tea leaves. The Japanese matcha powder I have I use exclusively for making cakes, cookies, crepes, ice cream, candies, and bread. I think I drank it once but didn't like it; I prefer the brewed tea leaves. Now I know why, the very pale green matcha powder, although also from Japan, is probably old or not the best quality.

Obubu Tea matcha has a much brighter green color

Matcha An Pan (Green Tea Bread Rolls with Sweet Azuki)
3½ cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons instant yeast
4 tablespoons sugar
1½ teaspoons kosher salt
4 tablespoons milk powder
1 tablespoon matcha powder
1¼ cups + 2 tablespoons lukewarm water
4 tablespoons soft butter
1 egg, room temperature
homemade or canned sweet azuki
  • In the bowl of a standing mixer with the paddle attachment, stir together 2 cups of the flour, yeast, sugar, salt, milk powder, and matcha. Add the water, butter, and egg and mix on low for 1 minute. Add the remaining flour and mix on low for 1 minute. Sprinkle with 1 tablespoon lukewarm water if the dough seems dry.
  • Replace the paddle with the dough hook and mix on second speed for 4 to 5 minutes or until dough is smooth and supple. Transfer into a lightly greased container, cover with plastic wrap and let ferment on the kitchen counter for 2 hours.
  • Transfer the dough on the work surface and knead lightly to release air bubbles. Scale the dough into 2½-ounce pieces, roll into rounds, cover with plastic wrap, and let rest for 20 minutes. Flatten the rounds into 5-inch circles. Using a 1-tablespoon ice cream scoop, scoop and drop azuki on the center of the circle. Gather the edges and pinch to close. Place on parchment-lined sheet pans, seam side down, 2 inches apart, and flatten each to about 1 inch thick. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise for 1 hour. Preheat oven to 350°F 20 minutes before baking. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until tops are light brown in color.

Matcha Rolls with Sweet Azuki
the cut roll looks like a butterfly or clover

Matcha Roll
I made a few plain rolls, so good with chocolate spread

October 15, 2010

Food Friday: Hallowe'en Treats

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Only 16 more days before candy day...are you ready for Hallowe'en trick or treaters? One of the bags of candies is already open and so I opened another bag with the Milk Duds in it. One tiny box has 4 pieces, more than enough to satisfy my craving for chocolate covered chewy caramels.
food friday chiclet

October 13, 2010

Suman sa Morón

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Suman sa Moron
Suman sa Moron

This is the third time I made this kind of suman and unlike the previous two [inedible] suman sa moron, this recipe I adapted from here is the best and most probably the most authentic. I'm not from the Visayas region where this type of suman comes from and didn't have them back in the Philippines either. But I can honestly say this recipe makes the most delicious and very soft suman with a strong smoky chocolate flavor (from Antonio Pueo tablea) and this suman is now on our list of all-time favorite Filipino treats. I can't stop eating them; they're great as a snack and for breakfast with barako coffee or hot ginger tea.

Suman sa morón is a cigar-shaped two-toned rice cake made with both glutinous and regular rice flours cooked in coconut milk, sugar, chocolate, and peanuts, wrapped in banana leaves and steamed for an hour. The recipe has julienned cheddar cheese added to the chocolate portion but I omitted it. I don't know the exact amount of chocolate to substitute for the tablea if you can't find them in your area. You can start with 8 ounces of semi-sweet or dark chocolate and just eyeball the color and texture, taste the cooked paste, and adjust to your preference.

Suman sa Morón
½ cup glutinous rice flour
1½ cups regular rice flour
4 ounces whole milk
½ cup sugar
½ cup fine muscovado (raw) sugar, or more to taste
8 chocolate tablea, softened with 2 tablespoons hot water
¼ cup chopped roasted peanuts
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups coconut milk, divided
julienned cheddar cheese, optional
banana leaves, cut into 8 x 10-inch pieces
about 4 dozens 5-inch long kitchen strings
  • With a wire whisk, thoroughly mix the 2 types of flour and divide equally into two parts.
  • In a non-stick wok, place one part of the rice mixture, add the sugar, whole milk, and 1 cup coconut milk. Stir until blended and cook, constantly stirring, on medium heat until thick. It will be lumpy but will become smooth as it thickens. Transfer into a plate and let cool.
  • In the same wok, place the rest of the flour mixture and add the remaining one cup coconut milk, muscovado sugar, chocolate, vanilla extract, and peanuts. Mix well and cook over medium heat while constantly stirring. Turn off the heat when mixture starts becoming oily and is smooth. Transfer into a plate and set aside to cool.
  • Pass the banana leaves over stove flame to make them supple.
  • Take a heaping tablespoonful of the chocolate mixture and place on the banana leaf wrapper. Sprinkle a little cheese, if using, before rolling with the banana leaf covering the mixture and roll into a ¾ inch thick rope. Take a heaping tablespoonful of the plain milk mixture and do the same process. Place the two ropes side by side and roll to form a thicker rope with the two colors fused together.
  • Roll the banana leaf to wrap tightly and tie a string at both ends to secure.
Suman sa Moron
  • Repeat the process until all of the two mixtures have been rolled and wrapped.
  • Steam in rapidly boiling water for 1 hour.

Suman sa Moron
best eaten when hot with a cup or two of strong barako coffee


Kulinarya was started by a group of Filipino foodies living in Sydney, who are passionate about the Filipino culture and its colourful cuisine. Each month we will showcase a new dish along with their family recipes. By sharing these recipes, we hope you find the same passion and love for Filipino Food as we do.

Suman, October's theme, is hosted by Sheryl http://crispywaffle.com/ and Divina http://www.sense-serendipity.com/

October 10, 2010

Chocolate Nougat

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Chocolate Nougat

I've been busy studying reading the most comprehensive and engrossing non-fiction book I have ever owned, ADVANCED BREAD AND PASTRY by Michel Suas. I kid you not, browsing through the book feels like I'm a student reading a textbook and preparing for an exam because it's meant to teach. The book is divided into 4 categories and 22 chapters, 942 pages in all with additional 87 pages for conversions, baker's percentages, temperature conversions, glossary, references, formula index, and subject index.

These are the 4 categories:
Part 1: Introduction, 43 pages, a chapter on historical perspective and current opportunities on bread and pastry and a second chapter on food safety and sanitation in the bakery, which are all must-read.
Part 2: Bread, 251 pages
Part 3: Viennoisserie, 93 pages
Part 4: Pastry, 591 pages

At the start of each chapter are objectives and brief introduction or history and at the end of every chapter a summary, key terms, and review questions.
Part 4, Chapter 18 Petit Fours and Confections
After reading this chapter, you should be able to
  • define the classical categories of petit fours and the characteristics of the items.
  • describe the contemporary categories of petit fours and to be able to make a selection of them.
  • define the properties of saturated and super saturated sugar solutions and to be able to make them successfully.
  • make a selection of sugar confections including crystalline, noncrystalline, aerated, and jelly.
While I'm not a newcomer to candy making, I'm not an expert either and this book will probably make me one after I am finished reading it and if/when I'm done making all of the formulas which might take forever. The first I made from Part 4 Chapter 18 is Chocolate Nougat because I've never had chocolate nougat before. The chocolate in the recipe is called chocolate liquor which should not to be confused with chocolate liqueur. The glossary section defines it as "the product of the whole cocoa bean after it has gone through the initial production process and can be turned into cocoa powder and cocoa butter, can be sold as unsweetened chocolate, or can be further processed into dark or milk chocolate".

Glucose is available at candy/cake supply shops or you can get Wilton's but this brand is 3x more expensive. I used Ghirardelli 100% Cacao Unsweetened Baking bar. The candies came out perfect, not too hard nor too soft, have the right amount of sweetness and crunch from the nuts, and the chocolate flavor is rich without being overpowering. I love it!

Chocolate Nougat
adapted from ADVANCED BREAD AND PASTRY by Michel Suas
1 pound ½ ounce sugar
3¼ ounces glucose
5 ounces water
10 ounces honey
2 ounces egg whites
¾ ounce sugar
3½ ounces chocolate liquor
5½ ounces blanched hazelnuts
7 ounces blanched whole almonds
2½ ounces pistachios
2 sheets 8 x 11-inch rice or potato paper
  • Line the bottom of an 8 x 11-inch pan (or metal frame if you have one) with a sheet of rice paper.
  • Toast the hazelnuts and almonds in a 275°F oven until golden. Turn heat down to warm (100°F), add pistachios and keep them in the oven until needed.
  • In a medium heavy bottomed stainless steel pan, cook the first sugar, glucose, and water to 302°F. When the sugar mixture reaches 248°F, start cooking the honey (in a small stainless steel pan). Cook the honey to 266°F.
  • Using the whisk attachment, whip the egg whites with the ¾ ounce sugar. Slowly pour the honey onto the whipping egg white. Switch to the paddle attachment and add the hot sugar syrup.
  • When full volume is reached, add the melted chocolate and mix until blended. Add the warm nuts and mix until incorporated.
  • Transfer into the lined pan and smooth out if necessary with a buttered rubber scraper. Press the second paper on top of the nougat. Leave on the kitchen counter to set. When nougat has cooled, cut into desired sizes.

Chocolate Nougat

Chocolate Nougat

My next project from the book is Laminated Brioche. I can't wait to make and share them with my readers.:-)

October 7, 2010

Food Friday Sautéed Vegetables

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Sitaw Saute

green and purple yardlong beans, cherry tomatoes, and edamame beans

food friday chiclet

End of season vegetables from my garden: green and purple sitaw, cherry tomatoes, and edamame. I sautéed them in garlic, shallots, fermented anchovies (bagoong monamon), and a little chopped crispy pork rinds (chicharrones). Simply delicious.

October 5, 2010

Baked Empanada Kaliskis

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Empanada Kaliskis
Empanada Kaliskis

Empanada kaliskis (fish scales) has been in my 'to make list' for as long as I can remember but even after getting a recipe with the procedure on how to make the layered dough (thanks again to Maricel) I was still hesitant because of the work involved and the dreaded deep-frying. A reader renewed my interest when he suggested making the Italian sweet pastry sfogliatelle into a savory one just like empanada. After reading both recipes and the one from Malta, pastizzi, which are all remarkably similar, I tested a small batch. Although I wasn't 100% successful in rolling the dough paper-thin and the empanadas don't have the thin layers of these ones, I still think it is worthwhile because they came out flaky, tender, and delicious.

How to Make Empanada Kaliskis Dough
5 cups all purpose flour
1 cup cold lard or butter, diced
1 tablespoon rock sea salt
1 cup water
4 tablespoons sugar, more or less to taste
3 egg yolks
filling of choice

The following is Maricel's complete procedure for mixing and shaping the empanadas. The thickness of the slices is not specified; 1-inch thick is okay. I didn't soak the slices in oil, I brushed the dough with melted lard, sfogliatelle style, before rolling into a log. I baked the empanads in a 400°F oven for 40 minutes, brushing them with melted lard every 10 minutes to open up the layers.
Cut in lard to flour until cornmeal in texture. Dissolve salt, sugar and egg yolks in water. Add to flour. Knead until smooth, adding up to ½ cup of flour if dough is sticky. Let rest 10 minutes. Using a rolling pin or pasta maker, roll until dough is paper thin. Roll jellyroll fashion around a piece of fresh coconut tingting until desired diameter is reached (bigger diameter for bigger empanadas). Be sure to roll tightly. Pull out tingting. Cut into crosswise slices. Soak in oil for 30 minutes. Roll out each slice on a piece of banana leaf using a center-out, center-out motion until circle widens. Invert onto another piece of banana leaf. Roll dough trimmings thinly. Put trimmings on top of inverted rolled, oiled dough. Add filling. Fold in half. Seal edges by twisting and turning. Deep fry in hot oil. Flush with oil to make scales open.

Empanada Kaliskis
filled with flaked chicken pork adobo

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