March 24, 2022

Indonesian-style Noodles

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Gordon Ramsay's 2021 cookbook, Ramsay In 10, has a fried noodle recipe he calls Warung Style Noodles. Warung, I think, is a small neighborhood eatery in Indonesia which offers cheap yummy food. I watched an Indonesian movie on Netflix that has similar ingredients and procedure for fried rice, Nasi Goreng. I followed the rice dish from the movie and used thin precooked rice noodles instead. I have smoked pork jowl and used that in place of bacon, because fatty pork jowl is simply delicious. For Nasi Goreng, use 2 cups cooked rice that has been refrigerated, uncovered, until very dry.

Indonesian-style Noodles
2 rashers bacon, cut into 1 inch pieces
1 well beaten egg
½ teaspoon garlic paste
½ teaspoon ginger paste
½ teaspoon shrimp paste (belachan, optional)
1 tablespoon kecap manis plus extra for drizzling
1 cup baby bokchoy, cut into 1 inch pieces, blanched and drained
sea salt, to taste
2 - 3 ounces precooked flat rice noodles
1 tablespoon water, optional
1 cup mung bean sprouts, blanched and drained 
  • Cook bacon in a skillet or wok until fat is rendered. 
  • Add the egg and stir fry for a few seconds. 
  • Add the pastes, kecap manis, and bokchoy. 
  • Stir fry until bokchoy is fully cooked but still crunchy. Taste and add salt, if necessary. 
  • Add the noodles and stir fry until well combined and noodles are heated through. Drizzle water if mixture is too dry. Turn heat off.
  • Add mung bean sprouts and stir gently to combine.  
  • Transfer into a serving plate and drizzle top with kecap manis, if desired.
Tip: Make a garlic and ginger paste by processing equal amounts of garlic and ginger with a little distilled water or peanut oil. Keep a portion in a tiny jar in the refrigerator for 2 weeks and freeze some in 1 teaspoon portions. This combination is handy for preparing Chinese, Filipino, Korean, Indonesian, Malaysian, Singaporean, and other Asian dishes. 

Kecap Manis is an Indonesian condiment staple. It is sweetened soy sauce that is thick although not as thick as molasses. You can either buy from Asian grocery stores but why buy when you probably have soy sauce and brown sugar in the pantry. Just boil them until thick, et voila! homemade kecap manis. BTW, ketchup got its name from Asian kecap. 

Kecap Manis
½ cup Kikkoman soy sauce
½ cup + 2 tablespoons coconut sugar or dark brown sugar
  • Boil ingredients over medium low heat until the sauce has the consistency of maple syrup.
  • Let cool then transfer into a squeeze bottle for easier dispensing. The sauce will thicken some more as it cools. Refrigeration is not necessary.

January 3, 2022

Homemade Ube Powder

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For people obsessed with ube like myself, it gets frustrating buying ube powder that turns out to be half fake. I got a few Filipino ube powder packages from Amazon and the ube powder doesn't soften even when soaked overnight in water. The finished product tastes a bit of real ube but is grainy even after using an immersion blender. I suspect the powder has peels included to increase the weight. There is no other explanation for the bits that never soften. I used it to make ube buns.

January 2, 2022

Brown Butter Ice Cream

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I've been searching for the Filipino mantecado ice cream since forever. I can't find any from my tons of Filipino and Spanish cookbooks and online too. Mantecado ice cream was available from ice cream makers in the Philippines eons ago but they stopped making for some reason. The flavor is now being revived by a few ice cream producers and is making a comeback as Filipinos discover how good the ice cream flavor is.

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