February 5, 2007

Cold Enough For Ya?

Yeah, that's how cold it was today at 2 PM, that's about 7°F or -14°C, and with windchill it felt less than 0°F. Tonight it will be much colder, the thermometer a few minutes ago read 0°F (-18°C). Eh, this is nothing compared with the temps in the Midwest states where they can go 40 below, now that's cooold. Last Christmas I was lamenting that it didn't feel like Christmas because it was warm at 70°F. I can't complain now, can I? Actually I love this weather, when it's cold I get the urge to make hot chocolate and churros or chai and s'mores cookies. Tomorrow...maybe.:-D
I also have 2 batches of sweet bread dough chilling in the fridge to be baked tomorrow, one to be made into Rotiboy coffee buns and the other into chocolate sticky buns, yum.

February 4, 2007

Quinoa with Artichokes

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This is the first time I tried quinoa and I really like it. It's supposed to be very healthy too. I paired it with chicken pieces stewed in honey, a galic clove, a sprig of rosemary, a tablespoon of lemon juice, salt and pepper.

Quinoa with Artichoke Hearts

1 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed well and drained (use a very fine sieve)
2 cups chicken broth
½ cup chopped onion
½ pound frozen artichoke hearts
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Saute onion in olive oil in a saucepan until soft, add broth and quinoa. Bring to a boil and simmer for 12 minutes. Add artichoke hearts and simmer for another 5 minutes or until all the liquid has been absorbed. Turn off heat and stir in cheese.

February 2, 2007

Caldereta (Beef Stew)

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This is one Filipino dish I don't cook often, maybe once or twice a year at the most, I'm not sure why. Too meaty? too sour or too rich? Caldereta is of course Spanish in origin, from caldera which means cauldron. This recipe is adapted from my cookbook FAVORITE FILIPINO RECIPES by Pat Limjuco-Dayrit.

2 pounds beef stew meat
½ cup vinegar
6 cloves garlic, crushed
½ tablespoon sea salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large onion, sliced
¼ cup sherry
1 bay leaf
1 sprig parsley
1½ teaspoons whole peppercorns
6 cloves garlic
1 hot green pepper
¼ cup tomato sauce
½ cup chopped roasted red bell pepper
1 cup hot water
¼ cup grated edam or gouda cheese
½ teaspoon sugar
½ cup green olives
  • Marinate meat overnight in refrigerator in mixture of vinegar, crushed garlic, pepper and salt.
  • Next day drain the meat and brown in batches in 2 tablespoons hot olive oil. Transfer browned pieces into a saucepan, add onions and sherry. Bring to a boil, then add the remaining olive oil and bay leaf.
  • In a small food processor or mortar and pestle, puree/crush parsley, peppercorns, 6 cloves garlic and hot green pepper. Add to the mixture in the pan and put in tomato sauce and the hot water. Simmer until beef is tender, about 1 - 1 ½ hours. Turn the heat off.
  • Stir in roasted red pepper and grated cheese. Add the sugar and adjust seasoning. Add olives and serve hot with steamed rice or French baguette to soak up the rich sauce, and steamed green beans.

February 1, 2007

A Really Large Pizza


I got lazy today and bought ready to bake frozen square pizza and did not notice it was huge. Only when I loaded the box into the car trunk did I realize its BIG size! It's almost as deep as my oven. This is a meat lover's pizza with lots and lots of bacon which overwhelmed everything else. See, I love bacon but this is much too much. (I think I still smell of bacon). About 3 inches of the pizza is hanging out of the largest baking sheet I could find in my kitchen. Why oh why did I buy this?:D

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