Friday, December 30, 2011

Cheers 2011!

Just in case I'll be too busy with preparations for New Years Eve, Im posting my end of 2011 blog now.

2011 for me has been a roller coaster of Ups and Downs..The beginning of the year gave our family a huge blow when my sister left my parents house because of a disagreement.. Then near the end my father received a cancer scare when a mass was found in his lung. Thankfully though it was benign, but nevertheless he underwent surgery to extract the mass which was quite huge. The sad part is that even though my dad was hospitalized, not once did my sister visit him...

I was diagnosed with thin basement syndrome. An autoimmune kidney disease. I underwent treatment and got a clean bill of health,but the medicine's side effects cause me to gain weight. I went from 43 kilos to 68 kilos in less than a month. I will be completing my treatment thi coming January 2012.

In the end though Family always pulls you through. My aunts, and my uncles have been very supportive and we are now as close as ever...They gave us strength and I am forever grateful.

We all spent Christmas together (which is like my dad's 3rd Christmas with us cause he always has to work), That in itself is something to be thankful for.

December 21, we received an amazing news.. I'll share it when its final.

My cousin got married last December 28. It was a wonderful wedding

Father and Daughter Dance

This was the moment though when i couldn't help myself, I stood up went to my Dad gave him a big hug and cried like a baby... You see my Dad wasn't there for my wedding, and i guess I got really emotional, cause it was a milestone and I really wanted him there... But circumstances dictate that he cant because he had to work... He was asked to leave the country to work 5 days before my wedding...

As I hugged him, my dad stood up took me aside, hugged me tight and said "Princess don't be sad, we all have different blessings... You have had many blessings in your life and this is your cousin's" I told him " I know Dad.. you're mine..."

The trials in my life that happened this year have humbled me, and the blessings have enriched my heart. At the end of the day I am grateful for the blessing that is my Husband, Son, parents, and relatives. In the midst of all the pain, help was always at hand... I Prayed and God always answered...

I would like to end this year with a few words...

Life is not a journey towards success and financial prosperity. Rather it is a quest for happiness...
We choose to be happy by seeing the good things in Life. Have FAITH.

Merry Christmas!!

Its been a couple of days since I've blogged.. This has been a very busy week for me. First Christmas, then there was my cousins wedding. Plus all of my relatives from out of town came for the wedding to its been kind of hectic. To top it all off my baby came down with the flu.

Anyway I wanted to share my Christmas with all of you so here's a photo of our Christmas table

I made roast beef, scalloped potatoes, portobelo mushroom gravy, pan fried fish with lemon butter sauce and creme caramel for dessert.

The pan fried fish was a last minute addition cause my mom didn't want to eat any of the others i prepared cause of her cholesterol "issues". I say issues cause her blood pressure level is okay, so is her cholesterol level. Its just that ever since my grandmother had a stroke my mom became fanatical about not eating beef an pork or any sauce that has cream etc...

So anyway the recipe i want to share is that of the scalloped potatoes. Its my first time making it and it actually turned out yummy.

Scalloped Potatoes Recipe

(makes a 13X9 inch pan)

8 Potatoes (depending on the size, I used big ones)
1/4 cup cream
1/4 cup sour cream
1/4 cup milk
2tsps chopped fresh dill
1 cup mozarella cheese
1/2 cup sharp cheddar
2tsp salt
fresh cracked pepper


preheat oven to 365 degrees. Slice the potatoes with a mandolin. the rest of the ingredients except cheese and pour 1/4 of it in a 3x9 rectangular glass baking dish. layer all of the potatoes and then pour the remaining cream mixture. sprinkle top with the cheese. bake until bubbly and brown on the top, about 30 to 45 mins.

I served my potatoes with gravy that i made for the roast beef as well and it was absolutely yummy.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

tiramisu is ITALIAN people!!! (well italian food anyway)

I really hate how people always equate Tiramisu as a Japanese Dessert. This is because of an advertisement for chocolate graham crackers back in early 2000, where a Japanese person was eating tiramisu. I wish people in advertising would not have mislead people just because TIRAMISU rhymes with "tira moko". Now, every time i make this dessert someone always comments: "this is japanese right?" its irritating!

That aside, i found this great recipe for tiramisu from Giada de Laurentiis. I really do not like using raw egg (as most recipes call for) so the use of zabaglione is sheer genius.  Its takes some work, but trust me its really good! 

Giada de Laurentiis Tiramisu Recipe as follows

6 ounces container mascarpone cheese 
2/3 cup whipping cream 
1/2 cup sugar 
Chocolate Zabaglione, recipe follows 
2 1/2 cups espresso coffee, 
warmed 24 crisp ladyfinger cookies (recommended: Savoiardi) 
Unsweetened cocoa powder, 
for garnish Dark chocolate shavings, 

Place the mascarpone cheese in a large bowl and set aside. With an electric mixer, beat the cream and 1/4 cup of the sugar in a medium bowl until soft peaks form. 
Fold the whipped cream into the mascarpone. 
Then fold in the chilled Chocolate Zabaglione. 
Cover and refrigerate.Whisk the warmed espresso and the remaining 1/4 cup of sugar in another medium bowl until blended. 
Line a 9 1/4 by 5 by 2 3/4-inch metal loaf pan with plastic wrap, allowing the plastic to extend over the sides. Working with 1 cookie at a time, dip 8 cookies into the espresso, and arrange in a single layer side by side over the bottom of the prepared pan.
Spoon 1/3 of the mascarpone mixture over the cookies to cover. Repeat dipping 8 of the cookies in the espresso and layering the cookies and remaining mascarpone mixture 2 more times. Dip the remaining 8 cookies in the espresso and arrange side by side atop the tiramisu. Press lightly to compact slightly (the last layer will extend above the pan sides). Cover the tiramisu with plastic and refrigerate at least 6 hours.Unwrap the plastic from atop the tiramisu. Invert the tiramisu onto a platter. Remove the plastic. Sift the cocoa over the tiramisu, and with a vegetable peeler or sharp knife, make dark chocolate shavings and sprinkle over top.

Chocolate Zabaglione:

2 tablespoons whipping cream, or heavy cream
1/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips
4 large egg yolks
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup dry Marsala
Pinch salt

Add cream and chocolate to a heavy small saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring often, until the chocolate chips are melted and smooth. Set aside and keep warm.Whisk the egg yolks, sugar, Marsala, and salt in a large glass bowl until blended. Set the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water, but do not allow the bottom of the bowl to touch the water. Whisk the egg mixture over the simmering water until it is thick and creamy, about 4 minutes. Remove from the heat.Using a large rubber spatula, fold the melted chocolate mixture into the egg mixture. Cover and refrigerate to chill completely.

note: i used brandy instead of marsala wine cause i cant find one.


Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Chicharon "Crispy Pork Rind" well sort of...

So just came from the doctor, and I need to modify my diet.. It needs to be low protein.
Good thing I remembered my aunt's recipe for crispy fried oyster mushrooms. So one down a couple meals to go!



about 2 to 3 cups oyster mushrooms (depending on srving size and the number of people who'll be eating)
1 egg
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup cornstarch
1tsp salt
1tsp pepper
2tsp garlic powder
Heat enough oil for deep frying. Clean the oyster mushrooms (if its kinda big tear to bite sized pieces). Beat egg and pour into mushrooms.  Set aside. In the meantime mix all remaining ingredients. Dredge the mushroom with the flour mixture. Deep fry. Serve with squeezed lemon.

This one is so yummy. it really tastes like chicharon (crispy pork rind)! I served it on my husband's birthday, my cousin asked me if it was pork!

Why the rose carved door?

Simply put, the door to our home has a rose carving. So I figured since I wanted an outlet for "creativity" and sometimes an ear or several.. as i experience life, Why not a door? Anyways I'll be posting my first blog tonight. Hope you guys like it!