Category: FOOD & DRINKS

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Tomato & Celery Salad

Tomato & Celery Salad by JMorton

Tomato & Celery Salad

This is a very appetising refreshing salad.

Perfect accompaniment for rather greasy or rich food.


  • 4 medium ripe tomatoes, sliced
  • 6 stalks of celery
  • 1½ tsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp cider vinegar
  • salt & freshly ground black pepper

Method of preparation:

  1. Using a bowl, pour in the olive oil, together with the vinegar and season with salt and ground black pepper.
  2. Mix thoroughly.
  3. Slice diagonally the celery stalks; remove and discard any stringy bits off the celery as you slice.
  4. Put the slices of tomatoes and celery into a serving bowl.
  5. Drizzle the oil and vinegar mix all over the tomatoes and celery.
  6. Give it a mix.

Serve and enjoy.

New Potatoes with Lardons in Mustard Sauce

Baby Potatoes with Mustard Sauce, Photo by Arnold Gamboa

New Potatoes with Lardons in Mustard Sauce


  • 1kg new (baby) potatoes, clean, no need to peel
  • 200 g bacon lardons
  • 1/4 cup chicken broth or 1 chicken bouillon dissolved in 1/4 cup of boiling or hot water
  • 1 half cup double cream
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • salt & freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tbsp cooking oil

Method of preparation:

  1. Bring a large pot of salty water to a boil.  Add the baby potatoes and simmer until just tender.  (The potatoes can also be steamed.) Drain and put in a large serving tray or plate.
  2. In a large frying pan, heat the oil and then saute the bacon lardons, until golden and crispy.  Remove the cooked lardons and transfer into a bowl, set aside.
  3. Stir in the chicken bouillon into the frying pan.  Scrape the brown bits from the pan to mix in with the chicken broth for added flavour.  Leave to simmer for three minutes.
  4. Pour in the double cream and then add the Dijon mustard.  Give it a good stir.
  5. Season with salt and black pepper.
  6. Spread the lardons all over the baby potatoes.
  7. Finally drizzle generously with the mustard sauce.
  8. Enjoy with grilled or roasted meat.

Chicken Breast in Apple Sauce

Chicken breast in apple sauce

Chicken Breast in Apple Sauce

Chicken breast cooked in apple sauce is just so delicious, especially served in freshly steamed baby potatoes and green beans.

I can’t get enough of this food.  It was just too tasty.  The sweet tasting apples give the chicken a very delicate taste.

Below is a recipe from our favourite M&S.



  • 2 Apples, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1 Lemon zest and juice
  • 1tbsp Olive Oil
  • Pinch Ground cinnamon
  • Pinch Salt
  • Pinch Pepper
  • 6 x 120g Chicken breast fillet
  • 150ml Chicken Stock


  1. Using a large bowl, toss vugorously the apple slices with lemon juice and cinnamon.
  2. Heat a pan and then add the apple slices.  Cook and stir until the apples are tender.  Keep warm but set aside.
  3. Loosely wrap the chicken breasts with cling film.  Use a meat mallet to pound the chicken until they are flatten into  ½ inch thickness.
  4. Remove the cling film and sprinkle the now flattened chicken on both sides with salt and pepper.
  5. Heat the oil in a large frying pan over high heat.
  6. Fry two chicken breasts at a time and cook until for 2 to 3 minutes per side.
  7. Transfer to a platter and keep warm.  Continue cooking the rest of the chicken, two at a time.
  8. Using the same frying pan, add the chicken stock and lemon zest and any accumulated juices from the chicken to the pan.
  9. Heat and stir until slightly reduced, which may take about 3 minutes.  Spoon this sauce over the chicken and serve with the sautéed apples.

Shrove Tuesday

shrove-tuesday1Today is shrove Tuesday, which has now become better known as Pancake Day.

What is Shrove Tuesday about?  Has it become just a day of cooking and tossing pancakes?

Shrove Tuesday is the last day of merriment and feasting before Lent begins in earnest.

But in truth and in its history, today is about penitence.  Shrove Tuesday got its name from the ritual of shriving, which early Christians used to do.

The act of shriving meant that Christians would confess their sins and their shortcomings and in so doing will receive absolutions.

Absolution means the person will be forgiven of his sins and released from his guilt and pain that he had caused.

This tradition is very old.

Shrove Tuesday

It was a custom and tradition of the early Christians to confess their sins a week before the start of Lent to their priest/confessor, who shall so shrive them.

Today is not only about pancake but a time to think about the wrong deeds that we have done or have continued  doing.  We must be penitent of them.

On the happier side, Shrove Tuesday is also about partying and feasting.  Time to cook and serve all the foods that may have to be given up for the sober Lent to come. Barbecue the meat and fish and make pastas so no food are wasted for the coming Lent.  Today is like a Mardi Gras – Fat Tuesday.

Pancake became the ideal food for Tuesday because it uses up all the fats, milk and eggs with the addition of flour.





Pork Dumplings Recipe

Dumpling, photo by PH Morton

Pork Dumplings Recipe

This is so delicious.  So scrumptious even with the simplest dip.  In fact the simpler the dip, the better as the herbs used in the dumplings enhance the flavour.

The recipe is to follow shortly

Pinakbet with Bagoong Alamang

Pinakbet. photo by Ruben Ortega

Pinakbet with Bagoong Alamang

This version of pinakbet uses bagoong alamang which is a  shrimp paste instead of fermented salted fish bagoong.

This pinakbet is a little milder in taste but it has its own merit all the same.



  • 1 large eggplant (aubergine), sliced
  • 1 large ampalaya (bitter gourd), seeds and pith removed, then sliced
  • 6 pieces okra (ladies’ finger), sliced diagonally in half
  • 4 sigarilyas (winged beans), sliced diagonally
  • 50g string beans, cut into 2 inches lengths.
  • 1/2 medium squash, peeled and sliced (refer to the photo above)
  • 2 medium tomatoes, sliced
  • 1 1/2 lbs pork belly, sliced
  • 1 medium onion, peeled and sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped finely
  • 4 tablespoons of bagoong alamang (this can be bought at most Oriental food shop)
  • 2 1/2 cups water

 Method of Preparation:


  1. Using a lidded casserole pan, boil the pork with half of the water.
  2. Cook until the water has evaporated and the pork is tender.
  3. Stir fry the pork in its own oil until it has turned golden brown.
  4. Add the ampalaya, squash, okras, tomatoes and onion.
  5. Spoon in the bagoong alamang and stir it in thoroughly with the pork and vegetable.  Cook for 2 minutes.
  6. Pour in the remaining water, cover the casserole and leave to simmer for 7 minutes.
  7. Add the sigarilyas and string beans.
  8. Cook for 5 minutes or until the sigarilyas and string beans tender but it is crispy.  Do not cover the casserole to maintain the beautiufl vivid colouring of the sigarilyas and string beans.

Enjoy with a freshly boiled rice.

Absolutely delicious.

Again, this can be a vegetarian delight by not adding the pork. 😉


Patupat – Ilocano Glutinous Rice Dessert

Patupat, photo by Arnold Gamboa

Patupat – Ilocano Glutinous Rice Dessert

Patupat is a specialty of the Ilocanos.  It is a sweet glutinous rice cake.

Depending on which part of the Ilocos region, patupat can be wrapped in banana leaves or with intricately woven palm or banana leaves.

The photo below shows the specialty of Pangasinan, patupat encased in woven basket of palm leaves.


Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare)

Fennel Bulb, photo by PH Morton

Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare)

Fennel is related to the carrot family and indigenous to the Mediterranean but they are now grown in many parts of the world.

It is a perennial herb with yellow flowers. It is very aromatic.

Fennel is very versatile.  The bulbs, see above, foliage (leaves) and seeds are widely used in culinary around the world.

The bulb is delicious drizzled in olive oil and balsamic vinegar and then baked in the oven.  It is sweet tasting, perfect starter or as a side dish with roast meat or even baked fish dishes.

Click here for the baked fennel bulb.

Pork Leg Asado With Pineapple

Pork Leg Asado, Photo by Ruben Ortega

Pork Leg Asado With Pineapple

This recipe is as good tasting as the photo shows.  The secret to this is marinating the meat in order for the sauce to get into all the crevices of the meat sinews.



  • 2 lbs pork leg, chopped to the bone into manageable pieces
  • 1½ cup water
  • 1/2 tsp whole blackpeppers
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1/2 tbsp oil
  • 1 inch cube butter
  •  1 large white onion, peeled chopped finely
  • 1 lemon or 1½ tbsp of fresh calamansi juice
  • 3/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1 small can of pineapple

 Method of Preparation:


  1. Using a large bowl, mix together the soy sauce, blackpeppers and lemon juice (or calamansi juice)
  2. Stir in the sliced pork leg and leave to marinate for an hour (or overnight in the fridge).
  3. Drain the meat but keep the marinade.
  4. Heat a large lidded frying pan or a casserole pan.
  5. Add the oil and then the butter.
  6. Fry the meat and cook until golden brown on both sides.
  7. Pour in the marinade and also the water.
  8. Drop in the bay leaves.
  9. Cover the pan and leave the meat to simmer until the meat is tender.
  10. Add the can of pineapple, including the juice, and cook for another 7 minutes.
  11. Serve immediately with a freshly boiled rice or green salad.




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