SPARK MY INTEREST

Mini Meatball SoupIngredients:2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, 2 turns of the pan in a slow stream2 carrots, peeled and chopped2 ribs celery, chopped1 medium onion, chopped2 bay leaves, fresh or driedSalt and freshly ground black pepper1 pound ground beef, pork and veal combined1 egg, beaten2 cloves garlic, minced½ cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano or Romano, a couple of handfuls½ cup plain bread crumbs, a couple of handfuls½ teaspoon freshly grated or ground nutmeg6 cups chicken stock or broth2 cups water1½ cups dried pasta, rings, broken fettuccini or ditalini1 pound triple washed fresh spinach, coarsely choppedIn a deep pot over medium heat add oil, chopped carrots, celery and onions and bay leaves. Season with salt and pepper. Cover pot and cook veggies 5 or 6 minutes, stirring occasionally.While the veggies cook, combine meat, egg, garlic, grated cheese, bread crumbs, salt, pepper, nutmeg.Uncover your soup pot and add broth and water to the pot. Increase heat to high and bring soup to a boil. When soup boils, reduce heat a bit and start to roll meat mixture into small balls, dropping them straight into the pot. You are making meat dumplings that will cook in the broth. When you are done rolling the meat, add pasta to the soup and stir. Cover and simmer soup 10 minutes. When pasta is tender, stir in chopped spinach in batches. When spinach has wilted into the soup, the soup is done and ready to serve. Adjust your seasonings. Serve soup with crusty bread or grilled 4 cheese sandwiches.Grilled 4 Cheese SandwichesIngredients:2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, 2 turns of the pan3 tablespoons butter1 clove garlic, cracked away from skin8 slices crusty Italian semolina bread1 cup shredded provolone1 cup shredded mozzarella½ cup grated Parmesan or Romano1 cup shredded Asiago[All of these cheeses are available in specialty cheese case and dairy aisle already shredded]In a small skillet over medium low heat, combine oil, butter and garlic. Cook garlic in butter and oil gently for 2 or 3 minutes. Remove garlic butter mixture from heat.Place a large nonstick skillet on the stove over medium high heat. Using a pastry brush, brush 1 side of 4 slices of bread with garlic oil and place buttered side down in skillet. Top each slice with equal amounts of the 4 cheeses, distributing them equally over the 4 slices. Top each sandwich with another slice of bread brushed with garlic butter, buttered side up. Flip the grill cheese sandwiches a few times until cheeses are melted and gooey and bread is toasty and golden. Cut grilled 4 cheese sandwiches from corner to corner and serve.
-Recipe courtesy Rachael Ray
Oct 8

Mini Meatball Soup

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, 2 turns of the pan in a slow stream
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
2 ribs celery, chopped
1 medium onion, chopped
2 bay leaves, fresh or dried
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 pound ground beef, pork and veal combined
1 egg, beaten
2 cloves garlic, minced
½ cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano or Romano, a couple of handfuls
½ cup plain bread crumbs, a couple of handfuls
½ teaspoon freshly grated or ground nutmeg
6 cups chicken stock or broth
2 cups water
1½ cups dried pasta, rings, broken fettuccini or ditalini
1 pound triple washed fresh spinach, coarsely chopped

In a deep pot over medium heat add oil, chopped carrots, celery and onions and bay leaves. Season with salt and pepper. Cover pot and cook veggies 5 or 6 minutes, stirring occasionally.

While the veggies cook, combine meat, egg, garlic, grated cheese, bread crumbs, salt, pepper, nutmeg.

Uncover your soup pot and add broth and water to the pot. Increase heat to high and bring soup to a boil. When soup boils, reduce heat a bit and start to roll meat mixture into small balls, dropping them straight into the pot. You are making meat dumplings that will cook in the broth. When you are done rolling the meat, add pasta to the soup and stir. Cover and simmer soup 10 minutes. When pasta is tender, stir in chopped spinach in batches. When spinach has wilted into the soup, the soup is done and ready to serve. Adjust your seasonings. Serve soup with crusty bread or grilled 4 cheese sandwiches.


Grilled 4 Cheese Sandwiches

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, 2 turns of the pan
3 tablespoons butter
1 clove garlic, cracked away from skin
8 slices crusty Italian semolina bread
1 cup shredded provolone
1 cup shredded mozzarella
½ cup grated Parmesan or Romano
1 cup shredded Asiago
[All of these cheeses are available in specialty cheese case and dairy aisle already shredded]

In a small skillet over medium low heat, combine oil, butter and garlic. Cook garlic in butter and oil gently for 2 or 3 minutes. Remove garlic butter mixture from heat.

Place a large nonstick skillet on the stove over medium high heat. Using a pastry brush, brush 1 side of 4 slices of bread with garlic oil and place buttered side down in skillet. Top each slice with equal amounts of the 4 cheeses, distributing them equally over the 4 slices. Top each sandwich with another slice of bread brushed with garlic butter, buttered side up. Flip the grill cheese sandwiches a few times until cheeses are melted and gooey and bread is toasty and golden. Cut grilled 4 cheese sandwiches from corner to corner and serve.

-Recipe courtesy Rachael Ray

Burger Steak with Mushroom Gravy. (photo from iPhone)

Savory Mushroom Gravy
Ingredients

4 tablespoons Vegetable Oil
1/3 cup Flour
Course Ground Black Pepper & Salt, to taste
2 cups Beef Broth, hot - (I used boullion cubes and hot water)
1/3 cup Onion, finely chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons Fresh Garlic, minced (about 3 cloves)
1 1/2 teaspoons Parsley, fresh or dry
1 cup Fresh Mushrooms, sliced or 1/2 cup Canned Mushrooms
1 tablespoon butter
1/4 cup Dry White Wine

Heat oil in skillet on med-high and add flour to make a thin roux. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Stir constantly to avoid scorching.
When the roux becomes a nice opaque tan, slowly pour in the broth, whisking quickly as you do this to avoid lumps.
Turn heat down to med-low and let bubble (not boil) for about 5 minutes, to thicken, stir frequently to avoid scorching.
Then turn heat to low, cover and simmer about 10 minutes. Keep stirred!
Meanwhile, melt butter in another skillet and add onion, mushrooms, garlic and parsley.
Saute until onions are almost transparent.
Slowly pour in wine and saute vegetables until wine cooks down 3/4 of the way.
Add vegetables to beef gravy and bring heat back to med, let bubble about 5 minutes longer.
Remove from heat and serve over your burger steak.

As for the burger patty, I don’t have an actual recipe, but here’s what I used
Ingredients

*Salt and freshly ground black pepper
*1 pound ground beef,
*1 egg, beaten
*1 small onion, chopped
*2 cloves garlic, minced
*½ cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano or Romano, a couple of handfuls
*½ cup plain bread crumbs, a couple of handfuls
*½ teaspoon freshly grated or ground nutmeg

Combine meat, egg, garlic, grated cheese, bread crumbs, salt, pepper, nutmeg. Shape the 
mixture into 6 patties, each about 3/4-inch thick. Grill burgers for 6 to 8 minutes on each side.
Then serve with gravy.

ENJOY! :P
Nov 5

Burger Steak with Mushroom Gravy. (photo from iPhone)

Savory Mushroom Gravy Ingredients

As for the burger patty, I don’t have an actual recipe, but here’s what I used Ingredients

*Salt and freshly ground black pepper *1 pound ground beef, *1 egg, beaten *1 small onion, chopped *2 cloves garlic, minced *½ cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano or Romano, a couple of handfuls *½ cup plain bread crumbs, a couple of handfuls *½ teaspoon freshly grated or ground nutmeg

Combine meat, egg, garlic, grated cheese, bread crumbs, salt, pepper, nutmeg. Shape the mixture into 6 patties, each about 3/4-inch thick. Grill burgers for 6 to 8 minutes on each side. Then serve with gravy.

ENJOY! :P

I made Pasta con chamba (per Anna)

I forgot to take picture. :)

It has chicken, prosciutto, cherry tomatoes, sundried tomato in olive oil, arugula, fresh basil and used a little chicken stock, white wine and heavy cream for the sauce, topped with grated romano cheese.

I basically used leftover ingredients from the Holidays! :P

Jan 4
01.01.10
01.05.10
Sauteed Chayote and Fried Chicken
2 Chayote, diced
1 small onion, chopped
1 clove of garlic, minced
1 tomato, diced
10 pcs of shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 tsp. of vegetable oil
a little chicken stock just to cover the vegetables
salt & pepper
If you know how to cook, you know what to do. Hahaha!
For the Fried Chicken, I just used a little salt, pepper, garlic powder and flour… then fry away!
Jan 5

01.05.10

Sauteed Chayote and Fried Chicken

If you know how to cook, you know what to do. Hahaha!

For the Fried Chicken, I just used a little salt, pepper, garlic powder and flour… then fry away!

01.06.10
TAPSILOG!
Yes, we are having breakfast for dinner. LOL. I was going to make Beef Steak but I realized we just had some steak last Sunday.
*Marinade for the Tapa (use flank or skirt steak)
soysauce
vinegar
lots of garlic
white sugar
salt and pepper
Jan 6

01.06.10

TAPSILOG!

Yes, we are having breakfast for dinner. LOL. I was going to make Beef Steak but I realized we just had some steak last Sunday.

*Marinade for the Tapa (use flank or skirt steak)

01.08.10
Beef Bourguignon
Ingredients
6 strips bacon, cut into 1- to 2-inch pieces
3 pounds beef rump, cut into 1-inch cubes
1 large carrot, peeled and sliced
1 medium onion, sliced
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
3 tablespoons flour
10 ounces beef broth, can condensed
2 cups red or Burgundy wine
1 tablespoon tomato paste
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon whole thyme
1 whole bay leaf
1/2 pound white onions, peeled
1 pound fresh mushrooms, sliced 
Directions
Sauté bacon in a skillet on stovetop set to medium heat until crisp. Remove bacon and set aside.
Add beef cubes to skillet and brown well. Remove meat and set aside.
Brown carrot and onion in skillet and transfer to stoneware. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in flour, add broth, and mix well.
Add beef and bacon to stoneware, mix, and place in slow cooker heating base.
Add wine, tomato paste, garlic, bay leaf, onions, and mushrooms. Cover; cook on Low for 10-12 hours or on High for 5-6 hours.
Jan 8

01.08.10

Beef Bourguignon

Ingredients

Directions

  1. Sauté bacon in a skillet on stovetop set to medium heat until crisp. Remove bacon and set aside.
  2. Add beef cubes to skillet and brown well. Remove meat and set aside.
  3. Brown carrot and onion in skillet and transfer to stoneware. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in flour, add broth, and mix well.
  4. Add beef and bacon to stoneware, mix, and place in slow cooker heating base.
  5. Add wine, tomato paste, garlic, bay leaf, onions, and mushrooms. Cover; cook on Low for 10-12 hours or on High for 5-6 hours.

01.11.10

Broiled Caesar Salmon

*marinated in lemon juice, olive oil, ceasar salad dressing, white wine

Broil for 6 minutes on each side.
Jan 11

01.11.10

Broiled Caesar Salmon

*marinated in lemon juice, olive oil, ceasar salad dressing, white wine

Broil for 6 minutes on each side.

01.12.10
Pizza & Hot Wings
I didn’t make the dough because I don’t have the tools. I used the Pillsbury Thin Pizza Crust, Prego Italian Sauce Sausage & Garlic, mozarella cheese, pepperoni, bacon, red onion, green bellpepper and mushroom.
The hot wings was on sale, and I thought… Why not? *still in the oven*
Jan 12

01.12.10

Pizza & Hot Wings

I didn’t make the dough because I don’t have the tools. I used the Pillsbury Thin Pizza Crust, Prego Italian Sauce Sausage & Garlic, mozarella cheese, pepperoni, bacon, red onion, green bellpepper and mushroom.

The hot wings was on sale, and I thought… Why not? *still in the oven*

 01.13.10
Asian Beef with Snow Peas
Ingredients:
3 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons rice wine
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger root
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 pound beef round steak, cut into thin strips
8 ounces snow peas
Directions:
In a small bowl, combine the soy sauce, rice wine,      brown sugar and cornstarch. Set aside. 
Heat oil in a wok or skillet over medium high heat.      Stir-fry ginger and garlic for 30 seconds. Add the steak and stir-fry for      2 minutes or until evenly browned. Add the snow peas and stir-fry for an      additional 3 minutes. Add the soy sauce mixture, bring to a boil, stirring      constantly. Lower heat and simmer until the sauce is thick and smooth.      Serve immediately.
Jan 13

01.13.10

Asian Beef with Snow Peas

Ingredients:

Directions:

  1. In a small bowl, combine the soy sauce, rice wine, brown sugar and cornstarch. Set aside.
  2. Heat oil in a wok or skillet over medium high heat. Stir-fry ginger and garlic for 30 seconds. Add the steak and stir-fry for 2 minutes or until evenly browned. Add the snow peas and stir-fry for an additional 3 minutes. Add the soy sauce mixture, bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Lower heat and simmer until the sauce is thick and smooth. Serve immediately.

01.14.10
Shrimp and Mushroom Linguine with Creamy Cheese Herb Sauce
Ingredients
1 (8 ounce) package linguine pasta
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 pound fresh mushrooms, sliced
1/2 cup butter
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 (3 ounce) package cream cheese
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
3/4 teaspoon dried basil
2/3 cup boiling water
1/2 pound cooked shrimp
Directions
Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil.      Add linguine, and cook until tender, about 7 minutes. Drain. 
Meanwhile, heat 2 tablespoons butter in a large skillet      over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms; cook and stir until tender. Transfer      to a plate. 
In the same pan, melt 1/2 cup butter with the minced      garlic. Stir in the cream cheese, breaking it up with a spoon as it melts.      Stir in the parsley and basil. Simmer for 5 minutes. Mix in boiling water      until sauce is smooth. Stir in cooked shrimp and mushrooms, and heat      through. 
Toss linguine with shrimp sauce, and serve.
Jan 14

01.14.10

Shrimp and Mushroom Linguine with Creamy Cheese Herb Sauce

Ingredients

Directions

  1. Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add linguine, and cook until tender, about 7 minutes. Drain.
  2. Meanwhile, heat 2 tablespoons butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms; cook and stir until tender. Transfer to a plate.
  3. In the same pan, melt 1/2 cup butter with the minced garlic. Stir in the cream cheese, breaking it up with a spoon as it melts. Stir in the parsley and basil. Simmer for 5 minutes. Mix in boiling water until sauce is smooth. Stir in cooked shrimp and mushrooms, and heat through.
  4. Toss linguine with shrimp sauce, and serve.

01.21.10
Beef Mechado
3 pounds rump roast, trimmed, cut into 2” chunks3 cloves garlic, minced1 small onion, chopped3 large tomatoes, chopped1 bay leaf1 red bell pepper. sliced1 green bell pepper, sliced3 tablespoons soy sauce6 medium potato, peeled and quarteredoil, for frying3 cloves garlic, mincedCook beef, garlic, onions, tomatoes, soy sauce and bay leaf in pan till meat is tender, about 45 minutes to an hour. About 30 minutes before meat is cooked, fry potatoes in oil till browned. Drain all but 1 tablespoon oil from pan and add garlic.Sauté for 1 to 2 minutes. Remove meat from sauce and add to sautéed garlic. Brown meat then add potatoes and sauce mixture to meat and garlic. Add bell peppers. Heat to boiling then remove from heat.
Jan 21

01.21.10

Beef Mechado

3 pounds rump roast, trimmed, cut into 2” chunks
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 small onion, chopped
3 large tomatoes, chopped
1 bay leaf
1 red bell pepper. sliced
1 green bell pepper, sliced
3 tablespoons soy sauce
6 medium potato, peeled and quartered
oil, for frying
3 cloves garlic, minced

Cook beef, garlic, onions, tomatoes, soy sauce and bay leaf in pan till meat is tender, about 45 minutes to an hour. About 30 minutes before meat is cooked, fry potatoes in oil till browned. Drain all but 1 tablespoon oil from pan and add garlic.

Sauté for 1 to 2 minutes. Remove meat from sauce and add to sautéed garlic. Brown meat then add potatoes and sauce mixture to meat and garlic. Add bell peppers. Heat to boiling then remove from heat.

01.24.10

Fishballs with my homemade sweet chilli sauce.

By the way, this came  all the way from Philippines courtesy of my friend, Joice. (Thanks, love!)

Fishballs is one of the  “street food” that I grew up with. Most parents would forbid their kids to buy these and other food street vendors sell in the wooden deep-frying cart that they push from school to school. They’re afraid that their kids might get sick. Luckily, nothing happened to me. My mother never told me not to eat street food either. So, everyday after school from elementary to highschool, I would down approximately 10-20 of these dipped in sweet and spicy sauce. Most of the time there are three kinds of sauce; spicy vinegar sauce made with vinegar, diced onions and garlic, sweet sauce made with corn starch, banana ketchup, sugar and salt, and the sweet, sour and spicy sauce, my favorite, the sweet variety with lots of small hot chilis added. Yum!!! That’s the one I made.

I boiled 1/2 cup of vinegar with 1/2 cup of sugar, 1 tbsp of ketchup, 1 tbsp of cornstarch, a little soysauce and few pinches of red pepper flakes. I added about 1/4 - 1/2 cup of water to bring down the taste of vinegar, I don’t like it to sour.

Note: If the sauce gets to thin you can always add more cornstarch but make sure to dissolve it in cold water first.
Jan 25

01.24.10

Fishballs with my homemade sweet chilli sauce.

By the way, this came all the way from Philippines courtesy of my friend, Joice. (Thanks, love!)

Fishballs is one of the “street food” that I grew up with. Most parents would forbid their kids to buy these and other food street vendors sell in the wooden deep-frying cart that they push from school to school. They’re afraid that their kids might get sick. Luckily, nothing happened to me. My mother never told me not to eat street food either. So, everyday after school from elementary to highschool, I would down approximately 10-20 of these dipped in sweet and spicy sauce. Most of the time there are three kinds of sauce; spicy vinegar sauce made with vinegar, diced onions and garlic, sweet sauce made with corn starch, banana ketchup, sugar and salt, and the sweet, sour and spicy sauce, my favorite, the sweet variety with lots of small hot chilis added. Yum!!! That’s the one I made.

I boiled 1/2 cup of vinegar with 1/2 cup of sugar, 1 tbsp of ketchup, 1 tbsp of cornstarch, a little soysauce and few pinches of red pepper flakes. I added about 1/4 - 1/2 cup of water to bring down the taste of vinegar, I don’t like it to sour.

Note: If the sauce gets to thin you can always add more cornstarch but make sure to dissolve it in cold water first.

01.27.10

my version of Beef Steak

Marinate the thinly sliced beef top sirloin in lemon, garlic powder and soysauce for about 30 minutes.

Fry the beef, thinly sliced potatoes and saute the red onions. (use the same pan.)
Jan 27

01.27.10

my version of Beef Steak

Marinate the thinly sliced beef top sirloin in lemon, garlic powder and soysauce for about 30 minutes.

Fry the beef, thinly sliced potatoes and saute the red onions. (use the same pan.)