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Saturday, March 26, 2016

Cream Cheese Spinach Dip

Cafe George is one of my fave restaurants in Cebu.  i particularly liked their salad, penang fish, beef, and of course the spinach dip.

I've decided to whip up my own version of the spinach dip.  It's close to the one served at Cafe George. (I claim it! Haha Maybe i should add white onions next time.  But it was a hit, the kids loved it just the same.)

Adopted from

1 bulb of garlic, chopped
Half white onion
2 tbsp olive oil
2 c fresh spinach leaves (washed in a bowl of water with salt)
c fresh milk
150g (arla natural) cream cheese
200g (arla) mozarella cheese

1.  In a small pot, saute garlic in olive oil over low heat. (Next time, I ought to try it with white onions to give that sweetened kick.)
2.  Add in the spinach leaves and saute.
3.  Remove from pot.
4.  In the same pot, put the milk, simmer over low heat, stirring constantly to avoid burning and curdling.
5.  Add in cream cheese and mozarella stirring constantly until melted. (For low fat alternative, use ricotta cheese.). Still watery consistency.
6. Add in the spinach with garlic and onions.
7. Blend it. Using a high powered (hand) blender, blend for a few seconds (or a regular osterizer).  Make sure to leave green spots of the spinach for it to be visually appetizing.  Do not overblend.
8.  Serve hot (or cool over room temperature) with toasted bread.  Consistency thickens further when it cools.

For home made garlic bread, simply brush olive oil and rub in garlic over bread; toast to desired perfection.


Sunday, August 16, 2015

Baked scallops

The cook is on leave.  I was psyched to prepare calamares for dinner.  As I browsed through the freezer, it's an expected treat to find scallops in it. Browsed through the internet and found a recipe at tweaked it and made it simple.  Here we go...

1/4 kg shelled scallops
5 tbsp butter, melted
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 chooped spring onions or shallots
Salt and pepper to taste
Grated quickmelt cheese

1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (or 220 degrees C)
2. Rinse scallops and drain.
3. Place scallops, melted butter, garlic, spring onions in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper.  Stir gently to combine.
4. Transfer to a casserole dish.
5. Sprinkle cheese on top.
6. Bake for about 12mins.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Fruit Salad

One of the all time favorite Filipino dessert  is the fruit salad which is made out of fruit cocktail and cream.  Aside from being delicious, it is easy to prepare and easy on the pocket.

For less than a thousand pesos, this can generously serve 30 pax (or upto 50 pax when pre-served in a small cup).


6kgs (2 large cans) del monte fiesta fruit cocktail (P204 x 2)
2000ml (8 packs) nestle all purpose cream (P46.5 x 8)
450ml (1 and half can) carnation condensed milk (P48.5 x 2)
24oz (2 bottles) nata de coco (P40.75 x 2)
2 cups grated fresh coconut meat

1. Open the fruit cocktail and nata de coco.  Pour onto a coliander, to drain the syrup for about an hour.
2. In a big bowl or tupperware, place the drained fruit cocktail, nata de coco and coconut.
3. Add in the cream.
4. Add the condensed milk to desired consistency and taste. Toss the mix all ingredients.
5. Chill overnight then serve cold. 


If it tastes too milky, it means, there's too much condensed milk.  You may add more cream in that case.  Thus, it is best to add the condensed milk gradually to desired taste and consistency.

You may also add other ingredients like kaong and kennel corn or fresh fruits for added texture.

Avoid freezing it as it becomes watery when thawed.

Black Pepper Crabs


1kg crab
3 tbsp keecap manis (sweet soy sauce)
3 tbsp oyster sauce
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp black pepper
1 tbsp white pepper
1 large white onions
1 tbsp grated ginger
1 bulb garlic

1. Put the crab to sleep in ice water.
2. Heat pan, place the crab add rock salt, cover until orange (almost cooked)
3. Remove from fire, clean the crab, remove the gills, chop to desired serving size. Set aside.
4. Prepare the sauce mixture. In a bowl, mix the keecap manis, oyster sauce and sugar. Set aside.
5. In a pan, heat butter. Saute the onions, ginger, garlic.
6. Add the black and white pepper.
7. Add in the sauce mixture.
8. Add in the crabs to cook. Then serve.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Simple Guacamole

Avocados are in season now.  I'm not a fan of fresh avocados but I can eat up a bowl full of guacamole with chips.

In one of our recent trips to Mexico, I've tasted all sorts of guacamole and the one served at Casa Magna Marriott in Cancun was to die for.

Before I danced the night away during one of our girls night out in Cancun, I learned how to prepare guacamole in Carlos and Charlie's.

(Single serve) 

1 fresh avocado
1 small tomato
Half red onion
1 tsp lemon juice
Salt to taste

1. Slice an avocado, remove the seed and scoop out the meat.
2. In a bowl, mash the avocado coarsely using a dining fork.
3. Remove the seeds of the tomato then dice it.
4. Finely chop the onions.  (I don't like the taste of onion so I prefer to chop it finely.)
5. You may also add chopped cilantro (but I prefer none).
6. Add lemon juice (or calamansi) to keep the color nice and bright.
7. Fold everything together, season with salt (and pepper) to taste. Don't over mix.
8. Serve with your choice of chips to complement the blandness of avocado.

The very salty tortillas of Pringles was a perfect match.

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Singaporean Black Pepper Crabs


3 tablespoons kecap manis
3 tablespoons oyster sauce
3 tablespoons caster sugar
2 kg mud crabs
1 1/2 tablespoons oil
1 1/2 tablespoons butter
1 1/2 tablespoons grated fresh ginger
6 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 -2 red chilli, finely chopped, optional
1 1/2 tablespoons black pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons white pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
2 spring onions, finely chopped, optional
1/4 cup chopped fresh coriander, optional

1.  Clean, put the crabs to sleep and cook.  Follow steps 1 to 10 here.
2.  Prepare sauce mixture: mix kecap manis, oyster sauce, sugar and 3 tablespoons water in a small bowl, stir, then set aside.  
3.  Heat oil in wok, add the butter, ginger, garlic, chilli, black and white peppers and coriander; stir fry for 30 seconds.
4.  Add the sauce mixture and stir; bring to a boil, then simmer 2 minutes.
5.  Add in the cooked crabs, toss to coat the sauce for 2 minutes.
6.  Remove from fire and transfer to a serving plate.  Garnish with spring onions and coriander.  

Friday, January 2, 2015

Crab and Sotanghon


1 package of Sotanghon (clear vermicelli/mung beans noodles )
4 mud crabs cut in 4
4 cups of chicken stock (with 2 chicken bouillon)
1/2 cup of green onions
1 head of garlic chopped (1tbsp)
1 thumb size of ginger chopped (2-3 tbsp)
3 tbsp sliced shallots
3 tbsp oyster sauce
4 tbsp kikoman soy sauce
1 tsp sugar
1 package of spinach
1 cup of dry black chinese mushroom (cut very thin)
2 tbsp sesame oil
3 tbsp regular oil

1.  Soak dry sotanghon in warm water until soft, then drain. 
2.  Put crabs to sleep, clean crabs and cut into 4 large pieces.  See this link how to put crabs into sleep.
3.  Heat up a pan and oil and when it is smoking, saute ginger, garlic, shallots and mushroom and stir briskly. 
4.  Add the crab pieces and toss for a minute or two, on high heat.
5.  Add stock 
6.  Add soy sauce, oyster sauce and sugar.  
7.  Add the noodles and cook until soft and liquid has been sucked into the noodle and brings flavor, for about 10 minutes. 
8.  Add some chopped spinach and cook a minute longer.
9.  Add salt and pepper to taste.  
10. Add sesame oil.