Just Loving It

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How’s everybody doing? I can’t believed how passionate I’m becoming each day, giddy, very excited, and my ideas kept flowing as I start to follow more enchanting and admirable people such as yourselves. You guys are giving me more ideas and style, of course I can’t produce the DSLR’s photographed pictures yet, but I’m studying, looking around, and finding out how pricey they are. But don’t worry, I’m working on it. All of your pictures are jumping off the pages of your blog sites, so enchanting and the vibrant play of colors, just  love darlydarly, a fashionable star indeed!

The adorable sweet sisters – Trina and Tina, my dear Constance who follows most of the multicultural foods I made. I’m flooded with a lot of requests from friends and co-workers with whom I shared most of the products of my home cooking. I collected a lot of pictures before but most of them aren’t as exciting as yours so I cook them again, taste them, and adjust the ingredients according to my personal experience and try hard to make the presentation as exciting as yours and the procedure more user friendly for all of us who are hurrying all the time.

I’m more relaxed nowadays because I am doing something that I am so passionate about. From the bottom of my heart, you guys are incredible people who make my food blogging as exciting as it can be. As I incorporate some produce from my humble and tiny garden, I develop confidence in myself and start to understand the play of colors in my presentation. When I look back at my old food and garden pictures, there’s a feeling I get that I could have done better: I didn’t do justice capturing the beauty of my food and garden.. I just have to work harder so my food and garden presentations are ready next summer for more dramatic photo opportunities.

I’d like to thank numerous  bloggers like Francis and Anna, Facebook friends who created an account just to follow my blog.

Thank yous to the pretty Nandini, Blair the Shameful Sheep and would like to thank and nominate the following bloggers: 1. my dear Constance@LiveEatCreate, 2. eatliveescape, 3. pretty Nandini Goan Imports, 4. the very positive Andrea Giang, 5. cooking with the wallflower, 6. Blair, the shameful sheep, 7. Ivan Jose, Francis, and Anna, 8. storytelling cook, 9. Cooking without limits, 10. Bunny Eats Design, 11. Dana@I’veGotCake, 12.  darlydarly, 13. Stargazer, 14. Benjamine, 15. thestaticfoodbin, 16. Inte fan for det det, 17. tastetableinsatiable, 18. storytellingcook, 19. CookingWithoutLimits, 20. my passengerdiaries,  Sorry! I could only name 20… Sincerly yours, Peaches, Masarap!!!

 

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Flavorful Baked Potatoes, Green Beans, Peppers & Cherry Tomatoes w/ Garlic, Cilantro & Rosemary

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Hey, guys and gals! Are you getting excited with the Thanksgiving holiday coming  soon next month? I got you covered and you can practice preparing this side and people who hate eating vegetables will definitely eat these flavorful vegetables. So, let’s gather our ingredients now and check out the picture below.

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INGREDIENTS:

8 pieces small red potatoes

8 pieces small yellow potatoes

1/2 pound green beans, (trimmed)

1/2 of 10-ounce container mixed cherry tomatoes, (halved)

4 cloves garlic, (minced)

1/4 cup each of fresh chopped rosemary, cilantro and scallions

1/2 piece each of a red and yellow bell pepper, (seeded and cubed)

2 Tbsp. olive oil, (divided)

Pam vegetable oil spray

1/2 tsp. ground black pepper

3/4 tsp. Himalayan pink salt

PROCEDURE:

1. Cook green beans in a saucepan of boiling water for 3 minutes, then plunge in an iced cold water, drain and pat dry, set aside.

2. Wash and brush all the remaining  vegetables, drain and pat dry. Cut the potatoes in halves, put in a huge glass tray, add 1 tablespoon of oil, sprinkle pepper and  Himalayan pink salt, minced garlic and 1/2 of the chopped rosemary and toss well.

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3. Spray the baking sheet with Pam vegetable oil spray and scatter the potatoes and roast for 30 minutes at 400 degrees F stirring occasionally.

4. Place beans, halved cherry tomatoes, cubed bell peppers, the scallions, cilantro and the remaining rosemary  in a huge bowl, toss well with a tablespoon of olive oil.  Add this mixture to the potatoes, tossing well while inside the oven. Roast for another 10 minutes at 400 degrees F.

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As always, Delicious! (Masarap!)

-Peaches-

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chicken Tikka Masala w/ Chick Peas

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Hello! Are you in the mood for making an Indian takeout at home and get a dose of curcumin ? It is the main ingredient in turmeric that gives curry its yellow color. And has been used in India for thousand of years as a spice and medicinal herb. Curcumin has a powerful inflammatory effects and a very strong antioxidant. I remembered Dr.Oz and Dr.Rosen on their old shows, mentioning that turmeric prevents Alzheimer’s Disease, a form of Dementia. Would you believe that rural India has a lower population of Dementia! I myself believe that their great intake of turmeric which has curcumin plus their vegetarian and plant based diet prevent them from getting demented. You have 2 ways of making this Tikka Masala, either the traditional way or buy this “Maya Kaimal Tikka Masala Indian Summer Sauce and cook it in a jiffy. You can make it vegetarian or plant-based by just  omitting the chicken. So let’s prepare the ingredients.

Maya Kaimal Tikka Masala (Indian Sauce)

Ingredients are just a 12.5 oz of this Tikka Masala sauce (got mine from Trader Joe’s), 3 cloves of garlic (minced), 2 shallots (sliced),  a pound of boneless, skinless breast chicken ( cut into bite sized cubes) and a can of chick peas (rinsed/drained).

PROCEDURE:

1. Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in medium heat pan, add garlic then shallots, sauté until translucent and fragrant. Add the chicken and sauté until no longer pink. Pour the content of the Tikka Masala Indian sauce, rinses off the jar with half a cup of water and add to the pan. Stir and let the mixture boil and simmer to a low heat, add the can of chick peas and simmer for 20 minutes, Taste and see how easy you can do it.

TRADITIONAL CHICKEN TIKKA MASALA w/ CHICK PEAS

INGREDIENTS:

1 Tbsp. olive oil

3 garlic cloves (minced)

2 shallots (sliced)

1-2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breast (cut into bite sized cubes)

2 Tbsp. garam masala

1 Tbsp. Chili powder

1 tsp. each of turmeric powder and ginger powder

1 can 28 oz tomato chunks or sauce

1 can 13.5 fl oz Chaokoh coconut milk

1 can Green Giant 15.5 oz chick peas

PROCEDURE:

1. Sauté garlic in a medium hot oiled pan. Add the shallots until translucent and fragrant. Add the chicken and stir until no longer pink on both sides. Gather the cooked chicken with a slotted spoon and set aside.

2. On the same pan, add all the herbs like the  garam masala, chili powder, turmeric and ginger, stir well until fragrant.

3. Add the tomatoes, chick peas, coconut milk and the chicken with its juices. Bring to a slow simmer by lowering the heat when the mixture starts to boil, stir very well and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally and put back the cover. Taste and adjust seasonings according to your preference.

4. Serve immediately while still hot with Toufayan smart wheat pocket breads by dunking on the mixture or serve with steamed brown rice.

As always, Masarap! (Delicious!)

-Peaches-

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Savory Salmon Broccoli Pudding Squares

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Hey, guys and gals, I made this for our youngest son’s 23rd birthday today, I prepared it a day ahead, went to work and bake it today. It entails a 2 day process but it is well worth it. As usual, he loves it. This was a huge pudding and we place 23 candles on it, After the celebration, I decided to cut some of them into squares so let’s gather our ingredients and start the preparation by looking at the next picture below.

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INGREDIENTS:

1 huge red onion (sliced thinly)

2 cups Shiitake mushrooms (sliced)

1 red bell pepper (chopped roughly)

1 head broccoli (stems sliced thinly & florets separated)

1-2 Tbsp. olive oil

1 loaf multi-grain bread, (cut into cubes making 4 cups)

1 and 1/4 cups smoked salmon (chopped)

1 cup scallions (sliced)

2 tsp. hot mustard powder

1 tsp. ground  black pepper

6 eggs

2 cups grated Parmesan cheese

4 cups Carnation Evaporated milk

1 cup jarred roasted red bell peppers (rinsed, drained and chopped)

PROCEDURE:

1. Boil a quart of water with a teaspoon of salt in a big pot until boiling in a medium heat.  Add the broccoli stems for a minute then add the florets, boiling for a total of 2 minutes then drain on a colander and plunge in a bowl of iced cold water to stop boiling, drain and paper  towel dry. Set aside.

2. In a sauté pan, add 1 tablespoon of oil on medium heat, add the sliced onions stirring for 2 minutes until caramelized, then add the mushrooms until they sweat. Add the red bell peppers, the broccoli stems and florets. Turn off the heat until the vegetables soften but not soggy. Remove from the stove and let it cool down.

3. In a huge mixing bowl, break the eggs, add the ground black pepper, the hot mustard powder, add the 4 cups of milk & beat with an electric mixer until they are well mixed. Add 2 cups grated cheese, stir with a spoon just to combine them all.

4. Spray Pam generously on a 9 x 13 inch ceramic baking dish. Layer the bread cubes on a single layer. Scatter the caramelized and sautéed vegetable mixture on top of the bread, then the smoked salmon, roasted peppers and sliced scallions.

5. Pour the egg/milk mixture into the bread mixture pressing down the bread cubes that might float while pouring the liquid.

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6. Cover with aluminum foil and refrigerate overnight.

7.  The next day, take out the tray and let it stand for an hour or 2 before baking on a pre-heated oven at 350 degrees for 30 minutes covered with that same foil. Remove the foil and bake for another 15 minutes until the pudding gets brownish. Now put back the foil and tent it over the pudding, keep inside the oven so it will continue to harden without drying up.

8. Let it cool down properly on top of the dining table, remove the foil so no steaming liquid will run into the pudding. Once cold, cut with a serrated bread knife very carefully, using a flat spatula into the bottom to ease each pieces off the bakeware to have a perfect cut.

As always, Flavorful and Masarap! (Masarap!)

-Peaches-

 

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Creole Jambalaya

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Jambalaya is a famous dish of Louisiana with Spanish and French influences and it is the new world version of Paella and for me it is simpler. It consists mainly of meat, poultry or smoked sausages and vegetables mixed with rice. They are of 2 kinds: either Cajun or Creole. Creole or red Jambalaya due to its reddish color from the tomatoes. Cajun has no tomatoes but has a distinct smokey flavor and brownish color due to the browning of the meat in a cast iron pot. See the ingredients below.

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INGREDIENTS:

1 cup chopped red onion

5 cloves garlic (minced)

2 cups Tri-colored bell peppers: red, yellow and green (cut into squares)

1 & 1/2 cups chopped celery

2 Tbsp. olive oil

2 cups chicken boiled in 3 cups water (dice the chicken and save the broth for later)

2 cans of 10-oz diced tomatoes

4 raw prawns, (deveined, heads and tails off)

1/2 cup each of chopped cilantro and scallions

2 cups uncooked long grain rice

1 lb. sliced andouille or smoked Kielbasa

2 tsps. dried rosemary

1 red Jalapeño pepper (seeded and finely chopped)

2 tsps. Old Bay seasoning or Creole or Cajun seasoning

PROCEDURE:

1. Cook sausages in hot oil in Dutch oven pan over medium heat, stirring constantly until brownish. Gather the cooked sausages with a tong, leaving the oil behind for sautéing othe onions then garlic until translucent. Mix in the chopped red Jalapeño pepper.

2. Add the celery, bell peppers, bay leaf, creole or Old Bay seasoning, sauté for 5 minutes until the vegetables are tender. Add the tomatoes, chicken broth, rice,  diced chicken and sausages, stirring to combine well and bring to a boil then simmer on low fire, with cover for 20minutes or until rice is tender.

3. Stir in shrimp, cover and cook for 5 minutes, uncover and stir in scallions and cilantro. Serve immediately while still hot.

As always, Masarap! (Delicious!)

-Peaches-

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Spicy Braised Chicken w/ Lemon, Basil & Capers

 

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Hi! Everybody, I am trying to utilize my Italian basil before they start withering from my pocket garden so I am making this dish today. Let me show you one of my pots of Italian basil here in the next picture below.

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I feel great! Gardening makes me happy, most especially picking the produce and using them for my cooking. See the rosemary which also adds a superb flavor to my chicken recipes but today is for my basil to shine in this recipe for the day. Let’s start gathering our ingredients below.

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INGREDIENTS:

1 4oz bag Kirkland Organic boneless chicken legs and thighs

3 garlic cloves (minced)

2 shallots (chopped finely)

1/2 tsp.salt+1/4 tsp.ground black pepper (mixed well)

1/3 cup white wine

1/2 cup broth (boil 1 cup of water with 1 Tbsp. of Better Than Bouillon Chicken or Vegetable Base from Costco)

zests of 2 lemons

juice of 2 lemons (1/3 cup)

6 slices of lime (thinly sliced)

1/4 -1/2 piece from 1 whole red Jalapeño pepper (thinly sliced)

2 Tbsp. olive oil (divided)

1/2 cup basil leaves (soaked in water then drained)

2 Tbsp. capers (rinsed/drained)

 

PROCEDURE:

1.Rinse the chicken with  water, drain and paper towel dry. Season with the salt and pepper mixture on both sides.

2. Braise the chicken on both sides with 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Save the juice if any will seep out of the chicken. On the same pan you braised the chicken, add another tablespoon of olive oil while the stove is still on medium heat.

3. Add the garlic and then the shallots, stir until the shallots are translucent, then add the sliced red Jalapeño peppers, stir well then pour the wine, broth, lemon zests and lemon juice for a minute or two.

4. Put back the braised chicken to the boiling pot, submerge them well into the sauce, cover and simmer on very low heat for 10 minutes.

5. Pick up all the chicken pieces and some of the sliced red peppers with a tong into a serving platter. Strain the sauce into a clean pot and boil it and add 2 tablespoon capers and lime slices into it, stirring well, simmering for 2 minutes. Taste the sauce if the capers and the lime give the necessary salty/sour kick. You may add salt if it is too sour for your tastebuds.

6. Pour the sauce on top of the chicken and sprinkle the torn basil leaves and decorate with the lime slices.

As always, Masarap! (Delicious!)

-Peaches-

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pompano Ginger Stew w/ Chayote & Pepper Leaves

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Hi, everyone, I am really taking advantage of this surprisingly extended warm weather to use most of my pocket garden harvest. So I will use pepper leaves, lemon grass and green peppers  from my garden to complement our dish and it is famously called ‘Tinola.’ In our native tongue it is called,’ Tinolang Pompano sa Sayote at Dahon ng Sili.’ A soupy fish dish that will warm not only your body but also your soul as the flu season begins. Let’s first gather up our ingredients.

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INGREDIENTS:

1 huge Pompano fish

3 cups rice washing

2 huge and plum tomatoes (sliced)

a thumb-sized ginger (julienned)

1 Chayote (thickly sliced)

1 green bell pepper

3 pieces small hot green peppers

2 shallots (sliced)

1 Tbsp. fish sauce

2 stalks lemon grass (smashed)

lots of pepper leaves (soaked in water/drained in a colander)

PROCEDURE:

1. Have the fishmonger in the fish market clean and slice the Pompano fish as to your preference. Inspect the fish and wash them properly and drain in a colander. Season well with salt and set aside.

2. Rinse 3 cups of Jasmine rice in 3 cups filtered water and save the 1st washing as soup base for this dish. After 2 more washings, drain the rice, add 3 cups filtered water and cook in a rice cooker.

3. In a huge and deep cooking pot, add the ginger and tomatoes then  pour the rice washing and let it boil for 5 minutes, add the shallots, the lemon grass and fish sauce and re-boil for 10 minutes until the tomatoes are wilted.

4. Add the sliced chayote, bell pepper and hot peppers for few minutes until the chayote is slightly tender.

5. Add the fish slices, gently submerge into the broth for 2-3 minutes until cooked. Add the pepper leaves, Cover the pot and turn off the stove. When ready to serve, open the pot, submerge the wilted leaves into the broth then  gently gather up the fish in a serving soup bowl and pour out the broth. Serve the fish and the chayote in individual soup bowls and pour the broth on top. Serve with steamed Jasmine rice.

As always, Masarap! The blending of the lemon grass and the chayote is flavorful!

-Peaches-

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Thanksgiving Backyard Party for Jesse

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Our dear friend, Sister Lilian threw a backyard party at her place and celebrating Jesse’s Thanksgiving Party after a successful open heart surgery. Attended by our closest friends from 2000 Hail  Mary’s and registered nurses from Mt.Sinai Heart Manhattan and nurses from Woodhull Hospital. Kind of Christmas on September ( Christmassy tablecloth this September! hahaha!) A  very informal one indeed! I brought the Spicy Chili Crabs, Lilian  and Ate Belen prepared Barbecued Chicken and Spareribs, Grilled Bamboo Leaves/Foil Wrapped Pompano Fishes, Vermicelli Noodles prepared by Darelle, Cucumber Salad and Tomato/Mango Salad,  ‘ Ginataang Saging, Camote and Gabi ‘  a dessert of banana, sweet potatoes and taro boiled with coconut milk and sugar,  prepared by Jopay, Mangoes and ‘Bagoong’ , (Sauteed Shrimp Paste) and sweet grapes and more fruits by Banengneng and friends. Fr.Ted and Fr.James came to bless the occasion. It was a very nice  goodbye to summer and a warn welcome to September month. We are forever grateful to God and Mama Mary first and then to all the people who continue praying for him. SJDC Class ’80, Dr. Rowena Sonza, Jesse’s friends from Australia, The Tayumanerz, Eve and Tito Bert and friends from all over the world, guys you are not here but we’re thanking you all from the bottom of our hearts.

We are also praying for the safety of our countrymen and women and children in Florida, prayers already reduced Hurricane Irma from category 4 to 2. So, lets continue praying. Thanks everyone for just reading this post.

 

Shrimp Salad with Mango, Avocado & Sriracha

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Summer is gone and I am pretty lazy to heat the stove and the oven. I am so used to salads, shrimps, seafoods, no heat hors d’oeuvres and cocktails. Anyway, let’s pretend that it is still summer time as the temperature is still decently warm. Let’s prepare our ingredients, no heating or baking I promise.

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INGREDIENTS:

24 pieces of large shrimp (peeled/deveined/tails on)

2 Tbsp. olive oil

zest of 1 orange + 1/4 cup of its juice

1/2 cup ketchup

1/4 cup lime juice

1 tsp. Sriracha seasoning

2 small red Jalapeño peppers (sliced)

half each of a green and a yellow bell pepper (sliced)

1/2 of a ripe mango (cubed)

half of an avocado (cubed)

a handful of chopped cilantro

1/4 cup of thin round slices of leek

PROCEDURE:

1. Boil the shrimp for 3 minutes until pink, drain in a colander until they cool down.

2. Whisk together all the liquid ingredients like the olive oil, ketchup, orange and lime juices.

3. Mix in the orange zest, cilantro and leeks. Add the colorful bell peppers and hot red Jalapeño pepper and mix very well before adding the shrimp. Taste and add seasoning like salt and pepper but for me, I didn’t add anything as the Sriracha seasoning is already salty for me.

4. Add the avocado and mango cubes on top. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

As always, tastes amazing, Masarap! (Delicious!)

-Peaches-