WELCOME

 

book pile

Welcome to the San Francisco Bay Area. Welcome to My Bay Kitchen!

Growing up in Baguio City, Philippines, I learned most of my cooking from my late mother,  just watching her in the kitchen.  She had no recipe books or cheat sheets, just the skills and knowledge  gained from my grandmother and great grandmother. I honestly believe that the best dishes are probably the ones that are passed on by word of mouth and practice, perfected not by measuring cups or kitchen timers, but by intuition and the pouring of one’s heart into the cooking. I have personally tried each of the recipes in this blog, injecting my own tweaks to make them more healthy and easy to prepare. More

I hope you will enjoy cooking the recipes as well as the story that goes with each of them. Select from the Category drop down menu  or visit this site’s pages by making a selection from the top menu bar. You can also use the search button to look for recipe key words.

Oh, and keep coming back for a second serving!

What’s That Purple Color In My Eggroll?

imageI’ve concluded long time ago that one can make eggrolls out of anything — pork, chicken, beef, vegetables and fruit.

In the Philippines, one particular eggroll is popular as a snack or dessert.  It’s called turon which basically contains banana of the saba variety.  Some variations include other local fruits like jackfruit.

But I was intrigued one day to find a recipe that included purple yam in the egg roll, specifically the jam that’s quite popular in my hometown of Baguio City.  It’s called ube halaya in the local dialect.

So I did prepare this in my kitchen and I’m afraid I’m going to be hooked with this recipe.

Note: Brown sugar is usually added to the eggrolls and is carmelized to add sweetness.  But I skipped the sugar because the purple yam jam already provides the needed sweetness.

INGREDIENTS

3 bananas of the saba variety, peeled and sliced lengthwise (if using smaller eggroll wrappers, you can slice each banana crosswise, then lengthwise to make 4 pieces)

A teaspoon of purple yam jam for every eggroll

6-12 eggroll wrappers (depending on ther size of the wrapper and the number of slices you’ve made of the bananas0

Olive oil for frying

DIRECTIONS

Take one eggroll wrapper and place it on a plate or clean surface.  Place a teaspoon of the jam in the center of the wrapper.  Place a slice of banana in the lower third of the wrapper. Fold in the left and right sides of the wrapper before rolling it away from you.  Seal the end of the wrapper by moistening with water.  Repeat process for the rest of the eggrolls.

Heat Olive oil in a frying pan over medium heat.  Fry the eggrolls, making sure they’re nicely browned on either side.  Remove from heat and set on a plate lined with paper tower to drain excess oil.

Serve warm and enjoy!

.

 

Ukoy Na Dulong (Silver Fish Fritters)

imageI’ve always enjoyed dulong (silver fish) as an omelet.  It doesn’t matter if it’s for breakfast, lunch or dinner, so long as it is accompanied by warm steamed rice.

But I also love to snack on dulong prepared like the traditional Filipino ukoy (shrimp and/or vegetable fritters).

This crispy ukoy na dulong is a great appetizer or snack, dipped in some spicy sweet and sour sauce.

Dulong is a very tiny, almost transparent fish popular in the Philippines.  It is caught in the ocean and is known to easily adapt to a freshwater environment. It should be differentiated from the silverfish insect.
INGREDIENTS

1/2 pound fresh or sun-dried dulong (Silver Fish)

1 cup flour

3/4 cup water

1 egg, beaten

Salt and pepper to taste

Olive oil for frying

For dipping sauce:

3 tbsps white vinegar

1 Thai chilli

1 tsp. brown sugar (optional)

Salt and pepper to taste

 

DIRECTIONS

If using fresh dulong. thoroughly wash and drain. Set aside.

In a medium bowl, combine flour, water, egg, salt and pepper. Add the dulong fish to the batter and mix well.

Heat Olive oil on a medium frying pan over medium heat.  Scoop about 2 tbsps of the dulong mixture into the pan. Flatten to form a thin patty.  Cook until the bottom is nicely browned before turning over to brown the other side. Remove from heat and set on a plate lined with paper towel to drain excess oil.

Serve warm with the dipping sauce (by mixing all the sauce ingredients)

 

Sweet And Sour Pork

image.jpegSweet and sour pork has always been a favorite of mine when eating out at Chinese restaurants.  You can’t go wrong by ordering this dish from the menu.  One might call it comfort food.  But it’s comforting to know that one can easily prepare this dish at home, as I did today.

INGREDIENTS

1 lb. pork belly, sliced into bite-sized cubes

1 small green bell pepper, seeded and sliced into 1/2-inch squares

1 cup pineapple chunks, juice saved

1/2 cup sliced green onions

1 cup sliced celery

1 white onion, peeled and quartered

1 medium tomato, quartered

1 cup brown sugar

1 tsp soy sauce

1 egg white

Salt and pepper to taste

1 tbsp white vinegar

1 tbsp ketchup

2 tbsps soy sauce

1/2 cup corn starch

1 1/4 cup water

Olive oil for frying

 

DIRECTIONS

Place cubed pork in a medium bowl, and season with 1/4 cup sugar, and 1 tbsp soy sauce. Mix in the egg white and green onions.  Add salt and pepper to taste. Cover, and place in the refrigerator at least 1 hour.

Coat the pork with corn starch.

Heat Olive oil in a frying pan over medium heat.  Fry coated pork until nicely browned.  Drain by setting the pork on a plate lined with paper towel.
In the same frying pan, heat remaining Olive oil over medium heat. Stir in the celery, green bell pepper, and onion, and cook until tender. Season with salt and sugar. Remove from heat, and set aside.
In a large saucepan, mix 1 cup water, 3/4 cup sugar,  vinegar, ketchup, and soy sauce. Bring to a boil, and stir in the cooked pork, celery mixture, tomatoes and the pineapple chunks with juice. Return to boil, and mix in cornstarch and 1/4 cup water to thicken. Cook until well blended.

Crispy “Mini” Scotch Eggs

image.jpegScotch eggs consist of hard-boiled eggs wrapped in sausage meat, coated in bread crumbs and baked or deep-fried. They are popular in the United Kingdom and are a common picnic food.

The London department store Fortnum & Mason claims to have invented Scotch eggs in 1738.

In the Philippines and other Latin countries, local delicacies approximate that of Scotch eggs. Like the Filipino embotido or morcon. Both are ground meat (pork or beef) formed into sausages with boiled egg filling.

For this recipe, I used the smaller quail eggs.

INGREDIENTS:

6-8 boiled quail eggs, peeled

1 lb pork sausages, casings removed

1/2 cup flour

Salt and pepper to taste

1 tbsp soy sauce

1 egg beaten

1/2 cup bread crumbs

Olive oil for frying

 

DIRECTIONS:

In a bowl, combine the sausage meat, flour, and salt and pepper to taste.

Take a handful of the sausage mixture and wrap it around one boiled quail egg, rolling it between your hands to shape into a ball.  Repeat process for the rest of the eggs.

Place beaten egg in a plate and the bread crumbs in another.  Dip each sausage ball into the beaten egg then roll it in the breadcrumbs.

Heat Olive oil in a medium pan over medium-high heat.  Fry the sausage balls, making sure they’re browned on all sides.

Remove from heat and set on a plate lined with paper towel to drain excess oil.  Slice sausage balls lengthwise and serve warm.

 

 

Misua Noodles With Meatballs

image.jpegOf the many types of noodles, misua or salted Chinese wheatflour noodles are among the tastiest and easiest to cook. They make a perfect soupy dish when combined with just vegetables or with meat, especially meatballs.

Misua with meatballs and patola (rigged gourd) is popular in the Philippines, yet another of those dishes that likely had a Chinese origin.

When the weather outside is cold or rainy, try this recipe to warm you up and satisfy your palate.

INGREDIENTS

1 lb ground pork
1 medium white onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 medium patola (rigged gourd) peeled and thinly sliced crosswise
1 egg
Salt and pepper to taste
3-4 cups water (or vegetable stock)
50 grams misua
1/2 tbsp fish sauce (more if needed to suit your taste)
Flour for dredging
Olive oil for frying
Sliced green onions for garnish

DIRECTIONS

In a mixing bowl, combine ground pork, onions, egg an salt and pepper to taste. Mix well. Make 1 1/2″ balls. Dredge each ball with flour and set aside.

Healt Olive oil in pan over medium-high heat. Fry the meatballs until golden brown. Remove from heat and drain by placing them on a plate lined with paper towel.

In the same pan, sauté garlic and onions in Olive oil for about one minute. Add water and bring to a boil. Add patola slices and cook until they turn bright green. Add fried meatballs, fish sauce and misua and continue to cook for several minutes, adding water to make sure the noodles do not dry up. Adjust taste by adding fish sauce as needed. Remove from heat and place on a serving bowl or platter and garnish with green onions.

Home-made Kikiam

 

image.jpegKikiam, a sausage-like delicacy wrapped in tofu, has always been a special treat for me since I was a child. I don’t ever remember it being prepared at home, but they were widely available at Chinese restaurants and peddled by street vendors or office mates. If you like Chinese sausage, lumpiang shanghai, or embutido, you’ll definitely like kikiam.

This is my first attempt to prepare kikiam in my kitchen, complete with home-made sauce/dip!

INGREDIENTS

1/2 lb. ground pork

1/4 lb. shrimp, peeled and minced

1 small carrot, minced

1 small onion, minced

Salt and pepper to taste

3-4 pieces, bean curd sheets (tawpe)

Olive oil for frying

Water for steaming

For the sauce/dip:

4 cloves garlic, peeled and minced

1/2 onion, minced

1/3 cup corn starch, diluted in water

2 tbsps soy sauce

2 tbsps white vinegar

2-3 tbsps brown sugar ( adjusted to your sweetness preference)

DIRECTIONS

In a large mixing bowl, combine pork, shrimp, carrots, onion, and salt and pepper to taste. Mix well with clean, bare hands. Lay a bean curd sheet on a clean, flat surface. Place about a handful of the pork mixture on one end of the bean curd to form a log.  Fold either side of the bean curd then roll it like you would when making egg rolls. Moisten the end of the bean curd to seal. Prepare the steamer. Add water and let boil. Arrange the kikiam in the steamer and then steam for about 25 minutes.Remove from the steamer and then set aside.  In a medium pan, heat Olive oil over medium-high heat.  Add in the kikiam and cook till they turn golden brown.  Remove from heat, let cool, then slice diagonally into bite-sized pieces. image

To prepare the sauce/dip:

Heat Olive oil in a medium pan.  Add garlic and cook until golden brown.  Add in onions and cook until tender. Add diluted corn starch and stir.  Add soy sauce and vinegar and cook for about two minutes.  Add brown sugar and stir well. Add water as needed to prevent sauce from drying up.

Sweet And Sour Cream Dory

image.jpegEver since I moved back to the Philippines, I’ve been fancying this farm-raised fish called Pangasius or cream dory.  It’s akin to the taste and texture of tilapia and catfish, and is rich in protein and Omega-3 fatty acids.

It’s mostly available in superpermarkets – packaged as fillets imported from Vietnam.

The possibilities are endless when preparing cream dory.  I’ve tried preparing them cured (sweet), as a ceviche, steamed or fried.  This recipe calls for a sweet and sour sauce.

INGREDIENTS

2 pcs., cream dory fillet,

1/2 cup red bell pepper, cut into tiny cubes

1/2 cup green bell pepper, cut into tiny cubes

1/2 cup pineapple chunks (or tidbits) with the juice

3 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed

1 small onion, chopped

1 small tomato chopped

Salt and pepper to taste

2 tbsps., white vinegar

1/2 cup water

4 tbsps. Olive oil

Corn starch for dredging

DIRECTIONS

Thaw and wash the fillets then pat dry them with paper towel.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Dredge with corn starch. Heat 3 tbsps Olive oil in a pan over medium heat.  Fry the fillets until slightly browned on each side.  Remove from heat and set aside.

Heat the remaining Olive oil in the same pan over medium heat.  Add garlic and sauté until golden brown.  Add onions and cook until tender.  Add tomatoes and stir-fry for another minute.  Add bell peppers and cook until slightly tender. Add vinegar. Add salt and pepper to taste. Add pineapple chunks, including the juice.  Add water and let simmer for two minutes before removing from heat.

Place cooked fillets on a serving platter and pour the sweet and sour vegetables/sauce over them.