2012 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

4,329 films were submitted to the 2012 Cannes Film Festival. This blog had 26,000 views in 2012. If each view were a film, this blog would power 6 Film Festivals

Click here to see the complete report.


Spicy BBQ Guava Chicken

Spicy BBQ Guava Chicken
by Heny Sison

2 pcs Chicken breast fillet
1 pouch Clara Ole BBQ Marinade Spicy
4 packs Crackers
180 g Clara Ole Guava Jelly
as needed Water

1. Marinate chicken breast in half pouch of BBQ marinade for 4-6 hours. Reserve remaining half for sauce.
2. Break crackers into equal bite size pieces.
3. Pan grill chicken until cooked through and cut into very thin slices. Set aside.
4. Pour remaining marinade into another pan and thin out with a little water, just enough so that the sauce can be used for drizzling. Bring to a boil and set aside.
5. Top each cracker with a small quenelle of guava jelly.
6. Fan out 2-3 slices of chicken and top on guava jelly quenelles.
7. Drizzle with BBQ sauce.

guava jelly

Easy Seafood Casserole

Easy Seafood Casserole
by Chef Jill Sandique’s family friend, Tita Betty Chicote-Garcia
Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Cooking Time: 10 to 15 minutes
Serves 6 – 8

1/2 cup olive oil
1 cup sliced onion
1 cup sliced celery
2 Tbsp minced garlic
4 small crabs, washed and drained
500 grams shrimps or prawns, washed and drained
2 cups mussels
2 cups clams
2 large squids, washed and drained
1 Tbsp LEA & PERRINS Worcestershire Sauce
1½ cups Heinz Tomato Ketchup
LEA & PERRINS Hot Pepper Sauce
2 tsp soy sauce
1 cup water, or as needed
sugar as needed
salt to taste


1. Peel the shrimps or prawns, leaving the heads and tails intact. Detach the carapace then cut the crabs in half. Slice the squid into rings. Set aside.
2. In a large, shallow pan, sauté the onion, celery and garlic in olive oil until aromatic. Add the crabs, then shrimps or prawns. Cook briefly then add the seafood, LEA & PERINS Worcestershire Sauce, Heinz Tomato Ketchup, LEA & PERRINS Hot Pepper Sauce, soy sauce and water. Mix well and cook just until done. Do not overcook. Season with sugar and salt.
3. Transfer to a serving bowl. Serve immediately.

Chef’s Tips: You may also serve this with 2 loaves of toasted baguette. Overcooking will make the seafood tough.


Pasta with Vigan ‘longganisa’

Pasta with Vigan ‘longganisa’
by Norma O. Chikiamco

For the pasta:
16 c (4 L) water, for boiling pasta
½ tbsp salt
½ tbsp cooking oil
450 g  linguine

Longganisa sauce:
350 g Vigan longganisa (about 12 pieces)
1½ c water
5 tbsp olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
¾ c chicken stock or chicken broth
½ c coarsely chopped cilantro leaves (wansuy)
½ c strips of basil leaves
1 red bell pepper, minced
Juice of 1 lemon
Salt and pepper, to taste
½ c grated Parmesan or Romano cheese

Cook the pasta:
In a large pot or casserole, bring water to a boil then add salt, cooking oil and linguine. Let boil for 10-12 minutes or until al dente stage. Drain pasta and set aside.

Make the sauce:
In a large pan, cook longganisa in water until water evaporates. Add about 1 tbsp of the olive oil and sauté longganisa until firm. Remove from pan. Slice into serving pieces and set aside.

In the same pan, pour in remaining olive oil and sauté garlic over medium heat until fragrant. Add the cooked linguine and toss to coat.
Pour in chicken stock or chicken broth, a little at a time, to keep pasta moist. Add cilantro, basil, bell pepper, lemon juice and the sliced longganisa. Season to taste with salt and pepper and toss well. Turn off heat.
Transfer pasta to a serving platter and sprinkle with cheese. Serve hot, with garlic bread if desired.

Cook’s tips:
If desired, you can use other types of longganisa.
Be careful not to burn the garlic so it doesn’t turn bitter.
You can also add strips of sun-dried tomatoes for more flavor. Refresh the sun-dried tomatoes in a bowl of warm water for about 10 minutes then drain them before slicing into strips.


Panna cotta

Panna cotta
by Ernest Santiago Reynoso

Prepare 6-1/2 capacity ramekins or custard cups. You may also use 12 demitasse cups (tiny coffee cups ). If using custard cups, grease bottom and sides with softened butter.

1 vanilla bean, cut lengthwise and split into two, scrape off the seeds or use 2 tsps. vanilla extract
2 Tbsps. unflavored gelatin
2 cups Magnolia fresh milk
1 cup cold all-purpose cream
3/4 granulated sugar.

Optional accompaniment: 1 jar (1/2 cup) Magnolia Best Fruits mango or apple cinnamon jam. Heat over low fire with 3 Tbsps. water. Put in a sauceboat.

Put the vanilla seeds or extract in a medium bowl with the unflavored gelatin, sugar, milk. Let stand for five minutes to allow the gelatin to bloom or expand. Then put the bowl over a pan with two inches deep of boiling water. Stir with a wire whisk until simmering. Remove from fire and add cold all-purpose cream. Mix with wire whisk. Pour on prepared molds. Refrigerate until firm, about one hour.

Dip the bottom of each 1/2 capacity mold in hot water for one minute. Unmold on dessert plate. Note: if using demitasse cups, serve as is with its accompanying underliner (plate) and a teaspoon. Decorate with mint leaves, if desired.

knox gelatin


by Reggie Aspiras

For the glaze and sauce:
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup corn syrup
1/2 cup molasses
1/8 tsp. nutmeg
1/8 tsp. all spice powder
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. Dijon mustard (use 2 tsp. if ordinary kind)
1/4 cup water
1/2 tsp. salt
Purefoods Fiesta ham, cooked, about 1 kilo
1/2″x6″ sugarcane sticks
1/2 cup chicken stock
salt and pepper to taste

For the glaze and sauce:
In a saucepan, add 1 cup brown sugar, 1/2 cup corn syrup, 1/4 cup molasses, 1/8 tsp. nutmeg, 1/8 tsp. all spice, 1/2 tsp. cinnamon, 1 tsp. Dijon mustard, 1/4 cup water and 1/2 tsp. salt. Cook until thick and then brush on top of the ham.

Insert 1/2″x6″ sugarcane sticks on the ham and then cover with Glad aluminum foil. Bake covered for 15 minutes and then glaze again and bake uncovered for another 10 minutes.

To the remaining glaze, add 1/2 cup stock. Season with salt and pepper. Brush ham with glaze before serving.



by Heny Sison

2 pcs large eggs
3/4 cup sugar
2 cups heavy whipping cream
1 cup milk
2 tbsp green tea powder

Whisk the eggs in a mixing bowl until light and fluffy for 1 to 2 minutes.  Whisk in the sugar a little at atime.  continue whisking until completely blended, about 1 minute or more.  Add the green tea powder and whisk to blend.  Whisk in the cream and the milk.

green tea



Frozen Fruit Salad

Frozen Fruit Salad
by Dorothy Ferreria

A different version of the classic fruit salad, surrounded with sugar glazed fresh fruits. This dish doubles as a table centerpiece

454 gram-can dark sweet pitted cherries in extra heavy syrup
567 gram-can crushed pineapple
1 tbsp unflavored gelatin
1/4 cup water
300 ml-can condensed milk
250 ml pack all-purpose cream
1 cup cubed canned peaches or fresh ripe mango
1 cup diced apples (unpeeled)
2 cups sliced bananas

1. Drain the cherries in a colander. After about 30 minutes, blot the cherries with paper towels to remove excess syrup.
2. Drain the crushed pineapple in a colander. After about 30 minutes, press with a spoon to remove excess moisture.
3. Line a loaf pan (12” X 4 1/2”) with food grade plastic food film. Set aside.
4. In a saucepan, combine gelatin and water. Allow the gelatin to bloom or swell for 5 minutes and then cook over low heat until gelatin dissolves completely. Set aside.
5. Using an electric mixer, beat condensed milk and cream until blended. Pour in the gelatin solution. Set aside.
6. Add the rest of the ingredients to the cream mixture. Mix well and transfer to the prepared loaf pan. Freeze until firm.
7. To serve, remove the salad from the loaf pan. Peel off the plastic wrap and transfer to a serving platter. Thaw a bit before slicing.

fruit salad


by Reggie Aspiras

3/4 c raisins
3/4 c dried cranberries
3/4 c dried blueberries
3/4 c dried cherries
1/2 c dried apricots
1/4 c candied ginger
Zest from 1 lemon
Zest from 1 orange
1 c rum
1 and 1/4 c apple juice
1/2 c butter
1 c sugar
2 large eggs
1 c all-purpose flour
1 c whole-wheat flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1/2 tsp ground allspice
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 and 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 c coarsely chopped pecans
Brandy to taste

Mix raisins, dried fruits, candied ginger, lemon and orange zests, and rum. Soak overnight.
The next day, stir apple juice, butter and sugar into the fruit and rum mixture. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and cool.
Add eggs and set aside.
In a bowl, mix together the all-purpose flour, whole-wheat flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, allspice, cloves, salt and pecans.
Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and mix until just combined. There will be some lumps but that is ok. Do not overmix.
Pour batter into a 5 x 9 x 2 and 1/2 inches loaf pan. Bake for one hour and test for doneness. If wet crumbs adhere to the skewer, return cake to oven and bake an additional five minutes. Retest for doneness in five-minute intervals until skewer comes out clean.
Set pan on a cooling rack and sprinkle with brandy.
After cake is completely cooled, sprinkle with brandy again and wrap first with plastic wrap then with aluminum foil. The cake may now be served. The cake improves, however, with aging and the addition of more brandy.

To age the fruitcake
Unwrap the cake and sprinkle with brandy every other day for two weeks, then once a week for the next two weeks.
When giving this fruitcake as a gift, I garnish the top of the finished cake with rows of the dried fruits used in the cake. The fruits are then brushed with strained marmalade to form an attractive glaze.

To make this recipe your own, substitute any or all of the fruits with those of your own choice. For example, you might like to try dried mango, dried papaya and dried pineapple for a tropical flair. Coconut could also be added and pili nuts would be a good substitution for the pecans. The main thing to consider when substituting is to maintain the total volume of fruit at 3½ cups.



by Heny Sison

1/3 cup confectioners’ sugar
1 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 tsps baking powder
6 tbsp cold unsalted butter, cubed
1 pc large egg, slightly beaten
assorted fresh fruits for topping

1.  Preheat oven to 400 F.
2.  Butter a 10-inch fluted tart pan with a removable bottom.  Set aside.
3.  Put the confectioners’ sugar, all purpose flour and baking powder in the bowl of a food processor.  Pulse to combine.
4.  Add the cubed butter.  Pulse until the butter becomes the size of peas.
5.  Add the eggs through the feed tube while the motor is running.  Process until the dough holds together.
6.  Wrap in plastic cling wrap and chill for 30 minutes or until ready to use.
7.  Pat the dough into a disk and lightly flour each side.  Roll the dough into a 12-inch circle about 1/4 inch thick.  After each roll with the rolling pin, rotate the dough a quarter turn.  Work quickly to prevent the butter from melting.
8.  Transfer the dought to the tart pan by rolling it around the rolling pin.  Hold the rolling pin over the pan and unroll the dough into the pan.  Gently press the dough into the bottom and sides of the pan.  Remove the excess dough by rolling the rolling pin on top of the pan.
9.  Using a fork, dock the sides and bottom of the tart shell.  Chill for 15 minutes.
10. Blind-bake at 400 F for 15 minutes.  Remove the pie weight.  Lower the oven temperature to 350 F and return the partially baked tart crust to the oven.  Continue baking for another 25 minutes or until golden in color.  Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
11. Spread the pastry cream on the baked and cooled crust.  Top with fresh fruits.

Pastry Cream:
3 tbsp all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 tbsp butter
1 cup whole milk
3 pcs eggyolks, slightly beaten
1 tsp vanilla

Mix the flour, sugar and butter in a medium saucepan.  Add the milk, slightly beaten eggyolks and vanilla.  Mix using a wire wisk and cook until creamy.  Remove from the heat and cool.