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      I love spring rolls, and I don’t mind at all how long it takes to make it, after all patience is a virtue . Back home we call spring rolls as “Lumpia”, and it has variety of fillings. It can be a meaty porky filling, or some tutty fruity ones, usually made up of banana, jack fruit, or a sweet mongo bean paste. Come to think of it, I used to sale lumpia back in grade school, and I almost got suspended coz the teacher in-charge of the canteen reported my sorry a$$ to the principal. DUH! How can a 9 years old could be the downfall of a school canteen? Thanks to her, I learned the basics of capitalism. Sad,sad,sad tragic event for a third grader, but did it stop me from selling other food stuff? HELL NO! Yes, at 9, I was already a guerilla vendor,bwahahaha. Me like more my nickles and dimes than to be completely penniless and have nothing to support my needs, hmmm……buying Gundam stickers and different colors of rubber bands. Amen to that!

Here’s a simple vegetarian recipe for a spring roll filling, and a tutorial on how to wrap a spring roll. For first timer rollers (sorry I couldn’t find any appropriate terms on this, lol!), don’t be intimated on how to start your spring rolls rolling. It doesn’t need to be perfectly wrap. Just have some fun, and savor the fruit of your rolling labor .

Ingredients:
Spring Roll Wrapper
2 cups finely chopped cabbage
1 1/2 cups finely shredded carrots
1 cup fresh shredded coconut pulp
Note: Frozen one will do, but if you can’t avail either, replace the coconut with mung bean sprouts which you can easily avail at any grocery store.

1/4 cup roasted sesame seeds
2 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp minced ginger
1 regular size habanero pepper minced
1 tsp soy sauce
1/2 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp cooking oil
black pepper
green onions

Procedure:
1. In a hot pan, add the cooking oil and saute the ginger, habanero pepper, and the onion (put the bulb part of the onion first)

2.Add the carrots and stir for a minute, then add the cabbage,salt,sugar,soy sauce and a dash of black pepper. Stir for 2 minutes.

3. Stir in the roasted coconut and sesame seeds for a minute, then mix in the green onion stalks.

4. Let it cool and set aside.

Wrapping Procedure:
1. Let the spring roll wrapper defrost to room temperature.
I use this brand:

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2. Cover the spring roll wrapper as well as the finish spring roll with a damp paper towel to keep it moist.

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3. Deep fry until golden brown.

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4. Follow this tutorial video, and enjoy rolling.

Wrapping and frying tips:

1. Wrap the filling as tight as you can to avoid opening during frying, but don’t wrap it too tight, or you’ll end up tearing the wrapper.

2. Make sure that the oil is hot, or you’ll end up with a soft and oily spring roll rather than crispy.

 

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Yesterday was Pandava Nirjal Ekadasi, and it was really challenging. Not just physically, but most especially spiritually. By Krishna’s mercy, I made it! Although, I have to take a tiny sip of water, for I was already having double vision due to my headache (LOL)! My husband and I was chanting our rounds, but he chanted more than me. I struggled a bit not to look at the box of champagne mangoes we have at the kitchen counter, and to divert my attention, aside from chanting, I ended up cutting paper patterns for my gopi skirt project. To keep us awake and to be somehow absorb in our KC on Nirjal, we tuned up to Krishna. com’s live broadcast and listened to bhajans and lectures, and of course more chanting. All in all, it was a really nice Nirjal Ekadasi. The following day, we didn’t have anything special to break our fast, instead we just had some mangoes and some home made muesli, and then the usual, going back to work. While I was at work, I received a text message from my husband that we should make some donuts to celebrate, and since it’s the “National Donut Day”. So, since we didn’t really had a feast after fasting, we decided to make some donuts 🙂

This is the hubby’s Recipe, so I’ll call it Radha Ramana’s Donut (^_^) LOL!

 

Radha Ramana’s Donut

 

Ingredients:
23 oz all purpose flour,
1/4 cup sugar,
3 tbsp ener-g egg re-placer,
pinch of salt,
1 tsp fresh ground nutmeg,
1 1/2 cup whole milk,
1/4 cup yogurt,
2 1/2 oz butter or vegetable shortening,
2 packs instant yeast.
Procedure:
Mix all the dry ingredients with the nutmeg. Warm the milk to lukewarm temperature, and the yeast and mix it. Wait for couple of minutes for bubbles to show up. Melt the butter into room temperature. Now, stir in the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients. Set your mixer to setting #2 for 10 minutes. After mixing, the dough will be shiny and not too sticky. Add flour or milk as needed. Set aside the dough for at least an hour covered with a towel. The dough will double it’s size. Sprinkle some flour on the table, and roll the dough into 1 inch thickness, and cut your donuts. Spread the cut donuts because it’ll double its size and also to avoid sticking, and leave it for 20-30 minutes. Ready the frying pan, and make sure it has enough oil at least 1 1/2 deep. Fry the donuts for about 2 minutes on each side until it’s golden. Let the donuts, cool down just a bit and start glazing and filling. Simple glaze example like fresh raspberry, mash them and add a tad of lemon juice and mix with powdered sugar.
Home made donuts! Raspberry and Blueberry glazing, and Dark Chocolate glazing w/ Chocolate soya pudding filling (^_^)!!! These waist expanders are what we’ve eaten after Nirjal Ekadasi!!! Thank you Krishna we made it \(^_^)/!!!

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I’d been craving for Filipino food lately; the one that my mother used to cook! Even though almost all of those culinary memories are associated with meat and fish, I still can’t help but to long for my mother’s cooking. I’m certain it’s not the taste I’m hankering for, but it’s the amount of love and care my mother put into preparing and cooking the food. One of my personal favorite, is the one w/ black beans savory sauce with bokchoy! I love the pungent smell of black bean sauce! I know it sounds weird, but for me, the aroma of it brings back happy childhood memories. So, to satisfy my cravings, I made some veggie 2na with black bean sauce, bokchoy, and added some seasoned tofu. I also added my own masala concoction into this one, hahaha! If you notice in this recipe, a lot of tomatoes are needed. Since the black beans sauce is so salty, the tomatoes helps to mellow it down.

Ingredients:

veggie 2na (about 6-8 pieces)

seasoned tofu (optional)

2 tbsp of black beans sauce

2 tsp of white sugar

1 big tomato (cut in small pieces, if you can’t avail of a big tomato, 3 medium size tomatoes will do too)

2 tbsp minced ginger

2 cups water

1 tsp sesame oil

2 tsp peanut oil

3 cluster of bokchoy

2 medium size red and yellow sweet bell pepper ( cut into small cubes, and you can used any color you want)

broccoli florets (about a handful)

some chives for garnishing

Masala:

1/2 tsp Hungarian paprika

1/2 tsp grounded black pepper

1/2 tsp hing/asoefatida ( you can buy this in any Indian store)

Procedure:

1. Pan fry the veggie 2na until golden brown. Set aside.

2. Cut the seasoned tofu into small cubes and pan fry. Set aside.

3. Cut the bokchoy and separate the leaves from the steam. Cut the steam into medium size cubes.

4. In a hot pan, pour in the peanut oil. When oil is hot, put the ginger and cooked it until slightly brown. Add in the masala and stir it with the ginger.

5. Mix in the tomatoes, bell peppers, and seasoned tofu and add the 2 cups of water. Simmer for 2 minutes.

6. Add the black beans sauce, sugar, bokchoy steams, and broccoli. Stir and simmer again for 2 minutes.

7. Add the bokchoy leaves and sesame oil, and do a quick stir.

8. Lastly, put the veggie 2na and simmer it for a second. Garnish it with some chives.

 

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My first try in making Hong Kong style Snow Skin Moon Cake! The green one is flavored with Pandan essence, while the pink one is coconut flavor. Both have Adzuki bean paste w/ walnuts filling. (^_^) I just followed the ingredients and procedure from this video.

However, instead of only 80 gms for both of the rice flour and the glutinous rice flour, I did 100 grams for each, since I find it kind of watery with the 200 grams of milk. Also, the red bean paste filling I use is store brought, and I added some chopped walnuts on it.

1. Use a cling wrap when you’re kneading the moon cake dough. In this way, your dough is smoother and it won’t stick to your hands.

2. For the cooked starch, I just steamed a couple tablespoon of corn starch covered with paper towel for 15 minutes.

P.S.

Excuse my blurry pictures, for I don’t have a camera (it’s broken 😦 ) Instead, I took the photos via my iPhone.

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Tofu Adobo (Updated)

Adobo is a very popular method of cooking in the Philippines. Perhaps, it’s the most popular and most distinguished among all Filipino cuisines, unfortunately, it’s commonly associated with meat. It has simple ingredients and very flexible procedures, so I come up with my own version of vegetarian adobo. You can either cook it right away, or have it marinated and cook the next day. Either way, the result is the same, yummy!

Tofu Adobo

Ingredients:

sliced tofu (sliced as you like but just thick enough in size; I cut mine in triangular shape)

1/2 cup lemon juice

6 pieces of slice lemon

1/2 cup of soy sauce or Bragg aminos

dried bay leaves

1 tsp salt

1 tsp sugar

1/2 tsp black pepper

sliced ginger (about 1/4 cup)

1 tbsp of oil

1 tsp of sesame oil

Procedure:

1. Drained and sliced the tofu and deep fry (you can pan fry also), set aside.

2. Slice the lemon and ginger and set aside.

3. In a bowl combine, the soy sauce, lemon juice, bay leaves, salt, pepper and sugar stir well, this will be our adobo sauce.

4. In a hot pot, put the oil and sauté’ the sliced lemon, ginger and about 3 pieces of bay leaves.

5. Stir in the fried tofu, and let it simmer for 2 minutes.

6. Add the adobo sauce,mix well and make sure that the tofu are fully coated with the sauce, simmer for 2 -3 minutes then add the sesame oil.

7. Offer and serve with love 🙂 Hare Krishna!

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What would it take for a noodle gaga like me? Simple, just dare to cook all those noodle varieties available. From pansit bihon to pansit palabok, Italian spaghetti to Korean jab chae. Heck, even from instant ramen to the unbeatable instant pancit canton, I tried it all and dig it! Come to think of it, I survived my college days by eating instant noodles. Yes, the lazy way of just putting hot water, and viola, you have a hot serving of a hearty noodle. But since I got married, cooking the instant way has to change, or else my husband will disown me,LOL! I’d been eating noodles since time immemorial, in which the amount of noodles I’d eaten could encircle the globe to-and-fro beating Michael Palen, hahahaha! So, this time, I dare myself to cook the famous Pad Thai. I had never cooked Pad Thai, and I always wanted to learn how to do it. At first, I was really intimidated, but after reading some blogs and articles, I conditioned myself not to back out.

One of the best blogs that I find very helpful on how to cook Pad Thai for beginners, is Chez Pim’s blog. In there, she thoroughly explained everything up to the last bits and pieces of ingredients, procedures, and even cooking tips. The article is a long read, but trust me, it’s worth your time. When you’re done reading it, I can assure you that you are now fully equipped on how to make your very first and own Pad Thai, just like me (^_^) Good luck on your Pad Thai quest, and soon enough, you’ll forget about take out!

Click here at Chez Phim on tutorial on how to cook Pad Thai.

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Hmmmm….I miss my sio pao (pronounced as “shopaw”), and for that, I decided to made some. Sio Pao is a famous snack in the Philippines. It’s a good food on the go and very affordable. Making sio pao is not complicated at all even for first timers. You just need to be time conscious when you’re waiting for the dough to rise, otherwise you’ll over grow the dough, and this can really affect the texture of your dough resulting to a dry and heavy buns. When deciding on what fillings to make for the buns, just feel free to experiment, or I may say, do as you please. I decided to do a sweet filling which is made of sweet purple yam just because it’s my favorite,lol!

Ingredients:
Dough:

4 cups flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 tbsp baking powder
3 tbsp cooking oil
3 tsp dry yeast
1 cup lukewarm water
1 tbsp sugar

Filling:
For my filling, since I use a powdered purple yam, I just followed the instructions on the packaging. However, for a salty filling, you can use a some scrambled tofu,minced cabbage and carrots. Just stir fry it, add some soy sauce and any spices you like, but make sure that it’s not liquidy to avoid any problems with the dough.

Procedure:
1. Sift the flour and baking powder, then add up the 1/2 cup of sugar and the 3 tbsp of oil.
2. Mix together the yeast and sugar in a lukewarm water and stir until it’s lump free and wait till its bubbly.
3. Pour in the liquid mixture in the flour mixture and mix well. Form into a ball and cover with a damp cloth.
4. Leave the dough to rise for 1 hour or until it doubles its volume.
5. Once the dough arises, punch it in the middle and let it rise again for another 30 minutes.
6. After 30 minutes, knead the dough in a floured surface until it is smooth and not sticky.
7. Divide the dough into 2 balls and roll it into a log then cut it into small balls.

Note: I weighed my balls into 75 grams each just enough for a regular bun size, and it makes about 14 buns.


8.Flattened the balls into a circle and put the filling into the middle.


9.Pull the sides of the dough into the center in closing the bun.


10.Place the bun into a 4″x 5″ square parchment paper and cook in the steamer for 15 minutes.


11. After 15 minutes, viola! Your sio pao is ready 🙂

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