How to cook: White corn and vegetables soup with squash blossoms

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Before 2012 ended, there was a get-together with Speedy's side of the family at my in-laws' house. Over food and drinks, Speedy's youngest brother, Richie, started bantering about when we would host another get-together in our house in the boondocks. We used to have the Veneracion family get-togethers here until my … »

How to cook: Sigarillas (winged bean), patani (lima bean) and squash in coconut milk

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When Speedy said he had ginataang sigarillas at some eatery and liked it, I agreed to try and reproduce it at home. How hard could that be, right? There is really just one basic way to cook stews in coconut milk — saute the aromatics, add the vegetables, pour in the coconut milk and stew away. The variety lies not in the … »

How to cook: Gingered mussel soup

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The fastest and easiest way to ruin any seafood dish is by overcooking. Unlike meat, seafood turns chewy and rubbery with overcooking. And they shrink like anything.Most people make mussel soup by adding the mussels to the pan before pouring in the water. I don’t. I let the water boil first BEFORE adding the mussels. … »

How to cook: Gising-gising (spicy pork and green beans with coconut milk)

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The first time I ate gising-gising was at Chic-boy. I hadn't heard of the dish before, I asked the girl at the counter what it was exactly and she said it was a spicy chop suey. Sounded good; we ordered it. Fast forward to several months later and Jeanette posted a recipe of gising-gising on her blog. Surprisingly, it was a … »

How to cook: Dinuguan (pork and blood stew)

dinuguan

Dinuguan comes from the root word dugo, or blood. This dish is so named because it is a stew made with the blood of a freshly-slaughtered pig. Traditionally cooked using a mixture of pork cheeks, lungs and intestines, this version -- made with pork belly, cheeks and liver -- should make the not-too-adventurous less … »

How to cook: Pinakbet, an Ilocano pork and vegetable stew with shrimp paste

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If you ask the average Filipino what Ilocano cooking is all about, he'll likely say, "Bagnet, empanada and pinakbet." Of course, Ilocano cooking is much, much more than those three dishes. But bagnet, Ilocano empanada and pinakbet are sort of iconic and they are loved by Ilocanos and non-Ilocanos alike.What is pinakbet? … »

How to cook: Inasal na manok (grilled chicken, Bacolod style)

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When Speedy asked me once if I knew how to make inasal na manok, I said yes without a second thought. In fact, I was rather surprised because the implication was that inasal na manok is something complicated or that the recipe is a tightly guarded secret. Literally, inasal na manok means roasted chicken, inasal being … »

How to cook: Maruya (Saba banana fritters)

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Fried banana is a staple in many Latin American and Caribbean cuisines. Tostones, also known as patacones, are plantains sliced and fried, pounded to flatten then fried a second time until crisp and golden. Tajadas are fried plantains sliced vertically and often served alongside a main dish. Banana chips made with plantain … »