Category: cooking

My Second Grader’s Lunch

There’s a saying, ” you are what you eat” or “your body shows what you eat”. So if a person is overweight, you can tell by the kind of food she eats. That is what I observe from people I see at the grocery stores, those who are obese are filling their carts with frozen foods, boxes of sodas, pizza, corn dogs, ice cream and a whole lot more. Not even a single fresh produce can be seen in their carts.

The school my second grader attends to offers free breakfast and lunch. Although they are free, I still pack her lunch instead of just relying from what the cafeteria is giving to the kids. Their food falls in what we call “junks” category. I have to make sure how much my child eat during lunch and to ensure what she’s getting is good and not just random junks like what they feed to the students.

Brutal as it sounds but it’s true. Besides, we are not that poor to not being able to afford our child’s meal. At home, I do 99% cooking of our meals. There should be vegetables and fruits in every meal or I feel guilty not giving my children the necessary nutrients their little bodies need for growing up.

Here’s samples of what I pack for my second grader. First photo was yesterday’s lunch and it’s a Filipino food for that’s what she was asking for. It is actually a repeat of what she had the previous day. She said, she liked the fried pork and rice very much, so her wish is my command.

Second photo is today’s lunch. American food this time so she doesn’t get tired eating the same meal everyday. I kind of packed her too much today but if she really likes what’s in her lunch box, she would eat it all. I shall see if there’s a leftover when she comes back from school this afternoon.

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Stuffed Peppers Recipe

I learned something new today. One of the FB friends posted her photo of stuffed bell pepper and I asked how she did it. It is so simple and easy that I don’t need to have the recipe in front of me while cooking. It is my first try to do this tonight and it resulted delicious.

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Here’s how you do it.
3-4 large bell peppers
half a pound ground beef, brown it first before stuffing it in
diced onions, sliced mushrooms
pinch of salt
pinch of ground black pepper
a small can of tomato sauce
one cup cooked rice

Preheat oven at 400 degrees F.
You use cooked rice for faster/easy stuffing then mix all ingredients once beef is brown, stuff it all in the peppers, add some shredded cheese of your choice. Put in the oven and bake for 25-30 minutes. Serve hot and enjoy!

You don’t necessarily follow all stuffing above, you can create your own if you prefer.

6-Topping Homemade Pizza

Pizza is bad, it contributes to your continuing growth of your belly but heck, it’s delicious. I love pizza but having a homemade pizza will make it less deadly, I believe. Although the dough is not from scratch, still I consider it healthy, haha.

Here’s what we had for dinner last night. I am proud to say that, with less baking experience I am still able to feed my family pizza with toppings we prefer. Dough and pizza sauce were store bought, but the toppings? I sliced/shred them myself.

Toppings include shredded sharp cheddar cheese, sliced canned pineapple, red bell pepper, pepperoni, sweet onions, olives, pre-cooked Italian sausage, minced garlic, a dash of sea salt and ground black pepper to taste.

The outcome? Yummy! It was all gone in one night. You see, we were getting healthy ingredients by making it at home instead of just ordering it at a pizza house or buying the frozen pizza with less toppings on it. Plus, it is easy to prepare and fast.

 

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Healthy Eating is the Best

I have been doing my home workout since February but I see very little changes especially in my abdomen area. I must admit, maintaining my healthy diet is not easy for me. There were days that I just let myself go and eat whatever I can see on the kitchen counter or in the fridge, most of which are baked products with lots of sugar and other additives in it.

I workout 3-4 times a week and walk twice a week yet my abdomen still has some thick belly fat. Unless I alter my diet, I shall not expect something is going to happen with my belly fat. This week, I promise that I would only eat less greasy, less starchy and less calories foods in order to at least shrink my fat. I know this would be a challenge but I am up for it.

Here are sample cooking I do at home during these times when I really need to weigh half a pound or less.
I found live crabs at a Mexican mart last time I went there and bought four pieces of it. I just steamed them with onions and a bit of garlic, sprinkled with ground pepper and dipped in melted butter. The result is yummylicious! I prefer the crabs to be cooked this way, it’s healthier, simple, less hassle and quick.

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Another one is our brunch today, a small bowl of oatmeal with cinnamon powder, pinch of salt and honey. Paired with fried Italian sausage, cantaloupe and cucumber. My girls love what I prepared for them. Again, it’s not greasy and has amazing benefits to our body.

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Complete Filipino Breakfast

This is my breakfast this morning. I should say, nothing beats Filipino foods. I wouldn’t exchange it for a burger, steak or tacos. To me, it is perfect already. Exactly the food I want to indulge everyday of my life. It was Mother’s Day yesterday but we weren’t able to go out and celebrate outside due to severe thunderstorm.

So what I did is, I spend my entire afternoon in the kitchen making “glutinous suman or budbud” and poto flan. Budbud is near perfect, just need a little bit more coconut milk but it’s good. Gladly, I got all available sides to pair with it like pure cocoa drink, fried milkfish, ripe mango and voila! It’s delicious, tasty and oh so filling!

I made a lot of people drool as soon as I posted this on Facebook, cruel me haha. When it comes to Filipino food, I feel lucky to be able to cook and eat it here despite of the fact that I am not in my home country to enjoy delectable goodies I used to eat when I was growing up! Almost all food that I crave to eat is available at the Asian market except for fresh fish, seaweeds and other seafood that I can only find in the Philippines.

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Banana Muffins with Chia Seeds and Almond Nuts

Baking might not be very healthy because of sugar, flour and other unhealthy ingredients in it but you can make it healthier by adding some good stuff in whatever you wish to make for your kids or family. For example, this banana muffins pictured below. I used the usual banana bread recipe I can find online but I added two tablespoons of chia seeds and slivered almond nuts to it, not only it taste good but with those two added ingredients makes it beneficial to our body.

Another thing, I recently found that stir-fry asparagus not only is very delicious but also simple  to cook. With a few sprinkles of seasonings, viola! You can have crunchy and tender tasty cut up asparagus paired with my nutty muffins. I just loved the combo! I make sure that we have vegetables to eat everyday and or fruits.

You can always choose to eat healthy and at the same time prepare simple dishes for your family. By doing this, it puts your mind at ease because what your family is getting is nutritious!

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Heavenly Food in Our Kitchen

Whenever I see food flooding on my Facebook page posted by friends, I can’t help but drool. When I do have my delicious homecooked food, rest assured I share it to them too. Here are of the recent Filipino goodness I prepared. They are tasty, some of the mare healthy, a few are greasy but sinfully good!

First and second photos below is an oven roasted pork belly with lots of onions and garlic inside with lemongrass. Brushed with soy sauce and olive oil, roasted in 350 degrees for 1.5 hours. Ideal time would be 2 hours, next time I’d do that. It is so tasty and really good once done, it made the whole house smelled divine too!

Third photo is a grilled Indian mackerel which I did a week ago and it’s all gone now. It is guilt-free recipe for there is no grease in it except its own oil and some salt to taste. Fourth, is a famous Filipino vegetable stir-fry called “pinakbet”. Vegetables that are in it; okra, bitter gourd, Chinese eggplant, squash and long yard beans with shrimp fry and lefover roasted pork belly.

I take pride of my cooking for it fills our hungry stomach, keep us full for hours, they are delicious and healthy! Well, except for the rice… but I am trying to substitute rice now with oatmeal.
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Our Small Thanksgiving Feast

These are just the food I prepared last night for our Thanksgiving dinner. I also made macaroni salad Filipino version but wasn’t able to include in the picture. I baked some chicken drumsticks instead of roasting a whole turkey. Reasons are; it’s too big and it would take us a while to eat the whole thing and I have not tried roasting turkey before, it’s such a big meat and I don’t want to take the risk of screwing it up.

We had turkey last year but it was my husband who worked in the kitchen. Another recipe I cooked is a classic green bean casserole. Thanks to Liliana Hart on FB for sharing her easy to follow recipe.

As usual, we celebrated another Holiday simply with my family. I guess it is going to be like this until we will have grandchildren coming over to our house every Holiday.

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… below is the screenshot recipe of the classic green bean casserole…
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Filipino Comfort Food for this Rainy Day

We woke up to a damp, gloomy and dark morning, it has been like that up to now. I can’t complain because it is my kind of weather. It is raining but the temperature is in the 60’s. It is also for a change, from sunny days to a dark day like today.

Since I stay at home a lot and freezer is full of awesome stocks of food, what else can I do? Cooking is one of my favorite things to do to satisfy my cravings.

I had two things in mind before I went to bed last night, I had a Cornish chicken and shredded young coconut meat thawed. Before noon time today, I spent at least over an hour in the kitchen making this native chicken soup with lemon grass, moringa and chayote, perfect for rainy colder day. I also prepared some “buko-pandan salad” for dessert, it’s my second born’s favorite.

With these comfort foods I have, I am good at staying home for a few days, I don’t mind not going anywhere though. With gloomy weather due to rain, I’d rather be safe, warm, comfortable and snuggling with my children at home.

I can’t stop thinking about the native soup in the kitchen, it made everyone in my FB list drool for they too, wanted to have some of it but unfortunately not all ingredients are available where they are.

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Round Scad Paksiw

Here’s one of my favorite Filipino dish, round scad paksiw or we call it “inun-unan” in Cebu. I know a lot of Filipinos love this dish, it is delicious and truly make them salivate. It is best paired with warm rice or grits. I am just lucky to have this fish in stock in our refrigerator for whenever I crave for inun-unan, I can just thaw it and cook it. Craving satisfied in no time.

For Filipinos who can’t buy this kind of fish in their market, it’s unfortunate of them. I know someone who spent so much money buying inun unan online or fried fish just so she can eat it. Of course, dishes are sold from fellow Filipinas who charge so much money for it.

You know, when you are far from home and you really crave for something which you know you can buy from afar, you won’t mind spending money on it, so long that it will get to you on time before it gets rotten.

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