Category: food

First Time Making Japanese Rice with Seaweed

One of the many things I love eating is seaweeds. I grew up eating fresh seafood and seaweeds. It has iodine in it and other minerals that are beneficial to our body. With that said, trying out Korean or Japanese seaweeds are heavenly to me.

I remember when I first tasted Korean seaweed soup years ago, I thought it smelled strange and I did not like it much but then once I get used to it, I learned to love the soup. However, with Japanese seaweed, I loved it the moment I put some in my mouth. I just love the smell of sesame oil and seeds that’s in it.

So when we went to Korean store three weeks ago, I was happy to see seasoned Japanese seaweed also, I bought me two packs and I still have them in a jar these days, eating them slowly you know? Anyway, I found a a small jar of Japanese seaweed rice seasoning. I did not regret buying it for it makes my rice tastes good.

Sprinkle the rice with the seasoning, a spoonful of sesame oil, a bit of salt, a spoonful of apple cider vinegar and some sesame seeds, voila! I made myself some Japanese rice paired with pickled Korean cucumber, marinated fried milkfish and of course, Japanese seaweed. My meal is sooooo delicious that I can eat it forever!

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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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Seafood 101: Tips for Buying the Best

Almost everybody loves seafood, right? Whether you pair yours with a great steak and call it surf and turf, or you like your seafood as the star of the meal, you can’t really beat premium seafood for lunch or dinner.

However, if you’re like a lot of people you aren’t quite sure how to pick out the best seafood. It doesn’t have to be a struggle though, and you don’t have to just guess and hope you get lucky.

Use this guide to help you pick out the best seafood no matter what you like.

Buy Local

Whether you live near the Gulf of Mexico, the Pacific Ocean or the Atlantic Ocean, chances are there’s a body of water near you. The seafood that comes out of that water is often going to be your best bet when it comes to getting fresh, high-quality food that you’re really going to enjoy.

If you’re not sure what’s local to your area you may want to talk with your local fishmonger or somebody in the area who knows. That way you can pick the best, freshest fish and seafood all of the time.

Choose Reputable Suppliers

Buying local seafood isn’t always possible, especially if you want a certain variety. That doesn’t mean you’re doomed to seafood that isn’t good though.

It does mean that you need to choose reputable suppliers for your seafood purchases. Only buy from a company that chooses high-quality seafood to sell to their customers.

Filipino Foods During Our Picnic

April 25 myself, my family and a group of Filipinas in our area agreed to gather together and had a picnic near the back of Benbrook Lake. It was such a beautiful day, the weather was perfect for picnic with a group of crazy and fun people that consist of mostly Bisayan-speaking like me. Two of whom speak Tagalog.

Anyway, you know when Filipinos gather, you can expect plentiful of food to be served at the table. Yes, I must admit, we love to eat and eat and eat while chit chatting nonstop. That’s just how we are. Imagine, we live close by yet we don’t get to hangout a lot often. So when we have the time, rest assured, chaos and loud mouths are to be expected.

According to my husband, we brought more food than we contributed. I told him, that’s just pretty normal. We bring food and we take home a lot. Everybody is a winner. We will not go home empty-handed because no one would want to bring back her food. Might as well, share it to others and enjoy the left over at home.

Photo below were the foosd that each of us brought to the picnic. As you can see, there were squid, tuna kinilaw – my contribution, rice, fried fish, chicken bbq, pinakbit- not on the picture, fried shrimp, noodles, eggplant salad, pork adobo, boiled sweet potatoes, pork with carrots. Some desserts like leche flan, maja blanca and sweet glutinous rice.

Looking at the food in the photo, makes you want to think that there was a big birthday celebration or a fiesta going on but no, it was just truly a simple picnic on a beautiful day.

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Healthy Eating at Home

When it comes to eating meals, everybody gets a fair amount of food I serve for them on their plate, well, I am talking about my two girls. My husband will sometimes take care of himself and figure out what to eat in that particular night if I don’t cook him anything. But for my girls, they eat what I give them and it is usually Filipino food.

They are trained eating healthy Pinoy food ever since they started eating solid food. With that being said, I have no problem what to give them these days or I don’t have to think about feeding them differently when I have something freshly cooked in our kitchen. One of the many foods they can eat is native vegetable stew paired with rice, sausage, shrimp fry, salted anchovy or dried fish at times.

Just by looking at their plates pictured below, you wouldn’t think that the ones who are eating the food are half Americans because not all FIL-AM kids eat this kind of food. There are just kiddos that we can’t force to eat what they don’t like to eat.

But my girls, I am super proud of them. You can give them anything Filipino. In fact, they prefer eating my food rather than some American food. However, they love pizza, mac and cheese, pancakes, bacon, hash brown and a few others.

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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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