Two of my favorite Filipino dishes: Chicken Arroz Caldo and Tokwa’t Baboy.  I grew up eating these dishes cooked by my mom on rainy days when we’d all stay in at home.  Now that I live here in Sydney, I find comfort in these dishes during cold winter days.

Chicken Arroz Caldo

What you need for cooking:
Chicken breast cut into strips
1 cup of Glutinous Rice
2-3 cups of water
1 cup chicken broth
1 tbsp canola oil
1 whole onion, diced
6 cloves of garlic, minced
1 thumb-sized ginger, sliced
3-4 tbsp fish sauce
Pepper and salt (to taste)
Slices of Calamansi or Lemon

What you need for garnish:
6 cloves of garlic, diced and fried til golden brown
Chopped green onions
Boiled eggs, sliced
Chicharon (fried pork rinds), crushed

What you need to do:
1.  Saute onion, garlic and ginger in oil.
2.  Add chicken breast strips and stir til juice oozes from meat.
3.  Throw in the fish sauce, season as you stir.
4.  Add glutinous rice and wait til it turns brown in colour.
5.  While stirring, add chicken stock then water, one cup at a time.
6.  Bring to a boil, cover and let it simmer until grains start to crumble.
7.  Season with salt and pepper. 
8.  Keep stirring once in a while to make sure that the rice won’t stick to the bottom

Once your Chicken Arroz Caldo is finished, serve it in a bowl and add garnishes mentioned above. Squeeze the calamansi or lemon on top of the Chicken Arroz Caldo for more flavour.

Note: You can use other parts of the chicken for this dish: chicken wings, thighs or drumsticks.  Some also add chicken liver.  I choose chicken breast strips so my Arroz Caldo will be less fatty and oily.

Chicken Arroz Caldo

Tokwa’t Baboy (Tofu and Pork)

What you need:
1/4 kilo pork shoulder or pork belly, sliced into little cubes
1/4 kilo firm or extra firm tofu
1 onion, diced
4 tbsp soy sauce
5 tbsp vinegar
2 cups water
1 tsp brown sugar
Pepper and salt (to taste)
Canola oil

What you need to do:
1.  Boil pork in water.  When water runs dry, pour 2 tbsp of Canola oil and fry til golden 
     brown.  Set aside.
2.  Fry tofu til crunchy and golden brown.  Drain the fried tofu in paper towel.  Cut into
     cubes then place in a dish together with the pork
3.  In a saucepan, combine vinegar and soy sauce then bring to a boil.
4.  Add sugar and onions then stir.
5.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.
6.  Pour the sauce over fried tofu and pork.

Note:  You can also add green pepper or red chili unto the sauce to make it spicy.

Tokwa't Baboy

Bon appetit!

Chicken Arroz Caldo & Tokwa't Baboy

An easy and healthy fish recipe…5 ingredients, 5 steps. 
What you need:

1/2 kilo fish fillets (your choice of Basa, Dory or Barramundi)
2 eggs
1 cup of Multigrain Bread Crumbs
1 cup of organic flour (plain flour will also do)
Oil for deep frying

Crumbed Fish Fillets

What you need to do:

1.  Cut fish fillets into small pieces (cutlets).
2.  Beat eggs
3.  Lightly coat fish cutlets in flour
4.  Dip in egg and coat evenly with multigrain bread crumbs
5.  Deep fry in oil for 6 minutes then drain on absorbent paper.

Serve with salad or chips (or both).  A good partner for vegetable dishes if you are having rice with it.  Dip in tartar sauce or sweet chili sauce to enhance flavour.

I usually just lather garlic salt on our steak before putting it inside the oven to grill and it’s good to go.  One Sunday night, I decided to make my steak more flavourful.  So I marinated the meat with more than just garlic salt.

What you need for the marinade:
4 rib eye steaks (or any other meat you want like T-bone or Rump)
Garlic Salt
1/4 cup of dry Red Wine
Rosemary Leaves
6 cloves of Garlic, peeled and smashed
4 tbsps of Olive Oil
4 tbsps of water
What you need to do:
1.  Place aluminum foil on top of baking pan
2.  Sprinkle garlic salt on the steaks and place each one on the baking pan.
3.  Smear crushed garlic on each side of the side.
4.  Pour red wine, olive oil and water on the rib eye steaks.
5.  Sprinkle a dash of Rosemary Leaves and Pepper.
6.  Leave for 15-30 minutes.
7.  When ready for grilling, place baking pan inside the oven.
8.  Oven-grill at 180 degrees for 20-30 minutes depending on how tender you want your steak is.

What you need for the gravy:

3 tbsp Gravox Traditional Powder
2 tbsp butter (or canola spread)
3 tbsp red wine
300 grams slice mushrooms

What you need to do:

  1. Boil 3 tablespoons of Gravox Traditional Powder in 250ml water.
  2. Mix in 2 tablespoons of butter/canola spread and 3 tablespoons of red wine.
  3. Throw in your sliced mushrooms.
  4. Stir until smooth and mushrooms are cooked.

Serve with salad on the side.

Bon appetit!  Happy weekend too!

My Husband and I sometimes miss the night life in Manila.  We met at work but it was at a bar that we were officially introduced and later on became part of one barkada (group of friends).  One of the things we enjoyed then were our Friday night gimiks with our barkada (night out with friends).  Hanging out at a bar would almost always mean ordering Sisig to go along with a bottle of beer.

Sizzling Sisig is a Filipino dish made from parts of pig’s head and liver, seasoned with calamansi and chili.  If not eaten as an accompaniment to alcoholic drinks, this goes well with steaming rice.

Since my Husband and I miss having yummy Sisig every now and then, but haven’t found a place that serves it as delicious as the ones from the Philippines, I thought of making my own Sisig.

The easiest way to make Sisig is buying a pig’s head, chop the skin and ears into bits, then fry it with onion, garlic, chili, etc. (No more boiling, grilling or marinating).  In the suburb where we live, we have access to a shop where we can buy pig’s heads.  The catch is, your Sisig can be very oily (from too much fats) and not-so-healthy.  So scratch that.  Instead, I made a not-so-fatty Sisig at home.

Making my own sisig, as I discovered, was tedious.  It comes in four phases: boiling, grilling, marinating and frying.  

Here are the ingredients and what you need to do in every phase:

Boiling Phase
1/2 kilo Pork Neck
1/2 kilo Pork Shoulder/Rashers/Belly
1/4 kilo Minced Pork
1/4 kilo Liver (pork/chicken)
2 cups Water
1 cup Pineapple Juice
4 pcs Star Anise
1 tsp whole black peppers

Combine all ingredients mentioned above in a pot and bring to boil.  Simmer for about an hour or until tender.  Drain and leave until cool.

Grilling Phase:

Slice pork and liver in smaller pieces.  Place in baking pan and put inside the oven.  Grill for 30 minutes or until pork in golden brown and crispy.  Let it cool for awhile and then chop into small bits.

(The traditional way of doing this part of cooking sisig is placing pork in skewers and grilling over charcoal briquettes.  Since I’m doing it my way and to save myself time from putting pork into skewers and using another equipment, I grilled the pork via my oven instead.)

Marinating Phase:
Marinade Seasoning Mix

1 medium-sized onion, chopped
4 cloves of garlic, minced
4 chili (either red or green), chopped
1 tbsp ginger, sliced into small pieces
2 pcs Bay leaf
1/4 cup Vinegar
1/4 cup Calamansi juice (or lemon juice)
1/4 cup Pineapple juice
Salt and Pepper to taste
Mix chopped meat and Marinade Seasoning Mix in a bowl.  Keep marinated mixture in the fridge for 2-3 hours. 

Frying Phase:
1 tbsp Olive Oil
1 Egg (or you can add more, depends on how many you want)

In a frying pan, fry the marinated pork in a tablespoon of olive oil (or your choice of oil).  Stir every once in a while until pork is golden brown and crispy.  Make a hole in the centre and crack an egg. 

I have a special frying pan for my Sizzling Sisig and it’s what I also use to serve this dish.  It’s actually a square frying pan for steaks and it’s thick, so it keeps the Sisig warm while we have dinner. 

(In restaurants, Sizzling Sisig is served using a hot plate.)

Voila!  My own version of Sisig!  Less fats from pork, less oil, more meat. 

The first time I cooked this, I made sure we had beer at home.  We had this for dinner and my Husband loved it!!! 
It may be tedious but seeing my Husband’s face lit up the moment I served this was very much worth all the effort.  He even asked me to cook it again the week after.

Bon Appetit!


Two nights ago, I shared in twitter and plurk that I was cooking Adobong Puti (White Adobo) for dinner. My update was followed by interest on how it looked and how it is cooked. And so I promised to share the recipe.

I never realized that there are some who haven’t tried Adobong Puti. I thought it had the equal popularity as the normal Adobo.

Adobong Puti is simply Adobo without the soy sauce. However, I don’t cook my Adobo the same way I cook my Adobong Puti.

Like Adobo, the Adobong Puti is a staple at my parent’s home. Both my parents are good cooks. My mom’s Adobo is to-die-for (when I worked in the Phils, my workmates ask me to exchange ulam with them whenever I had Adobo for baon), while my Dad cooks a mean Adobong Puti.

Although I never try to rival my parents cooking, I have tried to replicate their Adobo dishes to remind me of home and sometimes, just because I miss them. Not to mention that is one of the easiest Filipino dish there is.

Two nights ago, I think I succeeded in cooking Adobong Puti, one I think my parents can be proud of.

What you need:

Half a kilo of Pork (I combine two kinds of Pork: pork neck and pork shoulder), cut into cubes
5 cloves of Garlic
1/2 cup Vinegar
2 tbsp Canola Oil
2 cups Water
2-3 Bay Leaves
Salt and Pepper, to taste

What you need to do:

1. Put all ingredients (except Canola oil) in a wok. Cover and let it simmer over medium heat.

2. Occasionally mix and take out pork residue on top.
3. Cook until water is gone and only the oil from pork is visible.
4. Add Canola oil and turn up the heat to crisp the meat.
5. Cook until crisp and golden brown.
6. Serve hot with rice.
Kain na! {Filipino way of saying Bon Appetit!}