Tuesday, December 31, 2013

A Simple Curry Rice Dinner

Cooking a curry dish using instant Japanese curry roux
Curry is a popular dish in Japan which was introduced by the British. One common curry dish is the curry rice. It is basically rice mixed with vegetables (onions, carrots and potatoes), meat (chicken , pork or beef) and the curry sauce. Instant curry roux is now available in supermarkets (Japanese section) or specialty stores. I remember tasting a very delicious  curry rice in one of our overnight trips in Japan. I sometimes craved for the unique sweet and little spicy taste of curry (the taste is different from the Indian or Thai curry), that's why in one of my visits at a Japanese store in QC, I bought one of the curry sauces available. In our simple dinner, Apple sauteed onions and chicken, followed by the carrots and potatoes. Water was mixed and the curry roux was poured on the mixture until the mixture became rich. Add a little salt (or patis) and pepper. Apple served the curry rice with scrambled eggs. The Japanese eat curry rice using only a spoon. So we served the curry rice with spoons only. The kids asked "where is the fork?" I told them you don't need a fork to eat curry rice. Curry rice with scrambled eggs. A simple dinner but yummy!
Curry rice with egg.

Monday, December 30, 2013

Baby Pat Ensaymada

Baby Pat introduces color-coded flavored ensaymadas
When I see the color-coded Baby Pat ensaymadas it reminds me of our favorite colored M&M chocolate candies. The box of various colors of ensaymadas makes you wonder and ask, "what's inside this colored wrapper?"  If it's your first time to try the bread, it's really intriguing. So when you open the wrapper you will be surprised with the toppings on the bread. Baby Pat uses colored wrappers to identify the flavors of their ensaymada: Purple = ube, Red = Speculoos, Orange = Nuttella, Brown = Tablea, Yellow = Latik. 

Yellow = Latik
 When the soft flavored ensaymada appears before your eyes, there is a sense of wonder - "wow! look at the colors and the topping!" You unwrap the plastic cover excited to take the first bite.
Purple = Ube
After that first bite, you chew and enjoy the flavors. Some flavors are too sweet like the Nuttella and Tableau but the kids love them. Other flavors (e.g. Ube are buttery, which I like). My kids' favorite is the red one which is flavored with cookie butter. After finishing one color, you still crave for more and would like to try the other colors. Parang M&M! Makulay at Masarap!
Red = Speculoos (Cookie butter from Belgium or California). Geof and Julia's favorite!

Butter, ube are mixed inside the soft bread.
Baby Pat ensaymadas come from Sta. Rosa, Laguna. They can be ordered and delivered to you. Check out and like their fb page for orders: Contact Pearl De Guzman.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Lechon Ambula

Rayfer is the master cook among the cousins when it comes to lechon ambula
Ambula is a Kapampangan (Pampango) term for  rice mixed with viands. The closest example of an ambula dish is rice toppings. During the Geronimo - Maria Coronel family reunions, lechon ambula is a favorite. Ambula is simply rice mixed with chopped lechon meat and salt. It was a dish that originated from Lolo Memong of Floridablanca, Pampanga. Our Lolo Memong, the Oldies say, used to feed us with his bare hands with the ambula so that the clan becomes a closely-knit family. The ambula is a dish itself -no need for viands or sauce. If you love lechon - the skin, fat and meat -  and haven't tried the ambula, then you are missing one of the simplest yet tastiest lechon dishes. And you can only taste the ambula when you join a Coronel reunion. Mangan tana!
Ambula - rice, lechon and salt: simple but yummy!