"Kusina" = Kitchen; "Manang" = older sister

A Filipina's unabashed chronicle of her adaptations in the American kitchen. Includes step-by-step photos on how to make pan de sal, ensaymada, pan de coco, siopao, hopia, pandelimon, pianono, atsara, crema de fruta,etc., and if you are lucky, you will find videos too!

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Tuesday, October 05, 2004


Potatoes are planted using "eyes". Each potato has about 5 or more eyes that will each give rise to a plant. One plant will give, in return, 5 to 10 potatoes depending on the size. The container that you see here in this photo has potatoes which I got from 5 plants. Hence, this is about the amount of potatoes you harvest from a single potato, or maybe more (if you have more than 5 eyes in one potato). And as I am holding in this photo, this is the biggest potato I have ever seen in my entire life (even my Mom-in-law said it was the biggest she has seen so far, too!). I got two of them about this size (about 7 or more inches long, 3 inches thick and 5-6 inches wide), and I got only one thing in mind to do with them:

FRENCH FRIES! (This photo shows a batch of fries that I cooked using my very small saucepan. I could not take a photo of more fries as my kids and hubby would eat each batch in seconds! )

This afternoon we dug up all my potatoes as we are expecting a temperature of 20 deg F tonight (below freezing!). We came up with a total of 4 sacks, enough to last through the winter!

Potatoes are so versatile and are a constant item in my pantry. I realized only now that here, it is more practical and cheaper to rely on potatoes for carbohydrate source rather than rice, considering the relative ease of planting and harvesting them! So I am trying to get my sons and myself used to not having rice everyday. We probably have rice once or twice a week. It's cheaper that way, without compromising nutrition.

Some potato facts can be found here for those interested or will have the need to see guidelines in planting it.


  1. Hi Manang, they say the way to make chips or french fries crispy outside is to plunge it in ice cold water first before frying. How do you store your potatoes during winter?

  2. Hi Celia! I will have to try that myself! According to my in-laws, potatoes should not be washed. When they are dry, the excess soil can be shaken off, then place in a dark and dry place like the cellar. But since we don't have a cellar because our heating system is the radiant floor type, I have a room upstairs that I can use for storage.

    From the link I provided on my post about potato facts, it says,"Handle potatoes like eggs — potatoes will bruise. Get the harvested potatoes out of the light to avoid greening. Select only intact and healthy potatoes for long-term storage.

    Avoid storing diseased or damaged potatoes. Store the harvested potatoes in a cool, moist, dark environment. Ideal storage conditions would be 38 degrees F with 95 percent humidity. As this is not always available, a cool damp basement usual does fairly well, as long as the floor isn’t prone to wetness."


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