"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!

My Blogs


Baking & Cooking

Please use this search engine or the labels at the lower left side to look for a recipe. Thanks!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Pan de Pula/Pan de Regla/Kalihim/Kabukiran

Pan de pula/Pan de Regla/Kalihim
For a good story on how this tinapay's name evolved through time, read here.

Maybe, for me, the most apt name would be kalihim, in reference to bucaio's theory that it got that name from the sweet secret of using old rolls.

In my father's bakery (now gone), we did use stale breads to make this tinapay (which we simply referred to as "pula'). I have to confess that I never liked this tinapay, and it was not because of this secret (because we had another tinapay, "pudding," that used old breads also and was brown and chewy but I loved it very much).

Monday, September 21, 2009

Reader's Gallery # 10

Many thanks to Yvette for sharing her photos of spanish bread and ube ice cream, yummily being enjoyed by her son.

To Yvette: Thanks for your email and photos!

hi manang! just want to share you some of my work. thanks for the wonderful recipes! patok sa family ko!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Ian Edson - A Victim of Spamming

Yesterday, after I received a comment under my Pork Roasted in Mang Tomas Sauce post, I made a text box addressed to google (see down below)

This morning, the owner of the said site made a comment under my Beef Asado siopao (apparently that post shows up on google when he made the same googling I did yesterday), trying to clear his name.

I do believe the guy. A google adsense earner knows better not to make such spam comments...its the easiest way to get "his" website banned from the reverse results of what the spammer asked for. The spammer knows that....

Hence, it seems the spammer wants the site he provided to be banned by google adsense. Maybe out of jealousy, revenge, or simply wanting a competition (in google adsense) out of the picture. If the spammer is a Filipino, another crab mentality?

I would be interested to know if the spammer is indeed Filipino, or the other blogs he left a comment on belong to Filipino bloggers. Is the spammer also leaving messages on non-Pinoy owned sites as well?

Now the owner of that site is a Filipino living in the Philippines. If he earns from google, comparing his stats with mine, I can say that he earns a big sum every month from Google, enough to provide half of what is needed to support a family (converting $ to Php), IF his earnings per page load is same as from any blogger-adsense user's earnings.

So I am making this post in an attempt to clear Ian Edson's name (who, I believe, is the true victim here), in response to sylv3blade's post. I just hope we could track down the spammer. His IP address showing up in NY means nothing if he uses a proxy (according to my hubby. I don't really understand it, to be honest. A techie I am not.)

My text box yesterday:


I just recently got this comment on my most recent post, which I received in my email at 2:54 PM 09-16-09:

Hi, this is urgent. I will click all your adsense ads many times everyday if you do not

comply with what I am going to say.

Go to http://youtubemegavideo.blogspot.com/ and click my adsense ads 5 times (different

ads). That's it. If you dont want your adsense account to be banned, follow what I told you.

If you do not, I have records in my logs and if I find out that you did not comply with what

I said, you will get what you deserve.

Apparently, I am not the only one he threatened. See this thread.

I did not bother to click on his link, which will only add to his site traffic, and also seeing how leery his business practices are, I was afraid he would be able to implant a virus in my computer if I get to his site.

It seems he also has a channel in youtube or makes spam comments like this. Please ignore him if you are a blogger who received the same comment, or a youtuber who reads comments coming from him.

I did report him to google adsense for policy violation.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Pork Roasted in Mang Tomas Sarsa

Our supper menu on that day:
Pandelimon with butter (This is our favorite dinner roll)
Fresly picked cukes from my garden (sliced)
mashed potatoes
Pork Roasted in Mang Tomas Sarsa ng Lechon

Hubby loved it! And when hubby likes a food, it almost certainly is liked by everyone in our family. He is that picky. Ingredients are few and preparation is super simple! I just need to have time, so it is perfect on a day off when I have got so many chores to do.

pork roast (butt cut maybe? spinal column at one side)
1 bottle of Mang Tomas All Purpose Sauce (Sarsa ng Lechon) (11.64 oz)
2 medium onions, sliced

I started this with the pork fresh from the freezer so total cooking time was 4 hours. If you are using non-frozen, you can cut the time to 3 hours for really well-done.
Place sliced onions at the bottom of roasting pan. Add the sauce and distribute evenly.
Place the roast on top. Cover. Place this on the lower rack of the oven and bake at 350 deg F for 3 hours (less if not frozen). (If you are planning to make pandelimon as well, start preparing the pandelimon after baking the pork for an hour, and that leaves you total of 3 hours to prepare the dough and bake them).
Uncover, and glaze the top of the roast with the sauce (which now contains a lot of juice from the pork itself). Continue baking for an hour uncovered, checking from time to time that sauce does not totally evaporate (may add little water as needed to keep a good volume). Also baste the roast repeatedly as needed for a nice glaze. (With pandelimon rolls, transfer the roast at the very bottom of the oven and bake the rolls on the upper rack, upper 1/3 of the oven, for about 12-15 minutes).

What to do with leftovers (you can only eat so much, you know!), gather all the sauce with onions, add some more water and stir to get all the flavor from the pan. Sieve through and catch all liquid into fat separator. Place this in a small saucepan and boil until reduced to a good amount and consistency. Meanwhile, shred the leftover pork meat, discarding the fat, then grind or roughly chop. Mix with the sauce. You can adjust the taste to your preference. Then you can use this for a differently flavored pork siopao (either steamed or baked).

Grilled Stuffed Squids & Cuttlefish

I had several bags of frozen cleaned squids and cuttlefish, and had been meaning to have grilled squids, but I have always wanted some meat stuffing in it. Especially so after I saw Panlasang Pinoy's post about it.

Well, I had some plain cooked ground beef (as in S&P add-ons only) that was leftover from two times (both times were prepared fresh as he does not like eating leftovers) of serving my hubby one of his fave meals: ground beef, boiled potatoes and brocolli. I thought I'd use that as filling, but I added veggies (finely chopped 1 carrot, 2 celery stalks and 1 onion plus garlic powder) for additional flavor, and added a beaten egg to hold them together as they cook. I used toothpicks for the cuttlefish because it had a cut on one side.

I used several pre-heated sizzling plates sprayed with some oil, cooked the squids and cuttlefish about 2 mins on each side, then just combined them all on one when cooked. They turned out moist and soft and chewy, not at all rubbery dry.

Some squids had no filling because I ran out.
Grilled seafood always satisfies my Filipino palate, and those of my boys. We ate them with fried rice prepared with leftover pork tocino cut into small pieces. I never bothered to offer this to hubby, as he is so grossed out by tentacles and is not crazy over seafood in general anyway.

Monday, September 07, 2009

How to Cook/Prepare The Perfect (Pork) Tocino

Tender, juicy, and glazed tocino without the burn (go ahead and click on the photo to see a closer and bigger look at it). My husband loves this so much that he can eat as much as 3 chops even if he is not really a big eater.

I am not talking about a recipe. Rather, I am talking about the method that I have been using to cook pork tocino to perfection (according to my standards, that is). This is my method on how to cook tocino without burning them and without turning my pan into a burnt mess. (If you want to know the recipe from DOST teknotulong website, I pasted it down below, so scroll down some more. But please be aware that I have not tried it.)

Whether or not you use your own recipe, maybe you will like this method as well. I still am using my Mama Sita tocino mix (I got tons of them since my husband expressed loving this pork "casino" -- he could not remember the right term).

I marinate 8 pork chops using 2 packets at least overnight to 1 day, keeping them in the chiller bin of my fridge, with frequent turning. Then I place them all, including the marinade, in a big saucepan, cover and boil. As soon as it boils, I turn down the heat to #2 or #3 and simmer for about 25 minutes. About 5 minutes before simmering ends, I heat up the oven on broil (hi), place the griddle on the rack at the upper third of the oven. I spray with just a little bit of oil to prevent the chops from sticking, then I dish out the chops and place them on the griddle. While waiting for the surface to dry up a bit, I reduce the sauce on the saucepan by boiling further on high until it is almost like runny sauce (If it is too thick and sticky already, it will be harder to brush on the chops and it might not be enough). I watch this carefully because it can easily burn. The resulting sauce has enough fat drippings so I still create the same effect as when I fry them in some oil, especially when the excess water finally evaporates while I broil.

Then I brush this sauce on top of the chops,

broil for about 1-2 minutes or until Isee the tops bubbly and the sugar is caramelizing, which makes the chops appear glazed, and the fatty parts kinda turn like charred.

Then I flip over and do the same on the other side.

This way, you get a nice browning, nice glaze, without scorching and without making it taste burnt! I guarantee you can proudly serve this to any fussy American meat-eater like my husband. (If you serve some burnt tocino, be prepared to have most of it thrown away. I have done so in the past, and it does not feel good to see my husband eat a few tiny pieces, with the scorched parts left on his plate, even if the meat underneath is still good. It even feels worse when I myself have to admit that it is unpalatable. I used to cook tocino on stovetop with conduction burner instead of flame, and it is hard to control the heat, especially if I want indirect low heat like when cooking tocino or rice. It is impossible not to burn because I cannot place my pan away from the heat; it is always in direct contact. If you have flame burners, it is more possible not to burn tocino even when cooked on saucepan alone, but browning every piece equally is better achieved through broiling.)

Now if you use chicken breast, butterfly the breast so it is thinner, cook for only about 15 minutes before broiling since chicken cooks faster than pork.

Sarap talaga ng tocino!

Now for the PORK TOCINO RECIPE from DOST Teknotulong website:

Materials (see Procedure below for amounts):

Kitchen knife
Bowl with cover
Measuring spoon


1. Slice pork into 1 cm. thickness.

2. For every kg. of meat, mix the following ingredients and rub on both sides of the pork;11/2 tbsp. salt, 4-5 tbsp. sugar, 1/3 tsp. Salitre.

3. Place salted pork in a clean covered container and keep in a cool place or in a refrigerator for 3-5 days.

4. Wash a little and cook. Tocino will last for 1/2 month when kept in a refrigerator.

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Mango Jam

Mango Jam
It is my first time to make these mango jams. Although I typically use fresh produce when making jams and jellies (and when canning, generally), I don't have a choice with mangoes. The advantage is that mangoes here are available all year round, coming from Mexico. So I can make these jams whenever. My kids love it so much, they seem to prefer the jam over the plain fruit. I think this would also go well in crepes.

4 cups finely chopped ripe mangoes (I used the red mangoes variety; tastes like ripe Indian Mangoes; I had no other choice here)
2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
5-1/2 cups sugar
1 packet of sure-jell (there are two in each box)


1. Wash lids and jars in hot water; keep the jars filled with hot water until you are ready to put them in boiling water so they do not get shocked with temperature change (which might cause cracks). Start boiling water in a large pot for sterilizing. Place each jar in boiling water for at least 5 minutes before using (maybe 3-4 jars at a time).
2. Prepare fruit as above. Measure exact amount into a 6- or 8-qt saucepot (mixture might boil over if you use a smaller pot). Stir in lemon juice.
3. Measure exact amount of sugar into separate bowl.
4. Stir in 1 packet (the original direction says 1 box, but I think I got the right consistency with just 1 packet. 1 box contains 2 packets.)
5. Bring mixture to full rolling boil (a boil that does not stop bubbling when stirred) on high heat, stirring constantly.
6. Stir in sugar quickly. Return to full rolling boil and boil exactly 1 minute, stirring constantly.
7. Ladle quickly into prepared jars, filling to within 1/8 inch of tops. Wipe jar rims and threads. Cover with two-piece lids dipped quickly in boiling water (don't boil the lids - will damage the rubbery seal). Screw bands tightly. Place jars upside down on countertop for about 5 minutes before setting them upright. Do this step repeatedly with each jar, and replace each jar whenever you take one out from the sterilizing pot, remembering to take the first one out for ladling jam.) If you have a jar that is not full, you may use unsterile cover, but place this in the fridge and consume this first.

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

A Simple Roast Pork

It seems like chicken...haha! But this is a roast cut of pork, with spine and some ribs at one side (I don't exactly know what you call that kind of cut). I was looking at my freezer and was wondering what to prep for supper. I saw this roast cut...though there were several ligaments and fascia, the cut was very lean.

Very simple to prepare, all I added was kosher salt and freshly milled gourmet pepper. Straight from the freezer, I baked it at 350 deg F in that same roasting pan showed in the pic, which is the same material as my boiling water canner. The first 2 hours I exposed it, then I added the veggies (broccoli spears and zucchini) and baked covered for another hour.

Hubby at first frowned upon seeing it was mostly "red" pork meat (I am not sure what part of pork would be "white," although I have been seeing ads about pork being the "other white meat"), but he tried it anyway, and was surprisingly delighted at the very good flavor of the tender meat that he ate a full meal after all. My kids loved it (no surprise there! They are my #1 fans.)

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