"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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Saturday, November 26, 2011

Canning: Atsarang Papaya (Pickled Green Papaya) Revisited

Atsarang Papaya
I seldom get good green papayas in the Asian stores in my area, which take 2 hours to drive to.  So whenever I visit those stores and find them good (as in still fresh) green papayas, I make sure to get at least two or three of them to make into atsara.

When I first made atsarang papaya, I made use the the same brine recipe as its cucumber counterpart, Bread and Butter Pickles, because once I got a taste of these B&Bs, they reminded me so much of atsarang papaya. During that time, there was no foodblogger yet that I could find that gave a recipe for atsara.  However, my friend Ana did not really care for the mustard seeds (nakakatinga ba).  And as I also came to realize that turmeric powder is like ginger powder, this time, I opted to remove the turmeric powder in the B&B brine. I also opted to lessen the salt.

The kind of additional veggies depends on you...some like adding raisins, I don't. Some like ampalaya added, I don't. One person suggested adding jalapeño peppers...I will keep that in mind to try next time! But basically, it must include onions, bell peppers, ginger root, and carrots not only for the flavor but also for the colors.

I intend to keep some of these for myself. The others I plan to give as Christmas giveaways to Filipino friends.


12 cups cider vinegar
10 cups sugar
Note: This is a proportion only. You might need more or less of this amount to correspond to the amount of veggies you have. It is important that you have enough to cover all of your veggies when inside the jars already.

Green papaya (I used 2, which were probably about 3 lbs each), grated
Onions (I used 4 medium sized yellow onions), sliced
Red and/or Green Bell Peppers, cut in strips or diced (I used one red)
Carrots (I used two medium), sliced to look like flowers (or you can cut in strips)
Ginger root (I used about 2-3 thumb-sized pieces, sliced)

1/4 cup canning salt (I used Morton, the box is colored green)
ice cubes to cover top

After preparing the slices/grated veggies, make two layers of the papaya alternating with the other veggies (papaya-other veggies-papaya-other veggies) in a stainless steel stock pot. Sprinkle with the canning salt on top, top with ice cubes. Place the cover on, and let stand in room temperature for at least 3 hours.

Meanwhile, wash and sterilize your jars (I sterilize my jars in my steamer for at least 30 minutes). Boil water for scalding your lids and bands.  When the jars are almost ready, rinse the papaya mix with COLD water and drain.  Repeat three times.  (Note: Even if your jars are freshly bought from the store, you should still wash them, including the lids/bands/covers, with warm soapy water to remove manufacturing oil residue.)

Click on the photo to see a larger image.

Place in a thin cloth bag.  SECURELY close the bag using the handles. Bring this to the washing machine that is clean.  Place this on one side, and place a wet clean towel on the opposite side (this is to balance the weight so that the washing machine does not make a noisy sound, and this will also do your machine a favor).  Spin dry.  This method uses the centrifugal force of the spinner to remove most of the water in the veggie mix.  If you did not tie the bag securely, you might find your veggies scattered in the spinner. Not good. (If you don't have a spinner, you can use the cheesecloth to wrap around your veggies and squeeze out excess fluid, like I did in my first post on atsarang papaya.)

While spin drying your veggies,  start boiling the vinegar + sugar mixture in a different stainless steel pot, stirring occasionally. Once it starts boiling, boil for 5 minutes.  Add this brine to the veggies, lower the heat (I use #3) and simmer the veggies for about 5 minutes while stirring, then start packing.  (This ensures you are doing a hot pack, not a raw pack, which will increase the likelihood of sterilizing the mixture, aside from the preserving effect of sugar and vinegar. I also do not dilute the vinegar.  This high acidity further ensures the preservation effect. Even if the veggies themselves are low acid types, this acidic brine better ensures the safety of this mixture. I do not want to cause food poisoning, especially when I do not intend to process this pickle in a boiling water bath.) Make sure you put in enough brine into the jar to cover the veggies well.

Click on the photo to see a larger image.

Remove one jar from the steamer/sterilizer and fill one at a time.  Add veggies and enough brine to cover. Use a bubbler to release bubbles.  Add more brine if necessary. Leave a 1/2 inch headspace.  Wipe rims with paper towel to ensure no veggies are trapped that will prevent seal. Adjust lids and bands (or covers) and close tightly. Leave on the steamer upside down until you are ready to let them cool on the countertop. (Those last jars that you fill must also be upside down for about 30 minutes before you make them upright to cool completely.  This sort of sterilizes the upper part of the jar.).

If for personal use, you do not have to process these. I have been doing this method for 6 years now and they last more than a year without spoiling. The crunchiness of the veggies might be lost after one year, though, but that does not mean they are spoiled. However, not processing them ensures that their crunchiness also will last longer.

However, for commercial purposes (if you plan to sell these in the US), process in boiling water bath for 10 minutes just to comply with USDA standards. (Although I doubt that Filipino buyers would even care about such standards.)

Store in dark cool place (the cellar would be ideal).

Pamamaraan sa Tag-lish:
Yung listahan ng ingredients, nandun yung kung pano dapat nahiwa ang mga gulay --- shredded or sliced, etc. Gawin muna yun. Pag handa na yung mga gulay, i-layer mo sila (papaya- ibang gulay- papaya- ibang gulay) sa stainless steel na pot. Budburan mo ng asin sa ibabaw, patungan mo ng ice cubes, takpan, at hayaan mo ng mga 3 oras bago mo banlawan ng malamig na tubig. (Yung asin ay nag-aalis ng konting tubig mula sa gulay, para kahit medyo maluto sa brine yung gulay, malutong pa rin.) Gawin ito ng 3 beses para siguradong hindi maalat yung gulay. Tikman rin, syempre.

Habang naghihintay ng tatlong oras bago banlawan, hugasan at i-sterilize mo yung mga jars at takip na hanggang 30 minuto. Tapos, banlawan yung mga gulay then i-drain. Ulitin ng 3 beses.  Kung me spinner ka or washing machine, mas madali i-drain nang husto yung gulay (kung wala, kumuha ka ng katsa, ibalot mo yung mga gulay, at pigain mo nang husto at ibalik mo sa stainless steel na pot).  Tapos, pakuluin mo na yung suka+asukal ng mga 5 minuto sa isa pang stainless steel pot, bago mo ibuhos ito sa mga gulay. Babaan mo ang apoy at halu-haluin mo pa ng mga limang minuto bago mo ilagay sa sterilized na mainit pa na jar, i-release yung bubbles, punasan ang bunganga ng jars, takpan nang mahigpit. Ibaliktad. Pagkaraan ng 30 minutes, itayo nang tuwid.

Habang binabasa ito ay tingnan ang mga pictures. 

Pwede na itong hindi ipakulo sa boiling water bath kung hindi pang-komersyal. Kung ibebenta at kelangan sumunod sa USDA regulation, kelangan iproseso nang 10 minuto sa boiling water bath.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Canning: Sardinas/Bangus (Sardines/Milkfish) in Olive Oil

Canned Fish in Olive Oil
Ever since I bought my pressure canner and canned a batch of stew beef cuts, I had been wanting to can sardines or any other small fish "Spanish-style" (I am not sure what that means).

My first taste of this kind of "sardines" was back during med school, when a classmate who hailed from Laguna brought a jar of these, with small bangus (milkfish) as the content, and the label said "Spanish-style."  They were swimming in oil. It was beautiful to look at in the jars. The flavor was so good.  It had a hint of hotness due to the hot chili inside.

Even when I was just getting introduced to canning and did my research on it, I was dreaming of concocting all these canned Filipino goodies in wanting to fill my pantry with such foods, in jars with quantities enough to satisfy my craving when it hits.

Presto pressure canner

Books on Canning
This year (my 6th year of canning), I completed my canning tools finally. With the purchase of pressure canner and more books on canning (I bought the Ball books), I really got myself rolling.

One of the things I finally got to try was canning fish "Spanish-style."  I am not really sure what Spanish style is, because I have seen it as with olive oil, or as with tomato sauce. In any case, what my classmate brought before that I loved was bangus in oil.


I got frozen fish from the Asian store, one bag with 14 pieces of sardines and two bags of small bangus (3 pieces in each bag).   I thawed them, and my Nanay cleaned them before they completely thawed (she said it was easier to keep the flesh intact if done that way. My Nanay's father owned a fishery when she was younger, so she knew how to deal with fish in this manner. But she was not aware of canning practices.)

As for the instructions and recipes, I followed partly that from OverseasPinoyCooking's site. However, for safe canning practices, I followed the instructions from the USDA-approved site.

Basically, after cleaning the fish, I cut them to portions that would fit in the jars I was going to use. I used 8-oz jars for the sardines cut in halves, and I used wide-mouthed pint-jars for the bangus cut in halves as well. I brined them for 30 minutes in salt solution made of 1&1/2 quarts of water with 3/8 cup + 3 tbsp of Morton Kosher salt (based on the table on the basic brine in this article).  Then I drained the fish.

I proceeded with packing the jars tightly.  I was able to fit in 3 sardines per 8-oz jar, and 2 bangus inside a pint jar.  Then I added the pickles, carrot slices, and spices (I used 1/4 tsp whole gourmet peppercorns, 1 bay leaf, 1/4 tsp dried minced garlic, a slice of pickle, 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper for the sardines, and 1/8 tsp mustard seeds. For the pint jars with bangus, I used double the amounts, except that I used dried whole red pepper for each jar instead of the crushed red pepper. I then added extra virgin oil to cover the fish, leaving 1 inch headspace.

I used the bubbler to release trapped gas, and then I wiped the rims and adjusted the lids.  Note that when pressure canning, you do not have to use sterile jars, as the pressure will create enough heat to sterilize the jars during the processing time, which is usually an hour and a half at least.   Click on the photos below to read the instructions that accompany the photos.

I have the Presto pressure canner which is a dial-gauge type, so following the guidelines in the above link, I processed these babies (both pints and 8-oz jars) for 100 minutes at 11 psi. (It is quite a pain to monitor and maintain this pressure. I am still playing with the "maintenance" burner's flame/strength). After processing, I let the pressure get back to zero, then removed the valve, and let the jars stay in there for about two hours before removing. I let the jars rest on a towel on the countertop. After 24 hours, I checked for seal. I had two pint jars that did not seal properly, which were both using the reusable Tattler lids (I am still trying to gauge the right tightness when screwing the band on). All the pint jars with their metal lids sealed very well. Because of this, I had to consume first the ones that did not seal (rather than re-process two jars for 100 minutes again). But I let the flavors meld together first so that I shared one unsealed jar of sardines with my Nanay after three days. The other jar that did not seal is in the fridge, waiting for its glory day. I will get to try the bangus once I am done with these sardines.

Again, to review how to pressure can, this is a wonderful illustration:
An illustration of how to pressure can

Some notes on the principles of canning:
Headspace is necessary to allow for the expansion of the contents (usually liquids or sauce) as they boil during processing.  If they boil over, it is important that the lid is tightly placed enough so that air could escape, and maybe some liquid, but not solids which might hinder proper seal during cooling. (It is quite problematic to have boil overs involving oil, because then, it makes the  rubber seal slippery, and might prevent proper seal.)  Most organisms will thrive if given air, that is why it is important to release trapped bubbles, and the escape of air during processing is also vitally important.  The resulting lack of air is what we call "vacuum, " and upon cooling down, the contents contract in volume and the vacuum sucks in the lid, creating an effective seal.  That lack of air and effective seal that prevents outside air to re-enter is what keeps the good quality of canned foods.  The organism that CAN THRIVE IN LACK OF AIR in such canned foods is Botulinum, which may cause botulism if the food is not processed properly, like contamination with dirt, or not enough temperature and/or time to process such that the spores still thrive after processing. Safe canning process includes re-processing those that did not seal properly, or placing them in the fridge and consumed immediately if not reprocessed.  If you are observing proper canning, you should not open these sealed jars  and add unprocessed contents then seal while hot or even while warm.  Not all canned foods in jars whose lids popped in are safe just because they popped in and had a vacuum.  More important is the clean and sterile technique, from packing to processing that is done in one smooth flow with minimal interruption. If your canned foods had lids that popped in then later on spoiled, most likely the problem was in the non-sterile or unclean method of canning, or not observing proper processing methods and time.

Let the jars cool.  Test for proper seal after 24 hours using the lid-lift test.  If not properly sealed, use new lids and reprocess. Otherwise, keep them in the fridge and consumed within two weeks.  Let at least 3 days pass before consuming for the flavors to infuse the fish well.

The above brining time with a 20% salt solution gave a saltiness that was just right for my taste buds. However, 3 days was not enough for the red pepper flakes to have an effect.  Either that, or I should have used more.

You plan to sell these? Check first with your local town and state laws on how to, and familiarize yourself with safe canning practices as found in the books mentioned above. I would observe by the end of one year how good this canning method is.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Tattler Reusable Canning Lids and Rubber Rings - a Product Review

Lid lifting test for seal
This summer of 2011 was quite a canning experience for me. For one thing, I have completed the basic necessary tool set for canning, as I have purchased a pressure canner, Presto, which has enabled me to try to can ANYTHING.  I still used the boiling water bath (BWB) canner where applicable.  After telling my husband that I am now really getting into canning, his eyes lit up, and ordered a pallete of 900 quart jars (that was not a typo, it was really 900 jars) and two bulk boxes of Tattler reusable canning lids and rubber rings (that's a total of 576).

Seeing this summer of abundant produce as an opportunity to test how good these reusable lids and
rubber rings are, I used them, opened some jars, and reused them. I used them both in BWB and in pressure canners.  My observations are as follows:

1) Those processed using BWB, the lids were easy-peasy.
2) Those processed using pressure canner, I had varying results. Probably depending on the viscosity of the liquid, or the headspace, or how tight or how loose I closed the bands...sigh...some sealed and popped in okay. Some did not seal at all (probably boil overs are responsible so I needed to increase the headspace on reprocessing), some sealed but lids did not pop in (questionable complete removal of air).
3) In some reused lids, they did fine still. But I recently found a jar that I canned that seemed to seal but the lid remained popped up, which, to my dismay, remained popped up after opening and washing. You see, I thought the reason it was popped up prior to opening despite a good seal was that I tightened too much that the air had a hard time escaping, so that the increase in temp and volume only pushed the lid up more than it pushed the air out through the rubber ring.  I expected the lid to get back to its original shape after pressure equilibrium is achieved upon opening the jar. It did not.

Click on the photo to read the labels...
Comparing the popped up used lid, the depressed used and unused lids

Now I am thinking, if I reuse this particular lid, I would not have the popping in of lid as a visual cue that the processing created a vacuum (removal of air is a key factor that is responsible in keeping the quality of the canned food. Vacuum is lack of air. Vacuum is created by pushing the air in the headspace out during the increase in temperature, either by BWB or pressure canner.  Lowering temp then contracts the volume, so the vacuum created sucks in the lid, and seals the jar.) I do not know if vacuum produced in processing will have enough strength to suck in this popped up lid if I reuse it.  The only gauge I will have will be the lid-lift test 24-48 hrs after processing.

Well, there really is no other option for reusable canning lids/rubber rings, I guess, and I still have several hundreds of unused reusable lids/rings that I am stuck with.  Other than that freaky lid, it seems that most users are completely satisfied (although I know that the survivalblog author spent some time getting used to the Tattler lids as he also had varying degrees of unsuccessful outcomes like I had). Maybe with practice I will get better in time.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Canning: Tomato Soup

Homemade Tomato Soup
My SIL sent a pint of her home-canned tomato soup. The recipe was shared by her friend. She was planning to sell it, so she eliminated the addition of cream at the end to lessen the possibility of ending up with high pH. I liked it, so I also tried to make my own. However, I used much less of the chicken broth, so that I would not have to simmer for a long time to reduce the volume and thicken the soup. I did make up for the less chicken broth by including the chicken meat I had (about 1/2 cup in 1 qt of my homemade chicken broth). I still ended up with a pH of 4.15, which is still way below that is generally required of canned veggies (4.5) and since this is tomato based, my pH is even much lower than the allowable pH for tomatoes (4.7). This meant that I could process this in a boiling water bath canner instead of the pressure canner. Well, that is my theory. If anyone would like to try this recipe to can, do it at your own risk. This is an experimental phase for me, and this trial canning will provide me with a chance to observe whether my theory will be good, IF a jar of this is not spoiled and still good to eat by the end of a whole year (provided it is stored in a dark, cool place like a cellar.). So, blogging about my recipe here is not about encouraging my readers to try this for canning purposes, but rather for me to serve as notes on canning (the same way I take notes of my cooking/baking experiments). The thing about experimenting with canning is, the real test is at the end of its supposed shelf-life, which is usually one year (if it lasts more than that, the better). Only by the end of a whole year will I be able to make a conclusion on whether the recipe and method is a keeper or not. So, I should re-visit this post one year from now and make updates.

This does not taste at all like the store-bought tomato soup in cans. It actually has a taste closer to that of a spaghetti sauce, but the taste added by my homemade chicken broth somehow made it taste more like Filipinized version, that's why I loved it.  I bet this would be a great soup to sip in the morning while munching on hot pandesal.

Tools Needed:


10 pounds tomatoes
10 medium onions
30 cloves garlic, peeled
4 green bell pepper, cored and seeds removed
1/3 cup olive oil
1 qt chicken broth (with meat bits)
salt and pepper to taste
dried herb spices (I used 3 pinches crushed rosemary, 1 tbsp crushed basil, 1 tbsp parsley flakes)
3 tbsp sugar


Preheat oven to 425 °F.

Place tomatoes in deep pans. Peel the onions and place in pans as well. Cut the green peppers in half and place in pans cut side down. Scatter the garlic cloves into these pans. Drizzle the olive oil onto the veggies. Roast for 30 minutes.

After roasting, squeeze out excess juice and run the tomatoes through a vegetable strainer or food mill. Place the tomato juice/sauce into a big stock pot and set aside.

Place all other veggies in a big stainless steel stock pot, add the chicken broth, and puree using an immersion blender. Pour this into the stockpot of tomato juice/sauce and blend well. Add salt and pepper to taste, and mix in the dried herb spices and sugar. Simmer for 30 minutes, stirring frequently to avoid scorching, while sterilizing the jars and boiling the water to submerge the lids in.

Ladle the hot soup into the sterile jars. Wipe rim of jar. Adjust lids and bands. Process for 30 minutes in a boiling water canner. When ready to serve, re-heat. Add cream as desired, and sprinkle crushed crackers on top. Or you can add shredded sharp cheddar cheese and enjoy with toasted garlic bread instead.  Very good and healthy light lunch/supper.

Monday, November 07, 2011

Carrot Cake

Have a slice!
It was my first time (can you imagine???) making carrot cake. My fb friend Venus shared her recipe with me, describing it as moist. I made this for the first time because I was able to harvest tons of carrots this summer! And true to her promise, this recipe is so moist and good, my older son was saying even without the frosting it would still be good!
I had fun decorating!
For the icing, I used the recipe for cream cheese frosting in pumpkin whoopie pies because I did not have lemon on hand. I used Wilton food coloring (the ones that come in small tubs), placed some of the icing in a ziploc bag to pipe out the "carrots" and the "leaves."  I had to mark first where I would make the slices and placed a "carrot" on the top of each slice. I had more of the colored icing so I added "carrots" to the sides as well.

Venus posted her recipe and share with us fb friends, with the amounts in terms of weight. I converted them to the most convenient/closest volume measurements and came up with the following:


Cake --
2 & 1/3 cup all purpose flour
1 tbsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp cinnamon powder
1 &1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1 &1/2 sticks (1&1/2 cups) butter
3/4 cup brown sugar, packed
3/4 cup white sugar (you may opt to use less if you find this too sweet especially with the addition of the icing)
3 eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
4 cups grated carrots
1 cup chopped dates/raisin (I used dates - they are also sweet)
1 cup crushed almonds/cashew/pecans/peanuts (I used almonds)

Cream Cheese Frosting --

4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
6 tablespoons butter, softened
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 &1/2 cups powdered sugar


Pre-heat oven to 350 ºF.Lightly butter a 13"x9"x2" baking pan. Line with waxpaper. Set aside. Using electric mixer, beat butter and the two sugars in a large bowl until blended. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the vanilla extract. Sift dry ingredients together in a bowl. Add to sugar mixture.  Add carrots, dates, and almonds. Beat well. Pour batter into prepared pan, bake for 45 minutes or until done.  Cool and prepare frosting.

Beat cream cheese, butter and vanilla extract in small mixer bowl on medium speed until fluffy. Gradually beat in powdered sugar until light and fluffy. Frost the cake when completely cooled. Leave some icing for the "carrots."

Add enough food coloring to achieve the desired color for the carrot tubers and to the leaves. Have fun decorating, and ENJOY eating!

Saturday, November 05, 2011

Canning: Tomato Jam

My very first batch
For this summer, we had a whole row planted with 10 tomatoes.  As a result, I got tons of tomatoes from my garden this year. In the past, I usually would just can them as "Whole, Packed Raw" to be used in lasagna (which takes centerstage during birthdays) or I would open a jar and use a little bit at a time for sauteeing purposes. Well, I probably got triple or quadruple this year, so I thought I'd find something else to make.

One fb follower asked me if I knew how to make tomato jam. She said she should have paid attention to her HE class. That got me into searching for a recipe so that I could use up the tons of extra tomatoes I had.  And I found this recipe from Food in Jars blog that had so many rave reviews, so I decided to try. Lo and behold, my husband who is not a great fan of tomatoes tasted it and loved it, even eating it by itself, and he has since used that for ham when we have it for supper. My sons and I have tried it on broiled fish and meat loaf.  My Nanay also liked it.

I even shared the recipe to my friend, Cecilia, whose American hubby also liked it so well he even flavored his rice with this tomato jam. I let my SIL taste it (she is another one who does not like tomatoes, just like my hubby), and she agreed it has the potential to sell. (She sells home canned pickles, jams, and jellies to corner stores, which act as middlemen to sell these goods to the bigger stores. She agreed to sell my stuff, and proceeded to send a small jar to the USDA office for testing to include it in her license. It passed. I have delivered to my SIL 9 cases of them (I had to leave 1&1/2 case for myself for Christmas gift-giving.)

I found it better to adjust the amounts when making them so that I save more time and gas/energy by cooking more per batch, and the below amount makes for a good start in boiling the mixture down. By the time I make another batch using the below recipe, I just add that to the first, then when ready for canning, I can make a whole case of 8-oz jars, which all fit in my steamer canner for processing.  I was not too worried about steamer canner versus boiling water canner, because this particular recipe gets in sterilized jars right after cooking for several hours (so I am not worried about microorganisms surviving the cooking time), and the final pH after stabilizing (room temp) was tested also by the licensing body here and came out to be 3.5 (the cutoff was 4.56 generally, and even higher, I think up to 4.7 for tomato products for commercial licensees).  So this tomato jam had very good acidity, that I have no doubt it will still be safe even without processing, as long as sterile technique is applied in every step.

For Filipinos in the Philippines who have lots of tomatoes and time and manpower, this will be a good way to market them. Here in the US, I have found jars that looked attractive (see in the slide) which actually were made in China. I am sure if you asked around in Divisoria you will be able to find such jars suitable for canning. For myself, I am not sure if I will have the same enthusiasm next year to make this. Having worked in a good-paying job, I tend to compare how much I can make out of this per hour. Taking into consideration the cost of other ingredients, the time I consume prepping and cooking and canning, I don't feel it's worth it. But if I were jobless...it would be a different story.  Hence, I am sharing here my experience in case any of my readers would consider canning as another viable option for livelihood if and when laid off from a job. For those considering canning for business (especially now with the growing movement of people demanding organic products and less processed food items), I would suggest the simplest and easiest and quite in-demand: pickled cucumbers.  It would be nice if the uniquely Filipino produce like our delicious fruits picked at the peak of ripeness would be canned and exported to countries where Pinoy expats as well as foreigners open to new things will be able to enjoy them.

10 lbs tomatoes, chopped roughly
7 cups sugar
1 cup lime or lemon juice (freshly squeezed)
2 tbsp salt
2 tbsp crushed red pepper flakes
4 tsp freshly grated ginger
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp cloves


The sheeting test --
1st stage
2nd stage
3rd stage

Mix every thing in a big stock pot and simmer, occasionally stirring to prevent scorching. After about 4 hours or so (depends on how much you have, how strong your heat is, and how wide your stock pot is, since the wider pot will allow for faster evaporation), or when the mixture has achieved the sheeting stage, transfer in sterile jars, wipe lids and rims with wet paper towel, adjust lids, and process for 20 minutes.  (I usually wash the jars an hour before the mixture is ready for canning, then sterilize them in my steamer for 30 minutes on at least 180°F temp. I also boil water then dump this onto the clean lids just before ladling the mixture into the jars.)

Thursday, November 03, 2011

Reader's Photo Gallery #20

Some of the photos below were sent to me as early as May of this year. My apologies for being late in posting these photos.!

Thanks for my readers who shared their photos of the recipes from my kusina that they tried and loved, and took the time to share with me their experience and photos! Much love to you, mga kapatid!

From Aimee T. sent on May 25, 2011:

Mini-Choco Flan Cake

Choco Flan Cake

Her email --
Hi Manang,

            I would like to say Hi to you and your family. I tried to bake one of your recipe and it was so delicious and I am so pleased and happy with the result.   Thank you for sharing all the good recipe that you have had.  I would like you to know that I am enjoying your websites too. I attach the one that I bake yesterday.

            My next Recipe to make would be the chiffon cake with custard on top. Thank you so much for sharing. God bless you and your family.
Then the following was from Marlin sent from the period of Sept 16-21, 2011:
Choco Flan Cake

Birthday Girl


Sesame Ginger Beef Stir-Fry
Her emails --
Hi Manang- I tried your choco-flan cake for my daughter's 5th bday today, I made it yesterday following your step by step instructions, and just want to tell you that  it is super duper yummy, and easy to make, thanks for sharing the recipe, now I have added this  to my collection, God Bless- Marlin
and another --
Hello Manang- I made your mamon mala- Goldilocks, and this is the second attempt and I finally made it perfect, although I thought I dusted my molds with flour, eh coffee creamer pala ang nakuha ko, but it turned out okay pa rin, and taste was sooooo good, hubby said that it is not too sweet, so I want to thank you again. And as I type this, I am getting the Sesame ginger beef stir fry, I am on a roll, again salamat and more power to you and Lord bless!!!
and another --
Hello again Manang- here is the Sesame Ginger Beef Stir fry and is soo good and easy to make, again... Million thanks to you!!

Next photos were sent by Isabel on October 5, 2011:
Empanada de kaliskis

Lenguas de Gato
Her email --
Hi Manang,
Good day!!!!!
Thank you po ng marami sa mga shared recipes mo. my family really do like and love it esp. the legua d gato and empanada.
 Still trying to find time to try some of your recipe esp. the siakoy...been looking for that recipe long long time ago hehehehheheh!!!
check mo po manang ang attachment ko for my finished product of legua d gato and empanada.
Maraming pong salamat,
And lastly, the following photos were sent by ella11 just today!

 Her email --
hello manang!!kumusta po?!got a quick question about the super soft ensaymada.pwede po ba ako gumamit ng potato flour pang substitute sa mashed potato?isf so how much po sa tingin nyo?btw have some pics po galign sa mga recipes nyo na na try ko po.pardon the poor quality of pics at hindi po professional lol :D isa po sa plato ng hopia is ube forgot which one :D maraming maraming salamat sa mga recipes nyo and more power to you!:)

Again, thank you so much. These emails and photos will further encourage the skeptics, and the newbie ones who are quite afraid to just go ahead and do it. :)

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