A glance at my wandering thoughts

Posts from the “HAPPY Eats!” Category


Posted on January 4, 2016

I still have one more day to enjoy before going back to work mode. Tomorrow, my snooze button will be useful again. The past weeks have been wonderful just because the atmosphere was the most anticipated time of the year. I accomplished many things on my list during the holiday break while several of them are yet to be crossed out. I just completed today some of the most time-consuming tasks I need to get done…Happy me!

I’m still eating some of our New Year left-over food. Thankfully, there’s enough to suffice my girls who eat like birds. I did not cook any main dish on New Year’s Day. Food is everywhere at Christmas time. I decided to prepare something light on day one of 2016. The hubs and I paid a trip to the grocery store the day before and purchased our favorite brie with good finds on charcuteries. Before heading to our trips as scheduled on New Year, I prepared cheese board and small bites to keep us going.

The cheese and charcuterie board reminded me the time when I was in Germany. I’m used to eating hot foods in the morning but I learned to eat cold cuts and artisanal bread early in the day during my stay in Frankfurt with a strong cup of coffee as the only hot item on the table.


Cheese Board and Charcuterie

Cheese Board and Charcuterie

 This combination of figs and olives are delicious. They are both sweet and tangy.


 I’m used to the sweetness of brie but this one is both a bit salty and sweet. I’ve been looking for a triple cream and stores are usually available with double cream. I’m glad I found this. The texture is similar when you eat Lindor chocolate. Of course, how can I forget the Ancho chili jam that is almost like a tradition in the presence of a brie. The caramelized almonds complement well with the cheese.


This is something that intrigued me when I saw this at the store. It is called Panforte di Siena. I googled it and I found that this can be eaten as a dessert or a breakfast. It has an acquired taste with strong spicy taste. This is good with coffee, just make sure you don’t put sugar because this is very sweet. I told my girls that when I ate it, I felt like I am in a different era, probably around the 1500s. I know it’s odd but I just felt like it. Well, that is something different for this new year. Never be afraid of something new!IMG_0153-1

Here’s the full brand name that I took photo while in the store

Panforte Di Sienna

Panforte Di Siena




Sticky, Chewy, and Gooey Buns (no pun intended)

Posted on July 4, 2012

Sticky Buns



I have a dream…and it finally came true! I always wanted to bake cinnamon buns in the morning and eat it freshly baked. For some reason, I feel intimidated on how it is prepared, processed, and baked, thus no challenge was ever done. Hah! gone are the days of staring at my recipe book that has a photo that sometimes urge me to go to a Cinnabon store. The past weeks have surely turned our oven busy. Baking is in the air 🙂

Making sticky bun is quite a task but it’s worth your every sweat ( if you live in a warm place that is). The proverbial phrase of “virtuous patience” truly fits the wait. I began with this task around 3pm one Sunday afternoon and enjoyed its goodness the next morning. The unforgettable sweet aroma that filled our kitchen was enough to inspire me in making it again in the future.

The recipe:

One thing I am not or have not done so far was to follow a recipe in a strict manner. In this recipe, I combined 3 recipes from different sources. The dough recipe was taken from Alton Brown http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/alton-brown/overnight-cinnamon-rolls-recipe/index.html the filling and goo or glaze was from Bobby Flay http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/bobby-flay/sticky-buns-recipe/index.html and some tips from my good housekeeping recipe book.

I followed the video instruction of Mr.Alton brown in making the dough.

Flatten the dough with the rolling pin as wide as it can get. One helpful tip that I want to share is using a parchment paper or wax paper underneath. It saved me from tedious clean up afterwards.  After flattening it, I spread butter on top of it and then sprinkle a mixture of 1 tbsp cinnamon, white granulated sugar, toasted pecan nuts (grounded in small bits).  

Roll the dough carefully and slightly pinch the end together to seal the edge.


This roll yielded 10 slices.

The sliced rolls will sit in this glaze with walnuts (see recipe from Bobby Flay link). It will be kept in the fridge overnight until it swell enough and ready to bake. (Notice the color of walnuts, I rarely see red walnuts and got it from our local grocery store. )

The next morning, this is the pleasant surprise when I opened the fridge

I baked this for 30 minutes at 350○


It was sweet, chewy, gooey and perfect for a hot cup of coffee, but the best part is sharing it with your beloved .

Happy Bakers and their Plaited Bread

Posted on July 4, 2012

Yes, we are still in the baking mode! One night my oldest daughter made a comment, “mom we should bake our daily bread since we eat lots of those” my response was a resounding, “Yes why not?” That was the beginning of an inspiration for the love of baking. She started devouring with my baking encyclopedia, trying to find a recipe for everyday bread. I keep reminding her that just a plain white  loaf is a good starting point but she insisted on making the plaited bread because it looks fancy…and so the experiment set out.. Plaited loaf recipe requires the following ingredients: 1 packet active dry yeast, 1 tsp honey, 250 ml lukewarm milk, 2 oz melted butter, 1 tsp salt, 1 egg lightly beaten, 15 oz strong flour (we…

Cobbler Feast!

Posted on July 4, 2012

It’s summer time! The kids are ready to explore anything including everything about kitchen activities. My girls included my baking books in their summer readings (seriously!) and eager to try their hands on the recipes I haven’t tried myself. Recently, my weighing scale is not a friend anymore (actually, it hates me for a while now). Oh well, I’m sure it will haunt me sooner, but for now let the fun remain. My two little chefs gets excited like I do when we pick a new recipe to try. I can sense that my girls love baking and cooking. The fact that it’s a messy business is not at all a problem since we all do our share in the process from preparation to clean-up.  Actually, it’s really tiring but in the end,…

Dinner Out of the Blue

Posted on June 7, 2012

It’s late in the afternoon and I was busy looking for my ice cream dasher. The promise to make a home-made ice cream for my kids is long overdue and my little one is getting impatient. I keep looking everywhere for that mixer but I end up finding old stuff that I am happy to see anyway. One of the unexpected finds was the box of Kitchenaid grater and slicer set. I opened the box with excitement just like the first time I received it from my husband. It was his present to me a few years ago to ease my daily cooking task and yet I never had a chance to use it. Unaware of the time, my kids and hubby started to chorus about what’s for dinner.…

‘Tis the season of Fish

Posted on February 24, 2012

Today is the first Friday of lent. For Catholics who observe the lenten season, it means the season of fish. From the dawn of Christianity, Friday has been signaled as an abstinence day, in order to do homage to the memory of Christ suffering and dying on that day of the week. The “Teaching of the Apostles” (viii), Clement of Alexandria (Strom., VI, 75), and Tertullian (De jejun., xiv) made explicit mention of this practice. Here’s another article from Catholic answers:

“Finally, we should mention why Friday abstinence was imposed. The Church recognizes that, since meat is a chief part of most meals served in most places, and since meat is usually the most valued or expensive part of a meal, abstinence from meat on Fridays is a good way for Christians to unite themselves more closely to the sufferings of their Lord (Rom. 8:16-17, 1 Pet. 2:21) by denying themselves something they enjoy. Abstinence from meat is a sacrifice which unites them in penance and strengthens the solidarity of the Church through mild suffering. It’s also a good form of mortification, which disciplines the soul and strengthens its resistance to concupiscence. St.Paul practiced and recommended mortification: “I drive my body and train it, for fear that after having preached to others, I myself should be disqualified” (1 Cor. 9:27).”

In order for the kids to “endure” the fish diet for 40 days  (at least every Fridays) I will have to make it look at least palatable.

The idea is not to “enjoy” but to endure 🙂  Here’s our dinner tonight:

 Broiled Tilapia, Asparagus, Grape Tomatoes and Onions.


I sprinkled Tilapia fillet with salt & pepper, broil it for about 12 minutes at 500°

I steamed the asparagus and grilled the grape tomatoes in the pan.

As simple as that, and dinner is served!


Better than a belly dancer

Posted on February 10, 2012

 Seared Tuna Belly       We were at the seafood store the other day and bought an assortment of fish. I was lucky enough to see fresh from the wild. I purchased some Japanese Saba (Mackerel), Tuna belly and Strawberry grouper (Red Lapu-Lapu) with a good amount of size. I hope to find time taking some notes on those once I prepared ’em. I still have some frozen fish left in my freezer from our last shopping so I did not buy much of fish.        Last night, I cooked a dish that I haven’t tried before. It’s the photo you are looking on top of this post. It was a simple preparation and my kids loved it to the max. I sliced the tuna belly according to the portion my…

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