Saturday, February 23, 2013

Is this China product expired or not?

 This Christmas, My sister Joe came home from Shanghai and gave us some of these Waffles.  She bought it from Carrefour following my request.  Thank you sis *wink*.
 But I was a bit confused when I saw a date in the packaging that says 2012 11 14.  Can the product be expired?  But she just bought it this December, Is Carrefour selling expired products on their shelves?
 So I proceed to look at the back and found three characters 保 质基 (bao zhi ji) meaning date of guarantee for quality which indicates: 六个月 (liu ge ye) which is 6 months.

 Chinese products have their manufacturing date stamped on the front and the expiration dates indicated on the back.  So my waffles are manufactured on November 14, 2012 and they have a guarantee shelf life of 6 months which means they will be expired by May 15, 2013.

 Here is another example.  Manufacturing date stamped is September 8, 2012.

 And the guarantee of quality is 18 months which makes its expiration to March 10, 2014.

I just felt like sharing this bit of information to prevent perfectly good food products from making its way into your trash bin.

Thank you sis! The waffles are divine!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Shilin night market in Taipei, Taiwan

Taipei is all about markets, specifically night markets. Albeit I was a little sad that I was able to go to only one- Shilin Night Market,  My experience there is certainly memorable.  
On our night there, we saw this woman selling Taiwan sausages.  Her stall was packed and we had to wait our turn to get a seat.  So I got to look at what she was doing.    She broils those sausage for 10 minutes and puts them on what looks like a bun, but it is actually glutinous rice in pig casing.  She slices the "bun" and adds vegetable salad.  Very creative!

 The whole dish looked like a hotdog sandwich, Taiwanese style!

  I did not try the rice " buns" for fear that I might be too full to try the other dishes there.  The sausages  tasted like broiled meatloaf- smoky, lean and tasty.  Out of that 7 day Taiwan trip, we all agreed that her sausages are the best.  
Her business is quite good!  She has beef noodle soup, fish ball soup and oyster misua soup.  I ordered oyster misua soup with fried shallots floating on top.  The oysters are fresh and plump and the broth is so- so...

 It looked like a family business too. Mother and daughter all share the chores.  
 I also strolled around the market to get the vibe of the place.  I saw these calamansi floating on a gigantic bowl of tea.

And I thought only the Philippines has calamansi.
 Notice these albino ampalaya.  (bitter gourd)  You can have it made into bitter gourd shake. I wondered how it would taste....I don't dare try that, sorry.

The vendors chop their fruits into small pieces and puts them on a stick for you to try.  It was sooo sweet, I was tempted to buy there.  They sell the fruits for 50 nt for a 100 grams.  That is 750 pesos for a kilogram.

 It was good that the night before I bought a kilogram of sugar apple (atis) from Carrefour for 250 pesos a kilogram, so I know how much they really are worth.

We got so hooked up with the taste of Taiwan sausages that we decided to bring home these  raw sausage from the supermarket chillers.  I put them into my baggage frozen, and they came home thawed.  ( he! he!)

No matter, they really are "superior".  I poach them in water with a little oil. And we got to taste Taiwan again...

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Manila Bibimbap Recipe

 Lately there seems to be a Korean fad in the restaurants all around the Metro.  I like Korean foods. I like that  the cuisine centers more on vegetables.

This Sunday, I had too much time on my hands.  So I made Bibimbap.  I called this recipe Manila Bibimbap because the- piece de resistance- in this dish would be my favorite COSMOS ASADO.

No, I didn't cook the  asado.  I just bought it in Soler Street, Manila.  From Cosmos Panciteria.

The sauce that would tie this dish into one would be Macjang Sauce:
 The recipe for Macjang Sauce is as follows:
Mix together the following ingredients to taste ( no more cooking) -

1.  Djenjang paste (Korean brown tub of fermented soya bean paste or miso)
2.  Samjang paste (Korean green tub of fermented soya bean paste with chili paste)
3.  Karo syrup or Korean bottle of sugar syrup
4.  Rice vinegar (just a tweak)
5.  minced fresh garlic
6.  Sesame oil

All Korean ingredients can be found in Wang Mart .  They import Korean products that can be found in those leading supermarkets.

The different vegetables that can be added to a Bibimbap would be:

1.  Bean sprouts- sauté in sesame oil and garlic in high heat (to take out the moisture)
 2.  Dried shitake mushroom revived in water and sliced into strips- also sauté in sesame oil, water and garlic

 3.  Straw mushrooms in can, sliced and saute in sesame oil , water and garlic
 4.  Fried beancurd- slice into strip
 5.  Cucumber- sliced thinly

 6.  Julienned carrots- blanched in water

7.  Taiwan petchay- saute in sesame oil and garlic
8. You will need an egg - cooked sunny side up with yolk still runny...


9.  Asado- leave as such, no prep needed.  no picture too :(

Everything goes in a bowl and mix with how much ever Macjang Sauce you prefer and dig in!

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Xuhui Caoheijing Hongruncal Market in Shanghai 2

Some more pictures of the Xuhui Caoheijing Market in Shanghai.  The Philippines has abundant seafood, so when I saw this woman selling clams, I wasn't as impressed.  We have more variety.  
I was a little intrigued and shocked that I saw a guinea pig in the wet section of the market.  How are these done? steamed? fried? boiled.  When I asked the lady seller beside it, she said:

 " That's just for playing"  Whew!  What a relief! I don't think I would try them anyway they are done.

I saw this shop selling pre marinated fresh meat and seafood on the second floor.  Think of it like shabu shabu ingredients that can be bought in the market.  Great Idea!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Xuhui Caoheijing Hongruncal Market in Pudong Shanghai

Xuhui Caoheijing Hongruncal market is located in the residential district of Cao Dong Zhi Lu.  It was a stone's throw away from my sister's flat in Shanghai, China.

 And since I really cannot visit a country without first diving into their markets, I find myself waiting at 6 in the morning for the shops to open.

I was a tad too early- it seems.  Shanghai markets opens at 7:00 to 7:30 AM.

 The market is subdivided into 2 floors.  The ground floor houses the wet market selling fish, meat and produce.  And the second floor houses the dry goods, where we can find rice, canned goods and pre marinated- ready to cook- items.

Since Shanghai is famous for their dumplings, I think it only fitting that dumpling wrappers are hand made each day in the market.  These gentlemen are slicing their dumpling wrappers into squares or circles to fit the client's  orders.  They also make their own noodles out of the same dough and slice them very thinly or thickly.

Did you notice the moisture from their pre packed dumpling wrapper?  They were just finishing up at 6 in the morning.  I wonder what time they started making the dough.

 Shanghai dumplings have a chewy texture to them.  Unlike our dumpling wrappers which can be paper thin, theirs are thicker and have more bite to them.

As I went around, I saw these coagulated chicken blood blocks sitting in a water bath.  We used to have chicken blood sautéed in kutchay leaves or swimming in breakfast congee when we were small, So I understood where we would cook these.
But I didn't understand what these were.  This looked like a mound of beans sitting in a trough.  Anybody know what these are? How are they cooked?

These bamboo shoots are so fresh!  They looked like they were just picked from the ground.  I like them sautéed or added in my soup for that fibrous, nutty bite.  Where else other than China can we find such ingredients prepared with LOVE.

I didn't take a picture of the assortment of mushrooms I saw in the market.  But since we visited Shanghai during spring time.  Mushroom were all around the restaurants we went into.  And they were dirt cheap.  I bought 40 pesos worth of  fresh shitake mushroom and it took me 3 days to finish them.

 I think it will be worth visiting Shanghai if only for the mushrooms.

Did I mention that mushrooms are my favorite?

These gigantic garlic stalks can be added to dumplings and pork mince.  They impart a garlicky aroma. They are different from kutchay or green onions. There is a bundle of kutchay beside it.

 It must be garlic stalk harvest season.  They have them everywhere!

Here's the last picture I got from the wet section of the market.  The same familiar vegetable we have here only BIGGER.  The onions are probably 100 grams per bulb.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Adobong Boneless Bangus Belly

 I used to buy bangus (milkfish) from the wet market.    I would choose the fattest bangus, have them take out the scales and the fish bones, and have them cut "daing- style" (butterfly cut).

My favorite part would be the belly with its fatty center. Often, not all the fish bones are perfectly taken out.  And the bangus comes home soft and wilted.

That was before we discovered  Sarangani Bay Prime boneless bangus belly.

Now, we head off to the freezer section of the supermarket and stock up on these favorites.
It takes around 20 minutes to defrost these beauties and another 20 minutes to cook them.

 Easy fast food.

 It comes unsalted, so it is like a blank canvas for me to play with.

I tried them Boiled, Steamed, Broiled,  Fried, and Baked.  I love that they have really fatty belly. Yum.

Here's one of my favorite recipe:

Adobong Boneless Bangus Belly


1 pack 400 gram Bangus Belly- unseasoned
1/2 cup Knorr Seasoning
2 cloves garlic, sliced thinly and fried in oil
3 Tablespoon Rice Vinegar
1 Tablespoon Oyster Sauce
1/4 Cup all purpose flour
pinch of salt and pepper
1 pc finger chili ( optional)

1.  Season bangus with salt and pepper, coat with flour and fry.
2.  In a saucepan, mix together seasoning, oyster sauce, rice vinegar, and fried garlic.  cook in low heat.
3.  Dip fried bangus in warm sauce.
4.  Enjoy!  Easy Peasy! :)

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Sunday Lunch- Broccoli with Truffle Cream Pasta

 Another lazy Sunday at home.   It is the Sunday before exam week, so today is Review Sunday.

We have decided to have pasta for lunch.  So I whip up this quick Creamy Spaghetti with Truffles.
 I remembered the truffle paste I bought from Rijeka, Croatia.

Truffle goes exceptionally well with cream sauce, the pungent mushroom-my flavor gives a kick to the quiet cream.  To give this recipe a variation, I added Broccoli.

And since it's LAZY Sunday, I don't like to be bothered with making Bechamel ( flour, butter and milk sauce) and substitute it with Campbell Cream of mushroom soup instead.

Broccoli with Truffle Cream Pasta

1 T oil  (right now I'm using rice bran oil)
1 pinch of butter
1 Cup Lean Bacon
1 Can Campbell Cream of Mushroom Soup
1/2 Can of Evaporated Milk
2 Tbsp Minced Onion
2 Tbsp Minced Red Pepper
1 Tbsp Truffle Paste
250 grams Broccoli flowers, blanched and shocked in cold water
1/2 Can Button Mushrooms, sliced
450 grams cooked Spaghetti, al dente
pinch of salt, pepper and paprika

1.  Heat in low flame oil and butter.
2.  Saute mushroom in high heat ( this brings out the flavor of mushroom).
3.  Add onion, red pepper and bacon.
4.  Dump the Cream of mushroom soup and evaporated milk. ( You can add chicken stock to liquefy the dish).
5.  Add truffle paste and blanched broccoli.  Season with salt, pepper and paprika.
6.  Add cooked spaghetti and close the fire before you mix.  ( To prevent the spaghetti over cooking)
7.  Enjoy!