Friday, September 13th, 2013 05:49 pm
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
I've come to appreciate the avocado here. It's less mushy and doesn't have the weird bitter fibers I'm used to back home. Whenever I crave food, but I'm not in the mood to cook, it's avocado to the rescue. Savory? Avocado spread on bread + a squeeze of lemon + pepper + salt. Sweet? Avocado mashed up in a bowl + a squeeze of lemon + sugar + milk.

Savory -- and maybe I can stand to cook a little bit? Toast + avocado + fried egg on top.

I could probably just be content with avocado on bread all day long, if I had an infinite supply of avocado and bread :)

The lemon is an addition I just discovered today. I wondered if it would work, and Google turned up a bunch of results saying it would -- thanks Google! -- so I tried it. Adding lemon makes the avocado taste just a little brighter, emphasizing the taste of the avocado instead of overpowering it.

I find that half an avocado at a time works best; if I try to use up the whole thing, I'm too full. So I end up with a snack now, dessert later.... mmm :)
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
Ummmmm just because I am getting embarrassed of just putting up all chicken all the time.

(Also fair warning while I won't post everything I eat, I'm having fun cooking for myself. Expect more entries of food I've cooked while I'm here.

That might just mean all the chicken ;))

Moooore chicken

Tuesday, September 10th, 2013 01:49 pm
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
This time I marinated the chicken breast in soy sauce + garlic + lime juice, and then baked with a lime slice in the oven (this doesn't make sense to me and there were soggy areas because of the lime. Maybe they meant squeeze the lime slice over the chicken before baking....)

The hilarious thing is that my lunches all look the same but so far they've all tasted very different ;)

Today's is a nice garlicky tangy flavor. I do want a little more color -- hard without the skin but I will see what happens if I do 400°F for the last few minutes instead of 350°F all the way.

(Getting gradually less nervous about undercooked chicken. So far I haven't had any incidents...)

More chicken!

Wednesday, September 4th, 2013 01:06 pm
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
More chicken :)

Chicken is not scary!


Tuesday, September 3rd, 2013 12:19 pm
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
Cooked lunch! It actually looks reasonable as food :)

Food porn

Monday, July 22nd, 2013 08:49 pm
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
Just got served a gigantic oyster. I...suddenly understand certain euphemisms.

So uh food yes

Saturday, December 24th, 2011 10:28 pm
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
So uh my sister bought a roast turkey for dinner and had it carved in the kitchen. After we are the oddly dry meat, we found out there was all this stuffing thing left nthe kitchen? And it wasnt dry? I don't even know /o\

Cranberry sauce was great though :)
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
Hi everyone! Meet Flammable Mickey:

painting of a Mickey Mouse face on the back of an oil truck. Above is the word flammable, below are the words keep distance.  Also painted are a pair of baby Mickey and Minnie Mouse

He has nothing to do with this entry, but a warning is always appropriate when you're dealing with flammable things.

the entry is actually about food and cooking )
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
I meant to type "miss you, love you"; instead my fingers typed "miss you, love mine".

Which... works I guess! The keys are right next to each other and all that.

Have been having lots of summery-salad stuff: lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber, carrots as a base, and then whatever is on hand. I'm all out of the sliced almonds, but I did manage to find some cheese that's actually cheddar, and not velveeta! That has been adding some nice salty-sharpness to my salads. So good :)

I also managed to snag some Red Leicester. I don't know what that is like, but I'll find out soon.

Today's special ingredient was golden kiwi. I though the sweet acidity would offset the cheese, but it was too mild and the salad was overall blah. Green kiwi might have been better. Probably best though, would be some nice pineapple or orange chunks. Maybe apples, to go into an entirely different direction, as well.

I have discovered the hard way that sliced tomatoes keep for only one or two days, so I must now make sure we only slice one at a time instead of a couple.

Have been doing so! much! knitting :D I got my in-progress projects on Ravelry down to five for a time, but now I'm back up to seven (ahahaha /o\), with two more that need weaving in of ends / attaching of handles, that kind of thing. Sometimes I wish I could pay someone to finish my projects for me /o\

My latest project is a summer vest made with a linen/cotton blend. I am super in love with this yarn: it's smooth and light; like cotton it's not flexible, but it's much easier on the hands than kitchen cotton. I bet that it'll feel nice and light on the skin as well. I hear that linen gets softer with washing. I don't know if this blend will act the same way, but I certainly hope so.

I don't know if it's easier on the hands than cotton because I've only ever used kitchen cotton, or if it's because linen is somehow more forgiving than cotton and imparts some of that quality into the blend. It might even be because this is DK weight, and the kitchen cotton I've used is worsted? Noooot sure, but whatever the reason, I do love it, because with this it's much easier to knit garments that are suited to my climate.

I feel like my life right now revolves around IRC, knitting, my dogs, food (and cooking shows), and Dreamwidth. And well, I'm happy. So. Life.

(no subject)

Wednesday, August 24th, 2011 11:15 pm
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
Had a breakthrough tonight with Charlie and Moe! (Charlie is the old dog and Moe is the new puppy). Charlie is very territorial and jealous: great watchdog, not so good when it comes to new people and puppies, so we haven't been able to leave the two in the same room together.

We've been trying to introduce the two of them in low-stress ways -- walks together (with two different people), sniff-meetings through a baby gate, that kind of thing, but just the sight of Moe was enough to set Charlie off, so that hadn't been going as well as we'd hoped.

But then! Today Charlie and Moe were sniffing at each other through the baby gate and for once Charlie seemed reasonably calm, so I unlatched the gate between them, trying my best to act and sound slow and calm and normal-sounding and unstressed. And instead of trying to take Moe to the ground with his jaws, Charlie sniffed at Moe warily \o/

There was some growling and some chasing, and some posturing, with none of the aggression of before; I hung out in the area reading a book, again trying to exude calm and this-is-all-normal-carry-on-darlings, and I am quite happy with how it's turned out.

Charlie is bullying Moe quite a bit (poor puppy), but in a way that as far as I can tell is perfectly normal: that is, sniffing at, looming over, some barking. Moe meanwhile is alternating between lying down and yelping back. But it's all... I mean it's mostly mock-fighting rather than real fighting, and with some actual play in it. So. They're sorting things out, and as long as no one gets hurt I won't step in.

We're still not allowing them together without any humans in the area close by though! Not after what's happened in all their previous encounters.

(I'm so happy \o/ I love Charlie, and I love how loyal he is, but I was worried his protectiveness meant he would never accept Moe and now I have hope \o/ \o/ \o/)

I've also been having breakthroughs with cooking:

We put out a bowl of lettuce on the table with every meal, in addition to the "normal" cooked vegetables. Now when I say bowl of lettuce, I really do mean bowl of lettuce. No dressing, no salad fixings: just you know, a bowl of plain lettuce.

And I'm sick and tired of it -- in fact I'm sick and tired of a lot of things about food in this house. I mean to post about it at some point (that one I'll put under a cut). But while I was watching MasterChef, it struck me that we have ingredients in this house, hey? And I can use those ingredients to turn that bowl of lettuce into salad \o/

At first I insisted on calling what I did experiments, but now I'm forcing myself to acknowledge that vegetables tossed together with (sometimes) a dressing can too be properly called a salad, even if it's something I thought up myself.

I've been playing around with combinations of grated carrots, sliced almonds, and longgans (I don't know what these are in English, but if you translate literally from Chinese, then these are "dragon's eyes" :D)

For dressing I usually try one that [personal profile] pauamma taught me. The original recipe called for half an orange, two limes, and some raw garlic. There's no way to get limes here but I've recently found out that dayap tastes pretty similar! Calamansi kind of works, but I think I'll need to rethink the proportions since it's not as light tasting as lime.

I've also learned that you can make vinaigrette at home o_o I thought you needed a fancy machine but no, a vinaigrette is just acid + oil, basically. So far I've tried one with balsamic vinegar / olive oil / honey vinaigrette. I will poke around a bit to see what else I can do :D

OH oh and grilled tomatoes sprinkled with thyme and cheese works perfectly fine with lettuce. I consider that one a success as well.

Tonight I decided to go a bit fancy and aim for a kani mango salad.

Kani doesn't taste anything like crab, but as long as I think of it as fake crab rather than expecting anything crablike from it, it and I get along perfectly fine.

Mango we have a lot of \o/ because it's still mango season \o/ The best thing about mango is that after you slice off both cheeks to use in the salad, you can save the flesh clinging to the seed for dessert. There's nothing quite like cleaning all the flesh off a mango seed completely for sheer enjoyment of food *_*

And yeah, tossed it all together -- restaurants usually add Japanese mayonnaise, but though I prefer the sweetness of Japanese mayo over regular mayo, I don't really like mayo in general. The only thing I like mayo on are tuna salad sandwiches. Well maybe chicken salad sandwiches but that's a big maybe >_>

So anyway, yes, food. And yes watching shows that talk about food in a passionate and loving way :D

I need to see whether the Junior Masterchef Philippines edition is any good >_> I want to get ideas from somewhere local, so I can use local ingredients like oooh calamansi, stuff that would never end up on a foreign cooking show.



Saturday, February 19th, 2011 07:01 pm
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
Last week I made two batches of almost-perfect chocolate chunk cookies.

This week, I tried it again, and ended up with the first batch way overdone, and (because I was twitchy after the first batch) a second batch that is slightly underdone.

Since last week's was just a bit too sweet, I substituted half a cup of semi-sweet chips for half a cup of the dark chocolate buttons (half a cup out of 1 1/2 cups). That's toned down the sweetness, but I wonder now if it's toned it down too much.

I will try again in another week, and hopefully this time it'll be more like my first attempt at cookies by myself (beginner's luck!) rather than this week's :-)

i made cookies!

Saturday, February 12th, 2011 06:05 pm
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
Just your basic chocolate chip cookies :D flour, butter, sugar, vanilla, egg, a bit of cocoa and coffee powder, and chocolate buttons (larger discs of chocolate) instead of discs so that you'd get more chocolate in each bite.

Reduced the sugar to 2/3 of the recipe because the last time i made it it was too sweet, which. Well it turns out it was a good thing because i bought the wrong chocolate (dark instead of unsweetened or semi-sweet) so the cookie is still very sweet indeed.

Butter was slightly melted. Spent a long time at room temperature and in the mixer while I got everything together. Which may be why it...

Okay so I meant to make it crisper and thinner but somehow I ended up with something that is pretty thick! Fresh from the oven, it just kinda melts in your mouth, and the melted chocolate is just this mouthful of *____* i am waiting for it to cool; not sure whether it will become chewy or hard/brittle. I hope neither. I hope it just stays soft like this *____*

Waiting for it to cool now.

Candied Orange Zest

Saturday, January 22nd, 2011 10:17 pm
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
I have been devouring Top Chef: Just Desserts (no pun intended). And I can't eat what they're making, obviously, but just looking at the images, and listening to the thought processes behind their desserts is very yummy.

After one of the chefs mentioned that they'd made candied... ginger? orange zest? for a challenge, I realized that it is possible to make your own candied zest. I thought that you needed either a.) special equipment or b.) to let it soak for weeks/months. Turns out candied zest can be done in less than an hour. Some recipes mention up to a day, but even that is way better than what I had originally assumed.

Now I am fantasizing about making my own orange zest and coating them with some of the 85% dark chocolate we have at home that I can't stand to eat by itself.

Just finished the first season, and I am really happy about how it ended :-)

cut for spoiler for the ending and language )

I am also enjoying Top Chef: Masters. In comparison to those on regular Top Chef and Top Chef: Just Desserts, the masters are (mostly) so cool and professional *_* The sense of camaraderie has me in love. They take so much pleasure in food and I love watching them work and ooooooh.

I wish that I could either eat their food, or well, cook even half as well as one of them.

This all reminds me that I have not cooked in ages, and I should really get started again >_> (I have been baking though, but even my last baked item was a couple weeks back!)

Safe in Vietnam!

Tuesday, January 18th, 2011 07:18 pm
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
Angkor Wat was awesome and tiring and not for people with no head for heights. All the trekking has left me tired (in a good way), and the past two nights has been two of the most relaxing sleeps I have ever had. How do you pluralize sleep? Can you pluralize sleep?

Siem Reap (town near Angkor Wat) is very much a tourist destination to the point where most of the prices in restaurants, etc, are in dollars and things are cheaper if you don't convert into riels. I have never been anywhere with that system before. (i wonder if they keep a separate menu for locals?). Want to actually say something but not tonight.

Have had lots of good food, lots of good pictures. Need to raid my brother's and sister's cameras, because they got all the good shots.

Now in Vietnam! People are not lying when they say that Vietnam coffee is really good. Our guide took us to Trung Nguyen cafe, biggest coffee shop I have ever seen, with the best coffee i have ever tasted: drip coffee mixed with condensed milk, poured over ice.

I have never liked coffee before. It always feels thin and bitter, but this coffee was rich on the tongue and the bitterness was masked by the condensed milk, but the condensed milk did not mask the flavor of the coffee. Also, I was not shaking after drinking it, and instead of feeling slow, I feel really really good. Would drink it again.

Crossing the street is intimidating. Except on the biggest streets in the center of the city, the traffic never really seems to stop, and while you walk, motorcycles zoom by in frontof and behind you. The trick, I am told, is to walk slowly. It feels like you need Manila street smarts x 10.

Must run for dinner!

Cambodia day 1

Saturday, January 15th, 2011 10:23 pm
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
Notes written throughout the day, when I remember to do so

My brother accidentally knocked my phone out of my hands, and it fell to the floor *hard*. It has done that before with no damage, but this time, the backlight was broken. At first, it was as if there was no backlight, and then it was as if there was too much backlight, and it was washing the screen out.

 I was just about to give up on it, when my sister jokingly suggested i thwack the back of the phone to fix the backlight. I did, twice, and voila. :D phone all fixed now.  

At the Ho Chi Minh airport (stop over to Siem Reap), someone walked over and asked me whether it was all right to bring knitting on the plane. Hers was all in her luggage, but maybe what i told her will help next time!

Siem Reap airport is gorgeous, looks more like a spa than an airport. :)

It is apparently less hot here than the Philippines. I don't go out in the sun back home so i don't really know though *g*

Passed a tuktuk on the way to the hotel. It is like a tricycle and a jeepney rolled into one. Or maybe a tricycle and calesa and now I think of it as a horseless calesa the way a car used to be a horseless carriage. Also, lots of bicycles here. Dad is amazed there are so many alateris trees. I can say and eat alateris, I just can't spell it!

We are at Raffles. Um wow. This is the most gorgeous hotel i have ever been in, bar none. Usually I don't care as long as the bed is comfortable, but this is just blowing me away. There are a lot of tiny details that they got right, which I only noticed now thay every other hotel has gotten wrong.

Have so far eaten in three restaurants. The first was a snack at a random hole in the wall where they were out of everything, which was a shame because deer barbecue cambodia style from their menu sounded good but their yang chow fried rice was okay and their duck with crispy skin was really really good so that gave us enough energy to keep going through the afternoon.  

We dropped by the national museum but it was late in the afternoon and we decided we didn't have enough time to give it justice so we skipped the paying area. 

Stopped at le grande cafe in the old market area, where we had fantastic ice cream -- profiterole (vanilla ice cream wrapped in a pastry bun topped with whipped cream and chocolate syrup), and a Paradise sundae (banana, lime, strawberry sorbet topped with whipped cream and strawberry syrup) -- a light and refreshing counterpoint to the chocolatey goodness of the profiteroles. 

Shopped a bit after that. Got some earrings and silk scarves :D I love these scarves, just wish  I had more opportunities to wear them. 

And then dinner at Amok: banana heart salad, spring rolls (deliciously vegetabley), tumeric chicken (mild for curry which suited me perfectly), pork kebabs (cute! And delicious!), beef luk lok (small cubes of beef, just that perfect balance between tender and chewy with a slightly sweet pepper sauce), and fish amok (fish in coconut gata, a bit bland beside everything else and the only disappointment of the day) . Each dish had two tiny mounds of fragrant jasmine rice, and this rice was really really good. I could eat it forever. 

It is surprising to be in a place where things are cheaper than back home. I fact, i am sure this is a first. Every other country I have been to was more expensive than the Philippines -- even Thailand! I am not sure how I feel about this. Let's start with "strange"

Finally back at home base. Was all cranky because the free hotel wifi blocks all but the most poplar sites, but have worked around it by using OpenDNS.  mwahaha. :) 

Tomorrow is Angkor Wat, and more food.

Busy Busy Week

Sunday, January 9th, 2011 12:15 am
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
This week I:

* helped my sister's boyfriend with his website, earned pizza. It's a good deal, since I'm not actually doing much work/design. Just need to point him in the right direction when he gets stuck, and he takes it from there. Also, he doesn't take it out on me when he gets frustrated by technology, unlike most people I help (most people I help only once).

* went out to watch RPG Metanoia with friends on the last day of the Manila Film Festival. RPG Metanoia is the first 3D fully-animated Philippine film. I still can't tell if they're boasting about it using 3D-glasses technology, or if they're boasting about it being entirely in CGI. Maybe both!

It apparently took five years to make, and it is so Philippine-flavored I am ahahahhahaha :)

more about the movie )

* went out with my friend J to a factory outlet for skin care products. Stuff I usually find at PHP 800 branded, is less than a hundred here. Possibly a bit smaller, but not eight times smaller! So I'm trying it out and I hope that the quality is okay. (Supposedly, this store supplies many of the derma clinics, so!)

Dropped by SaveMore to pick up crackers for if some random person knocks on my car window. Somehow ended up buying baking chocolates and honey.

We ended up along T Morato and randomly picked Sentosa, a new Singaporean Chinese restaurant, for dinner. It's so new, it hasn't even officially opened yet, ahaha :) So we got a ten percent discount. Win!

Sentosa is pretty good. We ordered the xiao long pao (a bit smaller than I'm used to, but xiao long pao is usually so heavy, this was a welcome change), pad thai, and fried catfish with tamarind sauce.

And then next door to Dezaato Pan for some ice cream that tastes like Ferrero Rocher. Along the way, we talked about medicine, food, and then somehow the topic of fat shaming came up. LET ME JUST SAY I am relieved at how well that conversation went.

Now we're just hanging out, trying not to fall asleep, and looking at local coupon (groupon?) sites, so we can plan our next outing together :D
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
Okay, so.

Remember in that one news post, where I admitted my craving for pad thai? On Saturday, I finally satisfied that craving at 8 Spices over in T. Morato -- and it was good. It was also expensive: quite easily the most I've ever spent on a single meal. To be fair, that was because the portions were for two to three people (I ate half of each serving, and packed up the rest to take home). The pad thai was not *quite* what I was looking for, but close enough. Close enough :)

Sunday, I hung out with family, and did the usual Sunday thing, which involves eating a huge lunch, gorging on ice cream for merienda, and grabbing some yummy dinner together. Love kare-kare (usually beef tail and tripe in peanut butter sauce with vegetables). Seriously love. Home-cooked is better than any store-bought I've ever had, but that dinner (from Bangus in MoA) was decent, considering it's from a restaurant.

Monday, I caught up with some of my friends from high school. We ended up at Tokyo Cafe, where we hung out and ate pasta and french toast. Then we ended up in Gloria jeans for some coffee/cake when the fourth member of our group arrived late.

Ended up doing some shopping, where I'm proud to say that I managed to avoid spending anything. Mostly we just talked; I miss them! It's been a while since we've had a chance to get together. :)

I do not otherwise miss my high school days, or my my old high school classmates, but these three girlfriends? I miss, and am glad whenever we can get together. I gave them each a beret I knitted for them, and I'm pleased that I successfully gauged which beret would go to whom (I let them choose because I wasn't quite sure enough of myself!).

Considered voting for the barangay elections but I know very little about the candidates, other than what is in their pamphlets which, ugh, whatever. I feel like I should become a better citizen at some point. Hmm.

Got completely lost on the drive home. I'm very good at getting lost -- last week, the five minute drive from the mall to my grandpa's place ended up taking me an hour and a half, because I ended up on an expressway to Cavite, and I had to call up my dad to guide me home.

cut for long etc about driving and getting lost )

In news that are less stressful, today got to use our oven for the very first time! We finished renovating the kitchen a couple of months ago, but because of some *mumble* we weren't allowed to use the stove/oven until the kitchen had been suitably blessed, and we had to wait for a good day (fortuitous day? lucky day?) for the blessing to be done. So I've been waiting for a long time now to be able to use the new kitchen, and that day came last week.

cut for long etc about baking )

Ummmm. So anyway, I think I like baking even with the mistakes. Maybe especially with the mistakes? ;-)

(no subject)

Friday, October 1st, 2010 03:01 pm
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
Stumbled across some chocolate-covered orange peels in our refrigerator. So good; I feel like I'm about to burst with happiness.

So sleepy!

Wednesday, September 8th, 2010 10:02 am
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
First thing I do with my breakfast glass of orange juice is spill it all over my desk D: Had a moment of complete and utter panic that it would destroy my laptop and my external hard drive, but luckily laptop is up on a platform, and the hard drive was just outside the spill radius.


(I had a dream last night that I was going around with v-signs for hands, and various emoticon for a face, trying to match the best emoticon to my victory hand. I guess I finally found it?)

Smells of popcorn

Wednesday, August 18th, 2010 10:39 am
afuna: Cat under a blanket. Text: "Cats are just little people with Fur and Fangs" (Default)
We had popcorn in the room last night, and the smell has lingered so when I move about I get these whiffs of butter and popcorn goodness. It is driving me hungry!

Lunch, get here quick. AND BE POPCORN.