Sunday, June 29, 2014

Chicken Liver, Bistek Style

Chicken Liver, Bistek Style. The best method of cooking chicken liver is either Adobo or Bistek Tagalog style. For today I want to share my version of Chicken Live,r Bistek Style. There is no special about it just that the liver should be marinated, the marinade is discarded after use, I do not re-use the marinade of my liver Bistek. For the sauce I just add fresh soy sauce and kalamansi. Buy the freshest chicken liver. Cooking is fairly simple, it is basically similar to my other Bistek dishes. Click the link list below to find out our other Bistek recipes.

Beef Sirloin Steak, Bistek Style

Pork Loin Steak, Bistek Style

Bistek Bulalo with Pineapple

Bangus Bistek Tagalog

Mushroom and Tofu, Pinoy Bistek Style

Liver Bistek

Pork Bistek

Tanguige Bistek Tagalog

Bangus Belly Bistek Tagalog

Bistek Stir Fry

Bistek Bulalo


Here is the recipe of my version of Chicken Liver, Bistek Style, enjoy


1/2 kilo chicken liver, cut in halves

2 medium size onion, peeled, sliced into rings

1/2 head garlic, peeled, crushed, chopped

1 cup soy sauce

1/3 cup kalamansi juice

1 tsp. peppercorn, crushed

cooking oil

Cooking procedure:

Marinate chicken liver in a mixture of half of the soy sauce, half of the kalamansi juice, garlic and peppercorns for at least 15 minutes. Remove pork liver from the marinade and set aside, discard the marinade. In a wok heat a tablespoon of cooking oil and stir fry onions until translucent remove from wok and set aside. In same wok heat 3 to 4 tbsp. of oil and fry chicken liver batches for 2 to 3 minutes or until color changes to golden brown. Using the same wok add return the fried chicken liver and add in the remaining soy sauce, remaining kalamansi juice and 1/2 cup of water into the wok, bring to a boil. Simmer for 2 to 3 minutes or until sauce is reduced to half and has turn into an oily sauce. Add in onions and continue to cook for a minute. Serve with a lot of rice.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Beef and Black Bean Stew

Having a slow cooker is very useful, as it means I can put something on in the morning and come home to a meal that would have taken ages to cook otherwise. In the spirit of the World Cup, I found a Brazilian recipe for a beef and black bean stew.

I had a packet of cubed stewing beef that I put in the slow cooker along with half a can of black beans, a large squeeze of tomato puree, a small squeeze of garlic puree, a quarter of a teaspoon of chilli powder, half an onion (chopped) and two cups of water.

I put the slow cooker onto 'auto' setting, which means it cooks for about 4 hours then keeps the food warm until you are ready to eat.

I served it with some Jersey royal potatoes and vegetables, though I guess rice might have been more traditional.

I'm sending this to Chris at Cooking Around The World for his World Cup challenge.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Pinoy Pork Curry

Pinoy Pork Curry. Most Pinoy are intimidated by curry dishes, curry to most means super spicy hot. To those who love curry there is a tuned down version with the use of very minimal curry powder the Pinoy Curry. Check out some of our OPC version of Pinoy curry that we have already posted below.

Pinoy Beef Curry

Pinoy Fish Curry with Kalabasa

Seafood and Vegetable Green Curry

Thai Green Chicken Curry, Pinoy Style

Chicken Curry with Bamboo Shoots

Pinoy Chicken Curry

Pinoy Chicken & Pork Curry

Today I would like to share a pork version of the Pinoy curry. The recipe use pork strips with some vegetables and potatoes. Cooking is basically the same with my other Pinoy curry dishes.

Here is the recipe of my version of Pinoy Pork Curry, enjoy.


1 medium size pork loin, cut into large strips

1/2 head garlic,peeled, crushed, chopped

1 large size onion, peeled, chopped

2 thumb size ginger, skinned, cut into thin strips

2 medium size potato, skinned, cut into wedges

1 large size carrot, skinned, cut into wedges

2 small size red and green bell pepper, cut into strips

2 pieces red and green chili chopped

1 big can coconut cream

1 bunch snow peas, trimmed

1 bunch green beans, trimmed

1/4 cup fish sauce

1-2 tbsp. yellow curry powder

1/2 tsp. turmeric powder

1-2 tsp. sugar

1/2 tsp. ground peppercorns

1/4 cup cornstrach


cooking oil

Cooking procedure:

In a sauce pan sauté garlic, ginger and onion until fragrant. Stir in the pork and stir cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Add in fish sauce and stir cook for another 2 to 3 minutes. Add in the ground peppercorn, 1/2 part of the coconut cream and 1 to 1 1/2 cups of water, bring to a boil and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring once in a while. Now add in the curry powder, the turmeric, the remaining coconut milk, potato, carrot and sugar, continue to simmer for 5 to 8 minutes or until the potatoes are just cooked. Correct saltines if required. Add in the green beans, snow peas and chili, cook for minute, then thicken sauce with cornstarch diluted in 1/4 cup of water, continue to cook for a minute. Add in the bell pepper and cook for another half a minute or so. Serve immediately with a lot of rice.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Tokwa’t Talong

Tokwa’t Talong is our vegetarian version of Pinoy’s firm tofu dish Tokwa’t Baboy. Tokwa’t Talong is the latest version of our Tokwa’t… series. Below are the list of versions that we have posted in the past.

Crispy Tokwa’t Baboy

Tokwa't Baboy, Pork and Tofu

Tokwa't Isda, Fish and Tofu

Tokwa't Baka, Beef and Tofu

Tokwa’t Manok

Tokwa’t Pinakurat

Using fried eggplant as an alternative to the pork in Tokwa’t Baboy is the best option. Fried eggplant is a regular Pinoy vegetable side dish, usually served during breakfast with the Pinoy fried rice. Similar to fried firm tofu the fried eggplant goes very well with vinegar soy sauce dressing or dip.

Making the dish is fairly easy, it is basically similar to all our Tokwa’t… recipes. Just cut any eggplant into large cube and fry until color starts to turn to golden drown. The fried eggplant is then tossed with the fried firm tofu and the special vinegar soy sauce dressing with chopped garlic, onion and some chilies.

Here is the recipe of my Tokwa’t Talong.


2 large size eggplant, trimmed, cut into large cube

1 big block firm tofu, cut into rectangular blocks

1 small size onion, coarsely chopped

2-3 cloves garlic, chopped

1-2 red and green chili, sliced crosswise

1/2 cup vinegar

1/2 cup soy sauce

1 tsp. sugar

cooking oil

Cooking procedure:

In pour vinegar and soy sauce, mix in the onion, garlic, sugar and chili, set aside until ready to serve. In a deep frying pan fry the eggplant in batches for 2 to 3 minutes until crisp side turned to golden brown, keep aside. Using the same deep frying pan fry the tofu in batches for 2 to 3 minutes each side or until crisp, drain excess oil, keep aside until ready to serve. To serve chop the tofu into cubes, place in a serving bowl with the fried eggplant and pour over the vinegar soy sauce with the onion and garlic mixture, toss to mix.

Ground Pork Adobo with Quail Eggs

Ground Pork Adobo with Quail Eggs. Ground meat or giniling is one of the more popular choice of meat to most Pinoy. Ground meat dishes are very common in Pinoy cuisine, it is either cooked as the main ingredient or in combination of other vegetables. Check out the list below of some of the ground meat recipes that we have already posted.

Kalderetang Giniling na Baka, Ground Beef Kaldereta

Asadong Pork Giniling with Quail Egg

Braised Ground Beef with Oyster Sauce

Giniling na Manok, Ground Chicken with Tomato Sauce




Special Embutido

Meatloaf, Christmas Meatloaf

Tortang Carne

Spicy Chili con Carne

Winged Beans with Beef, Ginisang Sigarillas

Cheesy Lumpiang Shanghai

You may have noticed that most of the ground meat dishes are cooked with tomato sauce. For today’s dish we go back to the basics, we try to cooked ground meat, adobo style. This is not new, but it is my first time to cook giniling, adobo style. For this adobo recipe I wanted it simple by just using vinegar and salt and have omitted soy sauce. I do however cooked my ground pork adobo with potatoes which is usually an indispensable ground meat partner in Pinoy cuisine. I have some canned quail egg lying in the pantry for some time now, which I have added to add character to the dish, not to mention that boiled egg goes well with adobo.

Here is the recipe of my Ground Pork Adobo with Quail Eggs.


1 kilo ground pork

1 can boiled quail eggs, drained

3 medium sized potato, skinned, cut into cubes

1 small onion, peeled, chopped

1 head garlic, peeled, crushed, chopped

2 tsp. crushed peppercorns

3-4 pieces bay leaf

1/2 cup vinegar


cooking oil

Cooking procedure:

In a wok heat generous amount of oil and stir fry the potatoes for 3 to 5 minutes or until the edges start to turn brown. Remove from wok and keep aside. Using the same wok sauté the garlic and onion until fragrant, then add in the ground pork, crushed peppercorns and bay leaf and stir cook for about 3 to 5 minutes. Add in the vinegar and about 1 to 1 1/2 cup of water let cook for about 2 to 3 minutes without stirring. Season with salt to taste. Now add in the potatoes and continue to simmer for 5 to 8 minutes or until most of the liquid has evaporated and has turn in to an oily sauce. Now add in the quail egg and continue to stir cook for a couple of minutes. Serve hot with a lot of rice.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Queen Cakes / Blueberry Muffins

I have a lot of cookery books. I realised that again when Dom at Belleau Kitchen published this month's random recipe challenge, and asked us to turn to the 40th page of our 40th book and make whatever was on that page. My recipe books are in alphabetical order - thanks to my boyfriend when he was bored on evening - and I counted along; when I got to 40 I was still only as far as the letter E!

The book in question was Easy Cupcakes from Marks & Spencer and on page 40 were Queen Cupcakes. I'd never heard of them before and there was no explanation for the name; they seem to be simple cupcakes baked with currants. However, I had some blueberries in the fridge that needed using up - and I don't like blueberries on their own - so I thought Dom wouldn't mind if I adapted the recipe a bit!

Makes 12

You need:

115g butter, softened

115g caster sugar

2 eggs

4 tsp lemon juice

175g self-raising flour

100g blueberries, halved

3 tbsp milk

This is a very simple recipe. Preheat the oven to 180C. Cream the butter and sugar in a bowl them mix in the eggs. Add the lemon juice, mix in the flour, with a dash of milk to loosen the batter, then fold in the blueberries.

Spoon into muffin cases and bake in the oven for about 15 minutes.

The recipe for the Queen Cakes does not involve any icing or decoration and as I decided to take these to a volunteering day I was doing with colleagues, I thought that would work well- I needed something that I could transport in a box in my rucksack that wouldn't be too messy. The cakes had a muffin-like texture and went down very well when we had a break in a hard day's work - we were building a cob oven and an irrigation system in a community garden. It was great fun!

I'm sending these to Random Recipes, hosted by Dom at Belleau Kitchen.

Family Foodies, hosted by Louisa at Eat Your Veg and Vanesther at Bangers and Mash, has as a theme this month barbecues, picnics and outdoor eating. These cakes or muffins are so easy to eat outdoors with no mess; they travel well and taste great too!

Ness at Jibber Jabber UK is looking for vintage cake recipes this month. Queen cakes are - from what I can find out - a very traditional old-fashioned kind of cake so I think that counts!

Blueberries are in season so I'm sending this to Simple and in Season, hosted by Ren Behan.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Do Not Disturb Birthday Card

This card was put together from a decoupage card pack but you could also cut out the shapes yourself from different coloured card. I made it for a birthday but it would also work really well for Fathers' Day this weekend!

The backing paper was part of the set and I simply had to cut out the different shapes and build them up using sticky pads so the image of the man snoozing on the armchair stands out. I added a happy birthday sticker at the top.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Restaurant Review: The Drapers Arms, Barnsbury, London

Restaurant name: The Drapers Arms

Location: Barnsbury Street, Islington, London

Description: Gastropub with a nice garden tucked away in a residential part of Islington, opened by the son of Evening Standard restaurant critic Fay Maschler

Reason for visit: Pre-theatre snack and drinks with a friend. It was in the right area not too far from the theatre.

We ate: As we didn't have much time we decided to share a charcuterie platter and some fish balls which came with mayonnaise.

The food was: The fish balls were particularly nice.

The atmosphere/service was: We sat outside in the garden and as I arrived first, I sat on a large picnic table. Two people came in and asked if they could sit there too (there were no empty tables left) so I said yes, and they promptly started smoking. A few minutes later they were joined with four of their friends, also smoking and braying with laughter in that Made In Chelsea way. When my friend arrived she had to squeeze on the bench next to me and we tried to ignore them. Which is in no way the fault of the pub but it did slightly spoil my enjoyment of the evening!

Price range/value for money: I'm not sure as my friend paid, but looking at the menu online it's not cheap - but then, this is a gastropub in Islington.

Would I recommend it? Yes, it seemed a nice place, it's just a shame people are allowed to smoke in the pub garden.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Alphabakes - June 2014

Welcome to our second run-through of the alphabet with Alphabakes, which started with A in April, moved to E in May - and now for the third letter we're staying in the first part of the alphabet. The letters are chosen at random so that's a bit of a coincidence - this month the letter we are baking with is


Remember, you can either make a recipe beginning with D, or use an ingredient (preferably one of the main ones) beginning with D.

If you're stuck for ideas, you could have a look at the round-up for the last time we had D, back in January 2013! I quite fancy having a go at doughnuts myself....

If you haven't participated before, here's all the information you need:

1. Post your recipe on your blog and link it to The More than Occasional Baker and Caroline Makes , stating the relevant month's host. If you do not have a blog, email us a picture and a brief description of your entry which we will include in the round-up at the end of the month.

2. You can use your own recipe or someone else's recipe. The recipe can be sweet, savoury or a mixture! Anything goes as long as the random letter is predominantly featured in the recipe as one of the main ingredients or flavours or in the name of the bake itself (i .e . not as a garnish , or using 'flour' for the letter F!) You can also republish old posts/recipes but you must include the information for this challenge as stated in these rules.

3. Add the logo to your post and add 'alphabakes' as a label to your post.

4. Email your entries to by midnight (GMT) 25th of the month. Please include:

  • Your name (that you want included in the round up or we will use the name of your blog)

  • Your blog post URL

  • Recipe title

  • Photo of recipe (to be included in the round up)

5. You can submit as many entries as you like.

6. You do not have to participate every month to join in.

7. You may submit your entry to other challenges as long as it complies with their rules.

8. If you use twitter, please use the tag #alphabakes and mention @bakingaddict and @Caroline_Makes. We will retweet all those that we see.

9. Have fun! :)

Heart-Shaped Cake Balls

I described in a previous post how I made my own Rolo chocolates from a mould provided by the Dot Com Gift Shop. They also sent me a heart-shaped mould and some heart-shaped petit four cases to review.

I decided not to make chocolates this time however and instead make cake pops. Usually these are on sticks but they taste so delicious I don't see why you couldn't just make them as bite-sized nibbles and enjoy them that way. I had made a chocolate cake that was part of the same project, which you will be able to read about shortly, and had to trim the cake a bit. So I had some leftover cake trimmings which I crumbled up into a bowl.

I mixed it with some chocolate buttercream to make a dough.

Simply press the mixture into the moulds and place in the fridge for a little while to firm up.

As the mould is silicon it is completely flexible, making it very easy to turn the shapes out. You could also dip them in melted chocolate to coat them.

The Dot Com Gift Shop also sent me these mini heart-shaped petit four cases, which are just the right size to use with the mould.

Simply place the cake shapes or your chocolates into the cases to serve.

Disclaimer: I was sent these products free of charge by the Dot Com Gift Shop. I was not asked to write a positive review and all opinions are my own.

Homemade Rolo Chocolates

The Dot Com Gift Shop sent me these two chocolate moulds to review. If you haven't been to their website before, I urge you to check it out. The Dot Com Gift shop has a range of items for the home and garden ranging from cake stands and chocolate moulds to lunch boxes to candles and cushions. I've bought several things from the site before both for myself and as gifts, and last summer was invited to preview their Christmas range.

It took me a little while to get around to using the moulds as I had a particular project in mind, which you will hear more about later. I found the moulds so easy to use and I love the way they are packaged (above) - I think these would make a really nice gift.

I decided to use the round moulds to make homemade Rolos. I melted some chocolate and poured a little into each mould so it just covered the bottom, and used the back of a spoon to spread it around the sides. Don't make the layer on the bottom too thin as you want it to hold, but you need to leave yourself plenty of space inside the mould for the filling. Place the mould in the fridge for the chocolate to set.

I used a tin of Carnation Caramel for the filling; it is thick and not too runny and perfect for making these. You need about half a teaspoon or even a little less in each mould.

Melt some more chocolate and allow it to cool so it is still runny but not too hot. Pour into the chocolate moulds until they are filled and place again in the fridge to set.

When set, turn out of the mould. The mould is silicon so you can easily bend it to push the chocolates out.

When you bite into one, the caramel inside is still runny. These are perfect and remind me a lot of Rolo chocolates. They would make a lovely gift; I used them on top of a cake!

Restaurant Review: Burger And Shake

Restaurant name: Burger & Shake

Location: Marchmont Street, London - between Russell Square and Euston

Description: Diner style with casual tables in booths and tiles on the walls with and a varied but meat-heavy and not particularly diet-friendly menu ranging from jalapeno burgers to buffalo wings to chilli dogs and pulled pork sandwiches. Oh, and there's a salad. The restaurant is quite small, nestled among boutiques and cafes on London's trendy Marchmont Street.

Reason for visit: Dinner with a friend who lives near here; she recently moved so we wanted to try somewhere new and local.

I ate: pulled pork burger, £8.50. I love pulled pork but have never tried it in a burger before so couldn't resist.

My companions ate: Cheeseburger, £7.50, and vegetarian burger, £7.75, which consists of a large portobellow mushroom, halloumi cheese (though she is vegan so skipped this), plus lettuce, tomato, cucumber, coriander oil and mayo (again not for the vegans). The only other vegetarian dishes on the menu are side orders- mac and cheese, jalapeno peppers, fries and coleslaw, all of which together would make a meal, but other than the fries none of them are suitable for vegans.

The food was: My burger was excellent, from the brioche bun to the shredded pork in BBQ sauce - the taste complemented the juicy burger perfectly. My friends enjoyed their meals too. None of us ordered the milkshakes though, which given the name I imagine is a speciality here.

The atmosphere/service was: There was a nice level of bustle which comes from being a relatively small restaurant with people coming and going - it's not the sort of place you linger after a meal, and we were going on to the cinema afterwards - so it is the perfect place to grab dinner first. The waitress was friendly and we didn't have to wait long for our food.

Price range/value for money: Good; while the fries cost extra, there are two sizes - £1.95 for small and £2.95 for large, so for an extra two quid you can't really complain, and the burgers are large and very filling. A standard burger is £6.50 which is pretty good for a burger bar like this in central London.

Would I recommend it? Yes, it was a nice place- my first visit and it would be nice to see a couple more of these open in other parts of London. I definitely recommend the pulled pork burger which you don't see on menus very often.