Not Quite There Yet

February 28, 2012 § 5 Comments

Exhausting weekend.  No, I have not moved yet but my paintings and most of my furniture has though.  I spent most of last Saturday general cleaning and planning which wall the paintings go.

Tama na ba ma’am, Is this alright?  “Baba pa, taas pa, medyo kanan pa, lower, higher, a little more to the right…” – an example of the weekend I had with the workers.

The grease trap under the kitchen sink leaked, flooding the kitchen.  The drain in the balcony is clogged, the range hood doesn’t have a socket nearby, the lights are not bright enough… problems one wouldn’t know or notice until one is about to move in, I reckon.  It was so exhausting but satisfying at the end of the day.  Seeing that I’m almost there make me jump for joy.

A glimpse of my unfinished living room

While the recent purchases are settled in their own little corner in my new flat, there are the existing things that I own that needs to move with me.  That is no doubt, stressing me out.  Imagine the packing and the unpacking.

I’ve weeded out stuff that I don’t need over the past months.  I’ve sold some, given away many and ate at home so much.  Truth to tell, I’ve stopped stocking up on food.  I’ve been consuming stuff from the freezer and the cupboard (which would mainly be canned and bottled products).  The less you have, the less you’ll need to transfer, yes?  I’ve made some progress… I’ve consumed the last of my canned tuna and with it I made a quick lunch just to get us by.

Tuna with Fried Kesong Puti

I used this recipe sans the arugula and mushrooms.

You will need:

  • 1 can tuna in Olive Oil
  • ½ a tablespoon capers, slightly crushed
  • A dash chili flakes (optional)
  • A few strands fresh dill, (I snip it with a scissor)
  • Any bread will do; I used English Muffins but Ciabatta or sliced baguette will do just fine.
  • Kesong Puti (Filipino fresh cheese), sliced

What you do:

  1. Sauté the capers with a bit of oil from the can until it start to crisp.
  2. Stir in the tuna with half of the oil from the can, adding more depending on your preference (I like mine drier).
  3. Add the dill and let it simmer for a minute. Season with chili flakes, salt and freshly cracked pepper.
  4. Meanwhile, pan-fry the sliced cheese in hot oil until golden brown.
  5. Spread tuna mixture on your choice of bread and top with the fried kesong puti.

Enjoy!  And being a new member of the Kulinarya Cooking Club (yay!), I was inspired to fuse in a Filipino ingredient on this dish.  It has inspired me too to learn to cook more Filipino dishes.  In my attempt to whip up new dishes, I’ve neglected our own native dishes along the way.  So here’s to more Filipino (inspired) dishes on this blog.   🙂

Where to Eat in Macau: A Lorcha

February 12, 2012 § 11 Comments

“Where’s the best Macanese / Portuguese restaurants in Macau?” I asked many including a search on the Internet.  It came down to A Lorcha and Ristorante Litoral.

A Lorcha won by a hairline.  So before heading out, we reserved a table for 2 while keeping in mind to try Litoral next time we’re back.

One of the oldest and most famous Taoist temple in Macau.

We arrived before the restaurant opened so we walked to the Ama Temple and looked around.

Shortly after the restaurant opened, we were shown our corner table.  When we saw how quickly the restaurant filled up, I was glad we made that reservation.

Known to offer the best Portuguese cuisine in Macau, it is popular with the locals and tourists alike.  They serve home-style Portuguese cooking that is presented simply without much thought on food styling, but with food so tasty it needs none of the fancy tricks.

The server who happens to be Filipina immediately came to the rescue when the wide choice left us uncertain about what best to order.

We had the Grilled Charcoal Pork Chourico for starters and after tasting this, we asked if we could buy some from them, instead they pointed us to a nearby supermarket to look for the brand “Nobre”.

Shhh…  this turned out to be better than what they served us.

The Clams with Garlic, Coriander & Olive Oil is a popularly ordered dish and we had to try it.  It was heavenly.  The soup sweet and  so flavorful from the clams and the other aromatics we devoured it straight from the bowl.

It tastes better than it looks.  It’s a promise.

We likewise had to give their African Chicken a try.  Although we knew that we have probably over ordered by this time, our Filipina server managed to convince us to order the Portuguese Fried Rice.

Needless to say, we left her a huge tip.  It had great flavors!!!  It could very well be the best among the dishes we’ve tried.  We ended up ordering too much but we just had to have their famous Serradurra – it’s a milk crème pudding topped with crumbled biscuits.

It was sooo good!!!  I crave for it sometimes.  Sweetness just right and the consistency of the pudding so smooth it melts in the mouth.  The biscuit crumble completes it – definitely the icing on the cake.

What a pity there were only 2 of us, I’d love to try more of their dishes… Other worth trying are the grilled bacalhau (codfish), sautéed pork with clams, and grilled prawns.

Restaurante A Lorcha
289A Yua do Almirante Sergo,
Macau Peninsula
Opens daily except Tuesday from 12:30-3:00pm; 6:30-11:00pm


February 7, 2012 § 4 Comments

Is it February already?  Boy, what a hectic start of the year.  It’s performance review again at work and I’m in the middle of moving with last-minute touches and changes here and there.  So you can imagine what’s been keeping me busy lately.  Except for the one weekend I was in Laos, I haven’t had much of a weekend since 2012 set in but my new flat is getting to look livable by the day. Not without glitches, I’m afraid.  I hope I am still friends with my contractor-friend when we’re done.  I wanted to move in 2 months ago but… well it didn’t happen.

Another problem came up today.  I could sulk and brood about it but I chose to look at the brighter side.  Today, I purchased the most beautiful and perhaps the most valuable piece of furniture I so far own.  That makes me happy.  And when I’m happy I make Tuna Mushroom Pasta.

Canned tuna never tasted so good.  I passed by the deli before heading home and was even happier to find fresh dill.

This must be God’s way of telling me that everything is not all that bad.  The problem will be solved (hopefully tomorrow) but tonight, we will celebrate.

Tuna Mushroom Pasta

You will need:

  • 1 can tuna in Olive Oil
  • 3-4 shiitake or brown mushrooms, sliced
  • ½ a tablespoon capers, slightly mashed
  • Baby Arugula
  • A dash chili flakes (optional)
  • A few strands fresh dill, (I snip it with a scissor)
  • 200-250 gram pasta of your choice

What you do:

Cook the pasta as the pack directs.  Meanwhile, sauté the capers with a bit of oil from the can, add the mushrooms and sauté for another minute or until the capers starts to crisp.  Stir in the tuna with half of the oil from the can, adding more depending on your preference (I like mine drier).  Add the dill and a bunch of arugula.  Let it simmer until the arugula starts to wilt. Season with chili flakes, salt and freshly cracked pepper.  I chose to have it with pasta, but this dish goes well with pasta, rice, and oatmeal or even on top of sliced baguette.

Everyone knows that the saltiness of the caper and the citrusy burst of fresh dill is perfect complement to tuna.  We added a new dimension as the mushroom lends an earthy flavor, the arugula some tangy zest while the chili boosts all these up.  Go ahead, give it a try and let this simple dish give a bit of happiness today.

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