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27 May 2015

Avocado Salad Sandwich

There goes the time, ticking so fast suddenly and sneaking up on me. For the longest time, I had been occupied with our luggage and other pre-trip essentials for our trip to the Philippines and suddenly, here we are already! The kids are done with their school (we requested an early dismissal for them), one by one our suitcases are zipped close and I accomplished the most challenging job - emptying the fridge and pantry from perishables. Planning our meals around the existing ingredients in my kitchen puts my mind to work more than usual because I have to mind what ingredients have to be used and their quantities.

22 May 2015

5 Quick and Easy Tea Sandwiches

Getting by the afternoons with light snacks is always a spectacle when you have kids at home. I try to put a halt to the overly-sweet munchies that's a major favorite but reasoning out to my 5-year old daughter is a lost case. She wins, I lose. She's wrong, I'm right. She cries, sigh - I give up. But that's not always the case because I sometimes win too and when I do, I get to give her one of the non-sweet snacks that she would willingly eat. A slice of bread drizzled with extra virgin olive oil. It's the most basic healthy Italian snack that never fails to make kids sit down and eat. 

14 May 2015

Penne with Pesto, Potatoes and Peas

When I get asked what I do for a living and I say that I am a recipe developer, I get a questioning look that immediately changes to a reaction of excitement. It's always a promise of a long and interesting conversation. You don't get to meet recipe developers everyday because most often, we are hidden behind our computers and kitchens, creating, creating and always creating dishes. My hubby gets all the pats on the back for being the lucky one to be the consumer of what I photograph. And yeah, he does complain at times. Being the taste tester and the consumer can be a difficult job.

12 May 2015

Baked Vegetable Spring Rolls

Spring rolls, whatever they are filled with, whether they are fresh or cooked, you can be sure that I will be eating them. I don't have a favorite because I love every single one of them. There are the savory ones filled with meat, fish or vegetables with different kinds of dipping sauces and the sweet kinds for dessert that are filled with bananas. And just by writing about them makes me want to wander to the kitchen and make myself a batch of these delicious Asian treats.

11 May 2015

Homemade Rice Milk with Mango and Pink Guava Ice Cubes

Colors never fail to attract the attention of kids. As brighter they are, the more they are magnetized to them, whatever they are. Even ice cubes. When I started making colored ice cubes made of natural fruit juices, I suddenly had my picky-eating daughter in front of me shyly asking me what they were and speaking about everything except going straight to the point - she wants to try them! Little did she know that I actually made the fruit juice ice cubes for her because she's quite a little picky-eater. She mainly drinks water which is incredible, soda whenever she sees a bottle around and just a limited number of fruits. I wanted her to explore more the wonderful world of fruits and so these ice cubes were born.

09 May 2015

Eggs Benedict on Grilled Polenta

There is something ultimately good about waking up to a plate of eggs benedict. With the yellow Hollandaise sauce dripping down a runny egg, what else can be more inviting first thing in the morning? Of course, that is from a savory breakfast person like me. I love eggs with anything savory that goes with it like - polenta! Truth be told, I never had polenta for breakfast in northern Italy where this is staple during other meals. To use it to replace English muffins in the morning for the eggs benedict gives it a delicious alternative and it's worth a try.

08 May 2015

Dark Chocolate Molten Cake with Raspberry Mint Sauce

When I finally closed the third suitcase's zipper at almost 3 in the morning, I was almost passing out from tiredness but it was quickly overshadowed by my jubilation that finally, after weeks of filling up the suitcases, I have officially finished packing for our upcoming trip to the Philippines. It had been a job that I had been dreading (who can possibly like packing?) but I couldn't avoid no matter what. With a family of 4, a month and a half of hopping from one hotel to another, you can imagine what a predicament it will be for the clothes (and unimaginable hotel laundry bills). The only great thing about it is that it's summer so the clothes are light and smaller.

02 May 2015

Double Chocolate Cheesecake with Berries in a Jar

We have been staying outdoors the past days. The days are longer, the temperature is pleasantly warm with a cool breeze and the sun has been been shining so beautifully. This is the reason why I love spring so much. It's the best period to stay outside, work in the garden (when I am able to detach myself from the kitchen and computer), start eating outside and watch the kids and dog enjoy nature. Right now, both kids are sitting on the apricot tree and enjoying their elevated position while our dog is relaxing at the foot of the tree. Sure, my laundry loads grow along with the warmth of the temperature because the kids stay outdoors with newer games that make them dirtier and dirtier. But I think the kids don't stay like that for a long time.