Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Apetina Crostino




If you are running out of time to prepare your appetizers for the upcoming New Year’s Eve party, the comfort of grocery will definitely save you from worrying. A lot of ready-made spreads can be used to top your cute little toasted breads. 

My final installment for tonight's canapé is Apetina Crostino using 100g Apetina's Feta cheese with herbs and spices in oil, put it on top of bruschetta or crostini and best serve with red wine. Enjoy!


HAPPY NEW YEAR EVERYONE!!!




Anyto Crostino



There's no rule in making your cocktail party's hors d'oeuvre. You can put anything adible that pleases your tastebuds. Of course, make sure it is pleasing to the eye. 

My second Crostino topping was made from "anything-I-found-in-the-kitchen", so I named it Anyto Crostino. 

In a small bowl, I put in 1 tbsp olive oil, diced tomatoes, capers, and sprinkle it with McCormick basil leaves. Pronto! I have made colorful and healthy topping for my Crostino. 




Monday, December 30, 2013

Liver Spread - Quezo de Bola Crostino



As promised on my Crostini preview post, here is the first installment. 

The ready-made "little toast" I used was from Bizu Patisserie & Bistro. I receieved a gift pack from them last Christmas and that includes these cute small slices of toasted bread in a plastic container. Perfect to make my new year canapés before it expires... the only missing is the topping.

For the topping, I recycled some of the leftover from our Christmas dishes. We have remaining liver spread in the fridge that was used in making our home-made menudo last Christmas and I don't want it to go to waste. So I spread it on top of my little toasted bread and topped it with slices of leftover Quezo de Bola.

My nieces helped me spread it on top and they loved it.



Sunday, December 29, 2013

Crostini Preview | Easy Hors d'oeuvre for Your New Year's Eve Party



Hello Horsie!!!

If you are going to host a New Year’s Eve party whether for close friends, family members, neighborhood or simply because you like entertaining, a cocktail party with a buffet of hors d'oeuvre is one of the best ways to celebrate while waiting for a countdown to a brand new year. A buffet party with appetizing food sensational champagne, cocktails to die for and mouthwatering canapes are the magic of New Year's Eve party. Drinks need not be elaborate, a not too strong punch is an economical idea. But wines and champagne are required when you propose a toast and cheer for the new year. Italian wine gift baskets are best giveaway for your guests. 

The food should be plentiful and can be simple. It should be restricted to items that can be eaten with a fork or the fingers. Savory pastries like mini-quiches are my favorite but hard to do and time consuming. Popular savory canapes are spring rolls, sausages, chicken fillets, tempura and of course, Crostini. Salmon, caviar , foie gras, and truffles are some of the most expensive ones while eclairs, cream puffs, and chocolates are sweet finger food enjoyed by many party goers.




If you want to serve your party guests with seriously impressive nibbles without giving yourself a nervous breakdown, wait for my upcoming blog posts. On my next three posts, I'll entertain you on how to make home-made, easy, and thrifty toppings for Crostini. One was made from our Christmas party leftover. Another from anything available in the kitchen and a ready made topping I found in the comfort of the grocery store.

So, relax and stay tuned. In the meantime, ready your glittery outfit and stiletto. To make your New Year's eve celebrations go off with a sartorial bang you need to wear something extra special unlike anything you'd wear any other night of the year. Elegance and glamour are the key words for your party look. Remember: You gotta look a million dollar!

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Au Naturel | Honey-Lemon Fruit Salad



LISTEN! 

Before you dig into the holiday dishes made of that sugary, fattening and artificial cream, keep in mind that the next season is summer. You gotta have a killer body by the next three months or you gotta regret and blame eating that unlimited, frozen and creamy fruit salad when summer comes. 

Minimize your gluten, sugar and carbs intake tonight as much as you can. If you are panicking about cooking Christmas dinner or have no time to cook and prepare festive dinner for your family, you can order healthy food from selected restaurants in downtown Burlington VT.

Here's my healthy idea on how to make light and healthy fruit salad for tonight's noche buena and upcoming media noche. DO NOT use canned fruits if at all possible, you can use any fresh fruits that you have. This Au Naturel fruit salad is good for 2 - 3 servings. Below are some tips and tricks on how to make a polished fruit salad. 

Ingredients:

1 persimmon
1 sugar pear
1 kiwi
1/4 kilo seedless grapes
juice of ½ lemon
2 tbsp honey

Optional: fresh mint leaves or coriander leaves

Prepare the fruits: 

Wash the fruits under cool running water and dry. 

Peel the persimmons and cut into bite size. 

Cut sugar pear in half lengthwise and remove the core before cutting it into slices. Its up to you if you want the persimmon and pear peeled. 

Peel and cut the Kiwi. The best way to peel the Kiwi is to peel it round the middle instead of peeling it from top to bottom or you’ll end up with slices that look like 50p pieces.

Combine all fruits. Toss in lemon juice to stop any of the fruits from browning. 

Arrange the fruits attractively on a large platter and drizzle the honey over them.

Cover the platter with foil and chill for 30 minutes before serving. 

(0ptional) Add fresh mint leaves or coriander leaves to serve.


More Tips: 

If you are going to use mango, here's a cutting tip:  cut the two plump halves away from the stone, score a criss-cross pattern on the flesh of each half, turn the halves inside-out to separate the chunks, and slice away the flesh.

For Oranges, segment oranges rather than slicing. Using a small, serrated fruit knife, cut the top and bottom off, then cut from top to bottom, removing the peel and pith, keeping the shape as round as possible. Then remove each segment by gently slicing between the flesh and membrane.



Thursday, December 19, 2013

Its Bizu Patisserie & Bistro “Nutcracker” Christmas Encore

Press Release: This means that this material is fully and directly from the company issuing the press release. This also means that this website is not the author of the statement being read. The Cuisineuer is simply providing the information for readers who may be interested.

Melchor Croquembouche makes for a grand holiday table centerpiece. A lovely tower of profiteroles filled with pastry cream dipped in white and dark chocolate. Choose between an 18-inch tall croquembouche with 130 cream puffs or a 12- inch tall croquembouche with 60 cream puffs.


This Christmas, celebrate the taste of joie de vivre only at Bizu! Click here to view Bizu Patisserie & Bistro 2013 Christmas Gift Catalog.



Bizu Patisserie, once again, takes you on a journey to Tchaikovsky’s Land of the Sweets with its Christmas 2013 Collection overflowing with favorites and unique offerings sure to make everyone’s holidays truly enchanting. The season’s masterpiece is Bizu’s Grand Carousel. Reminiscent of Caroussel de la Tour Eiffel in Paris, it is filled with classic butter cookies, crisp tuile, luscious chocolate-covered pretzels and crunchy caramel popcorn. Wind it up and hear a captivating tune. 


Bizu’s Chestnut Cake, a combination of chestnut cremeaux, moist speculoos cake and caramel glaze topped with chestnut cream. 


Welcome back some Bizu favorites. Indulge in the sweetness of Rudolph, a Christmas chocolate ornament ball with crème caramel filling and a moist chocolate brownie base. Set the Christmas table with Noël Fruit Cake made of Valrhona chocolate, pecans and dark cherries. Try the Christmas Carrot and Walnut Cake topped with rich brown butter cream cheese. 


Christmas in Bizu is, of course, not complete without its signature Macaron de Paris. 


Macarons - these masterpieces are almond meringue shells filled with a luscious combination of buttercream. Order in boxes of 8, 14 and 28 or get the Macaron Pyramid, another show stopping centerpiece that holds 40 pieces. Just for the holidays, Bizu offers Speculoos, a lightly spiced ginger and cinnamon-flavored macaron. Something new are Bizu’s Chocolate Nut Butter Spreads, creamy and smooth combinations of chocolate and nut flavors with a hint of sweetness and a touch of saltiness. Try all four flavors: Hazelnut Milk Chocolate Butter, Macadamia and White Chocolate Butter, Almond Roca Butter and Pistachio White Chocolate Butter. 


Cheese Tarts, another newcomer, is a perfect Christmas gift. This smooth and dense mascarpone cheesecake over flaky puff pastry is available per piece or in a lovely box of six. 


The Pot de Crème is another addition to Bizu’s Christmas Collection. The soft French crème comes in four flavors: Madagascar Vanilla, Dark Chocolate, Burnt Caramel and Sugar Free Gianduja Hazelnut. Bizu puts a distinct spin on the much loved popcorn with its Gourmet Popcorn. Enjoy the light and popping crunch of caramel popcorn in three flavors: Salted Caramel; Dark Chocolate, Almonds and Pretzel; and Pistachio, White Chocolate and Macaron. New Ensaymada flavors make a vow this season. The three new flavors of Queso de Bola and Chorizo, Italian Pistachio and White Chocolate and Cheese Roll join the traditional Dark Chocolate, Almond Praline and Classic Cheese. 

Bizu is well known for its luxurious French Gâteau. Each one is a sight to behold and every bite is unforgettably delicious. Have a taste of Samba, Opera, Nirvana, Amour, Roca, sugarless and flourless Jolie, sugarless Naomi, Tiramisu, Strawberry Shortcake and Chiboust in Blueberry, Mango and Strawberry. Make the holidays more memorable with Bizu’s Savoury Holiday Traditions. Yuletide Pork Crown Roast is a festive circlet of juicy chops with a hearty stuffing of apples, chestnuts and sausages. Bizu's signature Ten-Hour Roast Beef Belly is so tender it melts in your mouth and comes with sidings of crunchy vegetables and creamy mushroom sauce. Whole Turkey Roast is all plump, juicy and golden brown and comes with a signature stuffing of apples, chestnut and sausages with a duet of gravy and cranberry sauce. A perfect addition to any Christmas dinner and party is the Baked Salmon Rockefeller, baked Norwegian salmon layered with creamy spinach and topped with parmesan mornay sauce. Complete the celebration  with Chicken Liver Paté and Smoked Salmon and Caviar for the appetizers.

To order, email concierge@bizugroupe.com or call 845-0590 to 93.  Visit Bizu Patisserie branches near you. Greenbelt 2 (757-2498), One Rockwell Tower, (478-7755 or 779-5044), Greenhills Promenade (724-2498 or 726-2496), Alabang Town Center (809-2498, 772-1917, or 772-1918), St. Luke’s Global City (823-6621) and Le Petit Bizu Robinsons Magnolia (467-0670).

Drop by the Bizu Christmas Carriage at the North Court of Power Plant Mall and Christmas stall at the Greenbelt 3 Park. Email conciergeteam@bizugroupe.com or check out www.bizuchristmas.com. Like us on facebook.com/ilovebizu  and follow us on  twitter.com/bizuph.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Lunch at Estrellas De Mendoza Playa Resort



We were surprised when we were told that ala cart menu was not available in Estrellas De Mendoza Playa Resort's main restaurant. The resort is far from the main road and other establishments so we dont have a choice but to avail their Php 499 lunch buffet. Here are the food that visitors of Estrellas De Mendoza Playa Resort could expect but I think they are changing their menu daily.




I started my lunch meal with cream of corn soup. There's nothing wrong with the taste, its the typical cream of corn soup. A little bit of everything followed in one plate;  Grilled Baby Back Ribs with Mashed Potato, Marinated Grilled Chicken, Sliced Fish Fillet with Chili Sauce, and Mixed  Vegetables.




I liked the sweet taste of Grilled Baby Back Ribs, I went back to the buffet table and had some more. A newly filled chafing dish with inviting pasta in red sauce captured my attention and I decided to try it. It was okay but nothing extraordinary, I partnered it with another serving of Sliced Fish Fillet.




Maja Blanca (coconut pudding) and Halaya (Purple Yam) were the desserts and both tasted real good. 

Foodies might be disappointed with limited dishes at Php 499 but I commend the kitchen staff for giving their guests such a decent meal considering the resort's distance to civilazation

A specialty restaurant would be a plus factor to the resort as well as ala carte and extensive menu.





Thursday, December 5, 2013

Pan de Donut | Pan de Manila Combines Two of Pinoys’ Well-loved Pastry Items – Pan de Sal and Doughnut



DONUT wait to try this!

Be the first to taste the delicious line of Pan de Donuts! Available exclusively at the newly opened Pan de Manila branch in Market! Market!, Taguig. Pan de Donut is a special creation by the leading pan de sal chain in the country, Pan de Manila. 

Smoothened and softened pan de sal bread is used as the base bread filled with secret white cream and then glazed and topped with Pinoy favorite flavors such as Pili Nuts, Coconut Jam, Polvoron, Yema, Peanut Butter and more. Cocojammers, a coconut jam-glazed Pan de Donut topped with pili nuts is my utmost favorite. It brought the taste of the countryside at first bite and childhood memories in my last.




Pan de Donut is your healthier option to fried and sugar-heavy ring doughnuts in the market, it is baked (not fried!) to yummy perfection. And oh, these Pinoy Donuts are bromate-free and trans-fat free!

Apart from the joy of tasting a healthier pandesal-doughnut hybrid, Pan de Donut is affordable and beautifully presented in a colorful box with paintings from Laguna painter, Mr. Amador Baraquilla. Here is the price range; 

Box of 2 pieces   - Php 80.00
Box of 4 pieces   - Php 140.00
Box of 6 pieces   - Php 180.00
Box of 12 pieces - Php 320.00





Perfect as pasalubong or gift for this holiday season. Choose from delectable 18 flavors!

      Name                        Topping

ChocoMonds                  White Choco Paste and Almonds  
Polvoron Crumbles          White or Premium Choco Paste and Polvoron
Snow Kisses                    White Choco Paste and Choco Chips
Chocolate Hills                 Premium Choco Paste and Rice Crispies      
Chocnut Crumble             Premium Choco Paste and Chocnut              
Cookie Crema                 White or Premium Choco Paste and crashed Cookies and Cream
Chunky Crookies             White or Premium Choco Paste and chunked Cookies and Cream
La Dulce Vita                   Dulce / Yema     
Cocojammers                   Pan de Coco and Pili nuts
Nippy Nips                      Premium Choco and mini nips
Nutty crunch                    Peanut Butter Crunchy
Berrylicious                      Strawberry 
Blueberry Bliss                 Whip Cream Blueberry
Piling Pili                          White Choco and Pili nuts
Marbles                           Whip Cream Choco Marble
Strawberry shortcake       Whip Cream Strawberry
Uberlicious                       Whip Cream Ube 




Pan de Manila now has 153 outlets, with presence in Manila, North and South Luzon and most recently in Cebu and Iloilo. For product updates, follow them on Facebook and Instagram: pandemanilaofficial.


Wednesday, December 4, 2013

RECIPE | Clara Olé's Manila Pesto



Pesto, Presto! 

Green and red - serve the colors of the season to your family and love ones with Clara Olé's Manila Pesto at once. This recipe was adapted and modified fom original Clara Olé's Manila Pesto recipe using Tinapa instead of Tuyo and Penne instead of Angel hair pasta. I also added black olives in it. Exciting new, easy and mouth-watering dishes are available on their website www.claraole.com for you to try and feast on.


Here's what you need;

1 pack Clara Olé Cheesy Pesto, 180g
250g Penne Rigate pasta
2 tbsps Extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup Garlic, minced
1/4 cup black olives, sliced
1 cup Tinapa, flaked
1 tbsp Vinegar
3/4 cup Kesong puti, chopped
2/3 cup Fresh tomatoes, chopped







1) Cook Penne Rigate pasta according to package directions.
2) Saute garlic in olive oil.
3) Add in tinapa and cook for 2 minutes.
4) Add in vinegar and cook over low heat for about a minute.
5) Add kesong puti, black olives and tomatoes. Cook until heated through.
6) Stir in Clara Ole’ Cheesy pesto and toss in the cooked pasta.
7) Sprinkle with grated Parmesan cheese if desired.


Best if serve with baguette or toasted bread. Enjoy!





Clara Olé offers a wide array of food products such as Dips & Dressings, Tomato & Spaghetti Sauce, Marinades, and Syrups & Sugar-free Jams.





Find Clara Olé on Facebook and on instagram for updates. If you are a newbie cook who needs some tips and tricks in the kitchen, subscribe to Clara Olé's Youtube channel to watch step-by-step videos and learn cooking techniques from their uploaded episodes. 


Tuesday, December 3, 2013

RECIPE | Patatas Riojana




Here's another recipe by Chef Fernando Aracama when he did his holiday cooking demo at The Maya Kitchen recently. Check out  www.themayakitchen.com for more recipes to try and savor with your loved ones this holiday season.


Ingredients:

3 tbsp olive oil
1/3 cup          chopped white onions
1 tbsp chopped garlic
2 pcs chorizo, sliced
1 tbsp paprika
2 pcs bay leaf
¼ cup            white wine
600 grams     potatoes, peeled and cut into large chunks
1.5 liters       flavorful chicken stock, bring to a simmer separately
1 tsp            ground white pepper
to taste         sea salt

Procedure:

1. In a pot, warm the olive oil and add the onions. Cook over medium heat until the onions are soft. Add the garlic and the chorizos. Render some of the fat from the chorizos.
2. Add the paprika and bay leaf. Cook for a few moments and then add the rest of the ingredients. Cover and cook until the potatoes are done.
3. Taste and adjust seasoning. Lightly mash the potatoes with a ladle. This will add texture to the soup.
4. Serve hot.

Serves four (4)



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