Thursday, April 30, 2015

Calorie Counted Meals Delivered at Your Doorstep - How to Lose Weight

Calorie counting. I know it's the IN thing now in terms of Health and Fitness. They say you should count the calories of the food you eat so you wouldn't go beyond what's right for your age, weight and height and thereby lose weight. It's not difficult now because there are calorie counted meals that can be delivered to wherever you are.

I actually tried this delivery thingy  this week. I'm on my fourth day and I'm happy with most of the meals I've had. My favorites were Monday's Cucumber Cherry Tomato Pineapple Salad (lunch), Tuesday's Cobbler Tomato Pescatore (lunch), Wednesday's Tuna and Mushroom Feta Salad (breakfast) and today's Beef Salad, Nouc nam (lunch).

All the meals delivered were delicious. They looked great and tasted great. And I'd gladly have them again next week. My only concern is I get hungry easily. But it's my fault really. I ordered the 1200 calorie meal package per day. And I'm like big and I should have selected the 1800 calorie package.

Anyway, here are some of the pictures of the calorie counted meals I've had so far.

Cobbler Tomato Pescatore with Red Rice Pilaf

Cucumber Cherry Tomato Pineapple Salad

Tuna and Mushroom Feta Salad

Beef Sala, Nouc Nam

There are a lot of companies offering calorie counted meals for delivery. As I said, it's really the IN thing now. The one I tried has the lowest price (Healthy Eats by Chef Jam Melchor) but the others are not really very expensive as well.

I'll keep you posted about this especially if it will do something about my weight. haha

In the mean time, let me enjoy my Pastrami Club Lite for dinner while I imagine what food I'll have tomorrow. 

Check out Healthy Eats on Instagram @healthyeatsmnl

Thursday, April 23, 2015

How to Cut Onions with Less Tears

I love cooking -- this you have probably figured out after reading my previous posts. But what I don't like is the cleaning up after everything's done. Oh, and I also don't like cutting onions. I don't like the "crying" it causes, that's why. But I've learned several tricks to lessen the crying through the years, thanks to some friends who shared their ideas. Now, I'm going to share with you these tricks.

Before I go into that let me tell you first why cutting onions makes you cry. You see, when you cut onions, a certain chemical is released in the air. It is this chemical (in the form of gas) that triggers your tear ducts. The more you rupture the onion, the more gasis released.

The first trick is very practical -- you need to choose the best knife to use. It is best to use the sharpest knife you have -- wait, this has more to do than just making the job easier and faster. You see, a sharper knife causes less rupture into the onions (sharp knife leads to smoother cuts). The lesser the rupture, the lesser the amount of gas released.

Another trick is to put the onion in the refrigerator (but not in the freezer) first before you cut it. When it is colder, the release of gas into the air is slower.  This I think has something to do with molecules mowing slower in lower temperatures.

You can also light a candle when you are cutting an onion. I got this idea when a friend told me that a lighted candle lessens strong scents/bad odor. I thought that maybe, the light absorbs something in the air to tame the bad odor down and maybe this will also do the same thing with the gas coming from the onions.

You can also put salt on the chopping board before you start cutting. The onion will somehow absorb the chemical released.

Lastly, do not remove the outer skin right away. Halve the onion first and put the cut side down. Once done, remove the  outer skin and start cutting. 

Please do not take these tricks as scientific or the gospel truth. I did not do scientific testing to prove them although I used  some prior knowledge in science when I thought of  them. But I can guarantee you they worked for me.

And last reminder, there will still be tears. But they'll definitely be lessened.

Happy cutting.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Sauteed Hotdogs and Hotdog Steak Recipes

So you decided to serve hotdogs to your kids. You already told them about it. Then when you opened your fridge, you realize you don't have enough for them to have at least one each. What do you do?

Here isa recipe to "multiply" the hotdogs available.

Sauteed Hotdog


1/2 kilo hotdogs, sliced diagonally
2 tbsp soy sauce
5 tbsp ketchup
1 medium white onion sliced into rings
3 tbsp oil
1 tsp garlic powder

  • Heat oil in afrying pan.
  • Saute onion rings.
  • Add the sliced hotdogs and cook for about 2 minutes. 
  • Add the soy  sauce, ketchup and garlic powder.
  • Cook for another 2 minutes.
  • Serve hot.
This recipe is not for kids only. You can tweak it a bit to make it more appealing to adults. You can even have this as pulutan or beer match. We now convert Sauteed Hotdogs into Hotdog Steak. The recipe is similar with just minor changes.   

Hotdog Steak


1/2 kilo hotdogs, sliced diagonally
4 tbsp soy sauce
3 tbsp calamansi juice
1 medium white onion sliced into rings
3 tbsp oil
1 clove garlic, minced
siling labuyo (optional)

  • Heat oil in afrying pan.
  • Saute onion rings (use only half -- the remaining half will be used later).
  • Add the sliced hotdogs and cook for about 2 minutes. 
  • Add the soy  sauce, calamansi and minced garlic. 
  • Add siling labuyo if you want.
  • Cook for another 2 minutes.
  • Serve topped with the remaining sliced onions.

Adobong Pusit Recipe -- with a little twist

I craved for adobong pusit (squid) yesterday so I headed to the market praying it's available. Good thing there's squid and the right size I was hoping for -- the small to medium sized squid.

Here is a recipe for Adobong Pusit that I got from my father.


1 kilo small - medium squid
1/2 cup vinegar
4 cloves garlic
3 tbsp cooking oil
salt and pepper to taste
2 pcs siling haba (the green one)
bay leaf
1/2 cup sprite or 7-up (our secret ingredient)

  • Wash and clean the squid. There are cooks who detach the head from the body (and remove the ink sack found in the head). I prefer to keep them attached. I also do no like removing the ink sack that gives the black coloring. The darker, the better -- that's how I like my adobong pusit.
  • Saute minced garlic in oil. 
  • Add the squid. Let it stay for a while.
  • Add sprite or 7-up. Simmer for a few minutes. 
  • Add vinegar, bay leaf and siling haba. Sprinkle salt and pepper to taste.
  • Serve hot with steamed rice. 
I like to have my adobong pusit served with the black sauce. I like to mix it with rice when I eat. Sometimes, I even fry steamed rice in the pan I used to cook the adobong pusit. Black is beautiful -- or in thiscase, YUMMY!

Friday, April 17, 2015

Gourmet Street Balls Recipe

Do you eat squid balls, chicken balls, kikiam and fishballs? I like these street foods. But my friends always tell me I should be careful because these street foods are not clean and I could get a lot of diseases. Sometimes I listen to them but more often than not, I  don't. I just go out and "make tusok-tusok" the fishballs whenever I want. But I also tried to make my own version of this at home for those times I listen to my friends and get afraid of all the germs they are talking about. You can cook this meal (which I call Gourmet Street Balls) for lunch or dinner. It's easy to prepare and it's cheap.

Here's the simple recipe for Gourmet Street Balls


1small pack of fishballs
1 small pack of squid balls
1small pack of chicken balls
1small pack of kikiam
500 grams mixed vegetables (corn, carrots, green peas)
1 can of button mushrooms
2 sachets of oyster sauce

1. Fry the fishballs, squid balls, chicken balls and kikiam. Set aside.
2. Saute onion and garlic in a pan.
3. Add the button mushrooms and mixed vegetables.
4. Add the fried fishballs, squid balls, chicken balls and kikiam.
5. Put the oyster sauce and simmer.

Additional notes for this very affordable meal:
  • You can add hot sauce if like it spicy. 
  • You can add sliced young corn. 
  • I once added soda (sprite, 7-up) to make it sweet and spicy. I think I added about 1/2 cup but I'm not sure because I didn't measure. You just do it according to how you like it.
  • Quail eggs can also be added. 
Enjoy this recipe. Again, it's very affordable so no worries. You can double your ingredients without hurting your budget.


Monday, April 13, 2015

What to Bring to the Beach -- Your Simple Food Guide for the Summer

It's been a while since I last posted here. I've been too busy with both work and family concerns. Anyway, summer is here as I we all know too well because of the heat. So I'm sure many of you are planning on going to the beach anytime soon.

Here are some suggestions of food that you can bring to the beach.

Fruits. They are must-haves. You have a lot to choose from. Watermelon, both red and yellow varieties. Melon. Mango, ripe and not. Banana. Singkamas, technically not a fruit but who cares. Dalandan. Fruits are heavy so I suggest you just buy them on your wayto the beach. If you're headed to Quezon, Batangas, La Union, Pagudpod, etc. you will surely find stalls selling fruits along the highway. Some say they are less expensive in stalls like these but I think they are not. I think they put the price a little higher especially if you look "tourist-y". But the good thing is you can bargain. Yes, "tawad" is usually allowed. I may be wrong about the "higher price" so, please don't quote me on this, lol. Anyway, a few pesos added can probably justified by the fact that you don't have to carry them from Manila all the way to the province. But I have another suggestion. You can stop by a local public market to get your fruits. They are priced for the locals -- no tourist factor to consider. But then, not all public markets are along the highway so you would have to exert a little effort looking for it.

Barbecue (or grilled porkchop, liempo, chicken, fish, hotdog). It is easier to prepare this than menudo, afritada, caldereta, etc for lunch. You can just buy meat at the supermarket and marinate it overnight. No need for so many other ingredients. Many resorts have grilling facilities anyway (but make sure you ask when you book your trip).

If you do not want to do anything like grill meat anymore when you are already at the beach, the best food to bring is adobo. It is easier to prepare than the other common ulam plus it doesn't get spoiled fast.

Fried chicken is also good if you have lots of kids. But I suggest you use chicken fillet instead of the usual cuts so you wont have to worry about disposing chicken bones later on (plus regular cuts is more difficult to eat if you will only be  using plastic spoon and fork).

Noodles. Pancit is also good to have. It can be for lunch and snacks. If you're going to take a ling trip, pancit may get spoiled. My suggestion is to ask the resort of any good pansiteria in town. Get its number and order pancit sa bilao in advance. Just pick it up when you reach the place.

So there you go. These are simple stuff to bring to your outing. Nothing really fancy about it so no hassle.

I hope you enjoy your vacation. As for me, I've already been to BORAWAN in Padre Burgos, Quezon with side trips to Dampalitan Island (also in the same place) and Kwebang Lampas at Puting Buhangin in Pagbilao, Quezon. BORAWAN is a beautiful place. Try and visit it. I'm already planning my next trip to La Union or Laiya in Batangas.