Wednesday, January 28, 2009


Jambalaya on Mostaccioli Pasta

Fast and easy pasta dish!
I first experimented on this recipe last year after ordering it a few times at Mimi's Cafe. I took a picture so I can dissect it (see recipe #27 Chicken a la Jambalaya). I had made this dish a few times since then but it was always different each time. One time it had pork, one time it had pork and chicken, and no sausage, etc. But it is good no matter what you do with it as long as you use the seasoning.
The reason this is fast and easy dish to do is that I used pre-cooked chicken. Actually, rotisseri chicken from Costco. Of course if using fresh chicken, you need to saute it longer and simmer longer. I even used the heat-n-serve kind of sausage. So actual cooking time is under 30 minutes.

Here is the recipe:

2-3 tbps. olive oil or canola oil
1 small onion, chopped
2 pieces chicken breast, pre-cooked, sliced in chunks
1 package breakfast sausage
1 small carrots, sliced thin
1/2 of green bell pepper, chunks
1/2 of red bell pepper, chunks
2 ribs of celery, sliced diagonally
15 oz. can tomato sauce
1 lb. mostaccioli pasta
2 tsp. cajun seasoning
1 tsp. garlic powder
chopped parsley for garnish (optional)

1) Cook the pasta according to package directions.
2) In a large skillet heat the oil and add the onions, saute until onions are transluscent.
3) Add the sausage, the cooked chicken, the cajun seasoning and garlic powder. Saute for a couple of minutes.
4) Stir in the tomato sauce and simmer for about 2-3 minutes.
5) Add in the carrots and simmer for 1 minute.
6) Add in the celery and the red and green bell peppers and stir well.
7) Mix in the cooked pasta and stir to blend well.
8) Transfer to a serving platter and garnish with chopped parsley.



1) If you can make your own cajun seasoning it is better so you can adjust the salt. I find the store-bought ones have plenty of salt in them.
2) You can add pork loins and shrimps to be more of Jambalaya.
3) If using fresh chicken, you need to saute it longer and simmer longer until the chicken is tender.

Monday, January 26, 2009


The Conventional Pancit Sotanghon Guisado
with Meats and Veggies

Puto which are steamed rice cakes (entry#61) are great accompaniments to the Pancit
and the calamansi are used as condiments (entry#66). Split a calamansi in half and squeeze its juice on the noodles to enhance the noodles' flavor.

Before I go further, let me create a little glossary here for those who are not familiar with this dish.
PANCIT is a name for Philippine noodles
SOTANGHON is a type or a variety of noodle
GUISADO means stirfried or pan fried or sauteed. It is a method the noodles are cooked.
There you go, now you have an interpretation of the title which is:

Pancit Sotanghon, dried noodles

Other names for sotanghon are, bean thread noodles, glass noodles and Chinese vermicelli.
Other types of noodles are made from flour, others are made from rice which are called rice sticks.
The reason why sotanghon noodles are called bean thread noodles is because they are made from mung beans. I'm not going to discuss about mung beans at this time, but maybe in the future.

Sotanghon noodles soaking in warm water.

I can only guess why these noodles are called glass noodles. Maybe it is because when soaked in water, they become transluscent and resemble glass.
I have no clue why they are called vermicelli. I thought that is an Italian pasta.

There are many different ways to cook noodles, but the conventional way of cooking sotanghon is strir fried with a lot of different kinds of veggies in the ingredient such as cabbage, pea pods, carrots, etc. But my favorite kind is very simple, no veggies, but chicken only.

This is Pancit Sotanghon done my way.

Quick and simple but very flavorful. The noodles are firm, but not dry. Perfectly moist and not mushy, and no veggies, just chicken. Mmmmmmmmmm, really full of flavor!!

Recipe for Sotanghon Guisado: (Updated)
1 package (1 lb.) sotanghon noodles
3 tbsp canola oil
2 cups (or more) cooked chicken, shredded
3-4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 onion, chopped
1/4 cup soy sauce or patis (or half and half)
2 water or chicken broth, or (bouillon or paste in 2 cups hot water )
1 tbsp. anatto oil (click here for the recipe #67 Anatto Oil)
freshly cracked peppercorns or
whole peppercorns
Veggies (optional)

1) In a pot or a large bowl soak the noodles in warm water (about 15-20 minutes)
2) While the noodles are soaking, heat the oil in a wok or a large skillet over medium heat
3) Saute the garlic until fragrant, not browned.
4) Add the onion and continue to saute until the onions are wilted.
5) Add the chicken and continue to saute for about 4 minutes then add the soy sauce or patis.
6) Turn the heat to medium high then add the broth and bring it to a boil.
7) Stir in the anatto oil and the pepper. Turn the heat down to medium and simmer for about 3 minutes.
8) Drain the noodles and mix them in with the simmering chicken and its broth.
9) Continue to stir until the noodles are tender but firm and not mushy.

Notes from MaMely:
1) From my observations, the amount of broth needed to cook the sotanghon noodles depends on how long the noodles were pre-soaked in the water. The longer they are soaked in the water, the lesser broth they needed to cook in. If they are soaked only for just say, 5 minutes, you need more than 2 cups of water or broth. The liquid is the key to make a perfect Sotanghon Guisado. Too much liquid makes the noodles to be mushy and break up to tiny pieces; not enough liquid makes the noodles dry and rubbery.

2) I used rotisserie chicken from Costco and by simmering water with the chicken, broth is produced. If you have some chicken broth on hand, that is perfect, definitely use that in place of water. Sometimes I use some chicken base in paste form but it contains plenty of salt just like bouillon cubes. I'm trying to avoid too much salt in my diet nowadays.

#67_Annatto Oil


Anatto seeds are used for flavoring and for coloring agent in Philippine cuisine. It is commonly called "atsuete" or "atchuete". So when a product from the Philippines has anatto coloring, the manufacturer can claim that it has no artificial flavoring or artificial coloring in their ingredients because anatto seeds are natural ingredient.
There are two ways that I know of to extract the coloring from the seeds. One way is to soak the seeds in warm water, but this process takes a while for the coloring to come out. The other way is to make annatto oil which is quicker.

Annatto seeds in olive oil
I used to make a small amount of annatto oil each time I needed some for food coloring. But I learned from Emerril Lagasse, a FoodTV network host, that I can make 1 cup or so, then use whatever I needed and store the rest in the fridge. Brilliant idea!

To make Annatto Oil:
Put a cup of canola oil or olive oil in a pot and pour in a package (2oz) of annatto seeds. Simmer for about 10 minutes on medium low heat. Let cool.

Put ANNATTO OIL in a clean jar with tight-fitting lid and store in the fridge.

Now I'm ready to make Pancit or Afritada....

recipe coming up folks!


Emerril said to take out the seeds before storing in a jar. Okay, Emerril, I will take them out later!

Friday, January 23, 2009



This fruit drink is very rich in Vitamin C


My friend Virgie from San Leandro, California, sent me these gorgeous calamansi from her calamansi tree. I would love to have one in my yard too, but they don't grow in cold climate like Utah.

Although these citrus fruits are native to the Philippines, some resources say they can also grow in Hawaii and Florida and obviously in California, but I don't believe they are cultivated commercially. Now, I'm not so sure about this and I stand corrected.
Calamansis are relative to mandarin oranges or pomelos, except they are sour, their peels are thin, and they have very juicy pulps. They have plenty of uses such as: removing stains on fabrics, removing stains on the skin specially the hands. I remember my father used to scrub his hands with the fruits after a day's work at the shoe-making shop to remove the stains in his hands and to smooth the calluses. This trick really worked well.
Calamansi fruits are excellent to use as fruit drinks similar to lemonade and are favorite condiments for pancit guisado and pancit Malabon.

I have a good memory of these fruits. When we were kids my sisters and I would cut a calamansi in half and sprinkle some salt on the cut side and suck the juice just for the fun of it. I also used to peel one and pop it in my mouth...either way was sooo sour, they made my whole face puckered!! It amazes me that I've never had a desire to do this since I became an adult.


Favorite fruit drinks among the Filipinos

To make a good CALAMANSI JUICE:

1) Boil 1 cup water and 2 tablespoons white sugar until water is reduced to half. Let cool.

2) Squeeze juice of about 10 calamansi fruits (about 1/4 cup) into a tall glass. Take out seeds.

3) Pour cooled syrup into the glass. Add some cold water to make one full glass.

4) Stir thoroughly. Can put some ice cubes in it.

Makes one 12 oz. glass fruit drink.


1) If you prefer not to make syrup, just use plain sugar or honey to sweeten the drink.

2) Do not use hot water with the extracted juice so as not to kill the vitamin C content of the juice.

Monday, January 19, 2009


Latik or Nilatikan
(Glutinous Rice Cake with Latik Topping)

It is always fun to go to Filipino get-togethers because we play "name games" on the food we bring. Just like with this rice cake, someone from the Tagalog region call this "bibingkang malagkit", another one from Manila said they call it "bibingkang kakanin", in Bicol, they call it "biko". I'm from Pangasinan and we call it "latik" or "nilatikan" over there. One thing we all agree on though is that it is yummy, no matter how we call it.

Latik refers to the caramelized sauce made of coconut cream and panucha (molasses cake) and is used as topping for this particular rice cake. It also refers to the kakanin (rice cake) itself, thus latik.
On the otherhand, in Tagalog, latik refers to the curdles from coconut milk when making coconut oil.

Confused???!! I don't blame you because I'm too! That's why I chose "GLUTINOUS RICE CAKE WITH TOPPING" for the title.

In this recipe, I used light brown sugar instead of the panucha for the topping. Most of the time though, I use the bottled coconut jam or katiba, found in most Asian stores, for the topping. It is a shortcut to making this is quick, less work and less messy.
If you decide to use the bottled coconut jam, heat it in a pot with some coconut milk to make it more spreadable. Do not microwave.


4 cups glutinous rice
4 cups water
1/2 can coconut cream
2 cups white sugar

1 1/2 cans coconut cream
2 cups light brown sugar

Cook rice just like the procedure in Biko recipe #7, click here.
1) Rinse glutinous rice with cold water, drain well. Add the water and cook in a rice cooker just like cooking regular rice.
2) When cooked, stir in the sugar and coconut cream. Mix well.

3) Spread the mixture into a greased 9x13" baking pan.
(Sorry, this is a bad picture as the sauce looks more orange in color than dark brown. I guess I have to blame the lighting).
4) Pour the latik on top and smooth it out.
5) Bake in a pre-heated 350 degrees oven for 45 minutes.
6) Let cool before slicing.

1) In a non-stick pot, combine the coconut cream and the brown sugar.
2) Boil, stirring often, until thick but of spreadable consistency.

#64_OBAMA ROLLS (into the whitehouse)

Obama Bread

I was watching the Rachael Ray show today where she was showing how to make some Chicago pizzas to munch while watching the inaugural coverage tomorrow. Then, in other shows they mentioned that some celebs will be there to perform. That gave me a lightbulb moment. Although I can't sing or dance or any of that sort, I can make some bread. Well, I thought if I want to be a part of the history I would make some bread and name it after President Obama.

So here goes the OBAMA ROLLS!!!!!!!or OBAMA BREAD,
13 inches across, symbolizes the gargantuan task ahead of him at the White House.

I used the POTATO DINNER ROLLS recipe (recipe #63) then coiled them up to make them look like the Philippines ENSAYMADA ROLLS and sprinkled with cinnamon-sugar.
The only problem can I take this to him????

For those who aren't familiar with the ensaymada rolls, they are sweet bread and are a Filipino favorite snack and breakfast item. They are soft in texture, rich in flavor, buttery in taste and very labor-intensive to produce as they require 2-3 risings. They are slathered with butter and sprinkled with sugar have grated cheese on top. It is a really rich pastry and it is my favorite bread sans the cheese.


Sunday, January 18, 2009

#63_Potato Dinner Rolls

If you want some SOFT dinner rolls, this recipe is for you. One of my sisters in NZ gave me this recipe a long time ago and yeah, baby, these are very soft dinner rolls.

I had used these bread machine pictures in my pan de sal, (recipe #20) and will use them again whenever I post bread recipes using the bread machine because the procedure will be the same and will save me from taking pictures every time I post such recipes.
Just like I mentioned in that post, I am spoiled by bread machine but I'm grateful that somebody invented such a wonderful gadget for making bread because I don't think I have all day to spend making a few loaves of bread or a few dozens rolls. Who does anyway in this time and age?

1 small potato, (about 5 oz) I had to weigh one for this post, 1/2 cup mashed
1-3/4 cups liquid (potato water) very warm
1/4 cup white sugar
1/2 stick butter, softened
1 tsp. salt
6 cups bread flour
1/2 cup instant powdered milk
1 tbsp. yeast
1 tsp. dough enhancer
1 tsp. vital wheat gluten
2 eggs, slightly beaten

1) Peel and slice the potato and boil it in 2 1/2 cups of water until fork tender. Mash the potato and measure the potato water to 2 cups. (can add water if necessary). If potato water is still too hot, let it cool down to 120-130 degrees F. To test it, stick your forefinger into the liquid. If you can tolerate the temperature, then it is about the right temp.

2) Put the liquid and the mashed potato in the bread machine pan, followed by the sugar, butter, salt, bread flour, powdered milk, yeast, dough enhancer, and the eggs.
Just like in the pan de sal recipe, put everything in the bread machine bucket and select dough cycle and let the machine do the stirring and kneading.

3) When the cycle is done, let the dough sit in the bread machine pan or bucket with lid closed and let the dough rise until it is doubled in bulk. Lightly punch it down and take the dough out of the bucket onto a floured surface and divide the dough in half. Cover the other half of dough with a plastic wrap to prevent it from drying out while working on the other half.
4) With a dough cutter or a sharp knife, cut the dough into 12 pieces and form each one into balls. Do the same with the other half of dough.
5) Arrange the shaped dough on parchment paper-lined sheet pan and let them rise until doubled in size.
6) Bake in 350 degrees oven for 18-20 minutes.

1) I use SAF instant yeast in this recipe but you can use any regular active dry yeast.
2) Don't let the yeast touch the eggs.
3) The reason I put the eggs on top, (last) is that the liquid which is at the bottom of the pan is supposed have a temperature of between 120-130 degrees. I'm afraid if you mix the eggs with the liquid, you will end up with scrambled eggs or poached eggs.
4) Left over mashed potatoes is perfect to use in this recipe.

Reduced amount of liquid and added more flour.

Friday, January 16, 2009

#62_Pork Adobo

PORK ADOBO with a little twist

I added
Oyster Sauce,
a non-traditional ingredient to a Pinoy Adobo

The preparation starts with the basic sauteing of garlic and chopped onions in a little canola oil. When the onions are translucent, add the meat and continue to saute.

My mother taught me to saute the meat (pork or chicken) really well before adding any water into the pan. By sauteing the meat really well means when clear juice starts coming out of the meat or in other words the meat starts to render its own fats, you have sauteed the meat really well. After sauteing the meat really well, you can add some water, soy sauce, oyster sauce, apple cider vinegar, peppercorns, crushed garlic and bay leaves. Cover the pot and simmer for about 30 to 45 minutes till the meat is tender, adding some water or broth when necessary.

If doing a combination of chicken-pork adobo, I would suggest to simmer them separately as chicken gets cooked faster than pork and then combine the two.

This is one of those cooking sessions that I do without measuring the ingredients. I call it eyeballing or free style. But I will post a recipe and approximate measurements of ingredients to serve as guidelines. ( On this particular adobo, I didn't put much sauce (it had some, not a lot) in it because I was going to use it for SIOPAO fillings (siopao recipe coming up).

I used some meat from a pork loin (for roast pork) when I made this. You can use any cut of pork like pork chops or whatever you have. Filipinos like to have some fat in their pork adobo and often use pork belly.

Ingredients for Pork Adobo or Chicken Adobo:
2lbs. pork, washed and cubed or chicken thighs, drumstick or cut up stewing chicken
3 tbsp canola oil for sauteing
1 small onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1 cup water
3-4 tbsp. soy sauce
3-4 tbsp. oyster sauce
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
3 cloves garlic, crushed
bay leaves
1/2 cup sprite or 7-Up (secret ingredient, now revealed)

NOTES from MaMely:
1) Here's another secret that I will share:
Ususally the night before, I marinate the cubed pork or chicken in soy sauce, sprite and crushed garlic.
When ready to cook, I discard the marinade and proceed to sauteing. Marinating makes the meat so full of flavor.
2) I was watching a show on the food network, "Ask Aida", Aida was making an Asian dish called Shuyo Chicken, and she put all of the ingredients in a pot and simmered it for 30 minutes until the sauce was cooked downed
So here's an idea: I've never done it this way before, but from what I saw from Aida, I guess after marinating the meat overnight, (she didn't marinate her chicken though) you can cook the adobo just like she did her dish specially when you're pressed with time....just an idea!

Update: 11-11-11
Here's a recipe for Lemongrass Adobo, click here.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

#61_PASALUBONG ( treats from home)

My dear friends from Calasiao, Pangasinan, came back today after a 6-week visit to Pinas. Before they left they asked me what I wanted them to bring back. I told them to learn how to make the famous white puto (rice cakes) so we can make them here. Atchi Glo said she'll just bring me back some made ones because the puto maker in Calasiao will never, never, never give out their trade secrets in making the puto. The makers are so secretive and protective of their recipes that they make their puto in their armored backyards when the whole entire town is still asleep.(lol)

These are CALASIAO PUTO, when fresh they are a little sticky, white as snow, silky, a little chewy, soft, bouncy,spongy, moist and has the right sweetness (for me).
Translation: PERFECT PUTO!!

Some people might think I'm biased and will disagree with me, that's okay. But if you get a chance to go to Pangasinan, maybe on your way to Hundred Islands, try to swing by Calasiao and sample their puto and experience it yourself, but plan to be there early AM though or you'll get the putos from other towns. No, I'm not from Calasiao, we're neighbors though so I grew up eating these puto. I have been to Mindanao and Visaya and of course, Metro Manila, and I liked their puto but I like the Calasiao puto the best. (no hard feelings folks!)

By the way, Calasiao is a town in the province of Pangasinan and is right next to Dagupan City where I am from.

ADDENDUM: 1-15-09
I microwaved some of these puto today and oh my golly, by golly! they are like fresh out of the steamer! I can't believe they survived the more than 30-hour trip from Pangasinan!
Thank you very much Mr. and Mrs. Parayno!!

These are some other treats they brought back and shared them with me, (bless their hearts!):
tsokolate tabarelia, Engbee hopia, Romana peanut brittle from Mangaldan, Pangasinan

And the best of all the pasalubong: boneless bangus from Dagupan.
Mmmmm, Mmmmmm!!

It is good thing my husband doesn't care for any of the above mentioned treats so I don't have to share them with him. My friend Bobbi who had been to the Philippines few times, loves bangus as much as she loves the Filipinos, but hates the belly with passion , is coming out on Sunday to have a Bangus Party with me but I don't mind at all because I will have the best part and will enjoy the belly. Ha-ha!!!

As you know, when you put whole bangus on the table at a Filipino dinner, be it sinigang (stewed), fried or grilled, the belly will disappear first, as fast as lightning. Yeah, Filipinos fight for the belly!! Come on down, Bobbi!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009


Nachos are usually snacks or appetizers but when I made these today I ate a whole plateful of it and it filled me up that I didn't want anything else to eat. It was a meal in itself.

It is very easy to do with some ready made corn chips. (yesterday I made some with fried tortillas, I will post that next). Just spread some shredded cheddar cheese on the chips and microwave...and viola!! CHEESE NACHOS!

Or... you can go DELUXE. Layer some corn chips on a sheet pan and put some cooked and seasoned ground beef on each of the chips and spread some cheese on top. Pop it in a 350 degrees oven until the cheese melts.

Take it out of the oven and garnish with diced avocado and diced tomatoes. Can add some sliced olives and jalapeno peppers. Mmmmm!!


or CURED PORK as in CURED HAM only better
with Garlic Fried Rice...Mmmmm!!! how good is that?!!!

Smells really good, can't wait to dig in!

This is the best Tocino recipe you can ever have!! You can use beef or pork chops but I used pork loins and took out most of the fat for health concern, otherwise, I would have preferred fatty cut of pork. I sliced the meat thin, about 1/4 inch and put them in ziplock bags with the marinade and refrigerated for at least 24 hours to allow the meat to cure.

To cook the tocino:

Layer meat in a fry pan with about 2-3 tablespoons water or the marinade (I do not use the marinade, but my sister does ) Oiling the pan is not necessary as the meat will render its own fats in the process. Cook meat covered on medium heat about 5 minutes minutes on each side. Turn heat down to medium low and put lid back on. Add some more liquid when necessary or when the pan starts to get dry out before the meat is tender.

Cook until the meat is tender and the juice/sugar has caramelized.

Serve with GARLIC FRIED RICE and vinegar-garlic-patis for "saw-sawan" (dipping sauce)


1 lb. pork sirloin, sliced thin

1 tablespoon Kosher salt

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar

4 cloves garlic, crushed

1/4 cup pineapple juice (my secret ingredient, now revealed)

1/4 cup 7 up or sprite (another secret ingredient...hush!)

freshly cracked corn pepper

3-4 drops red food coloring (optional)


1) Put the sliced meat in a ziplock bag and sprinkle kosher salt, making sure all of the meat is coated with the salt

2) Set aside for about half an hour

3) In a bowl, mix the rest of ingredients and pour into the meat, mixing well. Close the bag and refrigerate for at least 24 hours, up to 4 days to allow the meat to cure, turning it over once in a while to make sure the meat is evenly coated with the marinade.


You don't need to use food coloring if you like your tocino to look natural.

Sunday, January 11, 2009


This recipe was given to me by my friend, Josie, from Manteca who has been raving about it for months. So I finally gave it a try. I made a couple of additions to the caramel ingredients though and one of which is the maple syrup which gives the carmel a different flavor.
I experimented the recipe 2 ways to see which way is best.


A bain marie or water bath consists of 2 pans, a larger pan to be filled with water and a smaller pan in which the custard is in. I used a 9"x7"x3" pyrex dish. The height of the pyrex dish is good enough so the water will not splash into the custard when baking.

I learned this trick from my mother to test if a leche flan has a GOOD STRUCTURE: when you pick up a piece of leche flan with a tooth pick and holds up its shape the custard has a good, strong structure. Needless to say if it falls apart even before you pick it up, something went wrong in the process.

Recipe for the CARAMEL:
1/3 cup sugar
1 tblsp. pure maple syrup
1 tsp. karo syrup

Recipe for the CUSTARD:
12 egg yolks
1 can evaporated milk
1 can condensed milk
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/4 cup white sugar

1) In a sauce pan, combine the sugar, maple syrup and karo syrup and cook over medium heat until the sugar is melted and mixture becomes thick enough to coat the dish.
2) Pour the syrup into the pan or dish and tilt it around to coat bottom and about 2-3 inches up the sides.
3) Set aside and make the custard mixture.
4) Mix together the evap milk and condensed milk
5) With a wire whisk, beat the egg yolks and stir them into the milk. Mix in the rest of the ingredients. Mix thoroughly.
6) Pour the mixture through a sieve into the prepared dish
7) Let the mixture sit in the fridge until bubbles are gone, about an hour.
8) Heat oven to 350 degrees.
9) Bake the custard in baine marie for 50 minutes to 1 hour or till tooth pick inserted comes out clean
10) Let cool. Best eaten after it has been refrigerated for few hours.
Note: This is a very good recipe indeed!!


Ahh, I will never use the steaming method again. It is a lot of work to steam leche flan as I had to bring out my 14 inch steamer then put some cloth under the lid so the steam won't drip on to the steaming flan, etc,etc.

I was disappointed with the result from steamimg, it is not as good as the one baked in Bain-Marie. Try both method and be the judge!!

Monday, January 5, 2009


Bite-size Fruit Tarts topped with fresh kiwi and raspsberry fruits and canned pineapple tidbits.

This is one of the desserts I made over the holidays (see NOCHE BUENA entry) unfortunately, I did not have time to post the recipe then, afterall, this dessert is good for any occasion. In fact, the lady I got the recipe from had made these tarts for summer weddings.

The tart shells are made from butter cookie recipe. After mixing all the ingredients, form dough into a log or ball and wrap in plastic wrap and chill for several hours in the fridge. The reason I form the dough this way is because it is easier to cut them into pieces by just using a knife.

is a very indispensable tool when making these tart shells.

Baked tart shells ready to be filled with cream cheese fillings and fruit toppings.

1 lb. butter, softened
2 cups white sugar
1 egg
4 cups all purpose flour

1) cream together sugar and butter
2) stir in the egg
3) add flour and mix well
4) knead mixture by hand until smooth
5) form dough into 2 logs or balls,
6) wrap doughs with plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for at least 2 hours.
7) when ready to make cookies, grease tart moulds with shortening
8) cut doughs into about 200 pieces and form each piece into 1 inch balls
9) press each dough balls into the tart shells with a tart press
10) arrange tart shells onto a cookie sheet and bake in a pre-heated 325 degrees oven for 10 minutes or until the edges of cookies turn light brown.
11) fill with cream cheese fillings and top with your favorite fruits
1 (8 oz) cream cheese, softened
1 (12oz) cool whip
1 cup powdered sugar
1) cream the cream cheese until light
2) add sugar, beat until well blended
3) fold in the cool whip
1) Flour the TART PRESS before pressing it onto the dough
2) You can substitute sliced fresh strawberries when available..they look elegant.
3) Tart shells can be made few days ahead. Store them in airtight container.

Updated: 9-22-10

Fruit tarts topped with raspberries, strawberries, pineapple tidbits(not pictured)

Filled with baked cheesecakes (New York style)

These shells are made of Chocolate Cookie dough sans the chocolate chips and are molded and baked in mini muffin pans for about 8-10 on 325 degrees oven. After taking them out of the oven while still very hot, press each tart shell down with the tart press before unmolding. Let them cool on wire rack.