Monday, March 29, 2010

#234_Ukoy or Shrimp-Vegetable Fritters

Ukoy is a very popular kind of fritter in the Philippines. It is usually made of bean sprouts, grated squash, grated carrots, shrimps. The vegetables used vary from one region to another or even varies from one kitchen to another. I learned from some facebook friends that in Pampanga they use grated green papaya in place of bean sprouts which I have yet to try.

The other day I saw some shrimp fries at the Filipino store which made me nostalgic, because in Pangasinan where I grew up shrimps and shrimp fries abound. I haven't seen shrimp fries in 25 years. That's probably one reason why I used shrimp fries in this recipe instead of shrimps because I had to buy a package of this. Unfortunately they are not the fresh kind which I was accustomed to use in making Ukoy when I was back home. So, I settled with these dried ones called "daing na alamang" in Tagalog. I had to rinsed them in water to subdue the strong "dried fish" smell. I made do, but the fresh ones are way better to use for Ukoy.

Vegetable/shrimp Fritters

Batter for Ukoy
2/3 cup flour
1/3 cup cornstarch
1 tbsp. baking powder
2/3 cup water
1/2 tsp. salt

Mix everything in a bowl then throw in the prepared veggies.
add in peeled shrimps

Suggested Veggies
mix and match:

Grated carrots, onion, juliened, bean sprouts, grated Squash, grated potato, grated sweet potato.

To fry the Ukoy or Fritters:
Heat some canola oil in a dutch oven or heavy skillet. Ladle some of the mixture in a saucer, then carefully slide it into the hot oil (hot, but not smoking hot). Fry each side for about 3 minutes or until golden brown. Drain fried Ukoy on paper towels. Serve hot with your favorite dipping sauce.
For my Dipping Sauce Recipe click here.

#233_Easter Buns (Hot Cross Buns)

There are so many different recipes of Hot Cross Buns out there. Some are spicy and savory with some dried fruits like currants. Since I enjoy white sweet bread, I decided to use the my Basic Sweet Dough recipe #178, then added raisins, cinnamon powder and orange zest. For the crosses, I used cream cheese frosting recipe. The result? Amazing!

Here's the recipe:
1-3/4 cups warm milk
1 stick butter, softened
1/2 cup white sugar
6 cups bread flour
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tbsp. instant yeast, (saf yeast)
1 tsp. dough enhancer (my secret ingredient)
1 tsp. vital wheat gluten(another secret ingredient)
1 tsp. salt
4 whole eggs, slightly beaten

Here's the procedure:

1) Put everything in the bread machine pan in the order listed above starting with the milk.
2) Set the bread machine on dough cycle and let it do the mixing and kneading. ( my bread machine beeps when it is time to add other ingredients such as nuts, oats, etc) . So when it beeps, add 1 cup raisins and orange zest from 1 orange.
3) Let the dough rise in the bread machine pan.

4) When doubled in bulk, punch down the dough then take it out onto a floured surface and divide equally into 24 pieces. Shape the dough into balls then arrange them on a parchment-lined baking pan. (12 rolls in one pan)
5) Let the doughs rise until doubled in size.
6) Brush dough with egg wash then bake in a pre-heated 350 degrees oven for 18-20 minutes

Rolls right out of the oven

Let the rolls cool then pipe each roll with Cream Cheese Frosting.

Cream Cheese Frosting Recipe:

4 oz. (or half a brick) cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, very soft but not melted
4 cups powdered sugar
2 tbps. warm milk or orange juice ( add a little more if too dry)
1 tsp. vanilla

Cream together cream cheese and butter.
Add in the powdered sugar and milk.
Mix well until smooth and there no more lumps.
Pipe on rolls.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

#232_ Pan de Coco or Coconut Rolls

Pan de Coco, Coconut Bread or Coconut Rolls,
they all mean the same thing...
bread filled with
Sweetened Coconut or

I found it easier to fill the dough with the bucayo this way,
roll it up like jelly roll.
For the dough I used the Pan de Sal recipe #20, click here.

The rolls can then be sliced across to desired sizes.

The traditional way of making Pan de Coco
is to flatten each ball of dough
then put filling in the center,
gather the edges together then pinch to seal.

Serve Pan de Coco with hot cocoa...yummy!

(Sweetened fresh grated coconut)

For the Bucayo filling, I used the recipe of Virginia Ganzon Rodriguez who is a facebook friend and is so kind to give me the permission to post it here, but instead of posting it I'll just send you to her website to get the recipe, click here. It is a good bucayo recipe. The only thing that I changed in the recipe is the amount of water which I decreased to 1/4 cup and then I added 1/2 can of condensed milk when the mixture was almost dry, then cooked it just a little longer, about 2 minutes.

April 28, 2010
As per request of Maricel, (see her comment below) here is the recipe for Bucayo, the filling for the Pan de Coco or Coconut Rolls which I copied from Virginia's website.

1 lb. brown sugar
Approx. 1/2 cup water
1 pack frozen grated coconut, thawed
1 tsp. vanilla extract

Cook sugar in water, then add the coconut and vanilla. continue to cook until the consistency is dry enough to fill the dough. Cool the mixture.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

#231_The Ultimate Chocolate Cake

The chocolate cake with
Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

The chocolate cake with
Ganache Frosting

I filled the cake with whipped cream with sugar on this one.

This chocolate cake recipe was adapted from one of
my favorite food site,
the Smitten Kitchen.

Here's the original cake recipe from Smitten Kitchen:

3 ounces fine-quality semisweet chocolate such as Callebaut
1-1/2 cups hot brewed coffee
3 cups sugar
2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1-1/2 cups unsweetened cocoa powder (not Dutch process)
2 teaspoons baking soda
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1-1/4 teaspoons salt
3 large eggs
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1-1/2 cups well-shaken buttermilk
3/4 teaspoon vanilla

For ganache frosting

1 pound fine-quality semisweet chocolate such as Callebaut
1 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/2 stick (1/4 cup) unsalted butter

Special equipment

two 10- by 2-inch round cake pans

Make cake layers:

1) Preheat oven to 300°F.

2) Line bottoms with rounds of wax paper and grease paper.and grease pans.

3) Finely chop chocolate and in a bowl combine with hot coffee. Let mixture stand, stirring occasionally, until chocolate is melted and mixture is smooth.

4) Into a large bowl sift together sugar, flour, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. In another large bowl with an electric mixer beat eggs until thickened slightly and lemon colored (about 3 minutes with a standing mixer or 5 minutes with a hand-held mixer). Slowly add oil, buttermilk, vanilla, and melted chocolate mixture to eggs, beating until combined well. Add sugar mixture and beat on medium speed until just combined well.

5) Divide batter between pans and bake in middle of oven until a tester inserted in center comes out clean, 1 hour to 1 hour and 10 minutes.

6) Cool layers completely in pans on racks. Run a thin knife around edges of pans and invert layers onto racks. Carefully remove wax paper and cool layers completely. Cake layers may be made 1 day ahead and kept, wrapped well in plastic wrap, at room temperature.

Make frosting:

Finely chop chocolate. In a 1-1/2 to 2 quart saucepan bring cream, sugar, and corn syrup to a boil over moderately low heat, whisking until sugar is dissolved. Remove pan from heat and add chocolate, whisking until chocolate is melted. Cut butter into pieces and add to frosting, whisking until smooth.

Transfer frosting to a bowl and cool, stirring occasionally, until spreadable (depending on chocolate used, it may be necessary to chill frosting to spreadable consistency). I found that stirring this over a bowl of ice water did a great job of cooling it off quickly and evenly.

Spread frosting between cake layers and over top and sides. Cake keeps, covered and chilled, 3 days. Bring cake to room temperature before serving.

Notes from MaMely:
I made some modifications on this recipe because I do not have two 10" round pans, so as you can see I made a double decker using 9x13 cake pans. I also substituted whole milk for the coffee called for in the recipe because I don't use coffee. For the ganache, I used Guittard semi sweet chocolate chips and it worked just fine.
I had made this cake to make different kinds by using different frosting, such as coconut pecan frosting to make German Chocolate Cake; Black Forest Cake; with Ganache Frosting; or with chocolate frosting. Very versatile cake!

Here's a recipe for
Chocolate Buttercream Frosting:
6 oz. unsweetened chocolate
1 stick butter
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
3 cups confectioners sugar
Melt chocolate and butter over low heat. Stir in cream and mix until smooth. Remove the pan from the heat and beat in the sugar until the frosting holds a stiff shape. Spread on cake.

Recipe for Coconut Pecan Frosting, posts #36 click here and #83 click here.

1 cup evaporated milk
3 egg yolks, slightly beaten
1 cup white sugar
1 stick butter
1 1/2 cups shredded coconut
1 cup chopped pecans
1 cup sifted powdered sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract

1)In a deep pan, or pot, preferably non-stick, combine the milk, egg yolks, sugar and butter. Cook stirring over medium heat until thick, (about 15 minutes or til it reaches the consistency of pudding)
2) Turn down heat to medium low, and add the coconut, pecans, powdered sugar and vanilla. Stir for 2 more minutes. Turn off heat. (it might be a little runny at this point but when you spread it on the cake, the frosting settles quickly)
3) Spread frosting on the cake immediately. (it is easier to spread the frosting on the cake while it is warm).
4) Chill in fridge before slicing.

#230_Maruya or Banana Fritters

Maruya or Banana Fritters...
another popular Filipino snack using Saba bananas.

Saba Bananas a.k.a. cooking bananas
(this is kind of over ripe, but didn't want them to go to waste)

This variety of bananas is used for cooking different kinds of snacks.

Click here to check out a Turon recipe,
which is one snack using
Saba bananas.

Maruya, just like any other fritters, is made with batter then fried.
It is a very common merienda item in the Philippines
and it is pretty easy and also inexpensive to make.

Select ripe, but firm saba bananas and slice them lengthwise or in disks.

The batter should be a little thinner than pancake batter.

Batter for Crispy Maruya:
2/3 cup flour
1/3 cup cornstarch
1 tbsp. baking powder
2/3 cup water

about 4-5 saba bananas, sliced lengthwise or in disks
canola oil for frying
white sugar for dredging

Mix ingredients for the batter, stirring until the mixture is smooth.
Dip slices of bananas in the batter, then fry in hot canola oil.

You can fry them individual slices or in clusters.
For clusters, slice the bananas in disks (crosswise) then dip in the batter.
Fry battered bananas in hot canola oil over medium low heat,
about 2-3 minutes per side or until golden brown.

Drain fried maruyas in paper towel, then toss them in white sugar.


Monday, March 22, 2010

#229_ Another Cake by Melinda

Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting

Each flower stem is wrapped with plastic wrap
before they are arranged
on the two-tier cake, accented with cute spiky candles.

To view more pictures of Special Occasion Cakes,
visit my face book page by clicking on the link below:!/pages/PinoyAmericanFavoriteRecipes/102145934577?ref=nf

Saturday, March 13, 2010

#228_Pastel de Tres Leches ( Three-Milk Cake)

Pastel de Tres Leches

Pastel de Tres Leches, translated as three-milk cake is a very popular Latin American cake soaked in three different kinds of milk products, hence tres leches (three milk). Some recipes use butter cake, some simply use boxed white cake mix and while there's hundreds of ways to dress this cake up, I will stick to what I have already tried which is nuts and strawberries. Because this cake is already too sweet from the milk, I don't particularly want anymore frosting nor sweet garnishes on it such as whipped cream or caramel.
I first tried this cake last year from an authentic source (click here). I'm glad I did because now I have a recipe based on that authentic piece of cake.

For the cake, I used the tried and true Chiffon Cake recipe #210, click here and it turned out great. I did one in a 9"x13" pan and 5 mini cakes using "one-of-a-kind" molds.

I call these mini cakes because they are bigger than cup cakes and smaller than the smallest size cake pans. Do you want to know what kind of molds I used? It's my secret, so don't tell anybody... they are Tuna Fish cans! Yep! 7.5 oz.tuna fish cans, a bit taller than the regular 5 oz. cans. I love the size because it is perfect for individual servings. I got the idea from a friend, Josie, who uses the cans for making leche flan. There you go, I just revealed a secret!

Mini cakes using tuna cans for molds

Tres Leches Cake in a 9"x13" cake pan

Here's the recipe:
Prepare your pans. If using glass pans, grease the bottom well. If using mini molds, grease bottom and sides well. Baking gurus say don't grease the pans when making chiffon cakes...
I am breaking that rule specially with mini molds or muffin tins because you can't unmold them without breaking them to pieces if the molds aren't greased.

For the Cake (Chiffon Cake recipe #210, click here)
Egg yolk mixture:
2-1/4 cup cake flour, sifted before measuring
3/4 cup white sugar
1 tbsp. baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup canola oil
1/2 cup+2 tbsp orange juice or water
7 egg yolks
2 tbsp. orange zest
1 tsp. vanilla extract
Sift together cake flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a mixing bowl. Make a well in the center and add the egg yolks, canola oil, orange juice or water, vanilla and orange zest. Mix together with a wire whisk until all ingredients are well bended. Set aside.

Egg White Mixture:

7 egg whites, room temperature
1 tsp. cream of tartar
3/4 cup white sugar
Using a stand mixer, whip egg whites and cream of tartar until foamy. Gradually add the sugar. Continue to whip until sugar is dissolved and whites are glossy and soft peaks forms.

The Cake Batter:
Fold the egg white mixture (in 3 batches) into the egg yolk mixture until both are well blended together. (remember, just fold, do not mix or stir this mixture)

Pour batter into prepared pans and bake in pre-heated 350 degrees oven. Baking time varies
depending on the pans used. I bake the 9"x13" cake for 23 minutes; 18 minutes for the mini cakes. If using mini molds, place the molds in baking sheet then put in the oven.

Making the TRES LECHES
Cool cake for about 5 minutes, then poke holes all over the cake using a skewer or a fork.

Poke holes all over cake for the milk to penetrate.

Mix the 3 milk together
in a bowl

Some recipes that I saw online use a combination of evaporated milk, condensed milk and heavy cream. Some uses fresh milk instead of heavy cream. I guess it doesn't matter as long as there's condensed milk in it.

Pour the milk into the cake making sure it gets into the holes.

After pouring milk into the cake, let it cool completely then cover
and put in the fridge to chill for few hours or overnight.

When ready to serve, pour some more milk on the cake then garnish as you desire.

Notes from MaMely:
1) This chiffon cake recipe looks like it is hard and complicated to make, but it is really not that hard. Unless you give it a try you won't know how easy it is to make it. I know, because it took me a few years before I decided to try making it as I thought it was complicated for me. I'm glad I did give it a try because now, I hardly use cake mixes for this kind of cakes.

2) A blog reader and a cyber friend, Ziggy who is from Cuba, told me she makes this cake a Cuatro Leches, which means 4 kinds of milk. For the fourth kind she uses dulce de leches to top the cake. Sounds delish, I'll have to try that.

Sunday, March 7, 2010


Tupig is a very popular street food in Pangasinan
It is mainly made of glutinous rice and freshly shredded coconut.

A friend Stella, showed us how to make Tupig from the start, i.e. making the batter, wrapping, then broiling.

Another friend, Nieves, joined us with the tupig-making lesson.

A FB friend, Virginia posted her recipe on my facebook page and with her permission, I'm posting it here.

Virginia Ganzon Rodriguez
Ok, Here is the much anticipated recipe for Tupig, Tenpigs, or a Dozenpigs!


2 cups young coconut meat (buko kinayod)
1 cup macapuno string
1 plastic bag glutinous rice flour
2 cups brown sugar
2 cans coconut milk
vanilla extract
banana leaves, wilted and wiped clean then wipe with coconut oil or spray with
Pam to prevent sticking


Mix all ingredients together. Mix should not be watery. Add more glutinous rice if consistency is too watery.
Spoon mix on prepared banana leaves. Roll and fold edges. Broil in oven until the banana leaves are charred.

If banana leaves are not available, aluminum foil can be used though it's not going to be as delicious.
February 23 at 6:53pm ·

Virginia Ganzon Rodriguez
Use the top rack and broil. Keep a watchful eye because you don't want to burn them too much. Don't use mochiko brand. Use the plastic bag glutinous rice w/ green label.
February 23 at 9:21pm ·