Monday, August 25, 2008


Hi foodie blogville... if you've checked my blog lately, you'll notice that it's been a couple of weeks since my last post. I have an important reason for this, which I am about to share with you.

I am currently back in my homeland, the Philippines. This was an emergency trip, as my father has urgent health issues that I needed to attend to being his one and only child. It sucks big time to see your parents get older and in failing health. If you're curious and would want to know specifically what the emergency is about, then please check my personal blog here and here.

Suffice it to say that I am having one of the most challenging times of my life and would appreciate if you can say a word or two of prayer for my father and our family.

I miss cooking and blogging. But I gotta do what I need to do, and for now, my priority is my father to get well. I may be checking in once in a while, but I won't promise that I will be able to post anything till I get back to the U.S. a couple of weeks from now.

Hope you'll continue to check my blog... For Jude and Bethany, thanks for the tag/awards.. I will blog about it later when the dust settles.

Thank you.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Ricotta Pancakes With Roasted Apples & Prosciutto

I am thankful that when it comes to television, Mr. J and I don't have a problem as far as what shows to watch. We like almost the same programs - I watch what he watches, and he likes to watch what I watch. My only problem with him is when he's got the remote control - he changes channels so much I get dizzy! He loves to scan the channels, and when commercial break comes, his fingers get busy with the remote almost like an instict. He can't just stay in one channel. He just has to look around.

I know though, that this is a habit not unique to Mr. J alone. This is a guy thing. It must have something to do with the nature of men.. their nature to explore and conquer?

Anyhow, we were watching Tyler Florence over in FoodNetwork on Saturday afternoon. We just got intrigued with these cheesy pancakes. Coupled with the prosciutto and the apples.. this breakfast looked like a winner.

"Hmmnn... Why don't we try that?" Mr. J. said. "But you don't like cheese", I said to him. Mr. J always teases me because I love cheese a lot. He smiled and said, "well, it's ricotta. I'm willing to try it". So that settled it. I have no problem trying Tyler's ultimate pancakes.

So that very day I went to the grocery and picked up what we needed. Mr. J didn't expect for us to have the pancakes that very next day,so he was a bit surprised. Since it's Sunday, I thought it was a good time. So, why wait?

This breakfast then is a collaborative effort between Mr. J and I. I love it when we cook together. I made the pancake batter, but Mr. J took care of the flipping, and cooking. The prosciutto and apple wasn't much of a problem because both gets thrown in the oven.

As for these pancakes, one really has to be careful not to use too much heat. The pancake is different in that it cooks very slow, due to the cheese in it I suppose. So if you use very high heat, the outside will get burned and the inside will be raw.. that's not going to be good at all... So this breakfast particularly needs a lot of TLC (tender loving care). (Incidentally, in the Philippines, we call them HOTCAKES, and not pancakes..)

So just be patient, because you're going to be rewarded with a very delicious breakfast.. heavy and rich, but delicious. This breakfast sustained us, so much so that we didn't get hungry until dinner!
Ricotta Pancakes With Roasted Apples & Prosciutto
recipe from Tyler Florence

For the topping:
12 slices prosciutto
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, optional
4 Golden Delicious apples
1/2 stick butter, melted
1/4 cup maple syrup

For the pancakes:
2 cups ricotta
4 large eggs, separated
1 cup buttermilk
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 cup all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
Pinch salt
Butter, for cooking
Confectioners' sugar, for dusting, optional
1 cup maple syrup, warmed on stove-top

For the topping:
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
2. Lay the slices of prosciutto out in a single flat layer. Season with some salt and freshly ground black pepper, if desired, and pop into the oven. Roast the prosciutto until crispy, about 10 to 15 minutes.
3.Cut each apple into thirds, remove the cheeks and discard the core. Slice each piece into 4 and toss with butter and maple syrup.
4. Transfer to a roasting pan and place in the oven. Roast the apples until they are fork-tender and slightly caramelized on the top, about 30 to 45 minutes depending on ripeness of the fruit.

For the pancakes:
1. Combine the ricotta, egg yolks, buttermilk, lemon juice, and lemon zest in a large mixing bowl.
2. Sift the dry ingredients: flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt together into the ricotta mixture and stir until fully combined.
3. In a separate bowl whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks form and then gently fold into the batter.
4. Heat a large nonstick pan over medium heat and add a little butter. Cook pancakes at a time using a 6-ounce ladle or measuring cup to pour the batter into the pan.
5. Cook the pancakes on 1 side until they set. When small bubbles appear on the uncooked surface, flip the pancakes and cook until golden on both sides, about 6 minutes (or longer). Keep the pancakes on a plate set at the back of the stove under a dry towel to keep warm while you make the rest.

To serve, lay the pancakes on a plate and dust with confectioners' sugar. Serve with roasted apples, crispy prosciutto strips and warm maple syrup.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Brilliante Blog Award

I got my very first award, yay! Many thanks to Selina of Let's Chow for passing this award on to me.

When I started this blog, I was hoping to maybe meet some people but I wasn't really prepared to discover a whole "foodie world" out there; people from all corners of the world who share the same interest and passion in food as I do. Awesome.

It's been an exciting ride for me, so far, for the last 6 months. And I have learned a lot, which is why, in the first place, I thought of doing this blog. I wanted to learn more about food, about the cuisines from different countries. And along the way, I am meeting very talented, wonderful people. And I'm so glad.

Now, it's time to return the favor. I'd like to pass this award on to six other bloggers, following these simple rules:

1. Link to the person who tagged you.
2. Post the rules on the blog.
3. Write six random things about yourself.
4. Tag six people at the end of your post.
5. Let each person know they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.
6. Let the tagger know when their entry is up.

So, for number 3 above, here are some little stuff about myself:
* Though I grew up in the Philippines where "balut" or fermented duck egg is a huge delicacy, I do not eat it. I tried but just couldn't swallow the stuff. It grosses me out.
* For the same reason as above, I cannot eat any food that has any animal organ in it such as liver, brain....... you get my drift.
* I love jazz and lyrical dancing, and have taken some lessons on it. I have been a dance minister in my church both in Philippines and in the U.S. So you'd understad if I tell you why I love the TV show, So You Think You Can Dance... love it!
* According to the latest typing test I've taken, I type 96 words per minute.
* When I was a kid, I wanted to become a CNN reporter, which led me to study Communications. I don't know what happened.. :o)
* I have a mini-spoon collection which I always get from souvenir shops whenever I travel to new places (cities, countries). So far, I've 52 of them and counting.

There you have it, folks. Now you know just a little bit more about me.

So, it's my time to tag 6 people. These are some of the sites I frequent:
Divya of Dilse
Jude of Apple Pie, Patis & Pate
Rita of Mochachocolatarita
TS of Eating Club Vancouver
Nicole of For The Love Of Food
Gert of My Kitchen Snippets

Have a good day to y'all!