Friday, March 30, 2012

SALMON en PAPILLOTE

Good Friday!
No meat day for us ... what to make for dinner?
A modern drier version of the Sinigang na Isda  that I learned from my family (Fish cooked in a spicy sour broth).
So here is an easy recipe ... Salmon en Papillote.




Ingredients:

4 - 5 oz Salmon Fillets
2 tablespoon lemon juice
4 thinly sliced lemons
2 tomatoes chopped or 16 cherry tomaotes sliced in 1/2
2 jalapeno peppers, cut in 1/2 seeded and deveined (optional)
salt and pepper to taste
4 12 x 12 Parchment paper

Directions

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Fold parchment paper in half lengthwise. Cut out heart-shaped pieces from each sheet, starting from the fold. Make each heart about 2 inches wider than the fish fillets. Set aside.




Place a salmon fillet, atop a sheet of parchment paper. Spoon the sliced tomatoes over the salmon.Top the tomatoes with the thinly sliced lemon and the jalapeno pepper. If you don't like any spicy pepper you definitely don't have to use it.
Season with salt and pepper.



Fold the paper in half lengthwise to close and roll the edges together to seal the packets.
Place the packets on a baking sheet and bake until the salmon is just cooked through, about 20 minutes (until the paper is puffed and browned).
Using a large spatula, transfer the foil packets to plates and serve.

This is a delicious, quick and easy dinner if you are having friends over.
Always a Hit!!!



















































































Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Raspberry - Lemon No Bake Cheesecake


Once in a while I crave for a good cheesecake. Living where I am living now, 4 hours away from the nearest cosmopolitan city, there's NONE!!!
I always have to make it myself.
I miss leaving in Los Angeles, where all you need to do is let the fingers do the work ... dial, reach in your wallet and Voila! a perfect dessert with no sweat. 
Leave some pretend dirty bowls and whisk in the sink for the guest to see, and they think you did all the work. LOL!
Yes I am GUILTY! I'm guilty of sometimes just wanting a no fuss party so I am not tired and can just enjoy my friends. So there! Is that a valid reason? I say it is!

Putting my fingers to work again, I stumbled upon this recipe while browsing around for a No Bake cheesecake. I changed the recipe to serve a large party. I have used the individual dishes shown and have used a 2 oz. miniature cups to serve a very large party.
A no fuss recipe that everyone, I guarantee, everyone would love.
A recipe leaving your guest wanting for more.
Serves: 12
Ingredients:
the crust
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
2 tbsp sugar
6 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
the Filling
1 1/3 cups sugar
zest on 4 lemons
2 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
4 tsp fresh lemon juice
2 tsp pure vanilla extract
2 (8 ounce) tub frozen whipped topping, thawed
2 cup fresh raspberries, slightly mashed with a fork
Directions:
  • In a medium bowl, mix together melted butter, graham cracker crumbs and 2 tbsp of sugar. In individual serving dishes, evenly divide the crumbs and press into the bottoms of the dishes to form a crust layer.
  • .
  • In a large pastry piping bag (you can use a large ziploc bag snipping one corner), pipe or spoon the filling evenly into individual serving dishes. Put the individual serving dishes in a large tray and cover with plastic wrap. Chill for at least 2 hours before serving, overnight is best. Garnish with a sprig of fresh mint and raspberries.


Notes:
  • You can substitute raspberries with blueberries and strawberries.
  • This can make 2 pies in a 9-inch pie pan. Chill for at least 3 hours before serving.
  • If you wish to make your own whipped topping from scratch, feel free. But for busy moms like me, frozen is good enough and don't feel guilty. ;). 

Friday, March 9, 2012

ESPRESSO PANNA COTTA



I was looking for an easy dessert to make
 for an Advent Charity Event I was going to.
The event was just a few days after Thanksgiving
and I was still tired from slaving in the kitchen, and was not ready to slave again.


I remembered this recipe,
a less than 10 mins to make recipe.
So if you ever find yourself in a dilemma like I did,
and seriously want the credit you so deserve for being a kitchen diva.
Here's a perfect recipe for that!


Mini Espresso Panna Cotta

This recipe serves 4. But since i was serving a large party. Went to my local party store and found these cute 2 oz clear plastic teeny tiny mugs. I thought it would be cute to make it look like mini cappuccinos. These cups were just perfect serving for a big party. And I found teeny tiny spoons to go with it as well.





Ingredients:

1 cup whole milk
3 tsp unflavored powdered gelatin
3 cups heavy cream
6 heaping tsp instant espresso powder
1/2 cup sugar
Pinch salt
Whipped Topping
1 small white chocolate bar, for garnishing
1 small dark chocolate bar, for garnishing




Directions:



  • In a medium non-stick saucepanpour milk, add the gelatin over, and mix. Let stand for 5 minutes to soften the gelatin. Turn stove to medium heat and stir for 2 minutes just until the gelatin dissolves, but the milk does not boil. Turn to low heat. 
  • Add the cream, espresso powder, sugar, and salt. Stir, until the sugar dissolves, about 3 more minutes.
  • Remove from heat and let cool slightly. Pour mixture into 4 martini glasses or 4 coffee cups, dividing equally.
  • Cover and refrigerate. Chill until set, at least 6 hours and up to 2 days.
  • When ready to serve, top with whipped topping and sprinkle with chocolate shavings.



 
Note:
  • Best to shave the chocolate blocks when soft, so make sure its room temperature or you can microwave it for 10 secs to soften for easy curling. Use a vegetable peeler on the chocolate blocks to create about 2 tbsp each of the white and dark chocolate shavings
Serves: 4 (or 16 when using 2 oz cups)

Thursday, March 1, 2012

PINAKURAT (Spiced Coconut Vinegar)

Growing up in an island in the Philippines we don't use creamy sauces or butter to our seafood.  
We use coconut vinegar as our dipping sauce.


What is Sukang Pinakurat?
Sukang Pinakurat is a condiment, specifically a vinegar from organic coconut fragmented sap also known as "tuba" blended with "labuyo" chilis (as we know it here in the US as Thai chilis) and other ingredients.

"Sukang Pinakurat is named after a famous traditional dish made from wild boar meat "sulop" cooked only by a flame-shut pot of boiling coco vinegar, chilies, and spices.
The word "pinakurat" comes from the root word "kurat" in Visayan vernacular, which means "surprise."

Well, having this special vinegar as your "sawsawan" or dipping sauce you will definitely get surprised!





The Philippines is the world's top producer of coconuts, so their production plays an important role in the economy. Around the country, coconut trees line the beaches.

The coconut is The Tree of Life


There's coconut oil, coconut milk, coconut water, coconut meat, cocnut shampoo, coconut husk use to scrub and polish floors and hey ... there's even a Coconut Palace. The list goes on.



But my most favorite is the coconut vinegar.
This spiced vinegar is my favorite pair for anything grilled or fried.

Ingredients:
1 bottle 25 fl oz or 750 ml Coconut Vinegar
1 cup Thai Chilis or Siling labuyo, divided
1/4 cup ginger, diced and divided
8 cloves garlic, divided
1 cup fish sauce
2 tbsp onions, sliced

Directions:
  • In a blender combine 3-4 cups of vinegar, add 4 garlic cloves, 1/8 cup ginger, 1/2 cup chilis.
  • Blend everything, a smooth texture is what we want.
  • Add the remaining vinegar and blend.
  • Add 1 cup fish sauce and blend. If you don't have fish sauce, you can substitute with salt.
  • Pour mixture into a bottle.
  • Add remaining Thai Chilis, onions, ginger and garlic.

Note:  Do not use plastic or metallic container to avoid chemical reactions.

WE HIT A MILESTONE!

15 days ago I started my blog. Today The Red Apron have 1000 views. This may seem like a very small number to all you who have been blogging for a long time and have tens of thousands of hits, but blogging for just 2 weeks, and getting 1000 hits means so much to me!
Thank you to all who gave time to view my blog.

Mango Strawberry Caipirinha
see Thirst Quenchers for recipe


I hope I'll be able to help those who are struggling in the kitchen just like I was a few years ago.
I know how busy we all are, and I hope The Red Apron helps you ease that busy day by making cooking easy in the kitchen with our quick & easy recipes.


Thank you to my friends and family who are always asking me for recipes, and my sister-in-law Jenny who has been blogging , in convincing me to blog.
Despite the hesitation at first, now I find myself putting aside time everyday in the kitchen, testing and experimenting recipe finds. And of course, I absolutely love tasting and discovering everyone else’s recipe.
Although, I don't like measuring, I find the challenge of measuring for the recipes I write rewarding when I find the right balance of tastes and flavors.

I’m so much more inspired!


Thank you again Everyone!!!
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