silver chopstix

Penguin Bento

Posted by in Bento

I had a little extra time yesterday morning so I was able to make this Penguin themed bento. I’ve already seen photos of this while searching online, so I have a pretty good idea how to go about it. My only concern was if I can cut freestyle the outline of the penguin’s face using “nori”. I tried to make a pattern but eventually ditched that idea. I used regular kitchen scissors to make the cut out. A special bento food scissors would be better I think for a more…read more

Pork Afritada

Posted by in Dinner, Pork

Afritada is a Filipino tomato based stew. I believe this is one of the many Spanish influenced dishes that we have. It is meat (pork and chicken are commonly used) braised in tomatoes, onions, garlic with a couple of tablespoons of vinegar. Tomato paste is then added with broth or water. Lola (my maternal grandmother) does not like to use tomato sauce as she finds it too sour. Bay leaf, salt and pepper are used to season. My family always include vinegar in our “afritada” recipe, I remember my mom…read more

Traditional Filipino Breakfast

Posted by in Breakfast

We rarely eat rice for breakfast since moving to the Northeast. Our everyday fare would normally be toast, cereal or fruits and yogurt. I was at the Asian store earlier today and saw in the freezer section a pack of chicken “tocino” (Filipino cured meat). I thought of making “Tosilog” (Tocino + sinangag + itlog) with it, a traditional Filipino breakfast. Roughly translated this is cured chicken meat, garlic fried rice and sunny side egg over easy. “Sinangag” or garlic rice is made by browning minced garlic in 1-2 tablespoons…read more

Totoro’s Friends Bento

Posted by in Bento

As part of my Totoro series, I decided to make my daughter a bento of Totoro’s friends. Chibi Totoro is a smaller white version of Totoro. It is also a forest guardian. Susu-Wataris are round and black furry creatures seen from the movie Totoro and Spirited away. They are also soot sprites. For today’s bento I made Chibi Totoro onigiri, Susu-Watari onigiri, turkey meatballs from last night’s dinner, green beans and strawberries. (197)

Totoro Onigiri

Posted by in Bento

Our family is a big Hayao Miyazaki fan. “My Neighbor Totoro” is one of our all time favorite movie. I’ve always wanted to make a “Totoro” inspired bento, but just the thought of it intimidates me. After searching the web and finding a step by step tutorial, It finally got me excited to try. This is going to be the first my Totoro Bento series. Here is my take on Totoro onigiri. I borrowed my daughter’s plush Totoro collection (Totoro, Chu Totoro, Chibi Totoro and Susu-watari) for this post. (295)

Hinamatsuri Onigiri

Posted by in Bento

Hinamatsuri or Girls Day is celebrated in Japan every 3rd day of March. To commemorate this occasion, I decided to make these onigiri in the shape of the Emperor and Empress. As a backgrounder, this is the day when people pray for the happiness and health of their girls. They also put up a display of dolls in tiers wearing costumes during the imperial times. With the top most reserved for the emperor and the empress. The remaining tiers would hold the ladies in waiting, court musicians, ministers and guards….read more

Bento Lunch Series

Posted by in Bento

My daughter loves anything Japanese. I made these bento for her school lunch beginning Spring of last year. Bento are very popular in Japan. They are packed lunches which consist of rice, meats, vegetables usually in small portions served in a box shaped container. “Kyaraben” or character bento are more elaborately styled to look like popular characters. “Oekakiben” or picture bento on the other hand are made to look like people, animals, flowers etc. Most of the bentos I have made are oekakiben since I find it really cute. Plus…read more

Vegetable Spring Roll (Lumpiang Gulay)

Posted by in Merienda

Vegetable Spring Roll (lumping gulay) is an all time favorite of our family. In our hometown of Navotas, it is called Sumpia and usually paired with arroz caldo (rice and chicken porridge). I usually make mine with what is available in my vegetable bin. Saute garlic and onion. Add in shrimps or any meat of your choice, you may even use fried tofu. Then add sliced carrots, celery, green beans, mung bean sprouts and cabbage. Season with salt and pepper. Let the vegetable mixture cool then wrap in Spring roll…read more