Category Archives: Food & Beverage

Food & How To: Durian Mousse Cake (Bánh mousse sầu riêng)

Since the Philippines is actually no stranger to durian as it’s abundantly grown particularly in Davao, the challenge now is creating something delicious aside from the usual by-products we know such as candy, pie, ice cream and float.

And we found this. A durian mousse cake.

Well, though you could substitute durian with mango or strawberry as in Helen’s recipe, we better stick with durian since this is what the feature is all about. Anyway, while the ingredients are actually easy to find, the different sets of ingredients makes it look complicated — as the durian mousse itself is even like a recipe within a recipe. Still, take heart, surely this cake is worth it.

Durian mousse being mixed and prepared

BATTER. 4 fresh eggs. 2 tbsp vegetable oil. 1 tbsp water. 1 tsp vanilla extract. 1 tsp salt. 1/2 tsp cream of tartar. 100 grams of sugar. 100 grams of flour.

DURIAN MOUSSE. 400 grams durian flesh. 200 ml milk. 1-2 tbsp of sugar. Gelatin liquid (15 grams gelatin powder and 3 tbsp water). 50 ml of whipping cream.

TOPPINGS. Your choice, however, Helen suggests it be caramelized dry coconut or coconut flakes. Key is to top your cake with a flavor that would enhance or blend well with durian.

Did you know that there are several varieties of durian?

The end product or the finished cake itself looks good so, if you have not tried one, just imagine its taste — what with the egg yolks, vanilla extract and durian all mixed together??

Enjoy!

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Cocktail: How to Make a Whiskey Sour

Here’s another cocktail that has an egg white — the Whiskey Sour! Not only is it one of the more bracing drinks especially in a hot summer, it is also one of the easiest to make as well! Like, the ingredients are just about anywhere. So, forget the ‘sour’ thing, we got you covered.

Consider the ingredients: 2 oz. of Bourbon or Rye Whiskey, 3/4 oz. simple syrup (1 part sugar, 1 part water), 3/4 oz. fresh lemon juice, and an egg white. And for your garnish — orange slice and cherry.

There you go! The secret. Fresh lemon juice! Now, while substitution would be fine, obviously, trying to create your own ‘sour mix’ for this particular cocktail would only mess up its taste a bit.

Try to use freshly squeezed lemon instead of making a sour mix

Speaking of taste, with lemon, t’is sour; but when you add simple syrup, it becomes like a lemonade. Yet since there is whiskey, the drink becomes kinda potent — especially if you cut back on the lemon juice and add more whiskey. The thing then is, don’t try to really balance the whiskey and the lemon but try to preserve the whiskey’s identity — besides, you would be adding an egg white.

Whiskey Sour: Measurement variation

Okay, while an egg white is a classic part of this cocktail, it is actually optional. Like, if you use Gomme syrup (sugar, water and gum arabic) instead of the simple syrup, you could in fact do away with the egg white — of course, though it would not be quite the same then. Thus, especially for first-timers, you should give the egg white a try. It’s silky and frothy that you could very well enjoy it all the more.

Food & How To: Fried Tofu Stuffed with Rice (Yubuchobap: 유부초밥)

It’s just about the weekend, and what a long one we would have considering there would be no classes come Monday, as the country would celebrate its Independence Day. So, time for the last of summer outings with a tasty dish to bring along. Yey!

And what do we have? Yubuchobap. A Korean recipe of fried and marinated tofu stuffed with rice. Check this out.

So. So, so simple, right? This is why this recipe is ideal for picnics and even for your kids’ lunch packs. Easy to handle, carry, and generally cheap to make. Just make sure you know where the nearest Korean grocery store is for your Yubuchobap kit.

Yubuchobap kit

However, if there’s no such store in your area, do not worry about the exact ingredients. Instead, just try to use the closest substitutes; otherwise, try to experiment and make them yourselves. Like, the flattening and molding of the tofu wrap for one. Or using chia seeds instead of sesame seeds (this is everywhere, we’re just looking to experiment) to dip your Yubuchobap.

Experimenting is good since you could come up with a tastier dish to your liking instead of continuing with a food monotony. See?!

Consider the benefits of Chia seeds and try experimenting

And speaking of something tastier, remember also that you could still add some spices and vegetables like broccoli, carrot and onion for a more flavorful and healthy Yubuchobap. Just light fry those veggies before mixing them with your rice.

The dipping of the Yubuchobap on the seeds

Still, if you just want to save preparation time, the kit’s ingredients will do without any need to add anything anymore. Just try to use high quality rice not just for its taste but for fluffiness.

Enjoy!

Cocktail: How to Make a Planter’s Punch

Well, let’s start off the month with another summer cocktail — the Planter’s Punch! With the sweetness in Grenadine syrup plus the tartness of citrus in fruit juices and lime, hey, this is like drinking some mixed fruit shake at a mall, huh?!

But of course, there’s more to this cocktail than just fruits — that’s why it’s listed as a cocktail — so let’s first see how it’s done.

Oh, don’t be overwhelmed by the speed of the bartender in making this drink. You could go over the video, anyway. And also, if you are wondering why some Planter’s Punches are reddish or what, this is because of the dark rum — otherwise, it’s in its variations.

Basic Ingredients

Interesting here would be the stirring. I mean, if only for the drink to be immediately cold upon serving, bartenders put ice even before the rum and juices are mixed. Then again, this also dilutes the cocktail beforehand that’s why, and so..

Planter’s Punch

You got a perfect summer drink. A sweet and tarty punch!

Cocktail: How to Make a Pisco Sour

So, how about a cocktail that would somehow reenergize us and get us through a stressful week? After all, our featured drink has an ‘egg’ in it! Aaaand it is no other than the..

Pisco Sour. One of those popular drinks in South America!

The Ingredients

Consider the basic ingredients. Pisco Barsol Quebranta. Fresh lime juice. Simple syrup. Fresh egg white. Angostura bitters. Now, see how it’s done.

Know what would have made the drink a bit more tempting? The glass. He should have changed it with a ‘stemmed’ one or some smaller glass. See in the video, the one used was just a little too big as the drink was about half-full and without rocks in it. Yeah, presentation counts.

Then again, how does it taste anyway?

It’s a bit sharp but the aftertaste is more on the sweet side actually considering that Pisco is made of grapes with some syrup and egg white taming the drink — meanwhile, the term ‘sour’ is simply there because of the lime or the mixed drinks that contain the base liquor, Pisco. So in all, it’s a drinkable cocktail really!

In the end, it’s just a matter of preference — Peruvian or Chilean?!

Cocktail: How to Make a Negroni

Most, if not all, alcoholic drinks are said to be good for the stomach — especially after dinner; they do help in digestion obviously. So, drinking here is not about getting drunk, though it’s more than just a thirst quencher, you know.

T’is especially true with cocktails.

Yet our feature for today has a not so ideal reputation in terms of taste. It’s not like you’re drinking some real salty or bitter beverage, but the Negroni is a bit, well, ‘revolting’.. at least at first.

Hey, it ain’t so bad! Gin. Sweet vermouth. Bitters. Many cocktails are actually mixed with these stuff. So what’s the fuss? This only tells us that the ‘revolting’ thing is simply about the palate. Just like how it tasted when we sipped our first beer. Ugh, bitter.

The importance of squeezing the ‘oil’ from the wedge of orange

Although some gets used to the ‘bitterness’ and so gets to like what they drink, still, others just can’t get the hang of it. Especially in the case of Negroni. For a ‘sensitive’ palate, yeah, it’s like medicine.

Spirit here is like 100%, so just stir

And this version by Jamie doesn’t even have a Campari!

Okay then, take note of the alternatives — gin could be swapped for vodka while you could also top it with soda water. Hmm… Again, if only for ‘discovering our palate’, guess it’s worth a try.

The classic Negroni, looks good alright

After all, Negroni does stimulate our stomach. Yes.

Cocktail: How to Make a Tom Collins

Another weekend, another cocktail. And this time, we bring you the Tom Collins. By Tom Cruise and Phil Collins?? Nahh. John Collins. Hey, we are not talking ’bout entertainers, though we could be ‘entertained’ preparing and drinking this cocktail, so let’s have a look..

With basically just lemon, gin and soda — you got your Tom Collins.

Oh, don’t you think the bartender was just too excited here? More than just the squeezing of the lemon or the balancing of its taste (too sour, more sugar; too sweet, more lemon), guess there’s something important he overlooked, hmm..

The shaking of the drink instead of just stirring it. After all, it’s got citrus and sugar in it — not all liquor.

The Basic Ingredients

Important: The ‘texture’ is the deciding factor in mixing cocktail drinks, whether it is to be shaken or stirred. Liquor is obviously ‘thin’, so stirring will do the trick; however, outside of liquor like citrus and stuff, they’re kinda ‘thick’ and so they got to be shaken. This ain’t coffee, so shake it baby!

Finally, remember there are differences in the kind of ‘soda water’ you use — whether it’s a club soda (which is great for cocktails), seltzer, sparkling water, or tonic water. Click here to know more.

Till then, enjoy your weekend!