Roasted Chicken with Lemon Grass

Back in the day, whenever my late aunt would come and visit, she would pass by and buy a whole roasted chicken from the local rotisserie a block away from our home. This would come with their own special gravy sauce and a small container of atchara (pickled papaya). I thought why not relive it by turbo broiling a whole fryer. It didn't taste like the one my aunt bought. It tasted like the competitor's recipe hahaha.


1 whole fryer (about 1.2 kilo grams or more)
3 stalks of lemon grass, washed, tied into a knot
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup lemon or calamansi juice
1 tsp of black pepper
1 tbsp. butter
2 tbsps. flour

Clean chicken really well. Dry cavity and skin with paper towels. Rub the black pepper in and outside the fryer then stuff with the lemon grass (stalks and leaves). Combine soy sauce and lemon juice then pour over the chicken. Massage the chicken in its marinade for 5 minutes. Store in the refrigrator for atleast 4 hours, covered. For best results, marinate the chicken overnight.

Preheat the turbo broiler to 350F and cook the chicken for 10 minutes. Lower the temperature to 250 - 300F and continue cooking for another 30 minuted or until the juices are clear. Transfer chicken to serving dish. In a sauce pan, melt butter and add in flour to make a roux. Add in drippings and stir until sauce thickens to the desired consistency. Serve on or on the side of the chicken.


Beef Salpicao

1 lb pound beef (sirloin, tender loin tips), sliced into 1/4" cubes
half a head of garlic, minced
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
2 tbsps. olive oil
2 tbsps. Worchestershire sauce
1-2 tbsps. oyster sauce
1 tbsp. butter

Marinate beef with minced garlic, salt and pepper and 1 tbsp. olive oil for atleast 30 minutes. I prefer to marinade this longer for about 4 hours. Heat the remaining olive oil in a non-stick pan. Sear the beef for about 3 minutes then add the Worchestershire and oyster sauces. Stir occasionally and let the beef cook in the liquids in low heat until tender. Once the beef is cooked to fork-tender, add the butter and stir for another minutes. Serve hot with rice.

*Fried garlic may be added to the finished dish for a more garlicy taste.


Homemade Spanish Sardines

With the prices going up for canned goods plus the move to go natural and minimize the consumption of processed foods, making homemade sardines is one of the best alternatives. I remember back in high school we had a Home Economics class and one of the activities was to make homemade sardines. I lost the recipe but I still remember how simple this can be done at home. Hope you would give it a try.

3/4 kilo milkfish (bangus) or about 8 pieces 4 inches long by 2 inches wide, cleaned (I kept the head on but cut off the tails and fins)
3-4 tbsps. rock salt
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup olive oil
20 pepper corns
8-10 carrots, sliced into rounds, about 5 cm
5 slices of pickle chips
3 bay leafs

Clean the milkfish by removing the gills and inards. Cut out the fins and tail. The head may be removed if desired. Slightly scald the fish with hot water but do not let it cook. After scalding, rub the fish with the rock salt leaving 1 tbsp. to be used for seasoning. Arrange the fish in a pressure cooker and add all ingredients. Make sure that there is enough liquid to cover the fish. Add equal amounts of oil and water if needed. Season with salt. Cook under medium heat until it starts to boil. Cover and let it cook for atleast 30-45 minutes under low-medium heat.

*Add chili if you prefer a spicier taste to your sardines.
**I ran out of pickle chips, so I subtituted it with 2 tbsps. of pickle relish


Kani Crab Spread

I was disappointed to learn that the Subway branch near my office closed down. My co-worker and I would often grab quick bites for lunch or spend the hour savoring our favorite Subway combos. Love the tuna or the sweet onion grilled chicken.
Because I was craving for the Seafood Sensation, I thought of making one at home. It turned out pretty good. Not like Subways, but I would do this all over again.


250 grams Kani crab sticks, cut 1/2 lengthwise, then sliced into match-sticks
1 sweet onion, minced
1 red bell pepper, minced
250 grams mayonnaise
garlic powder
chives, minced
lettuce or shredded cabbage
lightly toasted buns (white or wheat or any you prefer)

Combine all ingredients and season with salt, pepper, 2 tsps. turmeric, garlic powder and minced chives. Refrigerate for about 1 hour to let the flavors blend.

Slice the buns in half and slightly toast to add texture. Spread about 2 heaping tablespoons of crab mixture on one side of the bread. Top with lettuce and tomatoes. Top with the other bun.

Optional: To try a different flavor, replace the chives with cilantro. I haven't tried  yoghurt to replace the mayonnaise for less calories.


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