In spite of my love for food, I’m actually helpless when you leave me on my own in the kitchen. Don’t get me wrong, I do know the basics like boiling and frying up a few things, but to actually create a dish that’s worthy of serving to guests may be a bit of a challenge to me without some guidance (I’m actually concerned for those wo will eat).
I do recognize though that some of the best-tasting dishes may not be bought at a fancy restaurant, but are actually prepared at home. I’m sure more than a few of you would say that your mom makes the best adobo in the world. There’s something about home-cooked meals that make them extra appetizing. Now I wish for my mom’s cooking.
But of course, a well-prepared meal done at home largely depends on your trusted cooking equipment. Knowing that it’s about time that I start preparing my own food (at least during weekends), I and one of my blog contributors and foodie buddy, took part in Yummy Magazine’s and Kitchenaid’s Pinoy-themed cooking demo with Chef Gino Gonzalez at the Enderun Amphitheater. I’ve heard that there were a lot of requests for slots, so I was pretty lucky to be invited to be one of the blogger-attendees.
Before the actual cooking demo, my foodie-buddy and I got a chance to prepare our own version of 3 delicious recipes using Kitchenaid appliances. I present to you:
The Ube-Keso Trifle
To me, this easy-to-make dessert is essentially a cake in a jar! Easy to find ingredients such as ube cake, macapuno, and peanut brittle, are layered on top of each other to create this sweet masterpiece.
I also personally prepared the ube-keso cream I used in my dessert. Using the Kitchenaid 7-speed Hand Mixer, beating together the cream cheese, ube jam, and all-purpose cream was done in a jiffy!
I am definitely going to level-up my merienda after learning about this recipe. With just cream cheese, tinapa (smoked fish), olive oil, chopped garlic, and parsley, you can make a creamy spread that would go so well with pan de sal and coffee. I might also actually have this for breakfast!
To prepare that smooth, smoky spread, you just have to put all ingredients in the Kitchenaid Food Processor and blend until it reaches your desired smoothness. Easy peasy!
Mango Lychee Smoothie
Now that we’ve had bread and we’ve had dessert, we should also have something refreshing don’t you think? Now this one I can definitely do. All I needed were mangoes, lychees, milk, condensed milk, and crushed ice.
It’s as easy as blending all ingredients using the Kitchenaid 5-speed Hand Blender and voila! You have a Mango-Lychee smoothie to ward off the summer heat. By accident I poured in more milk than needed, but it tasted even better if you ask me.
Making our own dishes was fun, but the highlight of the event was learning new recipes from Chef Gino Gonzalez, who is currently the COO and Head Instructor at the Centre for Asian Culinary Studies. Chef Gino was very engaging in his demo, and we learned a few tricks from him too!
Yes, it’s Vaca with a “V”, as according to Chef Gino, that’s how they really pronounce it in Kapangpangan. He put his own “twist” in the recipe by browning chicken bones first when he was preparing the Asado sauce. He used the Kitchenaid Slow Cooker for the beef itself, which is very convenient because you can just leave it on its own, considering that cooking takes 7 hours.
The result was a tender dish that has a deep beef flavor. Perfect to have with rice. It actually reminds me of adobo, only this one has achuete oil and Thai patis instead of soy sauce.
This dish is named after Chef Gino himself (his real name is Eugenio), so you can tell that this is indeed a very personal recipe. 15 ingredients (including minced pork, fat, mushrooms, and singkamas, to name a few), are mixed together in a food processor until the mixture looked like ground meat. This is pretty new to me since the fried lumpia that I’m used to doesn’t really have this much ingredients.
After preparing the sauce and wrapping the ground mixture, we had a fried lumpia that somehow reminded me of Vietnamese or Chinese cuisine. This has become one of my favorites that day.
Salted Caramel Panna Cotta
Now on to my favorite part of every meal – the dessert! I’m extra happy because I love panna cotta and salted caramel is one of the flavors that I enjoy the most! Chef Gino first prepared a gelatin mixture then blended it with sugar and milk until it reaches the desired consistency.
I kid you not when I say that this is one of the best Panna Cotta I’ve tried. Maybe it’s because it’s in one of my favorite flavors. The salted caramel taste is very distinct. I can tell this would taste much better when chilled.
Yummy Homemade Fishballs with Five-Spice Sauce
Now this came as a bonus, given that this is an original Yummy recipe (you can find it in the Yummy.ph website). In a food processor, cream dory fish fillet was chopped together with several other ingredients, until it becomes a course paste that can be rolled into balls.
This is one easy recipe to prepare given that you can easily find the ingredients in the grocery store. Perfect for a different kind of merienda!
Just when I thought that the best part was over, it was announced that I will be participating in a Banoffee Pie making contest together with one of Yummy’s readers! Now I already told you that I’m no good in the kitchen, but I eagerly participated, especially that I have an energetic and lovely partner for the task.
We both agreed to have a minimalist but creative look for our Banoffee Pie. We used the Kitchen Aid hand blender-chopper to crush the grahams and the Kitchenaid Blending Pitcher to whip the cream.
Our team work paid off as we won first place! Woohoo! Looks like I’m not really that bad in the kitchen after all!
I learned so much in such a short span of time. I’m sure the recipes are harder to prepare that they look, but with the right kitchen equipment, learning to make these dishes should be a piece of cake!