Thursday, October 30, 2008

Fresh Cactus Leaves

I was surprised when I first came here and found out that cactus leaves can be eaten. In my place in Philippines, I didn't see much cacti around and if there was, it can't be eaten. I haven't heard that it can be eaten until one day at the office, when our transaction coordinator brought some cooked cactus leaves with meat and it tasted good. It was then that I realized why there are cactus leaves sold in stores. For those who do not know yet, these fresh cactus leaves are great with salads, burritos, scrambled eggs or with refried beans. It is included in Latino dishes. Below is the preparation before the fresh cactus leaves are used in cooking.
1. Using a knife or vegetable peeler, peel around the edge of fresh cactus leaves. There's no need to remove all the skin. Scrape off any spines and dark areas.
2. Finely chop cactus leaves.
3. Serve or store cactus in refrigerator for up to 3 days in a covered plastic or glass container.

Today's Meal

You might be surprised that spaghetti has been added to my meal plate. Back in Philippines, I ate spaghetti with rice. And still eat with it if I am at home and if there is a cooked rice. My appetite is really BIG! I had Picadillo or ground beef with potatoes and carrots and spaghetti with my rice. I cooked it and it tasted good!

Learn about the Real Estate & Bankruptcy Law with Richard S. Feinsilver, ESQ

Learn about the Real Estate & Bankruptcy Law through a web site that has been designed to provide you with a user-friendly overview of the bankruptcy and real estate process. If you are looking for an assistance, Richard S. Feinsilver, ESQ can help you. He is a New York bankruptcy Lawyer and and Real Estate Attorney concentrating on bankruptcy and real estate transactions in New York for over 20 years. So he can help you with your problems and assist your needs. It is important to have someone that can lead us and guide us with our legal problems. Visit the website to learn more of his legal services.

Garlic Chicken

Garlic Chicken is a Thai specialty. I got this recipe from Wok Cuisine book. For this recipe, ten cloves of garlic may sound a lot, but you'll be surprised by the mellow flavor of this dish. For an easy option, try using bottled minced garlic instead of the whole cloves of garlic. Bottled garlic gives great flavor and requires no peeling and mincing. By the way, I didn't add green onions or leek since I ran out of it at that time of my cooking. Also, I didn't slice the water chestnuts.

4 medium boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (12 ounce total)
1/2 cup water
2 tbsps soy sauce
1 tbsp cornstarch
1 tbsp rice wine or dry white wine
1/2 tsp instant chicken bouillon granules
1 tbsp cooking oil
10 cloves garlic, minced (1 tbsp)
6 ounces fresh mushrooms, sliced (about 2 cups)
1 medium leek, thinly sliced (1/2 cup) or 4 green onions, thinly sliced (1/2 cup)
1/2 of an 8-ounce can sliced water chestnuts, drained
3 cups hot cooked rice
*Rinse chicken; pat dry. Cut into 1/2-inch pieces. For sauce, in a small bowl stir together the water, soy sauce, cornstarch, wine and chicken bouillon granules. Set aside.

*Pour cooking oil into a wok or 10-inch skillet. (Add more oil as necessary during cooking.) Preheat over medium-high heat. Stir-fry garlic in hot oil for 15 seconds. Add mushrooms and leek or green onions. Stir-fry about 1 minute or till vegetables are tender. Remove the vegetables from the wok. Add the chicken to the hot wok. Stir-fry for 2-3 minutes or till no pink remains. Push the chicken from the center of the wok. Stir sauce. Add the sauce to the center of the wok. Cook and stir till thickened and bubbly.

*Return the vegetables to the wok. Add water chestnuts. Stir all ingredients together to coat with sauce. Cook and stir about 1 minute more or till heated through. Serve immediately over hot cooked rice. Makes 4 servings.

Nutritional information per serving: 393 calories, 26 g protein, 55 g carbohydrate, 7 g fat (1 g saturated), 54 mg cholesterol, 687 mg sodium, 452 mg potassium.

South Beach Diet

If you are still looking for the best diet that fits you, you may want to try the South Beach Diet. It is not low-carb or low-fat. Instead, the South Beach Diet teaches you to change the balance of food you eat to emphasize health and weight-loss. This will help you remove your intake of bad carbs and bad fats, and you will start eating good fats and good carbs which are good for your body. If your old diet didn't work, try this one and get rid of carb cravings, hunger and extra pounds.

Tacos Carne Asada & Lawry's Taco Seasoning

These are my favorite soft tacos at La Villa, Carne Asada and Pork soft tacos. I can eat 4 tacos at a time and these should be eaten with jalapenos. Hmmmm, I am drooling everytime I see this picture with Jalapenos. I can smell the tacos and it makes me hungry that I want to eat now. If you want to make one, below is the recipe for the carne asada from and I have also a recipe for Lawry's Taco seasoning from Top Secret Recipe Book.

2 pounds flank or skirt steak, trimmed of excess fat
1 recipe Mojo, recipe follows
Olive oil, for coating the grill
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
16 (7-inch) corn tortillas
Shredded romaine or iceberg lettuce, for serving
Chopped white onion, for serving
Shredded Jack cheese, for serving
1/2 cup Pico de Gallo, recipe follows
2 limes, cut in wedges for serving

Lay the flank steak in a large baking dish and pour the mojo over it. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour or up to 8 hours, so the flavors can sink into the meat. Don't marinate the steak for more than 8 hours though, or the fibers break down too much and the meat gets mushy.

Preheat an outdoor grill or a ridged grill pan over medium-high flame (you can also use a broiler). Brush the grates with a little oil to prevent the meat from sticking. Pull the steak out of the mojo marinade and season the steak on both sides with salt and pepper. Grill (or broil) the steak for 7 to 10 minutes per side, turning once, until medium-rare. Remove the steak to a cutting board and let it rest for 5 minutes to allow the juices to settle. Thinly slice the steak across the grain on a diagonal.

Warm the tortillas for 30 seconds on each side in a dry skillet or on the grill, until toasty and pliable.

To make the tacos, stack up 2 of the warm tortillas, lay about 4 ounces of beef down the center, and sprinkle with some lettuce, onion, and cheese. Top each taco with a spoonful of the Pico de Gallo salsa and garnish with lime wedges. Repeat with the remaining tortillas.

Lawry's Taco Seasoning
1 Tablespoon Flour
1 Teaspoon Chili powder
1 Teaspoon Paprika
3/4 Teaspoon Salt
3/4 Teaspoon Minced onion
1/2 Teaspoon Cumin
1/4 Teaspoon Cayenne pepper
1/4 Teaspoon Garlic powder
1/4 Teaspoon Sugar
1/8 Teaspoon Ground oregano

Combine all of the ingredients in a small bowl. To prepare the meat filling
for the tacos as described on the original package instructions: "In large
skillet, brown 1 pound ground beef until crumbly; drain fat. Add spices &
seasonings and 2/3 cup water; mix thoroughly. Bring to a boil: reduce heat
to low and cook, uncovered, 7 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Spoon
meat filling into warmed taco shells or tortillas. Top with shredded
lettuce, grated cheddar cheese and chopped tomato. Use fresh salsa and
guacamole if desired. Makes meat filling for 12 tacos (about 3 tablespoons

"Bop-Along with the Bop-a-Lots": An Award-Winning Children's DVD

"Bop-Along with the Bop-a-Lots" was named Parenting Magazine "DVD of the Year!" because of its great content that will give laughter to children ages 0-5, let them think and learn a lot. It teaches young children thinking skills used by the world's greatest minds. The thinking skills are very crucial for kids during their first year of their lives that is why parents should develop better thinking for them with Bop-a-Lots. You better own one for your kids or buy one or a couple as a gift for your grandchildren, god children or nieces and nephews. This is really awesome for kids to use. No wonder it is an award-winning DVD for children. It won Dr. Toy and iParenting too. If you visit their site, you will be entertained by their music and the dancing characters. .

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Jonh's Burgers

Jonh's Burgers are considered as the best burgers here in Bakersfield. They have been nominated and chosen as the best place for burgers. I agree, aside from it is really big, it is juicy and tasty. They put a lot of fresh lettuce in it and a big but thin beef patty. I couldn't eat the whole thing. Their fries are sliced bigger in size too. Aside from John's , I like In-N-Out Burger too. If you happen to visit Bakersfield, you should try John's Burgers.

Hawaiian Burger for me while hubby had Bacon Burger

Web Flames

My Toastmasters' speech project number two was about web flames. I was talking about the relationship that can be developed online. It is finding your love, soul mate or partner in life on the world wide web or the popular cyberspace. When love strikes on two people who live thousand of miles apart, no one can stop them to cut the distance and be together no matter what. "Indeed, when love struck us, we became conquerors, conquerors of time, space and almost everything. Really, love conquers all!" If you believe that love is unconditional and it is experienced by everyone no matter how you look like or where you live, you should better try to find the person you are looking for using the network. I am not forcing you to find your lover online but only telling you that dating online works and true love can be found online. Who knows, your soul mate is waiting for you at which is a dating site. Here, you may find your true love by signing up free and you can search for free too. This website is a good example for you to have web flames. I bet you will find the right one for you here if you haven't met yet the love of your life. This is your chance to meet that special someone so don't waste a single second and sign up now. Below are some words to ponder which are taken from my speech.

"In finding love on the net, know what you are looking for and get it. A lot of heartache comes from people not knowing what they want. Don't just go along with someone simply because they want you. Make sure you want them, for who they are, in return. You deserve to be in a relationship with the person that's right for you not just the person who wanted you. If they are not right for you move on and find the one who is. Be picky and give yourself some credit. You are perfect to someone and someone is perfect for you. Keep your standards high and it will pay off in the end. Take it from me for I did it well.

Always bear in mind that to accomplish great things we must not only act but also dream, not only plan but also believe. I believe in dreams, I believe in love, I believe in Web Flames. Why? I just had mine… "


Today's Meal

Today's meal was rice with Cajun Chicken Stir-fry and stir-fried baby corn for the side dish. I had Fruit shake with Non-fat milk and a piece of an apple. Oh boy, my appetite is getting bigger again. Work is really tiring that made me eat a lot after. When I was still working before in Philippines, I was a rice-eater. I ate a lot but I never gained so much weight. My metabolism was faster compared now and I was really active than today. I was glad that I have started work already because I can walk, play and exercise with my students and by myself. I walk to the McDonald's or Papa O's everyday after class instead of waiting for hubby at the parking lot. It is good for me but when I reach home or the office, I eat a lot. At least, I have burnt my calories before that LOL

Stir-Fried Baby Corn

Although corn has been used in Oriental dishes for centuries, baby corn is a relative newcomer. Some Oriental cuisines, including China, Thailand and Vietnam, have adopted the ingredient over the past few decades. You may cook this one with meat or the baby corn alone. This side dish is perfect with rice and any cooked meat. Below is the recipe from Wok Cuisine book.
1/2 of an 8-ounce package frozen whole baby sweet corn, thawed, or one 8 3/4-ounce can whole baby sweet corn, drained
1/3 cup water
1 tbsp fish sauce
2 tsps cornstarch
1 tsp sugar
1 tbsp cooking oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp finely shredded gingerroot
1 medium sweet red or green pepper, cut into julienne strips (1 cup)
1 cup sliced fresh mushrooms (I used mushrooms in a can)
1/2 cube chicken bouillon (I added this, optional)
Fluted Mushrooms for garnishing (optional)

*Cut baby corn into 1-inch pieces. For sauce, in a small bowl stir together the water, fish sauce, cornstarch and sugar. Set aside.

*Pour cooking oil into a wok or large skillet. (Add more oil as necessary during cooking.) Preheat over medium-high heat. Stir-fry the garlic and gingerroot in hot oil for 15 seconds. Add the corn, red or green pepper and mushrooms (I added mushrooms in can later). Stir-fry for 2-3 minutes or till peppers are crisp-tender. Push the vegetables from the center of the wok.

*Stir sauce. Add the sauce to the center of the wok. Cook and stir till thickened and bubbly. Stir all ingredients together to coat with sauce (I also added the mushrooms from a drained can). Cook and stir about 1 minute more or till heated through. Serve immediately. If desired, garnish with fluted mushrooms. Makes 4 side-dish servings.
Nutritional information per serving: 60 calories, 2 g protein, 6 g carbohydrate, 4 g fat (0 g saturated), 0 mg cholesterol, 311 mg sodium, 118 mg potassium.

Holiday Shopping Promotion

Save money now by shopping online and avoid the rush! Using the Black Friday website will help you save money when shopping this holiday. Christmas is almost in the air now and I am pretty sure that a lot of people will be in town shopping for gifts. To avoid the crowd, you can shop ahead of time and enjoy the discounts. Purchase items online during Black Friday, which is the day after Thanksgiving, and save money. It will be a cyber monday and enjoy the comfort of shopping without living your house. Visit the site for you to sign up for email alerts to let you know when new black friday ads have been posted. This site is really very helpful for planning your holiday shopping. Again, I would like to shop at BestBuy online. I remember last year's Thanksgiving Sale that they had, there were a lot of people. They offer discounted items that was why people fell in line and waited for hours just to be on the line. Some stayed over night to be first in line the next day. I could not do that, so I plan to just buy online so I don't have to stand and wait for hours just to get in. It is not only BestBuy but other stores too offer discounts for their items. Better check for Black Friday ads online and see the list of stores available. Happy shopping then!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Sesame Chicken and Bean Threads

This is a Korean specialty but similar to Filipino's Sotanghon. The taste is different though because this one is spicy and so tasty because of the marinade. The Koreans use egg strips to garnish this dish. To simplify preparation, just omit the egg strips. For additional ease, make the marinade ahead. Then, marinate the chicken in the refrigerator for up to 4 hours. The longer you marinate, the better the taste is. The marinade really adds flavor to the chicken. This is another recipe from Wok Cuisine book.

1 tbsp cooking oil (optional)
2 beaten eggs (optional)
4 medium boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (12 ounces total)
1/4 cup soy sauce
3 tbsps water
1 green onion, thinly sliced
1 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp sesame seed, crushed
2 tsps sesame oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
8 dried mushrooms
2 ounces bean threads
1 tbsp cooking oil
1 small onion, thinly sliced and separated into rings
1 9-ounce package frozen French-style green beans, thawed (I used green beans in a can)
2 large carrots, shredded

*If desired, make egg strips. For egg strips, pour 1 tbsp cooking oil into a wok or large skillet. Preheat over medium heat. Add eggs. Lift and tilt to form a thin sheet. Cook, without stirring, about 2 minutes or just till set. Slide onto a cutting board. Cut into 2x3/4-inch strips. Set aside. Rinse chicken and pat dry. Cut into bite-size strips. For marinade, stir together the soy sauce, water, green onion, sugar, sesame seed, sesame oil and garlic. Stir in chicken. Cover and marinate for 30 minutes. Drain, reserving marinade.

*Meanwhile, soak mushrooms for 30 minutes in enough warm water to cover. Rinse and squeeze to drain thoroughly. Slice thinly, discarding stems. Soak bean threads for 15 minutes in enough warm water to cover. Drain well. Cut into 3-to-4-inch lengths. Set aside.

*Pour 1 tbsp cooking oil into a wok or large skillet. (Add more oil as necessary during cooking.) Preheat over medium-high heat. Add onion; stir-fry for 2 minutes. Add green beans (I added it later for I used the ones in a can.) Stir-fry for 1-2 minutes or till crisp-tender. Add carrots; stir-fry for 30 seconds more or till heated through. Remove the vegetables from the wok. Add the chicken to the hot wok. Stir-fry for 2-3 minutes or till no pink remains. Add the reserved marinade, mushrooms, bean threads and cooked vegetables to the wok. (I also added the green beans from a can). Cook and stir about 1 minute more or till heated through. If desired, garnish with egg strips. Serve immediately. Makes 4 servings.

Nutritional information per serving: 306 calories, 27 g protein, 29 g carbohydrate, 10 g fat (2 g saturated), 54 mg cholesterol, 1,103 mg sodium, 681 mg potassium.

Wacom Bamboo's Search and Win


123rf Search and Win is back! Wacom Bamboo previously had a neat contest showcasing the powers of using the Bamboo and now it is back. All you have to do is just search for images on and look out for the special thumbnail for you to take home a cool Wacom Bamboo. You can win one for yourself when someone you referred through their referral program wins too. The contest runs from September 22 till November 21, 2008 so you have enough time to search and win a prize. By the way, is your one-stop royalty-free photo library offering stunning, practical stock photos at the most affordable price. They have the latest photos which are refreshing, intriguing images for your creative projects. You can get access to a wealth of high-resolution images if you subscribe and you may purchase credits and download images, all for a very low rate. Also, they have free images too that you can use. Just choose and download in your computer. 123RF aims to collaborate fellow photographers and make stock photos affordable for everyone. They have a simplified process of buying and submitting stock photos. Moreover, they offer affordable stock photos. Visit the site now to learn more about their products. You may try searching the photos and win! I will try to search for food pictures. Who knows, I might come across with their icon and win a prize. So, good luck to all of us!


Grilled Tri-tip with Montreal Steak mix

You should better try McCormick's Grill Mates: Montreal Steak Marinade which is 25% less in sodium. This marinade has a robust blend of coarsely ground peppers, garlic and spices. It makes the meat so tasty. You will need 1/4 cup of water, 1/4 cup vegetable oil, 2 tbsp red wine or white vinegar and 1 1/2-2 lbs pork or lamb or beef. This is best with sirloin, ribeye or round steak. You just mix all ingredients and marinate the meat for 15 minutes or longer for extra flavor. You can then grill, broil or bake it until done, basting with remaining marinade halfway through cooking, if desired. Just discard any leftover marinade. Buy the marinade mix at any grocery store near you.

A Perfect Holiday Gift for Parents-To-Be

Months ago, I made a post about Cryo-Cell cord blood banking and the importance of it. Parents and expectant parents must know that their children's cord blood can save lives in the future and saving it in the bank is a great investment. That is why this coming holidays, giving a Cryo-Cell Gift Certificate is an ideal gift for all the expectant parents. As the economy continues to remain fragile, many consumers this upcoming holiday season will be looking for gifts that have a greater sense of meaning that make more of a long term impact. A gift that can save a life. By giving a Cryo-Cell gift Certificate, parents-to-be will be given a gift that may one day save a life. Storing their child’s cord blood can indeed be a gift that lasts a lifetime, as stem cells collected from cord blood can be used to treat 70 diseases, including leukemia, anemia, lymphoma, diabetes and cerebral palsy. Indeed, it is a gift that gets even better with time. Cryo-Cell International is dedicated to educating expectant parents about the benefits of preserving their newborn's cord blood stem cells, while providing innovative, safe and affordable solutions for cord blood banking. Cryo-Cell gift certificates are available in any amount as long as it is in $50 increments. This gives gift givers the opportunity to select a gift certificate that best fits their holiday budget. Visit the site and check for the Current Offers. Go get a Cryo-Cell gift certificate and give one to all the expectant parents you know.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Today's Meal

Today's meal was pretty simple. A plate of corn in a cob, low-fat chili beans and sirloin steak. I marinated the beef sirloin overnight with Montreal Steak seasoning. While hubby grilled it the next day, I cooked the corn in boiling water with a little bit of salt. Then, I heated the chili beans from a can. The simple meal was delicious and we both liked it.

Tabirak/Benignet/Ginataang Bilo-Bilo

The Visayan/Bisdak/Bisayan calls this Tabirak or Benignet and it is Ginataang Bilo-Bilo in Tagalog. It might be called Sweet Rice Flour Balls in Coconut Milk in English. This is easy to make and it is everyone's favorite during Philippine Holy Week. Every Holy Friday, my Mom will always cook Tabirak and it is her specialty. This is what we eat the whole day instead of eating meat and rice every meal. This serves as our way of fasting. After cooking, My Mom shares it with the neighbors and they like it. It is pretty normal for us sharing and exchanging a bowl of Tabirak even it has the same ingredients but the fact that a different person cooks it makes sense. Tabirak is not only cooked during Holy week but also everyday. Some cafeteria serve this for merienda or snacks. I love it! Below is my first time to cook Tabirak with Ate Rose and Wrapshell. Shell brought the ingredients at Mary's house and Ate Rose prepared the Bilo-Bilo or the Sweet Rice Balls. Below is the recipe.
Ate Rose and Wrapshell
4 or more pieces Saging/Bananas, sliced in cubes
4 or more Camote/Sweet Potatoes, cubed
1 20 oz can Jackfruit in Syrup
1 12 oz bottle Tapioca in Syrup or Sago
3 13.5 oz cans Coconut Milk (use more if necessary)
1 pack sweet rice flour
3 13.5 oz cans water (use the coco milk can to measure) or 5 cups of water (use more if necessary)
1 tbsp Vanilla
3/4 cups sugar

To Make the Bilo-Bilo:
Add a little amount of sweet rice flour to the jackfruit syrup. Mix well. Add more sweet rice if necessary until the mixture is right, not too dry and not too wet.
Boil coconut milk and water. Add camote and Sago and cook it for a few minutes. Cover and simmer on medium heat.
Add Saging till cooked.
Add Bilo-Bilo, sliced jackfruit, anis, sugar and vanilla. Add more sugar if necessary. Stir all ingredients. It is done when the Bilo-Bilo is cooked.
Bilo-Bilo/Sweet Rice Flour Balls

Order Custom Calendars at VistaPrint

Another year will be ended soon and another year has to be welcomed. In preparation for the coming year, it would be a perfect time today to order Custom Calendars at VistaPrint. They have a great variety of products and it is too easy to order from their website. They offer different types of calendars for different purpose like desk calendars, wall calendars, poster calendars, wallet calendars and calendar magnets. They even have folded calendar cards which can be given as a gift. All of these can be a great gift for customers, friends and family. I used to order customized wall calendars before when I was still in Philippines. I chose the lucky horses on the picture and our family's name on it. When the year has ended, we still had it on our wall as a decoration because of its beautiful picture. Aside from your pictures, you may also choose nature and other beautiful sceneries for your calendar design. I would like to try a picture of me and my husband on a desk calendar. I will display it on his office desk. You may try it too. Start ordering Vista Print's fun, unique and affordable calendars now. You will like the design and the prices. Currently, they are having discounts so visit the site now and avail their low offers.

Tinolang Manok/Chicken Soup with Papaya

Tinolang Manok is everybody's favorite. This is good especially for breastfeeding mothers. I remember my Mom and my Grandma who loved to cook this soup using native chicken. It tastes good with plain rice. Sipping its warm tasty soup feels good that will make you sweat and full. The papaya adds a sweet taste and it is perfect with the chicken. I want to use Philippine native chicken for this soup. But you can try it with the chicken meat found in the market and this is easy to cook. You just need chicken meat, papaya, spinach or any greens such as pechay, lemon grass and salt&pepper to taste. Just boil the water first and add the meat. Let it boil again and add the vegetables with the seasonings. Then cook for a few minutes and serve with rice.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Enterprise Management Solutions For Restaurant Owners

A computer has a lot of advantages to business owners and users. Utilizing it will make work easier. We are aware that it is not only used in schools and big companies but also in hospitals and business establishments like fast food and restaurants. It is nice to know that restaurants now are using technology. Years ago, there were only people who manually accounted the cash and there were only simple electronic devices. But now, it is totally different. Companies such as Decision Logic are providing businesses to business establishments specifically in the hospital industry. And if you are a business owner wanting to see all the aspects of the restaurant business that Decision Logic can improve upon, you should check their website. They have a restaurant payroll software and offers enterprise management solutions that make operations streamlined and cost-effective. Visit the website now to learn more about management of inventory, balancing the budget, payroll management, and multiple levels of reporting.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Romano's Macaroni and Grill's Smothered Chocolate Cake

This one is good! This Smothered Chocolate Cake is so tempting that it wants you to eat more and forget your diet. I want to bake this cake for my husband that's why I have searched for its recipe. The original Romano's Macaroni and Grill's chocolate cake recipe uses coffee but below's recipe is using buttermilk in place of it.

1-1/2 cups mayonnaise
2 cups granulated sugar
2-1/4 cups cake flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
2 tsp. baking soda
1-1/3 cup buttermilk
1 cup heavy cream
10 oz. chopped chocolate
1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9 x 13 pan.

With an electric mixer, beat mayonnaise and sugar together.

In a medium bowl, stir together flour, cocoa powder and baking soda.

Add half of the flour mixture to the mayonnaise mixture.

Add half of the buttermilk to the batter, beating well.

Add remaining flour mixture and remaining buttermilk.

Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake 25 to 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted 2 inches from the edge comes out with crumbs attached.

Let cool. Meanwhile, prepare ganache: Put chopped chocolate in a heat-resistant dish.

Heat heavy cream over medium heat just until bubbles begin to form around the edges. Pour over chopped chocolate.

Stir until smooth.

Cut cake into pieces and pour ganache over each piece, so it drizzles down the sides. Garnish with chopped walnuts.

Asset Management by Martin Sands

Asset management is important if you have investments. If you are looking for someone whom you can trust and want your asset to be taken care of, you may try the management of Martin Sands. He has 24 years of investment experience in areas that include investment banking, venture capital, private equity, real estate, money management, sales/brokerage, and merchant banking. He is also the co-founder of Sands Brothers. Visit his website to learn more about his services.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Cottage Potatoes

Thanks to my friend, Grace for sharing this recipe with me. I tasted her Cottage Potatoes during her children's birthday party and I have liked it. I brought home some for my husband to taste and he liked it. I would love to try it in thanksgiving. If you are tired of mashed potatoes, you may want to try this. Below is the recipe.

12 large potatoes, peeled and diced
8 ounces process cheese (Velveeta) cubed
1 large onion. finely chopped
1 large green pepper,diced
1 jar (2 ounces) diced pimientos,drained
1 slice bread,torn
3 tbsp. minced fresh parsley, divided
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup butter, melted
1-1/2 cup cornflakes, crushed

Place potatoes in a large saucepan or Dutch oven;covered with water. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to medium. Cover and cook for 5-7 minutes or until tender; drain. In a bowl, combine cheese,onion,green pepper,pimientos,bread,2 tbsp. parsley and salt.

In a greased shallow 4 qt. baking dish, layer a third of the potatoes and a third of chese mixture. Repeat layers twice. Pour milk and butter over all; sprinkle with cornflake crumbs. Cover and bake at 350 for 45 minutes. Uncover; bake 10-15 minutes longer or until bubbly and top is golden. Sprinkle with reamining parsley.

Margherita Mio Pizza

This is Romano's Macaroni and Grill's pizza. Margherita Mio Pizza is topped with tomatoes, cheese and spinach. If you like tomatoes and cheese, you better try this. It tastes good. One serving has 4 slices and is good for one person. Eat it with your favorite salad and dressing. I like balsamic vinaigrette with my greens.

Cydcor Philanthropy

Cydcor is a company that has great sales capabilities. Since the beginning, its commitment was an unyielding desire to create a unique business - one that would lead to a more productive way of selling products and services on behalf of their clients, while simultaneously providing opportunity for their people. They have top-tier clients that represent some of the world’s most recognized brands, covering many different industries, including: Telecommunications, Cable, Internet, Office products, Financial services and Energy. Most people are unaware of Cydcor's many philanthropic efforts. Visit their website to learn more about it and read one of Cydcor's latest press releases:
Cydcor Supports Former Team Member Through Donation

Leading global provider of outsourced, face-to-face sales teams
and its team members provide funds and school supplies

WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif. (October 3, 2008) – Cydcor, the leading provider of outsourced, face-to-face sales teams, and its team members recently made a donation to the Andinet International School in Ethiopia, in addition to packing and sending supplies for the school’s children and teachers.

In support a former Cydcor receptionist who moved to Ethiopia in August to teach English and art to impoverished children at Andinet, Cydcor donated $1,000 to the school and Cydcor team members individually contributed nearly $600 in additional funds.

“We look for opportunities to support our team members’ prosperity internally as well as externally while they pursue other goals and passions,” said Gary Polson, chief executive officer of Cydcor. “At Cydcor, we try to create a philanthropic environment where our team members can support each other, and we all wanted to help her make a difference.”

Cydcor and its team members were also able to fill four boxes of binders, paper, padfolios, pens and pencils to be personally delivered to the school in Ethiopia. The money will be used to purchase student school and arts supplies, which are often limited or non-existent.

“The Andinet International School expresses heartfelt gratitude for the generous contribution and personal delivery from Cydcor,” said Nefertiti Makeda, director of Andinet International School. “Our school is growing and we are always in need of educational materials.”

About Andinet International School
Andinet International School is a world, co-educational institution open to students of all nationalities and religions. Classes are instructed in English, but Amharic, French and Arabic are offered as well. Working closely with the Ethiopian Ministry of Education, the school insures that each student meets or surpasses Ethiopian and international education standards. Andinet recruits highly qualified teachers from Ethiopia and throughout the world to teach and inspire students to strive for academic excellence and integrity. For more information on Andinet International School, please visit

About CYDCOR, Inc.
CYDCOR, Inc., is the leading provider of outsourced, face-to-face sales teams to a diverse client base of companies in a range of industries, including telecommunications, office products, retail energy and financial services. CYDCOR works with a network of independently owned corporate licensee (ICL) sales offices providing clients with access to more than 2,700 sales professionals and 200+ offices in North America. The privately held company is based in Westlake Village, California.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Puto (Rice Cake)

We Filipinos call it as one of the "kakanin." Puto or rice cake is one of our favorite food for merienda or snacks and can be eaten as a dessert. We usually eat it with Dinuguan or Pork Blood Stew (Puto and Dinuguan). But I just love eating it alone without the Dinuguan. Above is a picture of my friend's Puto. It was served on her daughter's birthday party. It tasted good! By the way, you may add cheese as toppings. It may be called Puto Cheese too.

1 c. rice flour
1 stick butter
3 eggs
1 1/4 c. sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1 c. Bisquick
1 (19 oz.) can coconut milk
1 tsp. vanilla
1/2 c. milk
1/2 tsp. salt

Mix all the ingredients to form a batter and pour in a deep baking pan (round) 2/3 full and cook in a steamer for 45 minutes. Source:

Looking for a Lap-Band Surgery Specialist?

Our country has a lot of competent lap-band surgery specialists nowadays. If you are looking for a specialist for lapband houston, you can contact Dr. Richard Collier. He provides a comprehensive Lap-Band©, weight loss surgery program as an alternative to the more invasive Gastric Bypass Surgery in The Woodlands, Conroe, Houston, Kingwood, and Spring, Texas areas. His premier weight loss program combines his well respected 30 year level of surgical experience with a highly-praised after care team program approach for patients following their surgery.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Insalata Blu

Insalata Blu is Romano's Macaroni and Grill's another type of green salad. I guess its name is derived from blue cheese. Insalata is the italian term for salad so in other words, this is what we call blue cheese salad. It has lettuce with a blend of toasted walnuts, red onions, blue cheese and tangy balsamic vinaigrette. They said that most people order this salad at their place so I tried it too even I was not sure yet if I will like the blue cheese. It is considered as the stinkiest cheese but it was not bad. Indeed, the salad was really tasty and I like the dressing best!

Web Hosting Geeks Can Help You with Your Web Hosting Needs

A friend has asked me one time about web hosting services because she was looking for a website for her to register her domain name. I told her that there are a lot on the network now which offer domain registration and she can choose what host she can use for her site. If you are like my friend who is still looking for a web hosting site, you may want to try visiting a web hosting blog by Web Hosting Geeks for you to learn more. Before I bought my own domain name, I did a lot of searches too. I was browsing the web and reading important information from blogs and different websites that talk about web hosting. I did not want to regret later on if I have bought a domain name from a host that I didn't like that was why I carefully chose the web hosting site for my blog. Having one's own domain name is important that is why having a reliable and trusting hosting site is important too. Though I haven't tried the Web Hosting Geeks' web hosting services, I will consider next time. I already have my domain name before I came across with this another hosting site. So if you have not decided yet, you can read their blog and learn a lot from them regarding domain registration and other web hosting matters. Visit their site too and check out their web hosting service.

Cassava Cake

My friend Grace Hallamore prepared a Cassava Cake on her daughters' birthday party last September 20. There were other Filipino Kakanin served and I have tried it all. We miss Filipino food so much that every time we have a party, we see to it that we have a filipino dish on the table. That makes us happy! At the end of the party, we brought some slices home and enjoyed it while it lasted. I even brought it to our road trip the next day. If you want to try it, below is the recipe. Thanks to Grace H.

• 2 Lbs Grated Cassava
• 1 14 oz. Can Sweetened Condensed Milk (Reserve 1/3 cup for Topping)
• 1 12 oz. Can Evaporated Milk
• 1 14 oz. Can Coconut Milk (Reserve 1/3 cup for Topping)
• 1 13 oz. Can Coconut Cream (Reserve 1/3 cup for Topping)
• 2/3 Cup Sugar
• 3 Eggs plus 3 Egg Whites
• 1 Cup Grated Coconut

• 3 Egg Yokes
• 1/3 Cup Reserved Sweetened Condensed Milk
• 1/3 Cup Reserved Coconut Milk
• 1/3 Cup Reserved Coconut Cream
Preheat oven to 325° f. In large mixing bowl combine cake ingredients. Mix well. Pour equally into two large greased rectangular pans. Bake until top is no longer liquid (approximately 30 minutes). Mix topping ingredients well and spread evenly on the two cakes. Bake an additional 20 to 30 minutes. Cool cakes completely. Slice each cake into 24 equal squares.