Friday, June 23, 2017

Pork Meat Loaf ala Jaime Oliver

Write recipe photo description here[caption id="attachment_352" align="alignleft" width="225"]Pork Meat Loaf Jaime Oliver Pork Meat Loaf[/caption]

Write recipe photo description hereI was surfing channels on TV one day and stopped when I saw Jaime Oliver was on.  You see, I like the way Jaime Oliver does his cooking, he makes it look very easy.  He was doing a Pork Meat Loaf which really got me interested.  After watching the show, I figured I could do his Pork Meat Loaf and googled the recipe and found it HERE.  I was thinking of doing it as a dinner surprise for the family.  Boy was I disappointed, I did not have some of the ingredients in my pantry.  So what did I do?  Improvise!   Might as well come up with something along the same lines.

One of the ingredients unfamiliar to me was tomato passata.  It looked like a tomato sauce or puree and I did some research.  It appears that passata is an uncooked tomato puree that has been strained of seeds and skins. It originated in Italy but is used throughout Europe.  Big problem, I don't have it.  Checking my pantry, I saw an Italian Style Spaghetti sauce.  I figured might a well use it as a substitute.  Another ingredient that I did not have was feta cheese.  No problem, I will just use cream cheese.  The recipe also called for stale bread to be blitzed into crumbs.  None.  But I did have packaged bread crumbs so I figured this will do.  The recipe also called for chilis but knowing my family, they will not like it so I replaced them with red bell peppers.  Lastly, the meatloaf was supposed to be served as a topping on spaghetti.  None also, so rice will have to do.
Time to cook!


  • 3 carrots
  • olive oil
  • 1 package bread crumbs
  • 1 KG ground pork
  • 1 TBSP dried oregano
  • 60 g cream cheese (diced into small pieces)
  • 1 egg
  • 3 red bell peppers (sliced lengthwise)
  • 2 onions (finely chopped)
  • 4 cloves garlic  (finely chopped)
  • 1 250g package of Del Monte Italian Style Spaghetti sauce
  • 60 g Cheddar cheese (grated)


  1. Preheat the oven to 200ºC/400ºF.
  2. Peel the carrots, quarter lengthways, then place in a roasting tray (roughly 25cm x 30cm), drizzle with oil and cook for 10 minutes.
  3. Use your hands to mix in a bowl the pork, breadcrumbs, half the oregano, the cream cheese, the egg and a good pinch of sea salt and black pepper.
  4. Shape into a loaf (roughly 20cm long), then, when the time’s up on the carrots, make a space in the middle of the tray and add the meatloaf. Cook for a further 25 minutes, or until the meatloaf is golden and cooked through.
  5. In a pan, heat oil and then put the onion and garlic with the remaining oregano and fry for about 10 minutes, or until softened, stirring regularly. Add the bell peppers and cook for 1 minute.
  6. Pour in the spaghetti sauce and let simmer until the meatloaf is cooked.
  7. Remove the tray from the oven and carefully pour the sauce around the meatloaf. Pull the carrots to the top of the sauce and arrange around the meatloaf with the red bell pepperss, then grate the Cheddar on top.
  8. Put back the meatloaf into the oven for a further 5 to 10 minutes, or until golden, and the sauce is bubbling.
  9. Once done, slice the meatloaf and use as topping for rice.

There you go folks.  My family loved this Pork Meat Loaf dish and I hope you try it out too.  Not as good as Jaime Oliver's but worth the time and effort to try.

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Breakfast Sliders

Sorry for the delay in posting this article.  This is probably the last (hopefully not) in my sliders series.  This is just a simple sliders recipe for breakfast.  An interesting trivia before I continue.  I was eating breakfast in a fastfood joint and there was a couple beside me.  The guy was explaining stuff to the girl.  He was doing all the talking while the girl was just listening.  Because the guy was talking so loud, I couldn't help but overhear everything.  My favorite part was when the guy was explaining the importance of breakfast, why it was the most important meal for the day.  He goes like this:  Why is this called breakfast?  Because you are breaking fast, your last meal being dinner and then you slept.  Makes sense?  Very authoritative explanation of breakfast?  Hahaha!  Breakfast is breaking fast - I was hoping for a better explanation.  So now I apply this statement to my wife and kids, with a very knowledgeable and authoritative approach.  I will start with, according to my research....
Ok, let's go back to the recipe.  This Breakfast Sliders recipe is very easy as all you need are scrambled eggs, ham slices, onions, cheese slices, melted butter and pepper.  Plain and simple!  Try this at home and your family will love this.  The pictures are almost self explanatory too.

Scrambled Eggs spread on top of bottom half of dinner rolls
Scrambled Eggs spread on top of bottom half of dinner rolls

ham slices, enough to cover dinner rolls
ham slices, enough to cover dinner rolls

onion rings on top of ham
onion rings on top of ham

Cheddar cheese slices on top of ham and onions
Cheddar cheese slices on top of ham and onions

top part of the dinner rolls
top part of the dinner rolls

melted butter and pepper
melted butter and pepper

fresh out of the oven
fresh out of the oven

finished breakfast sliders
finished breakfast sliders

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Cheeseburger Sliders

I posted a recipe earlier which was for lunch.  Since I was on a roll with sliders (pun intended!), I decided to do Cheeseburger Sliders for dinners.  You might be wondering, sliders again?  Well because I bought 4 packs of dinner rolls and wanted to experiment with creating sliders.  My next post will probably be about breakfast sliders, so watch out!  There is nothing fancy in this recipe, just your standard cheeseburger served ala sliders.  Very easy to make, no hassle.  

cheeseburger sliders
Cheeseburger Sliders
cheeseburger sliders #2
Another view of the cheeseburger sliders
On the way back home, my wife texted me asking if she needed to buy dinner.  Of course I said no as I was preparing  it already.  My second daughter, who is a very harsh critic of my cooking said that she loved it!  So go ahead and try this one as it is very easy to make.

cooked beef patty
Cooked beef patty on bottom half of dinner rolls
chopped onions
Chopped onions on top of patty
cheddar cheese
Cheddar cheese after the onions

Friday, July 22, 2016

Lechon Manok Barbecue Chicken Sliders

My wife left for Manila today to help out one of my daughters who had to transfer to a different room from her dormitory.  So I was left with the cooking chores but I had to drive them to the bus terminal first.  Considering that I did not have enough time to do a proper lunch, I had to figure out what I could do quickly but is not ordinary.  So I figured, why not re-purpose lechon manok (Filipino roasted chicken) and use it as the main ingredient for a BBQ slider?  Why not?  So on the drive back home, I stopped by the ever reliable Baliwag Lechon stand and got me one lechon manok.  I just asked them to halve it into two instead of chopping it up into smaller pieces.  

Since it was only me and my eldest daughter who were going to have lunch, the recipe that I will be sharing is for 2 people.  When I got home, my daughter asked, what is for lunch?  I replied, Lechon Manok.  And she had this look like she wanted to ask why.  She was surprised on the outcome of our lunch.  She couldn't believe it that I could do this with a lechon manok.  While having lunch, I asked her if I could repeat this recipe and she said yes!  So there were 9 mini dinner rolls, I had 5 and my daughter had 4.  She was satisfied with lunch.

one half lechon manok, shredded
Shred lechon manok
marby dinner rolls
I decided to use this kind of dinner rolls, enough for two
dinner rolls sliced in half
Slice dinner rolls in half

spread chicken on bottom part of dinner rolls
Spread chicken on bottom half of dinner rolls

smother with bbq sauce
Smother chicken with BBQ sauce
BBQ sauce that I used
I used this BBQ sauce, Kraft slow simmered original BBQ sauce

cheddar cheese on top of chicken
Place cheddar cheese on top of chicken, enough to cover, I used 9 slices
add parsley flakes on top of cheese
Sprinkle parsley flakes on top of cheese
half of dinner rolls
Put other half of dinner roll and pour melted butter on top

lechon manok BBQ chicken sliders
Lechon Manok BBQ chicken sliders finished product

lechon manok BBQ chicken sliders, another view
Another view of my lechon manok BBQ chicken sliders

more pics of lechon manok BBQ chicken sliders
another pic...

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Filipino Fiesta Salad

Filipino Fiesta Salad

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Where to eat in Tagaytay

Tagaytay City is one of the Philippine's most popular tourist destinations.   Because of it's higher altitude, the climate is cooler.  It also provides outstanding scenery as it overlooks Taal Lake in Batangas plus it provides an excellent view of Taal Volcano.  It is only 55 KM (34 mi) away from Manila which makes it an excellent choice for a weekend getaway to escape from the heat of the city.

There are numerous restaurants in Tagaytay and choosing where to eat is a little bit difficult especially when you are already hungry.  So if you happen to be in Tagaytay, where to eat?  To help you out with your choices, I am starting out in this blog my restaurant recommendations.

If you crave for home-cooked style meals, LZM Restaurant should be your first choice.  They actually have two branches in Tagaytay City, the first is at Magallanes Square and the latest one being at Ayala Malls Serin (please click on the links to visit their Facebook pages).  

The food choices are many and to help you out, I am suggesting their best sellers.  First should be the Fried Boneless Bangus, what they call their Queen of Specialties.  No visit to LZM is complete without trying this one.  The bangus is big (bigger than the plate) and is good enough for 3 people.  Crispy outside, tender inside.  It appears to have been marinated in soy sauce and is dredged in flour before it is fried.  This prevents the flesh from being tough and chewy.  They indeed serve the best crispy boneless bangus!

Fried Boneless Bangus
Fried Boneless Bangus

Next on the list would be their Chicharon Bulaklak.  This I guarantee is to die for.  It is not greasy and not oily and very crunchy to the max.  Goes well with the vinegar dip.  Just be very careful if you are watching your food intake though.

Chicharon Bulaklak
Chicharon Bulaklak

Your meal will not be complete if you do not order the Bulalo.  Bulalo seems to be the national dish of Tagaytay and almost every restaurant seems to offer this, but LZM's bulalo is simply the best for me.  This is a huge serving and very meaty.  Best of all, you can request for free soup top-ups.  The broth has the right mix of flavors.  I eat this with toyo, sili and kalamansi to enhance the experience.


And lastly, their must try and award winning vegetable dish, the Pinakbet.  The vegetables are crunchy and not overcooked.  The taste is a great balance of sweetness and saltiness.  Definitely worth it!


Other food worth mentioning are sizzling bulalo steak, sisig, crispy pata, stuffed squid, calamares, tortang talong, kare-kare, ampalaya con carne, and inihaw na liempo.

So the next time you are in Tagaytay City, try out any of the two LZM Restaurants, you will not regret it.

BTW, there are also two other LZM Restaurants.  The original one is at Silang, Cavite fronting Riviera Golf.  The other one is at Ayala Malls Solenad 2 in Nuvali, Sta.  Rosa.
LZM Serin
LZM Serin

LZM Magallanes Square
LZM Magallanes Square

LZM Silang
LZM Silang

Photo of Pinakbet taken from Pinterest.  All other photos and logos courtesy of LZM Facebook pages.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Busy Day Slow-Cooker Meals

Busy Day Slow-Cooker Meals

Fix it and forget it! Start dinner in the morning, go to work, run errands and come home to a piping hot supper. It couldn't be easier with the recipes that use a slow-cooker.

2 tablespoons butter
3 pounds lean beef stew meat
6 cups sliced onions
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup water
1 tablespoon beef flavored bouillon granules
1 teaspoon thyme
2 cups dark beer-with or without alcohol
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons cornstarch dissolved in 2 tablespoons water

Heat butter in large skillet and brown beef. Place browned beef in a slow cooker. Add onions and garlic to skillet and brown lightly; place in slow cooker with beef. Add water, beef granules, thyme, beer, brown sugar and mustard to slow cooker. Cover and cook on LOW 5-7 hours. Add cornstarch mixture to stew and continue to cook 20 minutes or until thickened. Serves 8.

6-8 short ribs, about 3 pounds
1 onion, thinly sliced
1 cup water
2 teaspoons beef flavored bouillon granules
1 cup hickory smoked barbecue sauce
3 tablespoons dark brown sugar
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons cornstarch dissolved in small amount of water

In large skillet over medium high heat, brown short ribs on all sides.
Place ribs in a slow cooker. Top with onions. In bowl, combine water, beef granules, barbecue sauce, brown sugar and mustard. Pour sauce over ribs. Cover and cook on LOW 6-7 hours or until tender. Add cornstarch mixture and continue to cook 20 minutes or until sauce thickens. Serves 4 to 6.


1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 3/4-inch pieces
1 cup uncooked wild rice
1 cup shredded carrot
1/2 cup diced onion
1 can cream of chicken & mushroom soup
1 can cream of mushroom soup
2 (4-ounce) cans sliced mushrooms, drained
6 slices fully cooked bacon, crumbled
1 cube chicken flavored bouillon dissolved in 1 cup boiling water
1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper

In large bowl, combine all ingredients. Place in 3 to 4-quart slow-cooker.
Cover and cook on LOW 6-7 hours or until rice is tender and liquid is absorbed. Serves 6 to 8.


1 (2 1/2-pound) boneless eye of round beef roast
1 medium onion, thinly sliced
1 (6-ounce) can Italian flavored tomato paste
6 teaspoons beef flavored bouillon granules
1/2 cup water
12 Kaiser rolls
12 (1-ounce) slices provolone cheese

Place roast in a 3 1/2-quart slow cooker. Add onion, tomato paste, bouillon granules and water. Cover and cook on HIGH 5-6 hours or until meat is tender. Remove roast from cooker. Using two forks, shred meat. Return meat to cooker, stirring to coat with sauce. Evenly divide meat among Kaiser rolls. Top with cheese. Serves 12.