Thursday, May 12, 2005

feeling blah?

tastebuds feeling dull?
my lola (grandmother) called it "sunok."
she had a way with words: "suya" she applied to irritating, annoying commercials on tv, lascivious dance numbers on lunchtime shows with "nakakasuya" tv hosts like Ariel Rivera (bemoustached curly haired Manila celebrity from the '70s...)
"sunok" she reserved for food that she couldn't stomach (especially cheesy, rich sauces). she also used it the describe the feeling when she couldn't think of anything to cook and all the dishes seemed tired and unsavory. (this happened to her often when she lived in a remote upstate New York town.) sorry i can't think of English translations that would accurately depict the sensations of the Tagalog...

so there comes a time when a foodie needs a break from saucy and thick and heavy...

formula #1: kinilaw (ceviche) of oysters, though this recipe is more like adobo in that the marinade is brought up to the boil ("you're actually cooking it, huh?", husband remarked quite cheekily.)

anti-"sunok" formula #2: husband's mother's day eve offering, sashimi deluxe platter from a famous organic supermarket with the best wasabi packets i ever met: "Genji Express" brand

tastebuds woke up yet?

kinilaw na talaba(ceviche of oysters) ala adobo ( based on "Recipes of the Philippines" by Enriqueta David Perez)

1 pint shucked oysters in their own liquor, available in sealed jars from most supermarkets & Asian groceries
2 crushed garlic cloves
2 shallots, sliced thinly
crushed peppercorns
1/3 to 1/2 cup Marukan rice vinegar

mix all ingredients in a saucepan and let marinate for 2 hours. bring up to a boil
and simmer for 2 minutes. remove from heat, let cool and serve with sliced bird chilis, if desired.