Friday, July 01, 2005

cooking "meme"! i've been tagged by spots!

i have been absent from the blogworld for what seems like such a long time...actually just a few days but feels like forever to me. i cook a lot more than usual but am able to blog less, due to the fact that...after all year long with their hard working teachers my kids have been returned to me for the summer!!! tee hee.
what a surprise therefore to find that i've been tagged by my infanticipating blogfriend from far off Singapore...spottiswoode! thank you ruth.. i've been counting down the days with you too, yours will be the first baby in blogdom for me :) ... in the Filipino culture we must indulge your every whim and give in to all your requests! and! neither must we take from your plate! ;)
i had to check first if i could answer well and if the friends i had in mind to pass on this tag had been here goes:
Meme asks: What is your first memory of baking/cooking on your own?
it's gotta be the Maya pancakes from the box. my all time favorite from childhood which i just had to learn how to make. now i have a memorized recipe from Betty Crocker which i can make in my sleep.
Who had the most influence on your cooking?
it's gotta be my lola, paternal grandmother, first and foremost, who taught me how to wield a knife and who yelled down the instructions from the library upstairs while she typed her short stories. she taught me to enjoy the scents and textures and processes of cooking...and i must mention my childhood friend Chichay whom i met when i was 10 years old and who was my co conspirator in countless kitchen experiments and disasters. bless you Chi wherever you are now.
Do you have an old photo as "evidence" of an early exposure to the culinary world and would you like to share it?
i have a lot of photos eating...but this one is my memorable photo of playing chef with my old friend Melinda... i was allowed to light fires in my clay pots and pans ("palayok-palayukan") and pretend to cook in my meticulously designed outdoor kitchen. i used grasses, leaves, flowers...i even had play cooking oil from the hibiscus (gumamela) and i used annatto seeds from our tree to color my dishes! that's me in white and in the Princess Leia hairdo, and that's my Ma's shadow taking the photo of us in the extra cinderblocks of our newly built house in Quezon City. i had just met Melinda at my new school!

Mageiricophobia - do you suffer from any cooking phobia, a dish that makes your palms sweat?
i think i have opened the cookbooks to the "souffle" page often enough for it to qualify as my only cooking phobia left...i've no qualms at all about disemboweling or dismembering the critters in the food hierarchy...but the souffle remains unconquered. hopefully not for long though.

What would be your most valued or used kitchen gadgets and/or what was the biggest letdown?
early in our marriage when it felt like i wanted to leave the Boston tundra and disengage...i vowed to bring my sturdy stainless Rival mixer with me. after 10 years it is still a faithful workhorse. loud but loyal, through thick (bread and cookie dough) and thin (meringues and creams). i don't ever feel like leaving anymore but it's coming with me anywhere i go.
biggest letdown? hmm. the potato masher i think.
Name some funny or weird food combinations/dishes you really like and probably no one else.
okay...takes a deep breath and grandmother taught me to pour hot pork fat and fish sauce over newly steamed rice and eat that with finely chopped green mangoes and fish in vinegar stew (paksiw)...she called it "sariling bahay" literally "my own home" and to this day i think i'm the only one who knows about this.
What are the three eatables or dishes you simply don't want to live without?
sashimi. roast pork. green mangoes. fishy oinky drooly.
3 quickies:
favorite ice tea.
you will probably never eat..uni. sea urchin roe. and "pet" meat. (i come from that part of the world where...okay enough said.)
tag 3 people...english patis. stefoodie. schatzli.
signature dish: smoked duck.

thank you mommy spots, that was fun!