Tuesday, September 30, 2014

#30MealsAtHome - Day 30 - Chicken Sopas

It's officially the last day of the challenge!  We're still adding four more days to make up for missed meals. 

Tonight, we had a family favorite, Chicken Sopas.  It's basically a creamy chicken noodle soup.  Back home, they usually use elbow macaroni.  I used Barilla Fideo Cut Spaghetti.

I should've made a bigger batch of the soup to make sure I'd have some left over to take to work tomorrow.

#30MealsAtHome - Day 29 - Sinigang Na Salmon

I'm just skipping from my last catch-up post about Friday night's meal to last night's meal.

All I want to eat is soup right now.  So last night, I gave my husband instructions on how to make Sinigang Na Salmon.  If you revisit Day 7, this is the same dish using Salmon filet instead of beef.  The sour soup helped clear my foggy head.

On the health front, it turns out I had a sinus infection that was getting worse by the day.  After two visits to the doctor (urgent care and primary care physician), I finally have the right meds in me now. I actually feel close to my normal self today.  

Tomorrow is officially the last day of the challenge, but we're adding 4 more days to the end to account for the take out meals we had while I was sick.  The money we saved doing this challenge will help cover the few unpaid personal days* I had to take during this bout.

*Don't worry, my employer does provide vacation/sick days as Personal Time Off. I'd already used most over the summer, and the balance during the first few days of my illness.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Inspiration Sunday

Medieval Page by Fouquier, via 500 px. Shown here under CC BY-ND-NC 3.0.

This prompt is yours to draw inspiration from. If you use it, and decide to post the resulting piece on your blog, or other online forum that hosts your writing, let me know in the comments section. I'll make   sure to drop by and share my thoughts.

Saturday, September 27, 2014

#30MealsAtHome - Days 23 to 26

Photo Credit: Defeat by Fouquier via 500px. Shown here under CC By-NC-ND 3.0.
This week felt like a defeat. I tried to anticipate the possible scenarios and have fall back options in the event that I could not cook.  I didn't anticipate getting sick.  Sick to the point that I couldn't muster the strength to handle any food. I must say though, we managed to keep to our commitment as best we could, given the circumstances.

On Day 23, the first night, I came home from work feeling so weak that I went straight to bed.  We ordered a pizza from the local pizzeria.

On Day 24, I barely managed to give my husband instructions on how to prepare some roasted Italian sausages with onions and peppers.  We had some nice rolls in the freezer.  Somehow the onion part of the recipe got lost in the translation.

On Day 25, my head was somewhat clearer then, and I wanted soup.  I was planning to make a piccadillo soup, so I brought out some frozen ground beef to thaw in the refrigerator. I thought I was ready to go back to my usual routine and go to work the next day.  I might have tried to do too much, that by late-afternoon, I was back in bed. My husband picked up some Pho on the way home from work.

On Day 26, feeling much better, but still not 100%, I looked into the refrigerator and found that the ground beef I brought out the day before was completely thawed.  I didn't want it go to waste, so I made our family version of Arroz ala Cubana and another Filipino dish, Pinakbet, out of all the vegetables I had in my refrigerator and freezer.  Our pinakbet had calabasa (winter squash), summer squash, green beans, okra, and bok choy. I keep a bottle of bagoong (fish paste) in my refrigerator.

Looking back, it doesn't seem to much of a loss.  So far, we've succumbed only 3 times over 26 days. We're adding those days to the end so we'll be going till the end of next week.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

#30MealsAtHome - Day 22 - Chicken Adobo

Last night was a hectic evening. One thing right at the heels of another. Since I knew ahead of time that the night was going to be a monster, I made our dish ahead of time; like, Sunday afternoon.

This is another Filipino dish that some non-Filipino friends might be familiar with, Chicken Adobo.  A traditional home dish, of chicken or pork in sauce of soy, white vinegar, garlic, pepper and bay leaf. The mix and flavor of the adobo dish will vary from family to family.  The adobo I grew up with has a distinct taste, that for the life of me, I cannot replicate here abroad.

I am posting my recipe here in the hope that someone in my family will tell me what I am missing.

Photo by: dbgg1970 via flickr. Found on Wikimedia Commons. Shown here under CC by 2.0*

Chicken Adobo


4-6 bone-in chicken thighs
4-6 cloves garlic, smashed
1/2 cup white coconut vinegar
1/2 cup soy sauce
1-2 dried bay leaves
1 teaspoon whole pepper corns

  1. In a saucepan, mix together all the ingredients. If the liquid isn't enough to cover most of the meat, add just a little water.  The meat will let out more liquid as it cooks.
  2. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat to simmer for about 20 minutes, or until the meat is cooked through.
  3. Some families stop here.  In my family, the chicken is then fried in a hot pan to sear the skin and thicken the sauce.
  4. Serve with steamed rice and vegetables.

Variations we've tried and enjoyed:
  • Add a whole, peeled hard boiled egg to the mix while the meat is simmering. 
  • Serve the meat with a side of chopped tomatoes, white or red onions, and fresh cilantro.
  • Add a side of scrambled eggs.
If you're Filipino, please feel free to share in the comments, your favorite variations on this dish.

*I had to source a photo from the internet, because ours didn't photograph well.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

#30MealsAtHome - Days 20 and 21

On Saturday night (Day 20) we had Linguini with Clam Sauce.  That coupled with a new Doctor Who episode was a great way to end a busy day at the yard sale.

Tonight (Day 21), we're having Sukiyaki. One of our favorite family Special Dinner dishes.

Nine more days to go!

Inspiration Sunday

Invisible Ballerina by Igor Ar via 500px. Shown her under CC BY-ND 3.0.

This prompt is yours to draw inspiration from. If you use it, and decide to post the resulting piece on your blog, or other online forum that hosts your writing, let me know in the comments section. I'll make   sure to drop by and share my thoughts.