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Philippines: Reminisce with every dish

My children asked me to write my recipes, many of which were my own family’s favorites that were passed down to me or I learned by watching them cook when I was growing up. My children have eaten many of these dishes when they were also growing up and some became our favorites and they are afraid they would be forgotten in time.  So that I could pass them down to them and to my grandchildren and perhaps down the line, I compiled these dishes as I cooked and photographed them so they could be easily identified and seen what they are expected to look like or maybe rattle the memory and recognize the dish they once knew because names won’t mean anything to them.

The recipes in this book are by no means authentic Filipino recipes because they were improvised to be more palatable to non-Filipinos. The improvisation and adaptation of many Filipino recipes in this book were developed for the non-Filipino palates; my American husband, my children who grew up here, their American spouses and/or partners and children, and of course, non-Filipino extended families and friends. Ingredients such as internal organs and the smell of bagoong or patis are offensive and distasteful to non-Filipinos; therefore, they are sometimes omitted or substituted, depending on who I am cooking for. The vegetables I used in the recipes are what my family likes to eat unless they are integral to the kind of dish that is being cooked. The amount of juice or gravy in certain dishes were also made to suit them.

My family’s favorites

Or, click on “Recipes” above then view the images sorted by categories and click on the image for the recipe you want.

My goal in preparing evening meals for my family after work is variety, simplicity and easy-to-prepare dishes that did not take too long to cook.  Many were developed as shortcuts to save precious time in the evenings but not lose any of the flavors they are well known and became famous for.

As you will see, this book did not just happen overnight.  It took years of writing down these recipes as I cooked them then re-testing what I wrote down diligently to be sure they were how I expected them before I included them in this book.  I started to use measuring cups and measuring spoons to be more consistent in cooking the same dish time after time.

It will be trial and error at first, but you will see what you and your family like and some experiments might become favorites.