Monthly Archives: June 2007

have you ever seen one of these?
a strange bug

ash grey ladybug, first appearance in our garden

we’re on day 3 of a sizzling sweaty hot summer spell–and i can only zip up my whiney lips and shush (for i vowed never to complain of heat when i remember the 20 degrees below freezing).

great timing for the kids who have swim lessons and i can barely contain myself from jumping into that beguiling Olympic length lap lane instead of sweating it out on the bleachers. i got my right eye on daughter and left eye on #2son. i really really have to sign up again and do laps, my favorite solitary pastime since when i was, ehem, youngER forever.

i’ll find a way! i swear! never mind if i redevelop my Mark Spitz shoulders.

meantime, savor the sizzlers. because summer’s here!


summer’s here
i’m for that
got my rubber sandals
got my straw hat
got my cold beer
i’m just glad that it’s here

summer’s here
that suits me fine
it may rain today
’cause i don’t mind
it’s my favorite time of the year
and i’m glad that it’s here

old man wintertime
he goes so slow
it’s ten degrees below, you know
you can take your ice and snow
but let my balmy breezes blow

yeah, the water is cold but i’ve been in
baby, lose the laundry and jump on in

i mean all God’s children got skin
and it’s summer again

summer’s here
i’m for that
got my rubber sandals
got my straw hat
drinking cold beer
man i’m just glad that it’s here
it’s my favorite time of the year
and i’m glad that it’s here, yeah

–James Taylor, from “Dad Loves his Work”

saving fish

fish in bean sauce

er “saving face” i mean. the movie.

every other movie i’ve seen i always notice the food scenes. a food scene that makes me want to cook what the protagonists are having…don’t even talk to me about the movies that center on food…like Babette’s Feast, Eat Drink Man Woman, Vatel, Jet Lag, Woman on Top, Like Water for Chocolate.

so the latest one i saw is “saving face” by Alice Wu. it deals with so many unmentionables: dialogues that an Asian American daughter could never talk about with her from-the-old-country-mother,-let-alone,-father: divorce, being lesbian, illegitimate children, romance with a younger man.

so there was this eating-a-fish-fillet-in-black-bean-sauce-with-a-bowl-of-rice-and-a-handy-pair-of- chopsticks-scene.

it was lunchtime, and i had to have some. so off i went to buy a little striped bass and home i flew to cook “fish in ground bean sauce.” from the Food of China, Nina Simonds and Deh-ta Hsiung.

marinate the cleaned, gutted, scored fish in 1 tbsp. light soy sauce and 1 tbsp. rice wine (Shao Hsing; or sherry). pat dry with paper towels; reserve the marinade.
brown fish in vegetable oil on a non-stick frying pan over medium heat.
remove all the oil leaving just 1 tbsp., then stir fry about 1 tbsp. julienned scallions and 1 tbsp finely shredded ginger. add 2 tbsps. ground bean sauce, 1 tbsp. dark soy sauce, 1 tsp. sugar, reserved marinade and salt and pepper to taste. stir for a few seconds then add 1/2 cup chicken broth, bring to a boil, then add the fish. cook for 3 minutes basting constantly and turning the fish once after 2 minutes. turn the fish over, sprinkle with 1/2 tsp. sesame oil and serve with the sauce poured over.

i highly recommend eating with a bowl of hot rice, chopsticks–taking a sliver of scallion with each bite. dramatic disclosures optional….

back in the block! er blog!

it’s been more than a month. i’m sort of back.

long story, short: ma was here a high school graduation two birthdays a wedding anniversary (hey, 19 na! wow!)public school teachers’ strike and Father’s day.

and the kids are paying for it with catch-up days!

of course my ma cooked us a lot of her specialties, #1 of which was her pancit palabok which husband simply dotes on.

here are just a few of the goodies she and i cooked. .. recipes will be posted, um, upon request? as soon as possible? as soon as i get back in the groove :grandma:
i missed the socializing here and bloghopping everywhere.
thank you to all –three?four?- friends who kept checking in… 😆

mango bread
mango bread, adapted from The Boston Globe Sunday Magazine
dbl choc cake
from, double chocolate layer cake. ahhhhhh! click here for the recipe.
bunos soup
bunos soup, milkfish/pork/chicken meatball soup specialty of Batanes, mom’s roots. it must have these dried gabi stalks…”bunos” (b pronounced as a soft v) plus a bunch of long hot chili peppers. it’s the bomb!

bunus stalks

dried gabi stalks

puffed pancake
puffed pancakes (here, deflated!) , the one that used up the strawberry syrup.

recipe for mango bread follows… Continue reading

papa day

middle of the week, middle of the day, he came home from work. “what’s the matter?,” asked wifey, fearing the worst…the baby had just been born a few weeks before. this was not the time to lose a job. (wifey is a paranoidneuroticblitheringfool most days, and in the days postpartum, was even more exaggeratedly so.)
“nothing. i’ve just come home to hold my boy.”
so he sat there in the balcony, wifey hovering nervously nearby, until she realized she had to leave them alone.
daddy T
from an extinct blog