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Posts in “Food”

Easy, Moist Banana Muffins

Thursday, October 19, 2017

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These easy, moist banana muffins are one of my favorite recipes. I love to bake them for breakfast (eating them with some scrambled eggs and bacon) or just for a snack. I rarely share recipes on this blog about my home-baked food, but if I do, it because it is something that I absolutely love the taste of. It took a while for me to learn how to bake, because in the Philippines, my family never had an oven. I’m so thankful that I learned. Now, I don’t need to buy muffins at the store. Instead, I can make it on my own. Here are the ingredients and instructions on how to make it. Enjoy!

Ingredients

1 ½ cups of all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon salt

⅓ cup of butter, melted

1 egg, beaten

3/4 cup white sugar (I sometimes use less ¼ cup and add ¼ cup of applesauce)

3 large ripe bananas

⅓ cup of greek yogurt

¼ cup of dried cranberries (optional)

Instructions:

Preheat oven to 375 F degrees. Stir flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt together in a large bowl. Microwave the butter in a medium bowl for 30-40 seconds. Pour the beaten egg into the bowl with melted butter. Mash the ripe bananas together into this bowl as well (I like doing this with a fork). Add white sugar and stir well with a baking spatula. Combine with the dry ingredients in the large bowl. Fold with greek yogurt and dried cranberries. Scoop the mix into the muffin pan. I use muffin liners, but you may also coat the muffin pan with oil to keep them from sticking. Bake for 20 to 25 minute

Let me know if you try it and how it turns out!

P.S Also check out my post for Filipino chicken empanada!

 

CATEGORY Food, recipe
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My Easy Fried Rice Recipe

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

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Before I came to America, I had been eating rice every single day; for breakfast, lunch and dinner. However, when Brent and I got married, I compromised with the food we eat for our meals. It’s not that he doesn’t like rice (he loves it together with other Asian foods!), but of course, I want to serve meals that he likes from his culture as well. When I do prepare rice, I sometimes want to make it more special, instead of just plain, white Jasmine rice. Today, I want to share how I make my own fried rice. You can find the ingredients easily in the grocery store, or you may already have them in your fridge. The good thing about this recipe is that you can add as much veggies as you like. We also like to eat this alone and sometimes add chicken to it. My toddlers love it!

Ingredients:

3 Tablespoons​ of cooking oil

2 beaten eggs

3 cloves of garlic (minced)

1 medium sized onion (chopped)

½ cup of water

1 teaspoon chicken bouillon

¾ cup of carrots (chopped)

4-5 cups of cooked rice (2-3 days old is better than newly cooked. See instructions below)

Salt and pepper to taste

1 cup of broccoli (optional; you can also use cauliflower)

¼ cup of chopped green onions (optional)

¼ cup of green peas

 

Other ingredient ideas that I like to use are:

Cooked chicken

Tofu

Mushroom

Corn

 

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Instructions:

  1. Using a wok (we got ours in an Asian market, similar to this one here), heat 2 tablespoons of oil in medium heat. Pour beaten eggs to cook. You can move the wok to move the eggs around and widen its size. When it’s starting to become solid, flip it over and cook the other side. Start to break the egg apart into medium sized pieces using a cooking turner (similar to this). Remove from heat and set aside.
  1. Pour 1 tablespoon of oil into the wok and start to cook the minced garlic and chopped onions, until onions are translucent.
  1. Pour water and add chicken bouillon. Once it’s starting to boil, add chopped carrots for 2-3 minutes.
  1. Add cooked rice. I love to use leftover rice (2-3 days old that I refrigerate). It is perfect for asian fried rice like this, since new cooked rice tends to get soggy and mushy. It’s common that rice can stick onto the wok. Just make sure you mix the rice often while making this. After you fry the rice, you may add salt and pepper to taste. You can also add garlic powder if you’d like.  
  1. Start adding other veggies like broccoli, green peas, and green onions. Stir the veggies with rice. Let it cook for 5 minutes and stir occasionally underneath so the rice won’t stick to the wok.
  1. Next, add the beaten eggs back with the rice and stir with all the cooked ingredients. Serve it hot!

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Let me know in the comment box below if you try it! Enjoy!

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Healthy Oatmeal Banana Cookies (No Sugar)

Monday, May 8, 2017

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I found a recipe that I added to my kids’ snack ideas, and it made them excited! These healthy oatmeal banana cookies have no added sugar at all! I love sugar, but of course as a mom, I know how addicting and unhealthy it is to have sweets all the time. My husband and I do give our kids sweets sometimes for rewarding good behaviour, potty training, or when they finish their meals. As some of you know, I am pregnant and I’m craving for sweets all the time! This recipe is the perfect snack for me and the growing baby inside me. I added dark chocolates on top of these cookies just to help satisfy my cravings.

 

The texture of these cookies aren’t the same as the cookies with sugar, but hey, it’s healthy! Plus, my kids totally love it! Try it and let me know what you think!

 

  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 3 ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1/3 cup applesauce
  • 1/2 cup raisins (optional)
  • 1/4 cup almond milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Stir oats, bananas, applesauce, raisins, almond milk, vanilla extract, and cinnamon together in a bowl until evenly mixed. Drop by the spoonful onto a baking sheet. Bake in the preheated oven until the edges are golden; 15 to 20 minutes.

 

Recipe from Gene Payne

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Any healthy alternative snack recipes you know, to help me beat my craving for sweets  and are good for the kids? I would love to hear them!

CATEGORY Food, recipe
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Ninja Turtle Inspired Birthday + Filipino Skewered Barbecue Recipe

Thursday, April 6, 2017

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My eldest son has been liking “ninjas” a lot.  I think he’s been a fan of them ever since he was an infant. My husband would lift him up and have him pretend to jump all over the house (walls, sofas, etc). This year for his birthday, he was the one who kept telling me that he would like ninjas for his birthday. That’s why I planned to use a touch of Ninja Turtles and a colorful theme for his special day. I saw some ninja turtle birthday ideas when it came to food. I tried to make the fruit tray and saw Ninja Turtle cookies in a grocery store. We also played “Pin the Mask” on the ninja, thanks to my friend Karla who led the game. We had a great time with our friends and their kids, who are close to my son’s heart. I thought to prepare Filipino dishes like lumpia and skewered pork barbecue, so our friends could taste some FIlipino dishes that we love. Here’s a recipe of Filipino skewered pork barbeque in case you guys want to try it. It’s actually a street food in the Philippines, which I loved to buy often when I lived there. It’s perfect if you dip it with spicy vinegar and eat it with rice!! YUM!

 

(Special thanks to my sister-in-law Suki for the birthday decor!)

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Filipino Skewered Pork Barbecue

 

2 lbs pork, sliced

½ cup soy sauce

½ ketchup

8-10 cloves garlic, minced (I used garlic pressed, similar to this)

3 tablespoons brown sugar

1 teaspoon ground pepper

2 teaspoons salt

1-2 teaspoons sriracha (optional, but it’s good!)

2 teaspoons of lemon juice (fresh or it can be from the bottle of concentrate)

1 cup (or more) of Sprite (Yep!)

Bamboo skewers – Soak a night or at least 20 minutes before you use it. It keeps the skewers from getting burnt during grilling.

 

Instructions:

Combine soy sauce, ketchup, minced garlic, brown sugar, pepper and salt, sriracha, and lemon into a flat container (I like to use a glass baking dish), stir it well with a fork. Place sliced pork onto the dish and mix together with the sauce. Pour the Sprite evenly over the pork. Cover it and refrigerate it to marinate overnight.

After it’s marinated, skewer the pork with the bamboo sticks. Keep the sauce aside. Ready the grill at medium heat. While waiting for the grill to be hot, cook the sauce from the marinated pork with a low heat and stir. Wait for it to bubble while cooking. When it’s cooked, I taste it and add some sprite, ketchup and brown sugar depending on how I want it to come out. For my son’s party, I found it a little spicy for our visitors who were kids, so I added these ingredients to adjust it. This cooked sauce will be used to brush onto the barbecue while on the grill so it’s juicy and moist. Put the barbeque pork on the preheated grill and start to brush the cooked sauce on each side of the pork. Grill 10-12 minutes per side. Keep rotating it and brushing the pork with the sauce keep it moist. Cooking takes about 25-30 minutes. I used a charcoal grill to cook this, but you may use a gas grill too.

 

Try serving it with spicy vinegar and rice! It’s totally delicious!

 

Anyone here tasted this skewered barbecued pork before?

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Juice that you should try in the Philippines

Monday, February 20, 2017

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Ever since I was a kid, Calamansi juice has been the most-requested juice I ask my mom to make for me. Even my husband loves the taste of it! My mom makes this juice almost everyday, especially if someone in our family has a cold and cough. We don’t usually buy calamansi in the market because in the province, my mom has her own calamansi tree. My kids had calamansi juice for the first time here and they totally fell in love with the taste. They love to help picking the fruit from the tree with their Lola (Grandma) to make calamansi juice. Filipinos also love to use calamansi to mix with dipping sauce, like in soy sauce with fresh chilis. It makes food like grilled fish or liempo so good! Even for noodles like pancit, we love to use calamansi too. Here are a few simple steps on how my mom and I make this fresh and delicious calamansi juice!

 

Ingredients:

Calamansi

½ cup of sugar (or more depending on your liking)

5 cups of water

 

Step 1 Wash calamansi and cut the top or through the center.

Step 2 Using a fruit drainer and small pitcher, squeeze calamansi into it to separate the seeds from the juice. I probably use 20 to 30 pieces of calamansi.

Step 3 After squeezing all the calamansi, pour 5 cups of water into the pitcher.

Step 4 Use ½ cup of sugar (or more depending on your liking) and stir it well.

Step 5 Store it in the fridge until it’s chilled or simply add ice to your glass, to start drinking this fresh and delicious juice.

 

Anyone here tried calamansi juice? What’s your favorite juice from other parts of the world?

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CATEGORY Food, Travel
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My Most Requested Dish: Filipino Chicken Empanada

Sunday, October 9, 2016

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This baked chicken empanada is the food that I get the most requests for. I started learning how to cook during my first year of being married. During that time, Panlasang Pinoy (a Filipino food recipe site) was the first place I would get all the Filipino food recipes to cook for Brent and myself. Now, I make these dishes and treats for everyone! I love to share food snaps on my Instagram, and I’m very excited to share photos of these delicious baked chicken empanadas that I made, here on my blog. People who have tasted them always love the taste of the dough, and the combination of chicken, carrots, green peas, potatoes, and craisins (You can also use raisins). Empanadas were only my “merienda” or “snack” when I was in the Philippines, but Brent loves them so much that sometimes this snack becomes our dinner. If you are looking for a more complete meal, a side dish of salad goes well with it too. Brent and I love to use Sriracha, an Asian hot sauce, for our empanadas. They are so good together!! Here are the ingredients and instructions that I used from Panlasang Pinoy.

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Prep time15 mins

Cook time

40 mins

Total time

55 mins

For Filling:

  • 1½ lb boneless chicken breast, cut into cubes
  • 1 piece medium-sized onion, minced
  • 1 tablespoon garlic, minced
  • 1 cup potato, diced
  • 1 cup carrot, diced
  • 1 cup green peas
  • ¼ cup raisins (I used craisins instead)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 4 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon sugar
  • ½ piece chicken cube
  • 2 tablespoon cooking oil

For the dough:

  • 3 cups flour
  • 6 tablespoon water, cold
  • 1 piece raw egg
  • 1 cup butter, cold
  • ½ teaspoon baking powder

 

Instructions

  1. Make the filling by pouring the cooking oil in a pan and then allow it to heat-up
  2. Once the oil is hot, saute the garlic and onions
  3. Add the chicken breast then cook until color turns light brown (about 5 minutes)
  4. Add water and chicken cube then simmer for 10 minutes
  5. Put-in carrots and potatoes and simmer for 5 minutes
  6. Add the green peas, craisins, and 1 teaspoon sugar then simmer for another 5 minutes
  7. Sprinkle ½ teaspoon salt and pepper. Turn off the heat, drain the excess liquid, and set aside.
  8. Make the dough by combining the dry ingredients in a mixing bowl starting with the flour, 4 tablespoon. sugar, baking powder, and ½ teaspoon salt. Mix well using a wire whisk.
  9. Cut the butter into small thin pieces place in the mixing bowl with the dry ingredients.(the butter should be cold and solid before doing this)
  10. Add water gradually and mix all the ingredients thoroughly until a dough is formed. You may use a pastry blender to ease the process.
  11. Divide the dough into individual pieces by grabbing a piece from the whole mixture and rolling it in your hand until a spherical shape is formed. Do this until all the dough is consumed. Set aside in a cool place for at least 20 minutes. (I like to wrap it with clear wrap and set aside inside the fridge)

my-most-requested-filipino-chicken-empanada-1 12. Flatten the spherical dough by pressing it with your palm against a flat surface. Use a rolling pin to flatten it fully while creating a round shape. my-most-requested-filipino-chicken-empanada-2
13. Arrange about a quarter to half a cup of filling (the chicken that you cooked in the first few steps) at the middle of the flattened dough. Fold the dough so that opposite ends meet (you should have formed a half moon shaped dough) then press the edges and seal.

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14.  After all the fillings are consumed, crack the egg and separate the white from the yolk. Beat the egg white lightly and mix a little water. Glaze the crust by brushing the egg wash.

15. Put a wax paper on top of a baking tray or grease the baking tray then arranged the sealed doughs.

16. Pre-heat oven at 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Bake the sealed doughs for 25 minutes at the same temperature.

17. Remove from the oven.

18. Serve hot. Share and Enjoy!

Have you tried Filipino empanadas before? Have you tried other kinds? Share your thoughts and comments, I love reading them. :)

CATEGORY Family, Food
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On a busy night: One Pot Tortellini and Sausage

Thursday, August 18, 2016

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This delicious creamy tortellini and sausage is one of my favorites to make because it is easy. It uses only one pot and is a life-saver when the kids are being a handful. I have been using this recipe for more than a year and it’s still husband-approved and now, it’s toddler approved too! Pinterest is a great way to find easy dinner meal ideas. I came up with this dish from Yellow Bliss Road recipe. If you want to make your night easier, but still have a delicious meal for your family, go ahead and make this one-pot meal.

 

Ingredients

  • 1 lb package of Turkey Kielbasa
  • 1/2 cup diced onion
  • 20 oz. package of refrigerated Tortellini
  • 28 oz can of whole tomatoes, cut in the can with kitchen scissors
  • 1 cup chicken broth or water
  • Pinch of salt & pepper
  • 2 Tbsp cream cheese
  • 2 cups shredded jack and cheddar cheeses

Instructions

  1. Cook the onion in a little olive oil until soft. Add sliced turkey sausage and cook until browned. Add chicken broth, tortellini, tomatoes, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, stirring often. Turn heat down to low, cover and simmer for about 15 minutes, or until pasta is cooked to al dente. Remove from heat and add cheeses, reserving a handful for topping. Cover and let stand for five to ten minutes. Garnish with green onions, if desired. Serve hot.

Recipe and Instructions from Yellow Bliss Road

Any one-pot, easy meal recipe you want to share? I would love to hear from you in the comment box below. :-)

CATEGORY Family, Food
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Hello Island Mama is a makeup, DIY, design, and lifestyle blog by Em Smith. She is the mother of two boys and a wife, who loves to inspire and encourage others through her works and stories. Originally from the Philippines.

"I can do all things through him who strengthens me." Philippians 4:13

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