Russian Salad, Variation of Potato Salad

My first taste of Russian salad was from my aunt. I never knew one could make red beets into a salad. Russian salad prepared the Pinoy way is probably named as such because of the natural red coloring of the ingredients, red beet.

russian salad The salad taste sweet with a slight tangy flavor due to the tart apples and the vinegar marinade. It is basically a potato salad except that the natural red color of the beets seep through the potatoes and the other ingredients. In wikipedia, Russian Salad is not even colored red. A homemade variant of the Russian Salad contains carrots, ham, onions, pickled gherkins, eggs, sweetcorn, cucumber, peas, potato and mayonnaise.

I believe the Pinoy version of “Russian Salad” is very delicious. Try preparing it.

Ingredients

1 cup cubed cooked red beets, beta vulgaris or sugar beets (Known as remolatsa in the vernacular)
1 cup pineapple tidbits
4 tart apples (sweet red apples tend to be mushy)
mayonnaise (I buy reduced fat)
1/3 cup diced sweet ham
1 1/2 cup diced cooked chicken
3 cups cubed cooked potatoes
1 cup cubed cooked carrots
1/4 cup finely diced celery
vinegar, salt and pepper to taste
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Beef Pochero

Every Filipino family has their own version of Beef Pochero just like Adobo and Mechado. A popular dish in this blog is my version of Beef Pochero aka Cocido which is mainly a Noche Buena dish. It makes use of left-over ham from the Christmas celebration. Growing up in Cebu, I recall my mother adding saba . Whole firm Saba bananas are boiled together in the broth. The thing is my daughters don’t like the saba taste in the broth.

beef pochero nancy reyes

May Reyes-Serrano, the youngest sister of the the women of the Reyes culinary clan demonstrates ripe Saba banana as an ingredient for Beef Pochero. Her recipe requires frying of ripe saba bananas instead of my version of boiling it with the broth. This should be an interesting innovation for me. For the saba banana lovers, try this recipe in your kitchen.

Ingredients:

3 pieces ripe saba bananas; 2 cut in thirds lengthwise, 1 left whole
oil for sautéing
1 piece red onion, finely chopped
2 pieces medium white onion, peeled whole
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup thick cut bacon, cubed
1 can chopped pimientos, small
1 can diced tomatoes, drained
5 cup beef broth
1/2 kilo beef kalitiran
1/2 kilo beef ribs (with fat)
1 cup tomato paste
2 pieces chorizo bilbao, thinly sliced
2 pieces medium potatoes, peeled and quartered
1 piece medium cabbage, quartered
1 bunch pechay
1 cup cooked garbanzo beans
patis, salt, pepper to taste

Procedure

1. In a pressure cooker, fry banana slices until golden and crispy then set aside.

2. Heat oil and sauté chopped onion, garlic, Bacon, pimiento and tomatoes then add broth.

3. Add beef cuts and whole saba and cook until tender (About 40 mins in a pressure cooker).

4. Remove saba and mash it on the bottom of serving platter.

5. Remove beef and place on mashed saba. Add tomato paste, chorizo, potatoes, cabbage, pechay and garbanzos to broth.

6. Cook until veggies are done. Move veggies to serving platter.

7. Season broth with salt, pepper and patis.

8. Boil broth uncovered until reduced by 1/4. Ladle hot soup onto beef and veggies.

9. Arrange fried bananas on top. Serve with hot rice.

Recipe ideas for Noche Buena

What do you plan to serve on noche buena? Here are some recipe ideas for noche buena

noche buena recipes

What do you know? I smell Christmas in the air.

I bet some of you already planned  the menu for your lunch or dinner on Christmas day or even your noche buena. For those that are still planning, here are some recipes that you can plan for your family and friends. Don’t expect fancy recipes but there will be a few so keep tuned.

You can start off with a few of my recipes that I’ve cooked for the past years. Click on the links below:

Continue reading Recipe ideas for Noche Buena

Sikawate, anyone? Hot tsokolate From Tablea

hot tsokolate
I am sipping hot tsokolate for merienda. My mom often called it SIKWATE!, the Visayan dialect for hot chocolate drink. I bought a lot of these tablea last year so I am just drinking the leftovers. Our Noche Buena is never complete without the hot tsokolate made from the native Tablea (cacao chocolate). I often visited my great grandmother in Cebu and her past time involved making tablea. The fragrant aroma is something that can never replace all those Starbucks frapucciono or chocolate drinks from fancy coffee shops. However, tablea is best prepared using a batirol and a tsokolatera so the consistency is smooth. A batirol is a wooden whisk used to mix tablea (a block of pure cocoa) and water into a thick, grainy, hot chocolate drink. The tablea and water are mixed in a cast-iron pitcher called a tsokolatera. Like a kawali or wok, a tsokolatera (Chocolatera or Chocolate Pot) performs better as it ages.

Continue reading Sikawate, anyone? Hot tsokolate From Tablea

Pinoy Cooking, Filipino Food and other Food Recipes