My all time favorite Filipino dessert is Cassava Cake. What you may ask is Cassava Cake? It’s a sticky dessert made from the Cassava (Manihot esculenta) a starchy tuberous root widely cultivated in the tropical and sub-tropical regions of the world. It is a staple in the developing world. When it’s dried its to a powdery or pearly extract we call it tapioca!
In the Philippines cassava is grated and used as the main ingredient for desserts including Suman, a sticky dessert wrapped in banana leaves. I like that too, but my favorite is Cassava Cake the way my grandma used to make. This so called cake isn’t really a cake, at least not in consistency. It is not “cakey” or “spongy” at all, instead is has a sticky consistency similar to “mochi”.
I’ve had several versions of Cassava Cake, made by different friends hailing from other provinces of the Philippines. From what I have observed it seems that different regions prepare it differently. I like our version the best, the bottom part has that same sticky consistency, but it has an almost custardy top layer. My version is also pretty sweet, just perfect for my sweet tooth. I do have to say that Cassava Cake may be an acquired taste, some folks love it and others can’t stand it.
This recipe has been in our family for years! The only difference in we’ve “modernized” it. Back in the day my grandma and aunts would spend a day grating the cassava and coconut, then the evening soaking the grated coconut and squeezing out the milk. These day we buy the frozen coconut milk and grated cassava, so much easier. You can use canned coconut milk instead of the frozen one, but my aunt insists the frozen coconut milk is best. You can buy both the frozen grated cassava and coconut milk at most Asian markets. I hope you like it!
1 16 oz. bag frozen grated cassava, thawed
1 16 oz. bag frozen coconut milk, thawed
1 Can Evaporated Milk
1 Can Condensed Milk
1/2 Cup Sugar
6 Egg Yolks
1/2 Stick Butter, Melted
Mix all ingredients is a large bowl. Stir well to make sure sugar dissolves and milks are well blended.
Pour into 9″ x 13″ baking pan.
Place filled pan into a larger roasting pan.
Fill roasting pan with water until is reaches the half way point of the panning containing the cassava mixture.
Place both pans in a 350 degree oven and steam for about an hour or until the middle is set.
Since many of us are still in the pandemic lockdown, self-imposed or mandated, deciding what to cook has become a chore. Many of us are probably planning out weekly menus to cut down on grocery runs, which many of you know can be a daunting experience with masks, lines, and empty shelves; and I won’t even get into disinfecting all the groceries we bring home! Such is our new “normal” at least until this scourge passes.
Another main concern for many of us is a disrupted food chain caused by virus outbreaks at many of the meat packing plants nationwide. Not only is this virus causing meat shortages, but it puts plant employees considered essential workers, and their families at risk. I know we all want to do our part to stop the spread and also hopefully keep folks from hoarding meat. (Remember the Toilet Paper back in March? I don’t think the factories have caught up yet!) Anyway to show our support for meat packing plant employees and hopefully lessen the demand for meats workers’ advocates are calling for Meatless Mondays. So you might want to plan your weekly menus to include at least one meatless day, it’s good for your health as well as one small step in stopping the spread. So I thought this month I’d share some meatless recipes with you.
One of my favorite seafood dishes is Salt & Pepper Shrimp, we used to order it every time we dined at a Chinese restaurant. Since I found a recipe for it we can enjoy it at home. I modified it to fit our tastes and I think made it a bit simpler to make. Served over steamed white rice it’s yummy!
1 lb. Medium to Large shrimp – peeled and deveined
1 tbls. sea salt
1/2 cup corn starch
2 tbls. ground white pepper
2 tbls. ground black pepper
1 tbls. garlic powder
3 tbls. chopped green onions
2 tbls. minced garlic
1/4 + cup peanut oil
Place shrimp in a small bowl and cover with warm water
Add sea salt and let soak for 30 minutes to 1 hour
In a shallow bowl mix together corn starch, 1 tbls. each of white and black peppers, and garlic powder
Drain shrimp and lightly pat dry with a paper towel
Heat peanut oil in wok or large frying pan on medium heat until hot
Coat each shrimp in cornstarch mixture and place in wok
Cook until shrimp turns pink – turn halfway for even cooking – you may need to add more peanut oil if it gets too dry
Place cooked shrimp on paper towel to drain – Do not turn stove off
If pan is dry add a tbls. more peanut oil – add mince garlic and stir until it starts turning golden
Add fried shrimp back into pan
Add chopped green onions and stir til green onions turn bright green and starts to soften
Mother’s Day is fast approaching, this year it’s Sunday, May 10th. If you usually take mom out for brunch, lunch, or dinner I doubt it’s going to be the same this year. Most of us are still quarantined, whether self imposed or mandated. But really with the COVID-19 virus still running rampant and without a cure or vaccine in sight do you really want to risk mom’s health, and yours, by dining out?
So instead of going out how about giving mom a gift instead? And what better gift to give mom than something made lovingly for her. Here are some really unique ideas that kids can make with just a bit of help from dad, aunties, or older siblings. Moms can make them too for grandmas, friends, and aunties!
And if you’re like me and don’t really want to go out to shop for supplies there are some ideas here that you won’t need to. I’m sure you have some of the supplies right at home, you’ve probably been using them to keep the kids occupied these last couple of months in quarantine. If not, then just get creative and improvise! So go ahead, have fun and get the whole family involved!
This is one of my favorite gifts, my grandson Devon made it for me a few years ago.
His mom, my daughter, helped him make the hand print tree and write the poem. She then had it framed and Devon presented it to me on Mother’s Day. It proudly hangs in our family room. Here’s the poem, feel free to use it for your projects.
I love this idea of taking a picture in a frame, my daughter did this with her kids last fall!
This pic was done by Moose Photography, professional photographers and posted by Cool Mom Picks But you can DIY it!
You’ll need the same frame in 3-4 sizes depending on how many generations you want to include. Take a photo of the smallest member, the baby, frame that. Take a photo of the next, mom, holding the framed picture of the baby, frame that.
Continue with each generation, grandma, great-grandma, etc.
Be sure the pictures are all taken using the same background.
This is too cute!
This idea came from Tips from a Typical Mom.
Just take photos of your child in 5 different poses, each pose holding a letter to spell “Mommy”. Mat and from the photos. Easy peasy! Great gift for Moms and Grandmas!
These photo flowers in a card stand are adorable and easy to make.
Who doesn’t love peanut butter and chocolate? I don’t know too many people that don’t! I think peanut butter and chocolate are the two most popular comfort foods and when you put them together in a cookie you get something pretty amazing.
We all love these Ganache Filled Peanut Butter Bars. They a just so yummy! You can eat them fresh out of the oven, cold, with ice cream, or better yet fresh out of the oven topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream! Now that’s divine!
The best thing about this cookie is that it’s so simple to make, ok a bit fussy; but it uses CAKE MIX! Now that’s seriously easy! I think the fussy part is the ganache, but really if you have a saucepan and can melt chocolate you can make this, trust me! You want complicated and yummy? Try my Ganache Filled Bar Cookies, those are super delish!
Anyway here’s the recipe for this super easy, super divine Ganache Filled Peanut Butter Bars. Once you’ve tried them you’ll be making them often.
1 box Butter Recipe Yellow Cake Mix
1 stick butter – melted
1 cup Peanut Butter – creamy or crunchy that’s up to you
1 (12oz.) bag Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1/2 stick butter
1 Tsp. vanilla
Preheat oven to 325°
In the bowl of your stand-up mixer combine all the cookie ingredients
Mix at medium speed until well combined – batter should be thick
Press 1/2 of the batter evenly into an ungreased metal 9×13 baking pan
Combine first three filling ingredients in a small saucepan
Stir constantly until the chocolate and butter are melted and combined evenly in the mixture
Remove from heat and stir in vanilla
Spread chocolate mixture on top of the cookie layer you have in your baking pan
Gently press the remaining cookie dough on top of the chocolate layer
Bake for about 20-30 minutes
Using a pizza cutter (I love using a pizza cutter on cookie bars, it’s easier to make even pieces) or a sharp knife, cut the cookies into rectangular or square bars.
Store in airtight containers at room temperature or in the fridge if you like them cold.
You’re probably wondering what in the world Dalgona Coffee is. Basically it’s whipped coffee which you can serve hot or cold. I prefer it cold topped with whipped cream!
I know topping whipped coffee with whipped cream seems, well, over the top. But I love my iced coffee sweet and the whipped cream adds that extra sweetness my sweet tooth craves.
Aside from feeding my caffeine and sugar addiction Dalgona Coffee gives me a good reason to put my handheld immersion blender to good use. I’d gotten one for Christmas a few years ago and seldom get to use it, that’s probably because I forgot I had one.
Anyway if you don’t have an immersion blender you can use a hand mixer or whip it the gold old fashioned way with a whisk. Just be prepared to whisk for about 20 minutes or so to get a really good consistency. Or you could order your immersion blender from amazon by simply clicking here!
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In case you’re wondering Dalgona Coffee is a Korean Beverage which is named after a Korean sugar sweet. Most Dalgona Coffee doesn’t contain dalgona its name is derived from.
Dalgona Coffee became an internet sensation due to the Coronavirus Pandemic this year. People worldwide who are locked down (that’s like most of the world) posted videos and pictures of themselves on Social Media making this frothy concoction by hand. It probably also gave them their caffeine fix when running out to the neighborhood Starbucks or cafe isn’t an option due to strict lock down rules.
Anyway here’s the recipe:
3 Tbs. Instant Coffee Powder
3 Tbs. Sugar
2 Tbs. Water
Place coffee powder and sugar together in a small bowl.
Add water and mix vigorously with a whisk or if you prefer an immersion blender or handheld mixer.
Mix until fluffy .
Add ice cubes to your glass and pour enough milk until the glass is 3/4 full.
Top with the whipped coffee. And if you want sprinkle with cocoa powder, cinnamon, or top with whipped cream.
Serve chilled. Before you drink it mix the whipped coffee into the milk. This is super yummy!
Rugs are a great addition to any room. I feel that they tie the room together. That’s one of the reasons I almost always throw some kind of rug into every room, including my newly redecorated craft room/office. For that room I made this Crocheted Rug using the colors that I have in the room. By the way rugs are also a great way to hid stains on your flooring!
I made this Crocheted Rug for my craft room mostly to hide spots on the carpet, but also to tie the room together. It’s super easy to make and is a great project for beginners. I used the colors that coordinated with the canvas bins I use to store supplies.
The whole Crocheted Rug is made with Half Double Crochet stitches and the first row is a foundation HDC. I love using the Foundation HDC on larger projects. I feel that it shortens the time and the work because instead of making a very long chain then HDC stitches across you do both the chain and HDC at the same time. If you’r not familiar with the Foundation HDC check out this Youtube video to learn how to make it.
Once you make the foundation stitches the rest of the rugs is done in HDC except the row with the spaces in between. That one is made with HDC with 2 chains in between to make up the spaces.
To keep count of the number of rows you’ve done I recommend using row markers. I find for projects like this Crocheted Rug the markers make it easier to know where you left off or if for whatever reason you need to redo a row.
When you’re done with the rug you must block it before adding the fringes. Of course you don’t really have to add the fringes but I think add the finishing touches to the Crocheted Rug.
The Pattern is below or if you want a printable version click here!
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Medium weight 4 yarn in 4 colors of your choice
Crochet Hook Size I or 5.5 mm
Finished size is 39” x 21” without fringes
Row 1: 1st color (white) foundation HDC, the first 2 ch counts as first HDC , make 70 HDC total, turn
Row 2-3: ch 2 ( counts as first St), HDC across, 70 HDC, turn
Row 4: ch 2, HDC in next 14 st, change to 2nd color (Gray) and HDC in rest of st, 70 HDC – place marker if you want
Row 5- 14: repeat row 2
Row 15: ch 2, HDC in next 18 st, change to 3rd color (hot pink) and HDC in rest of st, 70 HDC – place marker if you want
Row 16 – 18: repeat row 2
Row 19: ch 5 ( counts as first st and first ch 1 space), sk 1 st, (for this first st it will look like you are skipping 2 because the ch 5 you just did is first st) *tr in next st, ch 1, sk next st*, repeat ** across, ending with tr, turn (35 tr and 34 ch 1 spaces)
Row 20: ch 2 counts as 1 HDC, HDC 1st tr, HDC in ch 1 sp, HDC in each tr and ch 1 sp across, ending with HDC on top of ch 5 on row 19, 70 HDC
Row 21: repeat row 2
Row 22: ch 2, HDC across until the last 6 st in row, change to 4th color (light pink), turn, 70 HDC
Row 23- 27: repeat row 2
Row 28: ch 2; HDC in next 24 st, change to 1 st color (white), HDC in remaining st, 70 HDC
Row 29 – 30: repeat row 2
Row 31: ch 2, HDC next 19 st, change to 2nd color (Gray), HDC in remaining st, turn, 70 HDC
ROW 32-37: repeat row 2
Row 38: ch 2, HDC in 57 st, change to 3rd color (hot pink), HDC in remaining st, turn 70 HDC
Row 39-41: repeat row 2
Row 42- 43: repeat row 19 and 20
Row 44-45: repeat row 2
Row 46: ch 2, HDC in next 40 st, change to 4th color (light pink), HDC in remaking st, turn, 70 HDC
Row 47 – 51: repeat row 2
Row 52: ch 2, HDC across until you reach last 12 st, change to 1st color (white), HDC to end, turn, 70 HDC
Row 53 – 54: repeat row 2
Row 55: ch 2, HDC in next 57 st, change to 2nd color (Gray), turn, 70 HDC
Row 56 – 62: repeat row 2
Row 63: ch 2, HDC in next 20 st, change to 3rd color (hot pink), HDC in remaining st, turn, 70 HDC
Row 64 – 65: repeat row 2
Row 66- 67: repeat row 19 and 20
Row 68 – 69: repeat row 2
Row 70: ch 2, HDC in next 49 st, change to 4th coLor (light pink), HDC in remaining st, turn, 70 HDC
Row 71 – 75: repeat row 2
Row 76: ch 2, HDC in next 30 st, change to 1st color (White), HDC in remaining st, turn, 70 HDC
Row 77 – 78: Repeat row 2
Row 79: ch 2, HDC in next 18 st, change to 2nd color (Gray), HDC in remaining st, turn, 70 HDC
Row 80 – 88: repeat row 2. Fasten off at the end of row 85
Add fringes on both ends
If you love this Crocheted Rug like we do and made one for your room share a picture with us. We’d love to see your rug!