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52 Noodles home cooking

Noodle #1: Koka’s Laksa Noodle

I… overslept last Sunday and today was… I got busy, I daresay. I apologize for the delay but don’t worry! Our first noodle is here!!

The featured noodle for week no. 1: Koka’s Laksa Singapura Flavor noodle.

As some of you may know, Laksa’s my favorite noodle ever. So there’s a reason why this is the first and why this one caught my attention. God. This noodle had me by the red globs of oil on its broth. But that’s just the start. There’s a reason why this is the first noodle I featured.

Where to get it
I’ve seen Koka packets like these in groceries such as Landmark, Shoemart and Rustans. They are sold around 34-38 pesos, depends on which grocery you go to.

Preparing this noodle was easy. Instructions at the back were in clear English and granted that you have no problem reading English (or Malay) you should have no problem preparing this noodle. Sort of.

The noodle for Koka’s one of those noodles that get really soggy after the 3rd minute. I suggest you follow the instruction on the packet and leave it in the boiling water for 2 minutes. After that, turn off the stove and then add the soup packets.

There are two packets for this noodle. One has the seasoning and the chilli oil and the other is the coconut powder. Oh yes, this is one noodle that didn’t forget that all good laksa should come with the fresh flavor of coconut milk.

Once I added the seasoning and the coconut powder, I was immediately caught by the fragrant smell of curry and coconut. It really took me back to Singapore although once I bit some of the noodles, I had to remind myself that this ain’t the real thing and was just a good compensation for it. If you didn’t cook your noodles right, the noodles might be too soggy for you to enjoy the bite of noodle.

On the other hand, the broth is spectacular. I was too eager to have a taste of the broth that it was a test on my patience to try to cool the broth down with my breath. The laksa broth may not be as thick as those sold in stalls in Singapore but it has a nice refreshing zing to it. It might be due to the hints of lemongrass and kari leaves. The curry flavor was not too prominent on this one but the coconut flavor is and it’s quite amusing how it slightly thickened the broth. If you added too much water, it won’t taste as good.

The chilli only hits you when the broth has coursed through your throat and it has this leftover warmth enough to tickle you to a cough. With just the broth, it was almost as good as the real thing. Almost. When you realize that you don’t have the tofu or cockles or shrimp or fish cake or the slivers of chicken, it’s almost heartbreaking.

I must add though that while this had a good laksa broth, this ain’t the best yet and was just good enough to let the tongue remember what laksa even tastes like.

If you’ve got time to visit your grocery this week, it might be fun to try out this noodle. One thing I can say is that for it’s price, it’s a good cheap way to have a taste of laksa. If you add some fishballs and fried tofu in it, it’s almost like the real thing!

52 Noodles home cooking

Taste Test: 52 Noodles at Punked Noodle

Last year, I said to myself that as soon as the new year starts, I’ll start on something that would get me to write more often in my blog. In a way, it will encourage me to share a lot of things with you folks and it would make my cousins abroad really envious of the things I leisurely have here in Manila.

Kidding aside, I realized that for a site that declares its love for noodles… I rarely talked about noodles. I know. My bad. ^^;; But I am a noodle person and I love noodles and I though I should really do everything in my power to share this love with you folks.

Hence, the 52 noodles at Punked Noodle.

This is my valiant effort to share my weekly instant noodle or pasta experience with you people. Yes. You heard me. This year, I’m going instant. It’s easy on my wallet and well… don’t worry, since I only eat 52 noodles, I’ll try not to stack up on the MSG.

What makes this easy is rather than going to restaurants, I’m going to groceries and hunt 52 awesome noodles for to try. These noodles should be well within our reach and I will also consider the cost of getting them (unless if they were gifts to me. I can’t do much about that.) as well as their flavors. This is awesome for my highly impoverished wallet and also easy to fix when I’m much too lazy to really cook something up.

I hope this will also encourage you to try out the strange noodles that line up our groceries. If you have any suggestions for me (from the cheapest to at least the pricier brands) I’d be more than happy to try them. If you want to give me the gift of instant noodle, I’ll be happy to receive them as well! Just leave me an e-mail!

I’ve pretty much done my noodle tasting ahead so that I’m ready to post by Sunday. The first noodle is… close to one of my favorite noodles ever.

Cooking with friends home cooking

Toshikoshi Soba and a still memorable new year

This may be a month too late but it’s still a very fond memory to me. I started my new year the same time as the Japanese and this year, in the spirit of my love for noodles, I had my first Toshikoshi Soba. 年 越し蕎麦 (toshi koshi soba) may look just like your regular soba dish but it actually represents the ending of the year and the start of the new. Japanese would usually have a bowl of soba the minute midnight strikes. It’s similar to how Filipinos should have pancit. The toshikoshi soba’s a symbol of longevity that we may endure the coming year.

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home cooking Recipes

Another approach to the noble tilapia

I’ve always been fond of Tilapia. It’s not exactly the poor man’s fish but it is a versatile fish for dishes.

You can fry it crisp, grill it, cook it in coconut milk, and in this case, steam it.

Steaming tilapia was something we do in case we get tired of eating our fish fried. It is a healthier alternative and the flavor of the fish is heightened by the ingredients in it. I for one love cooking it like this because it’s nice to suck the juices out of the tilapia head. And the beans add a bit of biting saltiness that matches quite well with the rice. More to that, prep time and cooking time takes less than 20 minutes. Beat that Rachel Ray! >w<)v

Anyway, on to the recipe!
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home cooking Recipes

Re-make of Korean Beef Stew

Hee hee hee!! I think the curiosity for cooking Korean Beef Stew at home was when a friend and I were driving home on a hungry night and I found myself drooling over the thought of eating a nice warm broth of Korean Beef Stew.

Now, I got one of these cookbooks compiled by Good Housekeeping and saw a recipe for Korean Beef Stew. I’m never a beef buyer because I can never seem to cook it right. I go as far as ground beef and sirloin or breakfast strips. More than that… nu. But today, the flavor of spicy broth on a sweltering afternoon compelled to get some beef shanks and cook at a nice slow pace while I read some Kundera.

See, there was this fast food stall in Landmark named Kimchi

Food trips

7100 tastes at Bistro Filipino

Lapulapu and prawns in coco-lambanog sauce

This season’s a great time to experiment with different kinds of cuisine, but a recent experience in Bistro Filipino taught me that if you have 7100 islands to get different flavors to get from, wouldn’t it be best to experiment with our local cuisine?

At Bistro Filipino, chefs Rolando Laudico, Myrna Segismundo, and Jill Sandique showed us the 7100 different flavors that we can taste.

See the 7100 flavors the chefs have prepared for us!

Food trips Foodie Features

Meeting the Beef Noodle King

CK 032

There was a time when my late afternoon entertainment meant this cartoon called Cooking Master Boy. This Japanese anime showcased the story of Mao as he goes on a quest around China finding different methods and secrets to perfect his cuisine. In his journey, he met amazing people, some of which bore titles such as Dumpling King or the Prince of Mapo Tofu. Back then, I used to poke fun at the idea of meeting people like these, ‘Iron Chefs’ who are kings and masters of their chosen recipe. Until recently, an amazing experience by Chowking’s doors has shown me that it can happen, there are indeed cooks who become kings of their recipes.

A few weeks back, ((Yes, I have a terrible backlog)) I had my Cooking Master Boy experience when I crossed the Beef Noodle King of Taiwan, Chef Liu Zheng Hsiung of the Lao Dong restaurants. One thing interesting about this guy is he won first prize in the Traditional Beef Noodle Competition for his clear soup beef noodle. What is more interesting is Chowking is planning to bring in his epic beef noodles to the Philippines.
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