Recipes, DIY, Travel, Lifestyle Blog of a Filipina Mom

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Preservative-Free Lechon Sauce | Mang Tomas Sarsa

Preservative-Free Lechon Sauce | Mang Tomas Sarsa

This liver gravy is one of Filipino’s favorite dips for the famous lechon. Other than it’s thick and meaty taste, it provides a flavorful mix to the fatty goodness of the lechon meat. It is also used as dips with lechon manok and lechon kawali. […]

Crispy Lechon Kawali | Crispy Deep Fried Pork Belly

Crispy Lechon Kawali | Crispy Deep Fried Pork Belly

Lechon Kawali is literally deep fried pork belly that is a favorite for special occasions across the Philippines.  It is served during fiestas (carnival season) or birthday parties and is mostly enjoyed with a kalamansi and soy sauce dip or Mang Tomas (a liver gravy […]

Pork Menudo | Pork Stew in Tomato Sauce

Pork Menudo | Pork Stew in Tomato Sauce

Pork Menudo is a Filipino Pork Stew recipe that is easy to make using these basic ingredients of pork, carrots, potatoes, hotdogs and tomato sauce. Influenced by our Spanish heritage it has become a staple dish that is paired with rice. In Spanish, this might be commonly known as estofado de cerdo. One thing I like about this dish is that it tends to taste better as a next-day meal as the sauce fully develops into the meat and vegetables. Cook this in large batches, then store it in the fridge and still enjoy this pork menudo the next day.



¼ kilo pork belly (sliced in cubes)

1 medium size potatoes (sliced to small cubes)

4 medium size carrots (sliced to small cubes)

2 regular size hotdogs (sliced)

1 medium sized bell pepper (sliced into squares)

2 chicken liver (alternative: 1 small can chicken liver spread)

3 cloves of garlic (chopped)

1 medium size red onion (chopped)

2 tablespoon tomato paste

½ cup tomato sauce

2 tablespoon white sugar

Salt and pepper to taste

3 tablespoons of vegetable oil

½ liter of water


  1. Using a pan, drizzle the vegetable oil, then sauté onions and garlic until onions turns translucent.
  2. Add the pork meat, then sauté again ‘til the pork meat turns white.
  3. Add the carrots and potatoes, stir for a minute. Then add the tomato paste, quickly stir in with the ingredients, then add the water, tomato sauce, salt, pepper, sugar. Stir and let it cook for 10 minutes over low medium heat.
  4. On a separate pot, boil the chicken liver ‘til cooked (roughly about 5 minutes), then remove from the water and transfer to a bowl.
  5. Mash the chicken liver, then set aside.
  6. Back to the pan, once the sauce has reduced, add the chicken liver and stir. You can also add more water if you want a thinner consistency of the sauce.
  7. Let it cook for another 3 to 5 minutes over low heat.
  8. Serve and enjoy with a bowl of steam rice.
Super Crispy Fried Chicken

Super Crispy Fried Chicken

    If there’s any type of dish that the whole world is soooo familiar with, it’s fried chicken! There are plenty versions allover the internet for that yumilicious fried chicken recipe. Your mom, your lola (grandmother), your sister, or your entire neighborhood probably has […]

Fern Salad (Pako Salad)

Fern Salad (Pako Salad)

I’ve always loved eating ferns (known as pako in the Philippines). Growing up in General Santos City, this type of plant is plentiful and I’m sure in a lot of other provinces in the country too. It grows on the mountain parts and riversides. A word of […]

Steamed Rice Cebu & Dimsum Break Version

Steamed Rice Cebu & Dimsum Break Version

Steamed Rice Cebu & Dimsum Break Version

This steam rice recipe is a very popular fast food in Cebu. It’s a famous dish of Harbour City and Dimsum Break owned by the same corporation. This steam rice is not your typical boiled rice, in fact, it is a saucy rice topping with a mix of pork and shrimp. It’s literally a complete meal served in a cup-bowl then paired with a Chinese Chili Oil.

I admit that I am addicted to their steam rice, and for so many times I have attempted to replicate this dish. So after so many attempts I think I finally cracked the code, aka “hacked” the recipe in a modest way of cooking. This recipe though doesn't have pork since there's none in my fridge, but please feel free to use shrimps for this dish.  So ladies and gents, here’s my version of Cebu’s Steam Rice.


½ kilo pork belly – bones and skin removed, sliced into cubes, then set aside the pork bones

1 ½ thumbsize of ginger – finely chopped

3 pcs. star anise

3 cloves of garlic – chopped

1 medium size red onion – chopped

½ flour

¼ cup fish sauce

2 tablespoon of sesame oil

¼ cup corn starch

1 tablespoon white sugar

¼ cup soy sauce (marinade)

¼ cup soy sauce (for sauce)

¼ cup green peas

1 ½ liter of water

1 tablespoon black peppercorn

Vegetable oil for deep frying


Fried Rice Mixture:

7 cups of cooked rice

¼ cup of soy sauce


  1. Marinate the pork in soy sauce for 15 minutes, then coat with flour.
  2. Heat the oil and flash fry the pork meat for 15 to 20 seconds. Set aside.
  3. Using a large pot, saute the onions and ginger for a few seconds then followed by the garlic.
  4. Add the pork bones from earlier and cook ‘til slightly brown. By the way, the more pork bones you have, the better the taste. J
  5. Add the fried pork from earlier. Stir for a minute.
  6. Then add the water, star anise, peppercorns, fish sauce, sugar, and soy sauce. Let it boil in medium heat for 15 minutes.
  7. Add the green peas.
  8. Mix the cornstarch with ½ cup of water, then add to the broth mixture, then slowly mixing all the ingredients ‘til the broth turns thick in consistency.
  9. Using a serving bowl, scoop a portion of the rice, then layer with the saucy toppings.
  10. And voila! Serve and enjoy this famous Cebu Steam Rice.

Fried Rice Procedure:

  1. On a separate wok, add a portion of the vegetable oil from earlier, then the rice. Stir for a minute or two.
  2. Then add the soy sauce, stir again for another minute, then set aside.

You can also pair this Dimsum Break Steam Rice with my homemadeChinese Chili Oil

Chicken and Spinach Fettucine

Chicken and Spinach Fettucine

If you’re on the go and need to whip up something delicious without spending hours in the kitchen, a pasta dish is one of the easy meals that you can prepare.  Another thing I like about pasta dishes is that you can literally add almost […]

Steamed Cabbage Rolls

Steamed Cabbage Rolls

My love for Dimsum started from the famous Dimsum restaurant in Cebu called Harbour City.  Which they also did a fastfood version of their restaurant named Dimsum Break. As much as I love their food, they are getting pricier and pricier. So I made my own […]

Steamed Tilapia

Steamed Tilapia

Tilapia for me is a tasty fish meat that deserves some good old kitchen magic that easily brings out its flavor without that “tilapia fishy smell”. With this Tilapia recipe, I’ve used herbs and spices to make this dish aromatic by simply steaming it.


1 whole tilapia roughly ¾ of a kilo (cleaned up. Removed scales and gills removed then gutted it out)


Fish Stuffing:

Salt (1/2 teaspoon)

Onions (medium size bulb sliced into chunks)

Ginger (2 thumbsize, sliced thinly)

Tomatoes (medium sized)

Kaffir Lime Leaves (3 pcs.)

Oyster Sauce (1 tablespoon)



Sugar (1 teaspoon)

Fish sauce also known as patis

Soy sauce (2 tablespoon)



Coriander or Yansoy (4 stalks)

Spring onion (3 sprigs)

Sesame oil (2 tablespoon)



  1. Mix the salt, onions, ginger, tomatoes, kaffir lime leaves, and oyster sauce to a bowl. Then stuff the insides of the fix with this mixture.
  2. T0 make sure that we thoroughly cook the tilapia, lightly cut the meat on both sides.
  3. On a separate bowl mix the fish sauce, sugar, and soy sauce. Mix until the sugar is thoroughly dissolved.
  4. Prep your steamer with ½ liter of water, then let it boil to medium heat. Once boiling carefully place our fish meat with a sizeable steamer plate under the fish. Make sure you have a plate that can fit to the mold ok? Then add the sauce that we did earlier, followed by the ginger and steam initially for 7 to 10 minutes.
  5. After the first 10 minutes, make sure to bathe the meat with its sauce so all that flavor seeps into the fish. Steam again for another 5 to 7 minutes or depends on the size of your tilapia.
  6. As you wait for the fish to be cooked, heat the sesame oil about 30 seconds to a minute. Then set aside.
  7. Once the fish is cooked, carefully remove the entire fish using a spatula then place it on a serving plate.
  8. Temporarily remove the ginger for a while, and then drizzle those delicious sauces from the steam earlier. Then drizzle that piping hot sesame oil. Then topped the ginger again, followed by the spring onions, and coriander.
  9. Serve while steaming hot paired with a freshly steamed rice.


Kinilaw | Filipino Ceviche

Kinilaw | Filipino Ceviche

INGREDIENTS: ½ kilo fish (I’m using a pre-sliced flying fish from my suking tindera at the local fish market, or use tuna or tangigue if you have that) ½ bulb of onions (chopped) 1 ½ thumb size Ginger (finely chopped) 3 green or red chili […]