Noche Buena recipes from Chef Aracama

As you can see, there have been no food and resto features for a long time. Am not about to blame Typhoon Yolanda, but some friends were really serious when they urged netizens (like me) not to post food photos while hunger was prevalent in Tacloban & neighboring areas. So be it!

Anyway, this is not about food for the sake of eating. Will be sharing some recipes which you can use for the family’s all-important gathering for either the Noche Buena (during Christmas Eve) or Media Noche (during New Year’s Eve) this year. It is only three days before December after all!

This was from last Saturday’s class at The Maya Kitchen which I announced previously. Even though weekends are sacred to me because of family time, I didn’t pass up the opportunity to attend the class because the recipes up for demo by noted restaurateur and Chef Fern Aracama looked really good. Besides, I’ve been loving Spanish food lately.

Here was the line-up of dishes (from left): Malunggay/Spinach & Mozzarella Dip, Insalata Uvato which is the chef’s signature salad with honey balsamic vinaigrette, Grilled Ensaymada Media Noche Style, and the Bunuelos (fritters) with Warm Chocolate Dip. The Potato & Chorizo Soup was covered with the cast iron red Staub cookware which I was eyeing to be in my Christmas wish list :)

Maya Kitchen set up

The Potato & Chorizo Soup uncovered. Rich, filling & comforting.

Potato & Chorizo Soup

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Holiday recipes from chef Sandy Daza

The warmest Merry Christmas greetings to this site’s readers and friends! So how was your celebration? We spent it in Manila like we’ve done through the years. The traffic and the shopping were toxic.. at one point I wished I was in another time, or another planet. Anyway, here’s my half-finished table setting last night. I love Christmas coz of the decor we have to play with!

christmas at home 2012

Christmas is truly a big event in the Philippines, but from what I know New Year’s here is an even bigger eating affair. We take out all round objects and the family table epitomizes the land of plenty with food, food, food all around.

A few weeks ago, I attended the cooking class of chef/restaurateur Sandy Daza at The Maya Kitchen and am sharing some recipes here and in my food blog.

Bread Pudding

First, there’s bread pudding with custard sauce which is the answer to all the leftover bread from Christmas Eve. This also makes a great potluck dish. How to make:

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A Cafe Juanita Christmas at The Maya Kitchen

Dr. Efren 'Boy' Vazquez

On December 8, Saturday, meet the man behind one of Manila’s in-demand restaurants, Cafe Juanita as he shares his cooking secrets in a class at The Maya Kitchen from 9am to 1pm. Dr. Efren ‘Boy’ Vazquez will share his one-of-a-kind recipes for traditional Filipino Christmas dishes such as Rellenong Manok, Lengua Estofado, Baked Fresh Salmon with Mayo-Sigang Dressing, Bringhe, Pinoy Ratatoy, Halayang Mangga Tart and Pinsec. Knowing how to prepare these dishes is sure to make your family’s Noche Buena memorable this year.

More on Dr. Vasquez:

“The retired doctor has singlehandedly created a culinary sensation with his Café Juanita franchise located at West Capitol Drive, Barangay Kapitolyo, Pasig. His penchant and passion for cooking he got from his family which hails from San Isidro, Nueva Ecija. Recipes passed on from his mother and grandmother are either served in their original glory or are updated to the modern times.

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