you complete me

There is only one thing in my kids’ mind when you ask them about their ultimate comfort food… it’s lasagna. (See below if you want to know my lasagna recipe). And what is lasagna without cheese, lots of cheese? My fridge is never without cheeses… cream cheese, quick melt cheese, cheddar and mozzarella.

Cheese makes everything delightful. It is so FLAVORFUL, so good, so addicting. It is so versatile too. It could be an appetizer, a dip, mixed with desserts and great for baking/cooking. Just thinking about it makes me want to grab for some bread right now and make a grilled cheese sandwich. Cheese… you complete me. Yum!

How about you? What’s your ultimate comfort food?


My lasagna recipe. (I’m sure i already blogged about this but i’m sharing it again)

As a busy mom, i oftentimes make shortcuts when cooking. So i use ready bake lasagna sheets and store bought spaghetti sauce when i cook the ground meat. I sometimes make use of mozzarella sheets if i have them. It’s not often available so grated mozzarella is the next best thing. If out of mozzarella or on a budget? I also make use of quick melt cheese.

For the white sauce. Just melt butter in pan, add some flour, stir to cook and slowly add milk. Stir to prevent lumps. Season with salt to taste or in my recipe i just drop a pork bouillon cube to add more flavor. You may add some cream too for that creamier texture. Bring it to boil with constant stirring to make it even more glossy.

For the ground meat. I usually buy a combination of pork and beef. Based on my own experience, purely ground beef results to an oilier meat sauce. Put ground meat on pan, add some salt, chopped garlic and onion. When cooked, stir in store bought spaghetti sauce. Give it a dash of italian seasoning, some salt if needed and a little sugar to balance acidity. Simmer and set aside.

For layering. Just alternate white sauce and ground meat on a baking pan adding some mozzarella if you want an ooey-gooey lasagna but quick melt cheese will do just fine. I bake it for about 40 minutes with the pan covered in foil at first to prevent burnt cheese topping then i remove the foil covering and bake it just a little more time until the topping has a golden glaze. (Tip: To test if your pasta is cooked, just pierce it with a toothpick or a chopstick and you will know and feel if it’s done.)

Cool… serve… and enjoy! Best paired with toasted french bread with garlic parsley butter spread.

Boots: Mom… did you just say LASAGNA?
Mom: Yuppp! Oh! I thought you’ve just eaten ’cause you still have food stains on your mouth, hahaha… 

fun things to do on a rainy day

I love rainy days. While some people hates it, i do find it relaxing. Besides it is an excuse for staying longer in bed. But why is it that sometimes we feel sad when it rains? Must be the effects of the sound of the rain as it trickle on the window, or the gloomy surroundings that the dark clouds bring. But for me, rain only means one thing…. FUN and FOOD.

So, to set the mood up, here are the things that i usually do on a rainy day.

  • cook a favorite dish …

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“I just pan seared porkchops which i seasoned with mixed herbs and sea salt. in oil and butter till golden brown on both sides and finished cooking them in the oven. Result: moist porchops, fork tender and so delish… “

  • listen or watch the rain as it falls.. not only it is mesmerizing but also relaxing
  • eat comfort food.. sweets or desserts are on my number one list

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“Just add milk. or in this case oats milk to a bowl of chickpeas… ah so divine…” 

  • watch my kitties as they curl up in a ball to stay warm, or just groom each other.

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“Lickety-lickety lick… Kuting is definitely loving it.”

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“cute kitty puddle… “

  • take photos of raindrops on flowers .. yes, doing this all the time.
  • dance under the rain.. no age limit, just have fun doing it.
  • read magazines over a cup of hot coffee
  • or maybe all of the above…

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“Hey Tiger, wait for me… i will take a nap too.. gotta get our fleece blanket first.”

Cool weather plus comfort food plus the simple luxury of the softness of my couch plus the warmth of my nap buddy Tiger equals pure bliss. Happy Sunday!

ooey gooey lasagna

I don’t usually follow the NUMBERS of exact measurements when i cook and just rely on eyeballing rather than measuring. I often tweak recipes to make it applicable, simple, easy and fast without sacrificing the taste.

Last weekend’s dinner was lasagna. I opted for the bake ready lasagna sheets instead of the ones that need to be cooked. For the meat sauce, i cooked meat in 4-cheese (white cheddar, Parmesan, Romano, and provolone cheeses) spaghetti sauce. For the classic bechamel sauce, it’s butter, flour and milk and my own version of adding cream for that smooth and creamy texture and instead of salt I season it with a bouillon cube for that savory taste. Another trick is to sprinkle shredded quick melt cheese in between layers and of course for toppings because the kids’ definitely love cheese… lots of cheese.

I love the bits of caramelization of the cheese toppings. I bake it with foil and remove it the last 10 to 15 minutes for that soft browning which absolutely gave it texture and added flavor.

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Here’s what it looked like on close up.

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A slice of lasagna with that ooey-gooey cheese… yum!

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Kids’ verdict… delicious 🙂

it’s saturday and i’m craving for pasta

Pasta is one of my favorite dishes to cook. They are so versatile and so simple to cook. There are a ton of ingredients to choose from to make a pasta dish and the possibilities are endless.

Today i am sharing with you my own version of Salmon and Spinach Pasta. Sounds delish right? Yes it is. My kids loved it. This is how i prepare it:

  • Cook pasta according to your liking.
  • In another pan, pan fry salmon slices in olive oil. Don’t forget to season it with salt and pepper before frying. Don’t overcook. Once done, shred into bite size pieces.
  • For pasta sauce, melt some butter in pan, add a bit of flour. Once cooked, slowly add milk and cream. Season with salt and pepper. For my secret ingredient i usually add chicken cube to make the best tasting sauce. Stir continuously until it thickens then add the shredded salmon and spinach leaves. Save some shredded salmon for toppings.
  • Once sauce is prepared, add in the cooked pasta, blend well and serve.

And here it is… presenting my own version … creamier, chunkier and loaded with more spinach which i love.

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my own version

My inspiration came from this dish which i have tasted in one of the popular restaurants.

restaurant version

restaurant version

Happy Saturday to all.