Monday 26 December 2011


Now that Christmas is over, we look forward to celebrating the coming of the new year. In the Philippines, it is again a very big celebration. We are very superstitious folks and we believe in beckoning luck through observing certain rituals. As with Christmas, the table is groaning with food on new year's eve. We call the new year's eve meal Media Noche which simply means midnight. A table full of food on new year's eve is believed to bring abundance throughout the following year. Twelve kinds of round shaped fruits should be on the table to bring prosperity for the next twelve months. Noodles are also served for long life. 

Unlike the noche buena (Christmas eve meal), the media noche is not a formal sit down meal. We just nibble all night long as we wait for the clock to strike twelve. Fireworks play a major part in the celebrations to ward off evil spirits. We briefly sit down at the table at midnight just to go through the motions but by this time we are all already full. It is usually just for the family because it is a tradition to be in one's own home when the new year arrives. 

Pasta is always a part of the Filipino celebration. It is not like Italian pasta at all. Our pasta dishes are very much Filipinized to cater to our tastes. One favourite cold pasta dish is macaroni salad. It is actually similar to American macaroni salad except it has pineapples in it. We love that sweet and sour flavour in everything. Cooked pasta can sometimes look flat but when mixed with a vibrant mix of ingredients it definitely looks pretty festive. This salad is a good way to rehash the odd bits of ham, cheese and chicken (even turkey) that's leftover from Christmas. The dressing I used has mayonnaise, cream cheese and pineapple jam. It is good on its own and goes well with any other dish that's on the table. On new year's eve, most families serve barbecue pork skewers and this salad is just the perfect side dish. 

I want to thank you all for visiting and reading my posts. I look forward to sharing more recipes this coming year. A happy and prosperous new year to all of you! 

Ingredients for the salad:

300 gms. of dried macaroni
1 carrot, diced and cooked
20 green beans, cut into squarish pieces and cooked
1/2 c. diced cooked ham
1 tin of pineapple pieces, diced
1 chicken breast, cooked and flaked
1/2 c. diced cheddar cheese
dressing (recipe below)

Cook the macaroni until al dente. Drain well and leave to cool. 

Drain the carrots, green beans and pineapple pieces. 

Mix all of the ingredients together before mixing in the dressing. Chill before serving. 

This will serve 8-12 people.

Ingredients for the dressing:

1 1/2 c. mayonnaise
2/3 c. cream cheese
1/3 c. pineapple preserves
1 stick of celery, chopped
3 tbsps. sugar
1 1/2 tsps. salt
1/2 c. grated cheddar cheese
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper

Mix all of the ingredients together before mixing with the salad ingredients.

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1 comment:

  1. looks yum...with cream cheese! Happy new year!


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