Monday, 30 May 2011


A simple meal is made complete and special by the sweet ending. I have no qualms about buying dessert when I have no time to make one. This dessert, though, takes no time nor effort to make. It is as easy as 1-2-3 and requires no baking.

Friday, 27 May 2011


Roast dinners are always enjoyable both to eat and to cook. It is my "time off" from cooking because only a little time is spent actively cooking. When the joint is in the oven, I can relax for an hour or two doing something else or simply relaxing.

Tuesday, 24 May 2011


I have never ventured to cook big squids, although we eat the small ones quite often. I always worry about them being tough. 

The fishmonger always announces his specials at first instance and today it was squids. I took one look and shook my head. They were a foot long! He was very convincing and assured me that it didn't take long to cook and wasn't tough at all. It is overcooking that actually makes it tough. Persuaded, I chose two small ones (about 8" long). 

Friday, 20 May 2011


The summer season in the Philippines culminates in the month of May. A lot of towns celebrate their town fiestas, most of which feature a religious pageant called the Flores de Mayo, which literally translates to flowers of May. The prettiest young ladies dressed up in formal evening finery join a procession around the town.

Tuesday, 17 May 2011


The British summer is so short. It is always gone before you even know that it's there. When the sun shines everyone scampers out of their houses and goes outdoors. There's a park behind our house and it just springs to life the very minute the sun shines. We are lucky to have a bit of garden where we can sit and bask in the sunshine and laze about while enjoying the plants and the trees. 

When everything is so fresh and the weather is warm , it is so nice to sit outside and just eat something light and refreshing. Scrounging in the fridge yielded some leftover roast pork and a few cooked prawns and crab sticks. I could just add rice noodles and some fresh ingredients and bundle them up in rice paper sheets as spring rolls.  Then I could sit outside and relax while popping tasty little spring roll morsels in my mouth. Lovely!

Ingredients for the spring rolls:

8 cooked king prawns, split in half sideways
8 crab sticks, split in half lengthwise
cooked chicken or pork
50 gms. rice noodles
1 small carrot, shredded finely
lettuce leaves
coriander leaves
mint leaves roughly chopped
8 rice paper sheets


Put the rice noodles in a bowl and pour boiling water to cover. Leave for 20 minutes, then drain. Place one rice sheet (do this one at a time so they don't stick together) in a dish with warm water for 1 minute. Make sure both sides are wet. Take out of the water and lay on a board. Lay some lettuce leaves, then add 1/8 of the noodles, some coriander leaves, 2 pieces of the sliced crabsticks, some meat and lastly top with coriander and mint. Roll very tightly. Cut into four bite sized portions each. Repeat with the rest of the sheets. This recipe makes 8 rolls.

Ingredients for the sweet garlic and chilli dipping sauce:

2 tbsps. white wine vinegar
juice of 1 lime
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 red finger chilli, chopped
2 tbsps. of sugar
2 tbsps. fish sauce

Combine all the ingredients together and serve with the spring rolls.

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Friday, 13 May 2011


A lot of recipes have gone down in history yet still remain on trend. Buffalo wings is an old time classic yet still so popular. Unfortunately, not all are created equal. I am sorry to say that I have been disappointed too many times by these little niblets. Fried chicken wings doused with hot pepper sauce just doesn't make the grade.

Tuesday, 10 May 2011


Pasta can make a hearty and delicious meal in no time. When I'm busy and pressed for time, pasta is my reprieve. I'm sure it is for a lot of people, too. 

Friday, 6 May 2011


We celebrated Mothering Sunday here in the UK on April 3. This cake is for all mothers being honoured on Mother's Day on May 8. Happy Mother's Day!

Crema de fruta (meaning cream of fruit) is a Filipino trifle consisting of a sponge cake base, custard , fruits and gelatine. I converted it into a gateau because it makes a nicer presentation. This is my favourite cake and is the cake I most often make when there's an occasion. It is not too rich and actually is quite refreshing because of the fruit and the jelly. 

Tuesday, 3 May 2011


Satays are delicious morsels of well seasoned meats threaded on bamboo skewers and grilled over hot coals. It is one of Malaysia's ubiquitous street foods.  Eating satay for supper is one of the things I enjoy doing most when I'm there. It is not only the food itself but the whole experience of outdoor dining in the full Malaysian sense that excites me. The warm air, the cooking smells and the jovial mood all combine to make an atmosphere that cannot be recreated elsewhere.