Friday, 11 December 2009

Special Anniversary Dinner - Rib Eye Steak and more

We celebrated Lito's birthday and our 10th anniversary at home with a special dinner. For some it's like an ordinary dinner but since I prepared them all, with love and affection naks, it's already special for us. My morning and afternoon was spent in the kitchen. Good thing, our internet was not working, I was not disturbed by YM or skype hehehe.

I prepared the following. I know the lasagna doesn't match the rest but my kids wanted pasta and the noodles were leftover from miggy's project so I had to include it. Here's the menu:

Southwestern Corn Chowder
Rib-Eye Steak
Buttered Vegetables
Chocolate Cake

I am a stay-at-home mom now and I guess I have shifted careers from quality, information security incidents and environmental impacts as metrics to cooking, cleaning, taking care of the kids. What I'm doing in my previous careers is still applicable into what I'm doing now. I still have the Policies (Rules for the kids), Operating Procedures and Work Instructions which I have converted into lists to do, to buy, to cook and prepared the recipes as my WIs. My main process now is cooking and of course the KPI (Key Performance Indicator) would be how my kids and my husband like the food I prepared. Their reaction and how they would ask for more is my greatest achievement. Here are some of the WIs I am following for the dishes I prepared.

Southwestern Corn and Carrot Chowder

I wanted a soup that is nutricious and all my kids will love. At first, when I was looking at the recipe I found at Metro newspaper, I was hesitant to try because the ingredients are unfamiliar to me like Picante Sauce but later I found out the it's also a salsa. We still have Tostitos salsa as dip for the chips but I used it in this recipe. I have the knack for substituting ingredients and I was glad it still turned out good-tasting. I used Spam instead of the chicken breasts and used cheddar cheese because that's what we only have in our kitchen.

4 boneless skinless chicken breast halves, cut into 2 cm cubes
1 medium onion, cut into thin wedges
1 tbsp. vegetable oil
2 tsp. cumin powder
2 cans chicken broths (I used 2 chicken cubes dissolved in 800ml water)
1 pack frozen corn (I used fresh ones, scrape around 6 corns)
3 pcs carrots, chopped
3/4 cup Picante Sauce/Salsa
1/2 cup chopped sweet red pepper
1/2 cup chopped green pepper
2 tbsp minced fresh cilantro
2 tbsp cornstarch dissolved in
2 tbsp water
shredded Monterey Jack cheese


1. In 3 qt pot, cook chicken and onion in oil until chicken juices run clear.
2. Stir in cumin. Add broth, corn, carrot and picante sauce; bring to boil.
3. Reduce heat, cover and simmer 15 minutes.
4. Stir in peppers and cilantro.
5. Combine cornstarch and water until smooth; stir into soup. Bring to boil. cook and stir 2 minutes or until slightly thickened.
6. Spoon into bowls and top with cheese.

Rib-Eye Steak

I haven't done any steak before, I just eat them. Rib Eye and other cut of beef is expensive in the Philippines. I had my festival of steaks when I was in Texas last year and I remember the saying that when you asked for A1 sauce that means the steak served is not good. My friends also told me that they only rub salt and pepper to the meat before they grill them. I researched a bit for a marinade because I want my kids to like the meat and the only way to do that is to make them tasty-tasty and not all-meat tasty. Here's what the Work I for the Rib Eye Steak (from

1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup sliced green onions
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 1/2 pounds beef rib eye steaks
1.In a large resealable plastic bag, combine the soy sauce, onions, brown sugar, garlic, ginger and pepper. Add the steaks. Seal bag and turn to coat; refrigerate for 8 hours or overnight.
2.Drain and discard marinade. Grill steaks, uncovered, over medium-hot heat for 8-10 minutes or until the meat reaches desired doneness (for medium-rare, a meat thermometer should read 145 degrees F; medium, 160 degrees F; well-done, 170 degrees F).

Meat Lasagna

The recipe called for 3 different cheeses but I only used Parmesan and instead prepared a white sauce to be put on top of each layer of the meat. The white sauce is one small can of all-purpose cream and half of the Philadelphia light cheese that I found in our ref. My kids loved it. That's what they only ate that night and of, course the cake. They ate the steak the next day with rice.

1 pound ground beef
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 cups water
1 (15 ounce) can tomato sauce
1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
1 (1 ounce) envelope onion soup mix
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon pepper
9 lasagna noodles, cooked and drained
2 cups small curd cottage cheese
4 cups shredded mozzarella cheese
2 cups grated Parmesan cheese
1.In a large saucepan, cook beef and garlic over medium heat until meat is no longer pink; drain. Stir in the water, tomato sauce and paste, soup mix, oregano, sugar and pepper. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer for 30 minutes.
2.Spoon 1/2 cup meat sauce into a greased 13-in. x 9-in. x 2-in. baking dish. Layer with three noodles and a third of the cottage cheese, mozzarella, meat sauce and Parmesan cheese. Repeat layers twice.
3.Cover and bake at 350 degrees F for 40 minutes or until bubbly and heated through. Uncover; bake 5-10 minutes longer. Let stand for 10 minutes before cutting.

Will post photos later.

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