Chicken Wings with Oyster Sauce

This recipe is good! The dish reminds me of mom’s cooking.

Yum! Yum! Yum! Yum!

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WA @ PSS: School is starting

These few days, I have been attending staff meetings, training and helping out at PSS. It’s great to be back at school and on my first day of staff meeting, I was so overwhelmed by the joy of the teachers when they met one another. It’s like…they have not seen each other for ages and the sense I got from them is -they love one another. Everyone is willing to go the extra mile to help and that includes the principal and the head of schools. They are very…hands-on.

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Besides attending the meeting and training, I was tasked to help the three kindergarten teachers set up the new place. They have relocated and fixtures and decor need to be put up. My word! The many things that they have to do! I was happy to be able to help a teeny weeny bit. this. And more to do!

My initial thought? I felt blessed to be a teacher in a country in which the government places emphasis in the area of education. We have ample opportunities to be trained during in-service and be offered with various forms of scholarship. Our teachers are not faced with the threat of being axed when the funds get low and we are blessed with good facilities in schools.

That’s just my thoughts after 3 days with them. There probably will be more revelations as I stay with them longer. We’ll see.

Spanish Fricco (Beef, Potato and onion stew)

Finally, I have the time to explore new dishes. The past few days have been spent in the school helping out the teachers and by the time I reached home, I could only afford to cook familiar dishes. Thankfully, the hubs was willing to take over the cooking (his fried rice!) and household chores. Feels blessed.

Anyway, the next few dishes would more or less come from┬áThe Essential New York Times Cookbook by Amanda Hesser since I’m going through this book now.

I welcome this stew on a very busy day. It’s easy – just put inside the oven and let it stew! The preparation is simple too, making this dish a busy working day’s meal.

But the problem is according to the recipe, you would need two Dutch ovens. One big and one smaller obviously so that the latter can sit inside the bigger one. I’m not sure of anyone who has two Dutch ovens; maybe this is the norm in US? Anyway, since I have only one small Dutch oven, I just place all the ingredients in it and place it inside the furnace for the same period of time as advised. When the cooking broth looks like a wreck with rivulets of cream streaming through the beef juices, it is a success (according to the author).

Well, to me, the dish came out fine. I appreciate the natural juices that come from the beef. I’m not sure how it will turn out if I follow the recipe to a tee. If you know, do tell me. =)

Serves 6

2 pounds boneless beef shoulder
4 large white potatoes
1 1/2 large yellow onions
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 tbsp unsalted butter
4 bay leaves
1/4 cup heavy cream or creme fraiche

1. Heat the oven to 350F. Cut the beef into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Flatten each slice between sheets of waxed paper to 1/4 inch thick.

2. Peel the potatoes and cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Cut the onions into 1/8-inch-thick slices.

3. Have ready 2 Dutch ovens or heavy pots, one that’s large enough to hold all the ingredients and a larger one that will hold it comfortably. Cover the bottom of the smaller pot with one-quarter of the potatoes. Season with salt and pepper. Dot with 1 tbsp butter. Add a bay leaf, and cover with one-third of the beef and one-third of the onions. Season again. Repeat this 2 more times. Cover with the remaining potatoes, season once more, and add the remaining bay leaf. Using your palms, press down on the ingredients to compress the mixture. Pour in the cream.

4. Cover the pot, set it inside the larger pot, and fill the larger pot with enough boiling water to come halfway up the smaller pot. Transfer to the oven and bake until a knife inserted in the layers slips right through, 1 1/2 to 2 hours. Lift the smaller pot from the larger pot, to make serving easier.