That’s me pouring myself a glass of ice-cold coconut water after a nice early morning run. Idyllic, I know, but it comes with the perks of being home – everything can be so peachy. Finals ended a few days ago and I have one week to exhaust. That probably means I get to eat more, visit friends I haven’t seen in a while, eat some more, use the oven (!!!) and blog. This has been a long time coming.
The mint has been doing well, I guess. I broke off a rhizome last time for the good of propagation, and although it looks pretty fragile, I think this little one will survive.
The tarragon has never failed me. The dill – that which became a tree, is still pretty much the same. I can’t say the same for the celery though. Apparently that’s the only herb my mom uses, and after a few snips, it finally keeled over.
A few days before coming home I had a conversation with my mom and she asked me what I’d like for dinner (I took the late afternoon flight). Without any hesitation I told her “bihon!” (pancit/rice vermicelli), the way I know it’s supposed to taste. Then I followed it up by requesting estofado, something that I miss as well. These two are our party staples. When they are laid out on the table, it’s a special day. The pictures are for posterity; it was less elegant when I arrived the night before, but it was still a great meal. I ate like a boss.
The pancit has to be generous with the pork and chicken, with a savory quality that compels you to have seconds, thirds and fourths. The estofado (pork and chicken stewed in tomato sauce), needs to be fork tender. The sauce must be thick. Both are heavy, hearty dishes, but I just love to eat them together until my belly can’t take no more. Mama Eng (my aunt) never ever fails to impress.
And we’re off!