SPICEGASM.COM My travel tales and food hunting

June 28, 2010

Pancit with dark soy sauce ( Hokkien style )

Filed under: Food,Philippines,Recipe — Alex @ 7:10 am

After making the Cantonese style pancit, I still got the same ingredients available. So I decided to make a different version of pancit and this time around, I’m gonna make the Hokkien style pancit.

Most of the Chinese that I met in the Philippines are mainly Hokkien. Most of their ancestor comes from the Fujian province in South of China and settle in the Philippines. I know for a fact that the SM owner, Mr. Henry Sy is from Xiamen. I love listening to the Chinese Pinoy speaks among themselves as you can hear a mixture of Hokkien language and Tagalog mix together. Pretty much like how the Malaysian born Chinese do it too.


  • Pancit 100 gm – Soaked in water and drained
  • Chicken breast or pork ( slice to bit size )
  • Petchay
  • Cabbage
  • Carrot
  • Squid/Prawn
  • one teaspoon soya sauce
  • 3 spoon of dark soy sauce
  • chicken broth/water
  • salt to taste
  • pepper
  • crushed garlic 2 clove


  • heat up 3 spoon of oil
  • add in garlic, meat and squid
  • add soy sauce and salt
  • add vegetables
  • stir fry and add dark soy sauce
  • add half cup of chicken broth
  • add in noodles and mixed well
  • let gravy thickens in high heat
  • add pepper and serve on plate

This Hokkien noodle will taste better if cook with pork lard. Since I do not have any pork lard, I did not get the taste that I desired. I will have to make some pork lard in the future.

June 27, 2010

We call this Pancit Canton in Singapore/Malaysia

Filed under: Food,Philippines,Recipe — Alex @ 12:43 am

Filipino really enjoys Pancit Canton. Is customary to celebrate your birthday at least with pancit canton. Most likely this is a Chinese culture adopted by the Filipino to symbolize long life. Pancit in Tagalog means noodles and the long strand of noodles symbolize long life. Canton is most likely from the word Canton province or Cantonese. So to translate directly Pancit Canton would be Cantonese Noodles.

Pancit Canton in Philippines is normally dark in color and is used as ulam ( dishes ). Other parts of Asia normally eat it as the main course without rice. In Singapore for example, noodles are normally eaten in breakfast or supper. It can be eaten during lunch or dinner too if you want some alternatives rather than eating rice all the time. Since the Filipino loves rice so much, Pancit Canton without rice is not a complete meal.

Other part of Asia, when you mentioned noodles Cantonese or Canton style, the gravy is almost white in color. When the gravy is dark, we normally call it Hokkien style noodles. So here is a picture of a Cantonese style noodles I made the other day.

Here is my recipe for my version of Cantonese style noodles.


  • Pancit ( 100 gm )
  • Chicken breast or pork ( slice to bit size )
  • Petchay
  • Cabbage
  • Carrot
  • Squid/Prawn
  • 1 Egg
  • one teaspoon soya sauce
  • one teaspoon oyster sauce
  • chicken broth/water
  • salt to taste
  • pepper
  • corn starch
  • crushed garlic 2 clove


  • Do not soak Pancit in water
  • Heat up cooking oil ( one teaspoon )
  • Put pancit in wok and fry it a little
  • Once the pancit is slightly crunchy ( does not have to be thoroughly crunchy ) set it aside
  • Cooking the gravy
  • Heat up 2 tablespoon of cooking oil
  • add in garlic and salt
  • add in meat and vegetable
  • add in soya sauce and oyster sauce
  • stir fry ingredients to mix well
  • add in chicken broth 2 cups
  • once is boiling hot, add in corn starch to thicken gravy
  • off the fire and break and egg and add pepper
  • scoop gravy and pour on top of noodle

Frying the pancit

Noodles Set Aside

Is important not to break the egg while the fire is hot as we do not want the egg to be lumpy.

So here you go guys, this is my version of Cantonese Noodles. Tomorrow I will make some Hokkien Noodle. In fact it will looked more like Pancit Canton.

June 24, 2010

Garlic Shrimps Thai style

Filed under: Food,Philippines,Recipe — Alex @ 11:40 am

While I was visiting my friend in Bangkok, we always go to this restaurant near Soi 10, Ratchada. The restaurant is always packed with customers and is open till late. We always hung out there for it’s great food and drink Heinekken beer till 4am. One of my friend’s favorite dish is garlic prawns. We always refer the dish as garlic goong. Shrimp in Thai language is goong.

I think we patronize the restaurant almost every night for 2 weeks and we still do not know the name of the restaurant as the signage of the restaurant is written in Thai. We just refer it to the goong placeĀ  between the 2 of us. I bet everybody has their own version of garlic shrimp but I’m going to cook based on that Goong Place version.


  • 300 gm of shrimp or prawns ( shelled and leave the tail tip )
  • 5 cloves of garlic and chopped into tiny bits
  • one onion and sliced thinly
  • 2 teaspoon dark soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoon fish sauce ( patis )
  • one teaspoon brown sugar
  • one teaspoon coriander powder ( marinate with shrimp )
  • one teaspoon of black pepper
  • spring onion leaves and cut to 3 inches


  • heat up 3 tablespoon of cooking oil
  • add in onion and garlic
  • add in shrimp and stir fry to mix well
  • add in dark soy sauce and follow with fish sauce
  • add in sugar
  • add in spring onion leaves and black pepper
  • mixed it well and ready to serve

I think my version of the garlic goong is at least 80% as good as the one in our favorite restaurant. Too bad my friend is not around to confirm this. But I’m pretty sure he will think the same :).

June 23, 2010

Beef with bitter gourd

Filed under: Food,Philippines,Recipe — Alex @ 12:37 am

Made a beef dish yesterday for dinner and I’m pretty please with the result. As usual, I always have a tough time thinking of what to cook daily. Eating out is the same as well, sometimes you just do not know what to eat. After many days of spicy food, today I will just tone down a little on the spice.

Last week a friend of mine from Singapore came to Manila for some business meeting and he was kind enough to email me and ask me if there’s any ingredients I needed from Singapore. I just asked him to get me a bottle of cincaluk, small bottle of dark soy sauce and a small bottle of sweet soy sauce that are not available in Manila. Being the cool dude that he always is, he bought me 2 bottles of cincaluk, big bottles of the dark soy sauce and sweet soy sauce. Thank you very much Kevin for the nicest gestures.

Lets go on to our cooking tips on this beef dish shall we.


  • half kilo of beef slices really thin
  • one bitter gourd cut into semi moon shape
  • 3 slice of ginger
  • half bell pepper
  • one bunch of spring onion leaves and cut into 3-4 parts
  • one onion cut into 4
  • 3 cloves of garlic crushed
  • one teaspoon of sugar
  • corn starch ( one teaspoon )
  • sesame oil ( half teaspoon )
  • salt to taste
  • 2 spoon of light soy sauce
  • 5 spoon of dark soy sauce
  • one teaspoon of black bean sauce
  • white pepper


  • sliced beef are to be marinated with sesame oil, light soy sauce and one teaspoon of corn starch
  • set aside


  • heat up 5 spoon of cooking oil
  • stir ginger, garlic and onion
  • when fragrant, add in marinated beef and stir fry
  • add bitter gourd
  • add in dark soy sauce, black bean sauce and oyster sauce
  • add half cup of water
  • stir fry and mixed well
  • add in sugar
  • stir fry and when sauce thickens, add in spring onions and pepper
  • mixed it for a while and it is ready to serve

As a kid, I hate bitter gourd. Most kids I think hate it but as I grew older, I began to appreciate the taste of bitter gourd. It’s bitterness is not really like medicine but has some distinct flavor. I do not know exactly the word to use to describe the taste, but the Chinese refer it to “golden bitterness”, almost like ginseng.

If you go to a Chinese restaurant and most of the ingredients are prepared, this dish will not take the chef more than 5 minutes to cook it. The secret lies in the really big fire from the stove and the skill of the chef to “work the wok”. You need strong wrist and quite sometime to master this “work the wok” skill. I bet I will burn all the food if I were to use a Chinese restaurant stove with really big flames. But for now, I will just be contented with my dish fried on a normal house hold kitchen stove. And I think my pictures are getting better…hahahaha.

June 21, 2010

My version of chicken adobo

Filed under: Food,Philippines,Recipe — Alex @ 5:47 am

Every country has their own popular food. In the Philippines, adobo got to be one of the most recommended food if you are a foreigner. Just like in Singapore, if you have foreign friends or business associates visitng for the first time, you will normally utter these questions – “Have you tried our famous Singapore chicken rice?” or “have you ever tasted the popular Singapore Chili Crab?”.

Is very much the same all over the world as most of us take pride in our food. Most of us take more pride in our national food compared to our government. I seldom hear people condemn their food but I cannot tell you how many times I hear people talk bad about their own government. Since this is not really a politic blog, lets not go there and we stick to what we know best – FOOD.

As I mentioned earlier about ADOBO being popular in the Philippines, I’ve been asked countless times and offered many times as well to taste this dish. So after tasting few variety of ADOBO, I would like to offer my version of my adobo mixing some spices that I am familiar with, together with other ingredients that is popular in the Philippines. I’ve got a friend from Cebu who is crazy of this dry squid that he always fry and then eat it with vinegar. So I am going to use this dry squid as one of my ingredients for my version of adobo.

Ingredients for my version of Chicken Adobo


  • Half chicken cut ( adobo style )
  • button mushroom
  • 2 star anise
  • 3 dried chili
  • 1 dried squid ( toyo pusit ) – correct me if I’m wrong
  • 3 cloves garlic crush
  • 2 onion cut into 4’s
  • 3 slice of ginger
  • half chili pepper
  • dark soy sauce ( the sticky kind – not so liquid ) – 4 teaspoon
  • light soy sauce – 2 teaspoon
  • sugar – 2 teaspoon
  • salt – one teaspoon
  • oyster sauce – one spoonful
  • sesame oil – few drops


  • Heat up 5 spoon of cooking oil in wok
  • add star anise, gralic, onion, ginger and dried chili
  • Add in chicken and mixed well
  • Add oyster sauce, dark soy sauce, follow with light sauce sauce
  • Add dried squid
  • Add dried chili, mushroom and bell pepper
  • Add salt and sugar
  • Make sure all this are cook in the wok in low heat at all time. This is just to mixed the ingredients and chicken only
  • When is well mixed, transfer all from wok to a pot
  • Continue to slow cook in the pot and add few drops of sesame oil
  • By cooking this way, chicken will be more tender compared to cooking in the wok
  • when chicken is cook, add pepper ( powder ) and mixed it well
  • Ready to be serve

To be honest, this is my first attempt to make this dish. I am quite please with the outcome and the star anise and dried squid really make the gravy taste good. Noticed that I did not use vinegar as I want the taste to be slightly different. The dried chili gave some spiciness to the taste and I normally refer it to the “OOMMPPHHH” factor. Also what makes it different is the dark soy sauce. Is not so common to find dark soy sauce in Filipino kitchen but it is available in some SM departmental store. I hope you enjoy this post and happy cooking as always.

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