Sunday, April 26, 2009

My Very Own Birthday Blowout

It was quite timely for one of my favourite food blogs to do an exposition on the concept of “Blowouts” in the Filipino psyche. As Tangled Noodle clearly explained we Filipinos feel compelled (by some unknown force) to treat family and friends to a feast on our birthday. And we don’t just call them birthday dinners. We actually refer to such feasts as “blowouts” (for the high probability of blowing out a big hole through ones wallet).

I certainly am no exception to this Filipino rule. So, GFC or not, I already knew I would be having my very own birthday blowout come April.

The original plan was for me to take friends et al to my favourite Vietnamese restaurant at West End. But after discussions with friends they’ve unanimously expressed how much they prefer my food to any other restaurant.

I was touched! To be honest, I was quite blown away by that confession. Who refuses a meal at one Brisbane’s best Vietnamese eateries? And a free one at that!

I was more than flattered of course! That basically left me with no choice but to cook…

Planning the menu was never difficult. But with the assistance of friends it just became a lot easier. I just asked them what they wanted me to cook. I still made the final decision, of course, to make sure everything is coherent and complementary.

The requisite Filipino Lechon (sa Hurno). Nobody says no to this including the kids…

Paksiw na Pata (Stewed Pork Knuckles with Lily Flower). The sweet & sour taste sure wakes up ones tastes buds

Hainanese Chicken Rice – requested by my good friend Patrick. Never thought everyone else would be as keen but it was the first dish to run out that evening!

Lumpiang Sariwa (Hubad) – Literally translates as “naked fresh spring roll” for the conspicuous absence of any form wrap to hold the filling together. I made this one especially for Dang. It came with a “peanuty” sauce which I forgot to take a photo of.

Pancit (Sotanghon) – to symbolise long life, a requisite in any Filipino birthday celebration (no photo..i forgot)

Barramundi with Ginger & Shallots – Ronald requested this one for a lighter, healthier option that evening

Chocolate Mud Cake – courtesy of Dang

Ensaymada – an alternative to the mud cake

Fresh fruits – alternative to the cakes

Breakfast the morning after!


Tangled Noodle said...

Happy Birthday! Now, THAT's what I call a blowout! Everything looks amazing, especially the chicken, lechon and ensaymada but that paksiw is outstanding. That's one of my most favorite dishes but I haven't tried making it myself b/c I haven't made or can't buy proper Filipino-style lechon. I am going to be craving this so badly now . . .!

Thanks for the mention and I don't need to ask if you and your guests had a wonderful time. If only I could have a slice of that mud cake. Yum!

The Beancounter said...

Thank you so much TN!

My apologies for not including the link to your blog...I've fixed that one now...

"Paksiw na Pata" is a bit different to "Paksiw na Lechon"... main point of differentiation is the Lily flower...i'll do a post on both sometime in the future..

Btw, i think we still have some cake left...:)

Joelen said...

Happy Happy Birthday! What a DELICIOUS way to celebrate and now I'm hungry, wishing for my birthday to come!

The Beancounter said...

Thanks J!

No need to wait for your birthday...just cook up a storm then enjoy... :)

Manang said...

Belated Happy Birthday!
Wow, you certainly had a blast!
Hindi ka ba napagod sa birthday mo kakaluto/bake??? haha!

The Beancounter said...

Thanks Manang! Pagod but it was all worth it!