Dinner over the past two days has taken on some form of a theme. The other night, it was lemons. Last night, honey was the star at the dinner table.
I wanted to make beef pares ever since I encountered this article on Spot.ph. I’ve actually never had pares before, which is a sticky situation when you’re cooking something. I just followed the recipe here although I did substitute the beef with chicken (just because I wanted to finish up the chicken before buying any more meats) and the sugar with honey.
I suggest to skim the fat off while the chicken simmers so it would not be too oily. I also separated some of the broth before I thickened the sauce to make a soup. Paired with garlic rice topped with caramelized onions (makes a world of difference instead of just frying the onions with the rice and garlic), it seemed like a pretty decent interpretation of beef pares. I still have no idea what pares is supposed to taste like but dinner was pretty good.
I also wanted to make some kind of dessert. My sweet tooth has been neglected recently. I encountered a recipe for tapioca pudding on Heart of Light (I love you, Rachel!) and it looked amazing. It was perfect because it does not require the use of an oven, which I currently do not have and it lets me use up our overflow of tapioca (sago, for the rest of us).
I followed the recipe, with the addition of a little bit of chocolate powder and it turned out to be a huge, blobby mess. The tapioca disintegrated into mush. My theory is that the tapioca sold here does not require any soaking. After all, the instructions in the package said to just dump the contents in boiling water.
With the first version rejected, I made a second batch using honey as a flavoring. I tweaked an old custard recipe and it turned out to be just what my sweet tooth ordered.
Honey Tapioca Pudding (makes four servings — two, if you like sweets)
What you need:
1/4 cup of honey
1/4 cup of tapioca
1/4 cup of cornstarch
1 egg yolk
1 cup of milk
1 tablespoon of butter
Cook the tapioca in boiling water until it becomes fully transparent. Stir it occasionally to prevent sticking. Drain the tapioca and let it cool once it is cooked. Dissolve the cornstarch in the milk and bring to a boil. Put in the honey — you can add more or less depending on how sweet you want it. When the mixture starts to thicken, add the beaten egg yolk. It helps to temper the egg by adding a little bit of the hot mixture into the egg before putting it back in. This prevents the egg from being scrambled. When the mixture starts to look like custard, take it off the heat and put the butter in. Fold in the tapioca and chill before serving.
If I had shot glasses, I would have served these up in them for better presentation. In this reality, I just ended up spooning the pudding in juice glasses.