Today, one of my house mate celebrated his 24th birthday. A few days ago, he was planning to set a lunch party in our humbled flat and he wanted to invite our pinoy colleagues, but his main concern was his tight budget. And so to show my camaraderie(“pakikisama”), I volunteered to do the “marketing” for him(“pamamalengke”) and ultimately, to do the cooking. Yes, it's Eben to the rescue.
Asking for his suggestions, we agreed upon the following:
Originally set to S$50 (about PHP 1,500).
The Preparation and Cooking
Saturday morning, my other house mate accompanied me to the nearby market to buy the stuffs that we'll be using for the next day's event. We bought some vegetable, meat, spices, etc. Unfortunately, even if we bought the cheapest ingredients, we failed to remain at the S$50 budget margin, and we had to allot an additional S$30 to cover all other expenses. This includes the aluminum trays, paper plates, plastic spoons, forks and cups.
Saturday afternoon, I was preparing the bread rolls. The recipe is easy actually. Flatten the tasty bread, put some slices of chicken franks and cheese, roll it, dip it in egg wash, and dip it in bread crumbs (the one that's used in making tempura, the katakana in the packaging says, “Friers”). I did this to save time for the next day, since this spaghetti-compatible finger food took plenty of time to prepare but lesser time to cook.
I also prepared the chicken for the pancit, two chicken thighs boiled until tender.
Chopped some garlic, onions, red bell pepper, baguio beans, cabbage, carrots, and kintsay. I also prepared the meat for the adobo by slicing it into chunks.
Sunday morning, first to cook was the pancit. I had a hard time mixing all the ingredients together because the “kawali” (like a wok) that I'm using is a bit small, but still I managed to cook all 1 kilo of bihon and canton. I added some deep-fried fish balls, too. (yummy!)
Through the help of my other house mate, I let him fry the bread rolls which I have prepared yesterday.
With regards to the adobo, the birthday celebrant's girlfriend did the cooking, but still with my assistance and supervision (how 'bout that? haha). We just let the meat boil in garlic and soy sauce, waited until tender, then added some potatoes, and garnished with sliced boiled eggs.
Spaghetti was cooked last. I'm a Filipino and we make spaghetti the Filipino way. Yeah, with hotdogs and a little bit of sweetness. Hehe. I Just mixed some fresh tomatoes, tomato sauce and tomato paste, let it simmer, and the sauce is ready!
People started coming in at around eleven in the morning. Some brought their laptops with them (to play Warcraft and copy some downloaded movies and mp3s!), a colleague was watching her favorite koreanovelas, I on the other hand was playing O2 Jam, and then later on had a poker session with the others.
We also had some soda, cakes (4 birthday cakes mind you), and non stop booze.
However, I over estimated the quantity of food to serve and so we had leftovers. On a positive note, this is a good thing for we don't have to buy breakfast, lunch, and even dinner for the next day. Haha.
Seriously, this is my first time to cook for fifteen heads. I was so relieved that everybody seems satisfied with what they had devoured. (I hope).
I'm kind of tired right now but at the same time proud of myself for this accomplishment, well if that's the proper word to call it. My bed is calling me but I still need to press some of my clothes for this week. Today I wore a toque, tomorrow I will need to wear my thinking cap again. Oh yes, another week of brain cells exercise. U_U
On to the next birthday party!