vegetarian kitchen: bark to basics

Dearest ______,

I saw my Tita Liz (a close family friend, like an aunt) post a mouth- watering dish on her Facebook wall the other day. It was, quite simply,

“Cucumber, tomatoes, and onions marinated in homemade vinaigrette”. Thumbs up.

Now have you ever wanted a pet so badly you end up dreaming that a puppy is licking your face, only to wake up with your own drool sliding down your cheek? A gross analogy, but that’s how the salad kind of made me feel. Sour- salty- crunchy haunted me as much as the Boston Terriers do in my dreams.

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Continue reading “vegetarian kitchen: bark to basics”

the how (part 2)

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Photo by Halfray (post- processed by Author)

Dearest ______,

Previously, on the how (part 1).

The moment you decide on throwing a wedding party (however small that may be), things are bound to get a little more complicated than, say, winging it in Vegas with an Elvis impersonator and a dinner- for- two. Here are some helpful points though, which afforded us a relatively complication- free intimate wedding party in Singapore:-

Continue reading “the how (part 2)”

the how (part 1)

Dearest ______,

Previously, on the why.

In Architecture and Design, we’ve long realised that a building or a room is merely an end product; an output. And one that evolves from a three or four year- long grind of design presentations, meetings, arguments, compromise, science, law, and what not.

Both of us being exposed to this kind of work, Jawo and I instinctively applied an almost systematic approach to our own wedding- planning (the wedding being another form of major output in our lives after all; its completion, only 10 months after the project proposal).

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In the same manner one tries to leave office work inside the office, we’d decided earlier on that we would keep work on our upcoming nuptials at bay. Simply put, we didn’t want one wedding day (even if it is ours) to take over our daily lives for the next 10 months.

Continue reading “the how (part 1)”

vegetarian kitchen: buttered asparagus and mushrooms

Dearest ______,

With the exception of the fried tofu which took a light year and a half to bronze over / cook, this was a relatively fast dish to prepare.

While most asparagus and mushroom combinations require the browner species of the loveable fungi (Button Mushroom, Portabello, Shiitake, etc), I got the white clamshell mushroom which is said to be better paired with seafood. For my mediocre tastebuds though, they looked lovely enough with the dish. For this, I used:

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Garlic, Mushrooms, Asparagus…
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… And fried tofu for much- needed protein.
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As soon as the diced tofu had shown signs of bronzing above all that heat and oil and time, I tossed all else into the sizzling pan- including butter, salt, pepper.

And that’s how I quickly made lunch for my work lunch box tomorrow. The end!

Love,

Karlita

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the why

Dearest ______,

I met Jawo when we were both 18 years old and studying Architecture in Manila:

He, the ill- advised Alpha Male that he was; I, the misguided feminist.

Owing to our opposing (and mostly unreasonable) views on many things at that point, we were quite a match made in hell. There were many a ruined parties / drinking sessions we wrecked by some form of full- blown argument at the end of the night. This was to the frustration of our helpless friends, including my very polite part- Japanese roommate Miko.

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Our weird frenemy-ship was also to our own confusion, because while we were very annoyed by each other’s individual conceits, we found that we also liked being around each other for odd frequencies of time. Mind you and our understandably suspicious ex- partners, we never went out on “dates”.

We’d only go out to watch punk/ ska/ metal/ swing gigs together (“Hey, do you wanna catch the Brass Munkeys at 70’s Bistro tonight? Oh, and I’m also outside your apartment.”);

Or buy bootleg merchandise from the pirates of Recto (“Cynthia and the Swing Set or Squirrel Nut Zippers?”);

Or literally just sit down by some pavement somewhere to talk about god-knows-what (“Let’s see if we can finish this fat- ass cigar by morning.”);

Or drink at bars;

Or go to band practice, etc.

We found out soon enough though, that more important than all the misdirected cockiness we had as extremely foolish kids, we also had very similar old- school, almost rigid belief systems in the more essential things in life (i.e. principles on family, real friendship, faith, etc).

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A little after my 28th birthday last year, Jawo and I decidedly decided to get married. This comes 11 years after our first meeting, 11 years comprising of:

– 4 years of being classmates in College

– 3 girlfriends (plus a slew of plain janes)

– 3 boyfriends (plus a few adolescent heart breaks)

– 5 years of being together together

– 8 years of being the Ringo Starr to his John Lennon

– 97% Ups and 3% Downs

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As to the Why of it all, comedienne Mindy Kaling sums it up quite sufficiently:

“In Shakespearean comedies, the wedding is the end, and there isn’t much indication of what happily ever after will look like day to day. In real life, shouldn’t a wedding be an awesome party you throw with your great pal, in the presence of a bunch of your other friends? A great day, for sure, but not the beginning and certainly not the end of your friendship with a person you can’t wait to talk about gardening with for the next forty years. Maybe the point is that any marriage is work, but you may as well pick work that you like.”

Love,

Karlita

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lunch, boxed 3.0

Dearest ______,

My Mesclun salad with some homemade vinaigrette.

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My mixed vegetables in tomato sauce (vegetarian Kaldereta, if you will) with hard boiled egg for protein.

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Jessie’s homemade Rotti Prata with curry sauce.

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Love,

Karlita

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vegetarian kitchen: the most authentic spanish omelette

Dearest ______,

From the people at BBC Good Food, I got this really easy recipe for making a Spanish Omelette using the following ingredients:

– potatoes

– onion

– extra-virgin olive oil

– chopped flatleaf parsley

– eggs

It’s so easy I’m not even going to tell you how I did it, in “words”. Here’s an easy diagram!

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If you Google “Spanish Omelette images”, you’ll find that my attempt at a Spanish Omelette does not look like how they say a correct Spanish Omelette should look.

Uhm. Aheeheehee. I might have done something wrong different along the way…

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But tell me now- isn’t this the most authentic Spanish Omelette you’ve ever seen?

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Love,

Karlita

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