Hen=Chicken? Not!

My kitchen adventures in the past have been limited to a few pasta dishes, a handful of desserts and maybe a few ulams (note: not the basic Filipino staples!).  These adventures were rare and far in between and usually just brought about by a sudden sumpong to cook or to impress my ex-boyfriend (now my hubby!).  That being said, I wouldn’t consider myself unable to cook, although my Nanay (maternal grandma) would probably think otherwise.  I am not at all intimidated by the kitchen. :D

Now that I’m faced with a totally new life role, that of a SAHMmy (stay at home mommy) or “domestic diva” as my cousin (in-law) Pinky likes to call our “kind”, for exactly a week now, I’ve been whippping up meals for my two babies: hubby and Abby.  And I’m proud to announce that I’m not doing a bad job at all, if I may say so myself. :D  Like a first time gym goer, I’m starting it slow.  I’ve only been cooking regular Pinoy dishes, nothing ala-Wolfgang Puck.  And thanks to YM, I am able to get instructions from my Mom in real time.  So far, I’ve been able to cook adobong manok, nilagang baka, sarshadong hito, ginataang kalabasa and pork afritada…all for the first time.  Today we had steamed prawns and a little adobong pusit (meant for tomorrow!).  They weren’t all perfect, I admit.  The adobong manok had a little too much vinegar (no thanks to Nora Daza’s recipe!) but I was able to do damage control just before the adobo turned to paksiw (note: hubby hates as in HATES vinegar!).  The potatoes in my afritada didn’t turn out nicely because I didn’t follow my Mom’s instruction of frying the potatoes first.  I guess I got a little too impatient with the frying and besides, I never liked frying because I was afraid to have hot oil splatter on any part of my anatomy!  But my sarshado and ginataang kalabasa turned out really well, thank you.  *Bow*  And so did the adobong pusit (even if there was very little black ink)!  The steamed prawns drowned in 7-up was a smash hit (kahiya naman kung steamed na nga lang e pumalpak pa!).

The biggest blow to my self esteem happened last Friday, because for lunch, I chose an ulam which required years of hands-on experience and cooking expertise…fried chicken.  I decided to face my fear of frying head on.  I simply took to heart my Nanay’s advise to turn down the fire or move the pan over to the unlit burners of the stove if I have to turn over whatever it is I’m frying.

And so, there I was, frying like an expert.  *Tongue in cheek*  I was like a boxer dancing around the wok and ducking with every loud fizzle while holding my wok spatula at arm’s length.  However hard I tried to avoid getting in contact with the hot oil, natilimsikan pa rin!  I still have the remembrance on my right hand.  When I was through frying a few pieces, I called my starving hubby and daughter to the table for lunch while I continued frying the rest of the pieces I had left.  I saw hubby having a hard time slicing the meat?  I asked if it was still undercooked?  Maybe a little, so back to the frying pan they went.  After a few minutes, the drumsticks and thighs were back at the table.  We were just so surprised at how the darned thing was still so tough, hard to chew and hard to slice.  So like freaking rubber!  I thought that it might be the Texas chicken Pinoys liked to joke about…chicken for sabong!  I fished the packaging the chicken came with out of the trash.  The label said “whole hen”.  Isn’t a hen a chicken?  I phoned my aunt in California to ask.  I then found out that hens were usually used for stews.  So hen doesn’t necessarily mean chicken!  Ayayay! :D  Poor hubby, probably not wanting to hurt my feelings, ate a quarter of a rubbery chicken, holding the drumstick by the hand and tried with all his might to take a bite after bite after bite!  Abby probably thought she was eating gum! :D  Majority of the chicken hen pieces are still in the fridge waiting to become part of maybe a salad or pancit.

By 4pm, we were starving, so we had sandwiches.  It was a good thing we were invited to a bar-b-q dinner at the house of Dondi’s former boss.

No chicken dance just yet! :)


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5 Responses to “Hen=Chicken? Not!”

  1. Pinky says:

    Think of the oil splatters (on your skin) as battle scars…after quite a few, you’d be so used to them you won’t even notice they’re there! Wear them proudly as they are proofs of your being a certified SAHMmy :) Welcome to the club!
    As for the hen/chicken fiasco, found this very interesting… For the life of me, I swear I would’ve been stuck in the same rut – hahaha! Sa Pilipinas naman kasi, no distinction masyado ang mga manok save for native, spring and regular, diba?
    Share naman the sarciado recipe – mukhang yummy :). Though I guess I’ll have to look for something other than hito since don’t seem to find a lot of catfish here…
    Looks like you’re slowly getting into the groobe of things there. Give it a few more months and I’m sure expert SAHMmmy ka na! Catch you later…more posts to come!

    hi pinks! i do think i’m settling into my new role quite nicely. :) i’ll email you the sarciado recipe. serious ka ba? ;) back home, we usually use tilapia for the sarciado. ang mahal ng isda dito. at parang mga mutant tilapia and hito sa laki! as in! pang family of four yata ang isang hito! :D nakakashock talaga! haha!

    Reply

  2. Pinky says:

    Oops, just realized I misspelled “groove” in my post… sorry! magkatabi kasi “b” at “v” sa keyboard e! Just needed to clarify… OC lang po! :P

    it’s ok, pinks! :) that happens to me all the time! ;)

    Reply

  3. chinois97 says:

    Congratulations on slowly becoming an expert chef. The sarsiado and gintaang kalabasa sounds very appetizing.
    I’ll teach you a secret that will surely make your life much easier next time. chicken = KFC!

    korek! chicken=KFC talaga! kaso, alam mo ba, the first time we ate at KFC here, Abby was looking for rice! Pinky is asking for the sarsiado recipe. Mukhang malapit ka nang makatikim. ;)

    Reply

  4. Meeyagirl says:

    congrats! pwede na pala kaming maki-kain sa inyo hehehe. eto tip, go get one of those splatter screens (sa dollar store $1 lang yun). laking tulong, pramis :D tapos pag nagp-prito ako, i wrap a kitchen towel around my arm, tapos ginagawa kong shield yung takip ng kaldero, hehe. o di ba rambo :D ako ang first ever naluto ko (without hubby lurking in the background) was tinola. sunog yung manok, mushy yung sayote at durog ang spinach, pero yummy pa rin daw sabi ni hubby. we really have to give it to them, mahal siguro nila tayo talaga! (or…para lang sila makatakas sa cooking chores, magtya-tiyaga silang nguyain kahit na ano mailuto natin, hahaha!)

    alam mo ba, muntik na talaga kaming bumili ng splatter screen nung sunday sa ikea. kaya lang sabi ko, nakasurvive naman ang mga ninuno natin na walang ganun kaya huwag na lang. haha! bibili na ako talaga! at nung nagpiprito ako, sinuggest din ni dondi na balutan ko ng towel ang kamay ko! tinawanan ko lang. me gumagawa pala talaga ng ganon! nyahaha! :D i agree, kakainin talaga ng mga asawa natin kung ano mang ang ihain natin sa mesa…huwag lang talaga ma-vinegar at ayaw talaga ni dondi ng suka! ;)

    Reply

  5. Vanne says:

    weng thanks to your blog, now i know that i have to first fry the potatoes for the afritada. last weekend i got so depressed beacuse my almost perfect afritada turned into a potato soup. At si hec di gaya ni Dondi… di sya nagtyaga sa luto ko :(
    Pareho tayo, I also use Sprite (nga lang) to steam the prawns pero malimit king crab legs from Costco… try mo din. Eto ang nae-enjoy ko dito kasi naman sa Pilipinas sobrang mahal ng king crabs. Can you email me the recipe for the guinataang kalabasa? :) talk to you soon….

    Baning! Mukhang hindi takot si Hec na hindi ka na magluto ulit ah. :D Wow, para namang expert ako ha, hinihingan ng recipe. Heehee. Sige, email ko sayo. Will try your king crab legs suggestion pero hindi ako makakabili sa Costco dahil hindi pa kami member. :D Baka meron sa Asian store na pinupuntahan namin. Talk to you soon! Would love to hear about Julianne’s latest antics. Nyahahaha! ;)

    Reply

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