Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Seasonal Fruit Spread

I was feeling so helpless watching the news feed about Typhoon Ondoy. After all, the streets that got flooded: Katipunan Avenue, EDSA, C-5 highway, all these were familiar routes to me. Why, we just passed through them coming and going to visit friends, relatives and the Trinoma Mall in Quezon City. So, when I heard 5,000 folks were waiting out in Trinoma, I was feeling sad. Not because they were in danger, but because Trinoma has all the things you would want for the day and night: spa, movies, restaurants, hair salon, atrium, all kinds of American, European and Native shops. This quickly became our favorite when we vacationed in July and August. That was just a month ago, and to hear that folks are now wading in a waterworld, this was so hard to believe. The rains were non-stop and in six hours, the lakes were formed, where formerly were streets, roads, beautiful gardens, and now: mud, bent lamp posts, and vehicles that should be on the ground, now are floating. Floating like play cars in a bathtub. This not playing. This is real life.

So, instead of feeling helpless, and continuing to repost calls for help on Facebook, thank God for Facebook, which helped saved lives, and thank you for the inventors of Facebook - this social networking tool brings people, resources and quick ground floor photos and news. I decided to make some fruit spread and bake my standard banana bread recipe.

Here is the fruit spread:

15 nectarines, cut up into small pieces
3 whole calamansi fruit, washed, uncut
1 basket of green figs, cut up in halves
a handful of blackberries
a handful of raspberries
Juice of one orange
1/2 cup water, 1/2 cup sugar - make into a sugar syrup, by boiling together
2 drops of peach liquer

Cut up the nectarines. Add the calamansi fruit, add the cut up nectarines and figs. Boil over slow fire, and fully attend to it. It is almost therapeutic, to just keep stirring the mixture, smell the smells of fresh, organic, seasonal fruits. Then, as the mixture thickens, add the sugar syrup. Taste it. If too sweet, add the juice of an entire large orange. Keep stirring, until you have the consistency you want. I want mine not too thick, but spreadable. I added the blackberries and raspberries for color. Amazing to see that blackberries when cooked lose their black tinge and almost became deep ruby red.

You see, this is why I put so much labor of love in my cooking, I watch and observe the colors change, my sense of tastes and smells satiated and my oh my, a new surprise for me -- I looked at the fruit spread, and knowing we will not consume all the fruit spread, I decided to use half of the fruit filling into my banana bread.

So, as I finished the fruit spread, I set aside the banana bread. I poured the mixture into the small loaf pans, half of it only, then, spread the fruit fillings, and then, poured the next half of the mixture over it. Oh my, oh my, the smells of banana, mixing in with the fruit spread really made one feel like this is still summer. It is not summer. In fact, today is Sept. 29, 2009, but there are still floods and typhoons. So, in celebration of the seasons, to keep my attitude going to help out other folks by posting relief information in Facebook, I completed my task for the day: organic nectarine, fig, berries spread. Do you have a cute name for it? Let me know...

The verdict: My hubby finished up half a loaf to himself. Maura, my cleaning lady was so happy with the loaf she took home for her husband and her to eat the next day. I did the same, devoured half a loaf with my morning juice.

Check the juice recipe in my blog - that was created by my hubby. A lot of what we eat, we create recipes for, it is just part of good living, I think, to interact with your senses, to put your mind into it, to put masipag technology in your cooking, and sprinkle it with lots of love for others to be satisfied with. After all, it is about enjoying life! And you cannot enjoy life without food!

PS: I do not like posting photos of the created recipes, for I want you to imagine them, and be persuaded that there is nothing better than creating your own experiments with good food dishes! Sometimes, I do, as my mentees will suggest, please post our photos and the food. So, I make an exception. Next time, I will post farmer markets' produce.....


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