I Am A Crook...I Mean A Cook...

This year, I don’t even feel like baking anything. I used to enjoy baking Pistachio Cream Cheese Fingers, a recipe my friend had shared with me years ago. Two things hinder me: my family and I are trying to eat healthier and secondly, the time that I would spend baking, I would rather spend with my hubby and child or whoever will drop by for a visit. Christmas shouldn’t be a burden. It should be a meaningful celebration of remembering what our good God had done to restore our relationship with Him through Jesus. It should be about restoring wounded relationships, destroying walls and building bridges instead. It is not easy. Easier said than done. But when you believe in what He can do for you and I, then we can. Because of His grace.

Right now, I am enjoying the nice glow of sunrise, a welcoming break from all those rainy days. Though I’m thankful for the rain He gave! Sipping a cup of coffee, I think about you all in prayers. May you have a wonderful Christmas, returning to the Lord and then, sharing warm memories with your loved ones. May your new year be a complete start of having a closer walk with the Lord. I am not perfect myself. But I know that His faithful love and mercy always awaits for anyone’s return. Always welcomes anyone. Always accepts. Always forgives.

My hubby volunteered to cook stuffed bangus or milkfish. It is a kind of fish you can buy from Asian markets. We bought the boneless and he will mix the flesh with veggies like carrots, peas, garbanzo beans and seasonings and stuffed it right back. I had attempted to make some pickled green papaya few days ago and I thought this would go great with the stuffed milkfish. I had also put them in jars and gave them as gifts. He will also make some “menudo”made from diced beef with veggies and we’ll just eat them with either rice or bread. We opted for the bread so we passed by a nearby bakery and got some rolls.

For dinner, I thought of making some “pansit” well known Asian noodles. Opting for healthier version, I’ll just use chicken and will try to give some to one of my neighbors, whose wife has not been feeling well for quite some time now. 

I am a CROOK….I mean a COOK sometimes. So, if you’re willing to try this recipe, here it is…But I try to cut down on salty stuff so I use low sodium chicken broth. I also don’t like to use pork but it’s your preference, I’ll include it anyway. The rice vermicelli noodles, you can get them from Asian markets or Asian aisles from your grocery stores [I hope].
Photo Credit

Pancit Guisado [Sauteed Rice Noodle]:

14-16oz. rice vermicelli noodles
I cup boiled chicken breast, flaked
1 cup shrimp, shelled
1 cup boiled pork meat, sliced thinly
1 tablespoon vegetable oil [I use olive oil]
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 medium sized onion, sliced
1-1/2 cup fresh green beans, sliced thin diagonally
1/3 of a whole cabbage, sliced thinly
2 carrots, thinly sliced into 2-inch strips
3 stalks celery, sliced thin diagonally
3-4 cups chicken stock
Salt and pepper to taste
Lemon slices

Soak the noodles in water until soft. Drain and set aside. In a non-stick pan over medium heat, sauté garlic in oil until lightly browned. Add onion. Stir for 1 minute. Add the chicken meat, shrimp, pork, green beans, cabbage, carrots, celery and salt and pepper to taste. Cook for 5-8 minutes until vegetables are crisp-tender. Remove and set aside.

In the same pan, add the chicken stock. I use a little bit of low sodium soy sauce [approximately 3-4 tablespoon or adjust to taste]. Let boil and add noodles. Simmer in medium heat until liquid is absorbed and noodles are cooked. Gently stir in 2/3 of the vegetable mixture taking care not to mash the noodles. Transfer  to a serving platter and top with the rest of the vegetable mixture. Serve with lemon wedges. Enjoy!

Merry Christmas and A Happy New Year To All of You! May God bless you and protect you and give your heart's desires according to His will. Love to all of you, my friends...Thank you for your friendships, love, sweet thoughts, prayers and encouragement. May we remain a blessing to each other, to help us all endure and finish this journey we are all in. Safely. Completely. 
All posts/composed songs copyright by RCUBEs.


The Attacker (5/15/09)

The sun was just peeking from the Eastern skies. Ephesians 6:12 [37 kb]

Out in the prison’s yard, some huge Sheriff’s buses were illuminated by the soft glow coming from the lights all over from the tall lamp posts. Their engines were turned on, warming up, before the buses would take the inmates to the different courts where they would have their trials.

Orange-uniformed men were lined up in pairs, joined together with handcuffs and chained, forming a long line. They already had their breakfast and had their morning medications prior to going to courts. Some were fidgeting, as they waited to board those buses.

All of a sudden, all hell broke loose! Two men were engaged in a fight, using weapons they made secretly for a while. Deputies called for help on the radio, both for custody back-up and medical staff, as well.

When the air was cleared and the other inmates were secured, one man was down on the floor. He sustained multiple gashes but two of them were deep. One cut was vertically etched from his left ear going down to the jaw line. The other dangerous cut was horizontal on his left neck, close to the jugular vein. Pool of blood dripped all over the floor. Holding his bleeding neck, he was pointing at the other inmate few feet away, being guarded by the other deputies.

The other man being accused was not hurt. There were no lacerations nor any other signs of trauma. He was obviously very agitated as he was being questioned by those deputies, while the medical staff started treating the other man on the floor. They cleaned the wounds and controlled the bleeding. That man was sent to the nearby hospital.

When the investigation was finalized, it turned out to be that the “downed man who was accusing the other inmate” was the attacker and the other one who didn’t have injury was the one attacked. The deputies found out that it was the second attempt to attack the unhurt man. Both attacks on him failed. He was well-prepared after the first attempt on him, that when the second attempt was done, he was able to defend himself and ended up injuring his attacker severely.

[Source: NLT Bible ]:

We also have an “accuser of the brethren.” Satan and his army of demons are the enemies of God and of everything good.

“Because God’s children are human beings – made of flesh and blood – Jesus also became flesh and blood by being born in human form. For only as a human being could he die, and only by dying could he break the power of the Devil, who had the power of death.” –Hebrews 2:14

Because of what Jesus had done [dying on the cross], we, who live in constant fear of death shouldn’t be afraid anymore. Jesus had freed us from that fear so we can live for Him. When we belong to God, we know that death is only the portal that leads into “eternal life”. [“Thank You Lord!].

Paul warned us, too that we also battle against the evil forces of Satan, who is a vicious fighter. But to be able to withstand their attacks, we must depend on God’s strength and use every piece of His armor. We face an army whose goal is to defeat Christ’s church. When we believe in Christ, they become our enemies. They will try any device to turn us away from the Lord.

Fear not! For God has provided His supernatural power to defeat Satan and his army, through His Holy Spirit within us. So, arm yourselves with God’s armor.

Let us be strong in the Lord's mighty power. Let's put on His whole armor to resist the enemy's attacks: put on the sturdy belt of truth and the body armor of God's righteousness. For shoes, put on the peace that comes from the Good News, so that we are well-prepared. We will need faith in every battle as our shield to stop the fiery arrows aimed by Satan and his army. Let us put on salvation as our helmet, not forgetting the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. Let's pray at all times, on every occasion in the power of the Holy Spirit. We must stay alert and be persistent in our prayers for all Christians everywhere. [Ephesians 6:10-18].