Apple Cider Vinegar

apple cider vinegar bragg label

Ignoring the hearsay rules, I poured some apple cider vinegar in glass of instant orange juice. Still tasted like juice, only more sour. I drank it after breakfast.

The hearsay rule. Dilute apple cider vinegar in plain water and drink it early in the morning, before breakfast. I obviously violated two.

Mama bought an apple cider because of the old same reason. She heard from someone that it is good for the health. Healthiness is really a good selling point.

I remembered the scene few years ago. A clever businessman was making a fortune by selling kaong vinegar. What she did? She made an improvement in taste quality, packed it in elegant bottle and throw a tons of health claims. Would you believed? Vinegar can cure sore throat.

The product brand name is Bragg. Not from the word brag which means “show off”. It was from the surname of the owner I guess. However, the similarity in pronunciation make it kinda sound good.

apple cider vinegar bragg label

Here is the dilution ratio and intake times, as written legibly on label. Put one to two tsps in 8 oz water. Take three times daily. Maybe sweeten with sugar, honey, maple syrup or molasses.

So what I did is not necessarily wrong. It can be added with sweetener to improve the taste. Best taken three times a day. No notes whether to take it on full or empty stomach.

Explaining some label terms.

Raw – unfiltered. No heat treatment employed from juice extraction, mother preparation, harvesting and to packaging. The cider vinegar is package as is, no filtration done. The evidence is the mud-like thing that settles to bottom.

With the mother. For traditional vinegar making. The starting solution is mainly 1/3 mother and the other 2/3 is freshly prepared juice. Mother contains the live organisms needed to commence reaction which is Acetobacter aceti. Natural vinegar starters usually contain other microbial flora. Upon completion, 2/3 is harvested and the rest is left to serve as mother of the next batch. Basically, all naturally produced vinegar has fair amount of mother.

Naturally gluten free. From the best of my knowledge, only wheat products have gluten.

The Red Colored Salted Eggs Live On

newly bought red salted egg

I am a bit puzzled. There are still many manufacturers who are producing red colored salted eggs. There are also many customers like me who buy.

Do they know that the substance use for coloring egg is harmful to health? Or maybe, just maybe, the specific dye nowadays is certified food safe. Please enlighten me!

Salted egg is dyed with red color for easy identification. It is like a food label that shows its unique identity when group with others. Its inventor, whoever he is, might randomly picked red for this purpose.

newly bought red salted egg

Now is modern day. Cheap labels can be created easily with sticker paper, inkjet printer and a laptop PC. On medium to large scale production, volume but cheaper labels could be outsourced from printing presses.

That is right. several years ago I saw an article from the Department of Agriculture website about the undyed salted egg bearing a sticker label. Then months later the “Itlog ni Kuya” came into popularity.

I am not sure which came first. the company producing white salted eggs or the government institution doing the research.

It is not important anyway. What matter is, what I have in mind is possible. Getting rid of the red harmful dye using a simple sticker label and customer acceptance of such changes.

However, red colored egg is still very popular.

There are two reasons I see. White salted eggs are more expesive than regular. The extra cost of labels and the labor of sticking them manually one by one. Compared to dying, a large batch could be done with minimal work. Simply submerge them in a bath of dye solution and let dry.

Many people think, if it is not red, then it is not salted egg. They won’t believe even if you introduce and explain. To avoid trouble, many producers are sticking to old fashioned way.

We faced the same problem when we shifted the tablea shape into bar form. Most customers never wanted buying the bars even if we explained that they are just the same product they used to buy, only the shape changed.

Coconut Macapuno Spread

white macapuno shreds

I think I had never seen makapuno in ages. I felt nostalgic the time we used to fetch every mature coconut from our two short coconut trees. Hoping to get a macapuno or two. It was thank to my mom who gratefully gave us one.

Note: My wife taught is was a regular matured coconut. She asked me to grate it and cook ginatan.

Now it is time to make some macapuno sweet.

white macapuno shreds

Add water in pot equal to volume of macapuno shreds. Example, measure one liter water for every liter of macapuno shreds. Adding sugar crystals directly is not recommended. Dissolving time will take relatively long.

Bring to slow boil. Add desired amount of sugar. It depends upon your senses. It is recommended to add little by little until the wanted taste is reached. Bear in mind it will taste less sweet when macapuno shred is added. Add a little more sugar to account for this change.

I used muscovado sugar for mine.

Drop the macapuno shreds and stir continuously until the shreds become semi transparent and turn to spread-like consistency.

With my fingers crossed, I added few scoops of milk powder and it unexpectedly turn out well.

brownish macapuno spread

Refrigerate to extend keeping life.

Note: Macapuno is abnormality in coconut. A normal nut contains a small embryo, about a half-inch thick and hard meat sticking around shell, and the rest is water, the liquid endosperm. I estimate it is about 80 percent of the whole nut, excluding husk, of course.  In macapuno, the entire nut is filled with tender luscious meat, suitable for making sweets.

Macapuno never occur in every coconut tree.  There are specific varieties, that we call such. In my previous experiences, we get usually two macapuno nut in one bunch. One to  none if unlucky, three otherwise.

Research and laboratory experiment enable the production of tree that produce 100 % abnormal fruit. However, plantation should be established where other coconut never exists. The tree cross pollinate with each other making the pure breed futile.


How To Make Tilapia Ice Cream

After scaring you of what could be the bad effects of eating tilapia fish to your health, here is a reason to temporarily forget what the previous article said.

The Tilapia Ice Cream. It is not the usual ice cream you are familiar with. You may find it interesting. Or think the fish should only be partnered with rice.

Things similar to this excites me. Very few have the courage to try things that are beyond the norms.

This unique ice cream was invented by Professor Dana G. Vera Cruz of the College of Home Science and Industry of the Central Luzon State University (CHSI-CLSU).

Here is how to make tilapia ice cream as published by PCAARD-DOST.

1) Steam the tilapia fillet.
2) Chop the walnut, dice the cheese, then set aside.
3) Beat the all-purpose cream in medium speed. Add the condensed milk while stirring.
4) Flake the steamed tilapia fillet, add to the mixture, and continue beating until thick and fluffy.
5) Add the walnut and cheese while continuously beating until the last ingredients are completely incorporated into the mixture.
6) Stir slowly the mixture while cooling in order to incorporate air and prevent large ice crystals from forming.
7) Freeze overnight the smoothly textured semi-solid foam product.

After freezing, the tilapia ice cream can be enjoyed in a sugar wafer cone.

I have never tasted it yet. I am hoping I can find time making some for myself and family.

Eating Tilapia is Worse than Eating Bacon

Tilapia! It is not our favorite fish. It is affordable. It is a fish but no disagreeable fishy smell. Easy to clean, both entrails and scales. Easy to eat, as meat separates easily from bones. Quick cooking. And ultimately, it taste good. It is not our favorite fish but our habit is contradicting.

We cannot feast on meat, especially pork. We often resort to fruits and vegetables and fish as protein source. However, it seems our fish choice is worse than pork meat according to studies. I heard it several times already. Not once, not twice.

Last heard from Aksyon TV. A study conducted by Wake Forest University and published by American Dietetic Association found this out. Tilapia has more bad omega 6 fatty acid than beneficial omega 3. The combination may cause inflammation resulting to heart disease, arthritis and asthma. It is worse than eating bacon, as mentioned.

This bad news is not blamed on fish itself but how they are grown nowadays. Most traded tilapia are raised inside fish pens and ponds. Given specially formulated feeds and supplement to reach maximum size in the shortest possible time. Kinda similar to pig fattener and broiler chickens.

I see beyond omega 6. The tilapia we are consuming are loaded with artificial feeds, antibiotics, growth promotants, supplements and other chemicals of unknown safety.

Philippine is the 5th largest producer of tilapia globally.

Mother-Baby Friendly Workplace

mother-baby friendly workplace certification

I am wondering why there is a breastfeeding station inside SM Mall. I am seeing its door every time I am on my way to comfort room. I am curious what is inside. No one was entering and going out so I never had a chance to glance. I am guessing breastfeeding on-the-go is not in practice. Moms always carry infant formula to keep their baby’s tummy full. Filipino women are conservative type, most feel ashamed of doing it in public.

I know, maybe, the management wants their establishment to be a “Mother-Baby Friendly Workplace”. Not only for mall customers and strollers but for their own employees too.

I got the idea when I saw the FNRI-DOST was certified as “Mother-Baby Friendly Workplace”. It was included in their regular publication.

mother-baby friendly workplace certification

The agency said they ensures the promotion and practice of breastfeeding by providing a healthy and safe working conditions for women through the establishment of a lactation station.

It is a well-lighted and clean room with comfortable sofa equipped with the basic amenities such as lavatory, refrigerator, table and breast pumps. Breastfeeding moms are given 40 minute break to express their milk for later use.

In my imagination, I have a rough idea on how the breastfeeding station looks like.