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Chef Sandy Daza’s Quarantine Cooking Rule #1: Use Simple And Leftover Ingredients You Have At Home

Stay home, cook at home! For the latest season of Casa Daza, Chef Sandy is sharing simple but gourmet dishes you can cook with the stuff you already have at home.


Since we’re continuing to minimize our daily excursions to the grocery and restaurants to help curb the Covid-19 infections, cooking at home has become both our source of joy and comfort. And when it comes to quarantine cooking, one of the most important strategy is to maximize simple ingredients and use the leftover food you already have at home to create new delicious meals for you and your family.


Chef Sandy Daza is back in the kitchen for Casa Daza Season 4, and this time, he’s cooking dishes inspired by cuisines from all over the world, using only the simplest ingredients you already have in your pantry.



For pro home cooks, the ingredients you’ll see below are surely a staple in your weekly grocery list. But for beginners, these recipes will help you familiarize yourself with regular ingredients that you should always keep stock of. Sometimes, the simplest of recipes will surprise you.


Here are some of our favorite recipes from Casa Daza Season 4 that will be on weekly rotation at our homes this quarantine.



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Finnish Meatballs

Bite-sized meatballs made from a combination of ground pork and beef are great as creamy and meaty ulam or as pasta sauce.


For the meatballs:

1/2 kilo ground beef
1/2 kilo ground pork
2 tablespoons chopped garlic
1 cup finely chopped onions
3/4 cup fine bread crumbs
1/3 cup seasoning sauce like Maggi or Knorr
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 cups oil


For the sauce:

2 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons butter
3 cups water
1 beef cube or 1 tablespoon beef powder
1 cup cream or milk (instead of milk, you may use cream of mushroom soup plus 1 can of water)
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1/4 cup seasoning liquid
3/4 cup sliced mushrooms


Directions

  1. In a bowl, combine ground meat, garlic, onions, bread crumbs, seasoning. Add eggs and mix well.
  2. When mixed well, form into 1/2-inch balls. Lay on a flat sheet and refrigerate for at least 2 hours to let the meatballs firm up.
  3. Combine flour and salt and mix well. Roll each ball in flour and fry in oil until done. Set aside.
  4. In a saucepan, melt butter. Add flour and combine both on high heat until mixture turns brown. Add water, beef cube, and milk. Simmer until thick.
  5. Add Dijon mustard and seasoning sauce, then simmer for 5 minutes until it has the desired thickness, like the consistency of gravy.
  6. If you are using cream of mushroom soup instead of milk, add this after the water, then pour in an additional cup of water measured by filling the empty mushroom can. 
  7. When sauce is thick enough, pour over the meatballs and serve.



Watch Chef Sandy make Finnish meatballs step-by-step in the video below.






Kimchi Fried Rice

Level up day-old rice by adding our favorite Korean ingredient, kimchi! In addition to being just so delicious to eat, kimchi is also very good for your gut and skin!


Ingredients:

3 tablespoons oil
2 tablespoons chopped garlic
1/2 cup chopped onions
1 tablespoon gochujang
1/2 cup ground beef or pork
1 chicken cube
1 cup kimchi, chopped
5 cups rice
2 tablespoons oil
4 beaten eggs
2 tablespoons soy sauce


Directions:

  1. Sauté garlic and onions in oil. Add gochujang, ground meat and chicken cube. Cook until meat is done.
  2. Add kimchi. Add rice and mix well.
  3. Set rice to one side and add a little oil. Pour beaten egg and cook. When eggs are almost done, mix well with rice.
  4. Season with soy sauce. Mix well and serve.



Watch Chef Sandy demonstrate just how easy this Kimchi Fried Rice recipe is to make, plus he's sharing other Korean recipes.







Tuna Macaroni Salad

You don’t have to wait for large gatherings to enjoy this fiesta classic!


Ingredients:

300 grams macaroni, cooked and drained
1 1/2 cups mayonnaise
1 cup finely chopped onions
1 1/2 cup hard boiled eggs, chopped
1 cup pineapple, crushed
3/4 cup pickle relish
2 cans tuna, mashed
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon. lemon juice


Directions:

  1. In a bowl, combine mayonnaise, onions, eggs, pineapple, pickle relish and tuna. Mix well.
  2. Add macaroni and toss well.
  3. Chill and serve.



What’s a good meal to partner with a light, tuna macaroni salad? How about prawn thermidor and Shepherd’s pie? Chef Sandy shows us how to make this full menu in the video below.







Lolo Farm’s Baked Chicken Spaghetti

Chef Sandy's comfort food is made following this heirloom recipe learned from his father.


Ingredients:

1/4 cup cooking oil
2 tablespoons chopped garlic
1/2 cup chopped onions
1/2 cup chorizo de Bilbao, chopped
1/4 cup red bell pepper, chopped
1/4 cup green bell pepper, chopped
1 cup tomato sauce
1 teaspoon paprika (optional)
3 cups chicken broth
1/4 cup seasoning liquid
1 can cream of mushroom soup
3/4 cup grated cheese
3 cups flaked chicken
500 grams spaghetti noodles
1 cup cheddar cheese, grated


Directions

  1. Preheat oven at 350°F.
  2. Break uncooked spaghetti noodles in half. Boil in salted water according to package directions until done. Drain and set aside. 
  3. Sauté garlic and onions in oil. Add in chopped chorizo and sauté for a minute.
  4. Add in red and green bell peppers and sauté further. Add in tomato sauce and paprika. Cook for a minute.
  5. Add in chicken broth, seasoning liquid, cream of mushroom soup, and cheese. Add in flaked chicken and mix well. Add in spaghetti noodles and mix.
  6. Transfer to a baking dish. Sprinkle with grated cheese and bake for 15 minutes. Serve and enjoy!



Don’t have cream of mushroom soup? No paprika? Learn all the hacks from Chef Sandy Daza as he makes Lolo Farm’s Baked Chicken Spaghetti in the video below.






Catch new episodes of Casa Daza Season 4 with Chef Sandy Daza every Monday, 8 p.m., on Metro.style Youtube Channel and Metro Channel, channel 52 on Sky Cable and channel 174 on HD every day.


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