Saturday, September 24, 2011

"The Learning" - A Documentary Film

"The Learning"  is a documentary by Ramona Diaz.  It tells the story of four Filipino teachers with high hopes and ideals of working in the United States.  It shows the joys, pains, and struggles of the Overseas Filipino Workers being away from Home.

We highly recommend this film for everyone to see.

Watch the full episode. See more POV.

POV - Watch Video | The Learning: Full Length | PBS

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Tuna Carbonara (Filipino Style)

Tuna Carbonara (Filipino Style)

500 g of pasta (fettuccine)
1 180 g canned Hot & Spicy century tuna
1 7.6 oz can of Nestle cream
1 12 oz. can of evaporated milk
1 small onion, finely chopped (preferably red)
 2 tbsp. butter
½ cup of grated Parmesan cheese
Kraft quick melt Eden cheese (alternative)
½ tsp. of ground black pepper
¼ tsp. sea salt
1 ½ tbsp. of corn starch (dilute in cold water)

For toppings:
broccoli, chopped (steamed)
2 stalks of celery, finely chopped

In a large skillet, sauté onion in butter. Add tuna chunks and stir. Cook it for 2-3 minutes. Add evaporated milk and cream, cover it and let it boil for 3-5 minutes at a low heat. At the boiling point, add diluted cornstarch to thicken the natural sauce. When adding the cornstarch, stir it constantly to avoid lumps of congeals starch and sauce.  Stir it for 3-5 minutes. The sauce will return to its original transparency and appearance as the starch cooks out.  Add the Parmesan cheese and ground pepper and turn off the heat.  

For proper way of cooking pasta please click on this link How to Cook Pasta.  Serve with grated Parmesan cheese, steamed broccoli and garnish with celery on top.

Beef Broccoli

Beef Broccoli
3/4 lbs. lean boneless beef (flank, round, skirt or tenderloin)

1 tbsp. rice vinegar (substitute rice wine if desired)
3/4 tsp. sugar
1 tsp. soy sauce
2 tbsp. water
2 tsp. cornstarch

3 tbsp. oyster sauce
2 tbsp. soy sauce
¼ cup water
1 tsp. cornstarch mixed w/ 4 tbsp. water (cornstarch mixture)
2 lbs. fresh broccoli
3 garlic cloves, crushed
1 medium onion, chopped (white)
½ tsp. of salt
ground pepper
5 tbsp. canola oil (butter if desired)
1 stalk scallion, cut 1 inch long

Slice the beef into thin cuts. Add the marinade ingredients then put cornstarch on the meat spreading it using your fingers . Leave it for 30 minutes. Set aside.

After marinating; heat the wok and add 1 tablespoon of oil. When the oil is hot, add garlic and stir fry until aromatic. Add the broccoli and a touch of salt.  Mix everything together. Turn down the heat if necessary to make sure it doesn't burn. Add ¼ cup of water.  Cover it for  2 minutes until broccoli turns bright green and is tender but still crisp. Remove from the wok and drain.

Clean up the wok with paper towel. Add 3 tablespoons of oil. Fry the beef for 3-5 minutes. Do not overcook the beef! Drain off the oil and set aside.

Use another saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon oil, then add the beef and stir for 1 minute. Add onion, scallions and broccoli mixture. Stir and cover it for 1 minute. Add oyster sauce and sprinkle the remaining salt and pepper. Stir briefly and cover it for 2 minutes. Add cornstarch mixture and stir quickly to thicken. Turn off the heat and serve hot over steamed rice.

Saturday, August 20, 2011


by Ritchie Raymundo

It’s been 6 years since I left our home country, the Philippines and settled with my husband here in United States. I never thought that I would end up sacrificing a LOT of things in my life.  Here is a list of the things I’m missing terribly back home;


The most depressing and heartbreaking thing to do is to leave my family behind.  Even with the technology nowadays, a video chat or a phone call is so much different compared to a jeep or a taxi cab away right?
I really miss doing things with my loving Mama such as shopping or going to the mall for a stroll. But the thing that I miss the most is my Mama's nurturing and love.  I miss her being a best friend to me and my sister.

GAS UP (for the first time)

Sigrid M. Dimaano

2009:  I was on my way to school one day when suddenly I had to pass by the gasoline station and gas up for the FIRST TIME!

"This is it!"  I told myself.  For I was dreading to do this for the longest time.  Somehow, I always find a way to let my husband do the dirty job for me.

*Note:  In the Philippines, there are people who do this for us.

So I went down, swiped my card and unscrewed the cap from my gas tank.  I took the gas hose with the spout and pressed on it as hard as I can.  And there I was, waiting for the gas to pump out and NOTHING happened.  I cancelled the credit card transaction and went directly to the cashier.

Friday, August 19, 2011


I uploaded this on my personal website last month and I thought this is worth sharing.

For more Parenting write-ups, visit: We are Pairents Blog

On Being PAIR-ents...: The Power of the Piggy Bank: I recently uploaded this photo on my Facebook account showing my son putting coins in his piggy bank.  This picture brought back many memories.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011


by Melody Gutierrez

Do you still remember your many firsts living abroad? Well, I’m sure you do. Perhaps, your memory needs a little nudge so allow me to share my first experiences that may take you right back; something that is worth remembering.

First Travel to the US

The farthest place I’ve ever been in the Philippines was in Vigan, Ilocos Norte. It was a tiring 8-hour ride. But it was nothing compared to my first trip to the US East Coast  that took almost 26 hours. This has been the most backbreaking trip I’ve ever experienced.

First Taste of Cuban Food

My husband is Cuban American.  One day, I got curious with their Cuban sandwich called "Pan con Bistec" so I asked him to buy me one. 

It was served in a large bread (Cuban bread) with beef steak, onions and tomatoes in it.  One thing that caught me by surprise was that it had picnic fries on top of it.  It was delicious though.

Sunday, August 14, 2011


 by Sigrid Dimaano

Filipinos are known as good English communicators.  I am one of those who truly believe in this but not until I finally settled and lived here.

Before I came to the United States, I was pretty confident that it was going to be easy since English was a part of my daily life in the Philippines.  But I was wrong, I guess you'll never really realize it until you settle and try to be a part of a society where English is the first language.  I was so critical of myself which made me think twice before I utter a word.

At first, I thought I was the only one but after talking to several people, I learned that they had the same feeling and I was assured that it was NORMAL to feel that way.  Here are common experiences we have encountered.


 by Sigrid Dimaano

I must admit, there are many things I would like to think I can do as a homemaker which I wasn't able to utilize when I was still living in the Philippines.  Somehow, these skills manifest themselves when I'm bored or whenever I need to use them.

Sometimes, it makes me real proud when I can do things that I never thought I can do.  For instance, I learned that it's fun to experiment with cooking and baking. That Cake decorating is so therapeutic and that

Tuesday, August 9, 2011


 by Sigrid Dimaano

Many people say that the Philippines is so much alike with the United States.  In some ways, this is true but in many other ways, it is otherwise.  I have listed some of my first impressions when I got here.

1.  The Roads are SO WIDE and there's so much LAND

When I first came to the United States, it was for a visit.  I came with my family and we only went to the West Coast.  I was amazed on how wide the roads were and how orderly the traffic was.  Of course for a Manila driver, this is road heaven.  

2.  It's so GREEN and there are ANIMALS roaming around. 

The East Coast is way different.  It was still Summertime when I first came to the East Coast and I was in awe with all the huge trees around.  I got even more excited when I saw a family of deer, squirrels and rabbits roaming at my friend's backyard.  It was so cool!