Classic Pomodoro ( PASTA)

1/4 cup Olive Oil
1 onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
3 x 400 g cans chopped tomatoes
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 tsp dried parsley
1 tsp dried thyme
1 piece dried bay leaf
3 tablespoons torn basil leaves
freshly grated Parmesan Cheese, to serve ( optional)

  1. Heat the oil in a deep frying pan and cook the onion over medium heat or 4-5 minutes, or until softened.
  2. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds before adding the tomato, tomato paste, dried parsley, thyme and bay leaf.
  3. Add some salt and pepper.
  4. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 15-20 minutes, or until the sauce thickens, stirring occasionally.
  5. Add the basil.
  6. Toss over a hot pasta and serve with grated Parmesan Cheese.

Mozzarella and Smoked Ham Stuffed Tomatoes

8 ripe tomatoes
1 cup breadcrumbs
2/3 cup chopped smoked ham
4 tablespoons Parmesan Cheese
4 tablespoons chopped herbs ( basil, oregano)
salt and pepper to taste
5-6 tablespoons olive oil
8 cubes mozzarella
8 leaves of lettuce

  1. Slice the tomatoes crosswise in halves. Remove the seeds. Arrange on a baking pan.
  2. In a bowl, combine the breadcrumbs, ham, Parmesan cheese and herbs. Season with salt and pepper. Add olive oil and blend well.
  3. Fill the tomatoes with this mixture. Top each with a cube of mozzarella and sprinkle with more bread crumbs.
  4. Cover and bake in a preheated 180 degrees C oven for 15 mins.
  5. Serve the tomatoes on a bed of lettuce leaves.
Source: Taste and See ( A Couples for Christ International Cookbook).

Yerba Buena ( Peppermint)

Yerna Buena or commonly known as peppermint.

Peppermint/ Yerba Buena/ Daun Mint

Scientific Name is Clinopodium douglasii. Belongs to the mint family. In the Philippines, this plant has been listed in the 10 Medicinal Plants of the Philippines and is recognized for its medicinal value.

It is a small herb with elliptical leaves.

Use the leaves for the following:

a.) Headache and Stomachache : Boil chopped leaves in 2 cups of water for 15 mins. Cool and strain and drink every 3 hours.

b.) Rheumatism, arthritis: Crush the leaves and massage on knees or where pain is

c.) Cough and Colds : Soak in a cup of hot water 10 fresh leaves and drink as a tea.

d.) Menstrual and gas pain: soak a handful of leaves in a glass of boiling water.
Drink infusion. It induces menstrual flow and sweating.

e.) Nausea and fainting : crush leaves and apply at nostrils of patient

f.)  Toothache : squeeze sap of a fresh leaf. Soak a piece of cotton in the sap
and insert this in aching tooth cavity. Mouth should be rinsed by gargling salt
solution before inserting the cotton. To prepare salt solution add 5 grams of
table salt to one cup of water.

g.) Insect bites: crush leaves or pound leaves unitl paste-like then apply juice on affected part

The leaves can also be used for cooking.

This plant can be readily planted on a small pot so that everytime you want to use it. Its readily available.

Why not plant Yerba Buena today so you have it when you need it.


Zingiber officinale L.
Ginger is a rhizome (underground stem) that grows almost everywhere. We use it for a lot of purposes, medicinal or as a food.
Ginger has a lot of medicinal benefits. Here are some:
1. For colds and sore throat : Boil grated ginger with enough water for your tea. Add lemon and honey. Sip while hot. Try to inhale the steam for your clogged nose so it will loosen up.
2. As an anti-inflammatory : Pound some ginger and place on inflamed area. Or you can wrap it on a fabric and place on top.
3. For Nausea and indigestion: Finely grate some ginger and eat it.
4. For headaches and menstrual cramps: Boil some ginger and drink the water.
So next time you are sick, why not try this. Let me know whats the outcome is.

Steak Salisbury

3/4 kilo ground beef
1 egg
2 slices ham, chopped
1/2 cup breadcrumbs
4 tsps finely chopped green onions
1/4 cups finely chopped parsley ( fresh)
1/4 cup grated cheese
salt and pepper
1 can Cream of Mushroom soup
1/3 cup water

  1. Combine the first 7 ingredients in a bowl.
  2. Season with salt and pepper
  3. Add 1/4 cup of soup.
  4. Mix well then form into patties.
  5. Transfer to a baking pan and bake at 350 degrees F for 30minutes.
  6. Add water to the remaining soup
  7. Pour over patties and bake for another 10 mins