The weather had been really bad in Metro Manila, that we decided to head back for a few days in Isabela. Doc Rey's radio segment as Vet ng Bayan was done by phone patch at 5:15am...thank God for telecommunications.
Very off to be in a sunny place, different work to do...but take the chance to do wonderful lovable things:
Had oatmeal for breakfast.
Since there is a truck ban for big trucks inside the market road where Solraya Santiago is located, Doc Rey drove the feeder truck between the stores to deliver the stocks from the big truck to the branches. Boy, that was a long time since I have seen that scene. Timing of arrival of our stocks from Manila are days that we are in Metro. So today was a rare Sunday in Isabela.
Farm cooking....THE BEST! By 12noon, Doc Rey suspends his delivery trips and said we will go to the farm. I was excited to wear my new raindrop boots to the muddy farm...oh of course to see the Ilokano Sunshines too.
As I walked past the bunkhouse, the smell....aroma...of???? Can't tell...but, there on the farm table were fresh Green Papaya peelings and bare stalk of Malunggay. Can it be Tinolang Manok????? YES! Little did I know, Doc Rey called to the farmhelp to slaughter a Sunshine. He called at 9am, they caught, slaughtered...and now at 12noon, the freshest Malunggay leaves from one of the fence trees were dropped. Everything in this dish, except for say salt and pepper came from the farm. Sunshine and veggies.
What's good about home cooked food? No extenders, no scrimping. It was slow cooked to perfection. The soup was creamy and thick, although clear. The Papaya was fresh an crispy and soft all at the same time. Not mushy. The Malunggay leaves you know were just off the tree, dark dark green, all whole leaves and it slightly tinged the yellowish color of the soup stock.
Oh, I shouldn't forget my treat. The blood of the chicken is poured over "bigas", then left to curdle, then lowered into the soup stock to cook.
I commented that it is far far far better than the tinola in our favorite resto. I also had an answer....it was done without profit in mind :) We didn't have to extend the servings to 12 people. There was just enough water for a soup base and not for 12 servings to fill up bowls and have chicken pieces float.
The soup here was a meal by itself!
Tonight I meet with my staff for a rotisserie chicken we are opening. Hmmmmm, this meal made me have 2nd thoughts about doing a tinola, arrozcaldo place. Good old Chicken Soup!
WHY? The location will be beside hospitals, great drive thru access....The kind of food that will be great to take home or to take to hospital. Let me think about it till dinner.
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I act fast...but cooking or working, its best to have low fire while slow cooking :) You reap more in all aspects.