Anyway, while Calumpit and Pampanga suffered man high waters we had water up to our waist, courtesy of Pedring. Now, if you’ve been following this blog you know I live in Malabon. Flooding is part of the territory. Unless I win big money or suddenly gets a benefactor, we can’t move. Like all those people who refuse to evacuate, there really isn’t much choice. Some of my friends, they don’t care anymore. It’s like ho-hum, what else is new? I hate that! Even when flooding happens everyday, we are just living with it as best we can.
That doesn’t mean ho-hum. You are awake and wary about more rain, high tide, the next low pressure area to come in. You worry about the roof (actually, Pedring’s winds tore the plastic roofing off our makeshift garage). You worry about the house crashing down.
Hey that’s a possibility, when the ground underneath is so saturated with water and the water pressure could cause cracks and fissures to open up even more. The house is top heavy with most appliances and furniture hauled up. Electricity being cut off is inevitable, so you scramble to cook all the pork chops in the freezer, chicken turned into adobo. You make sure there are candles and batteries on flashlights; the rechargeable lantern juiced.
We have four dogs to feed and think about. The pit bull gets the laundry room, on a ledge meant for washing clothes standing up; the askal (half-breed) is fine where he is but in case water rises higher, she stays on our stairs. The boxer is smaller and well behaved so he gets to stay in his baby monoblock chair in my parents’ bedroom. The otter hound got big, so he stays in the upstairs hall now. It is my job to bring them up with dog food and water; plenty of newspapers and plastic bags to clean their messes; sponge mop and detergent spray. They whine when they want to go so that’s good.
I broke them up and fed them into the blender, adding just a little sugar so you taste mostly coconut, a cup of milk and a teaspoon of almond extract! Delicious! Very refreshing now that it is hot out. See those dregs of white meat and beige-y bits of the interior shell?
I’ve posted about my mom’s coconut jam and for sure, she will start making ‘em this weekend. Before then, she just took some fruit to the market to get the meat scraped and flaked. You get charged 5 bucks per fruit. The coconut grinder told my mom she has good fruit and asked where it came from. When she told him they’re from our trees, he offered to buy some next time and gave her a discount – 6 bucks for two fruits.
Once home, she poured hot water over some to extract the milk, squeezing those juices out. That went into our veggie good ulam (viand)! She sautéed garlic and ginger, sweated sitaw (runner beans) and boiled ‘em with naturally sweet kalabasa (yellow squash) in the creamy coconut milk, seasoned with ground pepper and a bit of salt. This is my favorite veggie dish, next to ginisang munggo (sautéed mongo beans with bitter gourd leaves and tops).
The monkey guy said two of the fruits are good for bukayo . I don't know how they can tell which is which - mala-uhog meant soft coconut meat, fragile, almost transparent meat, lots of juice. There's other "categories" but that's all I know firsthand hehehe. Bukayo is coconut meat “noodles” in caramelized sugar, preferably with toasted sesame seeds. It’s cheap candy! Mom forgot to tell the grind guy to make some noodly so she made do with toasting shreds on the wok, in dark brown sugar.We didn’t have sesame seeds either. What she came up with was this delish, caramel brown shreds that tasted like it needs a warm soft roll to lie in!
Pan de coco! My next favorite bread after cinnamon rolls. I don’t have bread flour though, and no time to bake. So what I’m going to do, is get some hot pan de sal, tuck some coconut in it (with butter!) then dunk the lot in hot, darkly brewed coffee! Now if I really want to go decadent and deranged, I’ll pffft the top of my coffee, no sugar, with whipped cream, powder on some cinnamon and crown with the coconut shreds. How’s that sound? Nomnomnomnomnom!