Although my son hasn’t even turned two yet, I have already started building his library. I would spend hours upon hours scouring the children’s lit section of bookstores, hoping to find a literary gem for his collection.
So when I found a copy of Janell Cannon’s “Stellaluna” at Book Sale earlier, my eyes went wide and I let out a silent shriek of glee. I checked the price tag and almost burst into song. Fifteen pesos! Oh happy, happy day!
I read it as soon as I got home and fell in love with it. It’ll be years before my son actually gets to read this book but I know he’s going to love it as much as I do.
“How can we be so different and feel so much alike?” mused Flitter.
“And how can we feel so different and be so much alike?” wondered Pip.
“I think this is quite a mystery,” Flap chirped.
“I agree,” said Stellaluna. “But we’re friends. And that’s a fact.”
I was over the moon when my friend Kat told me she had some fresh basil for me. I immediately consulted trusty Mr. Google because I wanted to whip up something other than pesto that was simple but delicious. I came across several recipes which seemed pretty doable given my skill level but I decided to go with this one (from eatingwell.com):
Corn and Basil Cakes
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup low-fat milk
- 2 large eggs
- 2 tablespoons canola oil, divided
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 2 cups corn kernels
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh basil
- Whisk flour, milk, eggs, 1 tablespoon oil, baking powder, salt and pepper in a medium bowl until smooth. Stir in corn and basil.
- Brush a large nonstick skillet lightly with some of the remaining 1 tablespoon oil; heat over medium heat until hot (but not smoking).
- Cook 4 cakes at a time, using about 1/4 cup batter for each, making them about 3 inches wide.
- Cook until the edges are dry, about 2 minutes. Flip and cook until golden brown on the other side, 1 to 3 minutes more. Repeat with the remaining oil and batter, making 10 cakes total. Reduce the heat as necessary to prevent burning.
Although the recipe looked pretty simple, I still enlisted the help of my husband (who did most of the actual cooking). Since we both love cheese so much, we added a little bit of grated cheese into the batter. For a Filipino touch, we paired the corn and basil cakes with some longganisa (sausages made from ground meat and flavored with garlic and other spices) instead of barbecued chicken or grilled steak.
It was really good. The little one enjoyed it so much, he asked for an additional helping when he finished his baby cake.
I will probably tweak the recipe a bit though. I’m thinking of adding more cheese and maybe some caramelized white onions next time.
In one of my essays for a class I took several years ago, I mentioned how a certain book which was at the bottom of a very tall pile found me. I guess I could say the same about this book. It was buried under a mound of books in a section I normally skip. I have no idea what drove me to dig through all those horrendous titles but I’m really glad I did.
My glasses misplaced
I seem to have lost my page
Oh yes, where was I?
Tiptoeing thru graves
I find no sleep in this grotto
That is no mistake
I know you can’t be erased
But I can try
– Billy Corgan, Look