For the love of books: August 2013

As always, I have been doing a sort of book review lately or let me just say ‘sharing my thoughts on books’ and I have decided to make it monthly since I am not reading that much due to some work that I have. For my new supporters, I would like to let you know that I also love books, just in case you have not visited the page The cook, the kitchen and the bookshelf. So you’ll be reading my thoughts on the books I have read for the month.




Forbidden is a book about Angels and Nephilim, which I understood that they are half-human and half-angel. Claire is a girl who has been tired of moving from one place to another with her mom. They have not stayed in a place longer than two years. At Emerson Academy where Claire is studying at, she has her good friends and she like it there. Also at Emerson, she met Alec, who is an Angel or he prefer to be called a Grigori. As expected they fell in love with each other but as the title says ‘Forbidden’, their love is indeed forbidden as Alec, an angel, is not allowed to love someone like Claire who has a human blood but later on, she realized that she has also an angel blood which makes her a Nephila.

I found the book awesome. The twist in the story made me so eager to turn one page to another. It was like I was reading three books at the same time – Twilight, Shatter Me and Mortal Instruments. Why? (1) The first time Claire and Alec met was in school, just the same as Twilight and they can’t be together, just like Bella and Edward; (2) Claire has a power of touch like Juliette in Shatter Me, but not like they have the same power; and (3) Angels, Nephilim can also be found in the book The Mortal Instruments. This is one of the books I cannot put down. I have finished almost 400 pages in ten hours – four hours day one and six hours on day two. If I have no work to do during that time, I would have finished the entire book for one day. I just wished that the book will have its sequel because I believe that there should be more of Alec and Claire.


Divergent by Veronica Roth

Photo from Tumblr
Photo from Tumblr

I was so thrilled to see the first official teaser trailer of Divergent and that got me more excited about the movie. The book has been on my list and I was happy to read it, finally.  

Divergent is a book about a society in the future in which they are divided to five factions according to their personality. When teenagers reach the age of 16, they undergo aptitude test and will finally choose in which faction they think they belong. Tris is a teenage girl who has undergone the aptitude test and found out that she cannot fit into any one of the factions which makes her a Divergent – possesses more than one personality and her life is endangered. On the Choosing Ceremony, she chose to be on the Dauntless faction in which bravery is their utmost personality and that made her leave her parents on the Abnegation (Selfless) faction as her brother joined another faction – Erudite (Intelligence). She has undergone many mental and physical tests together with the other initiates and met her love interest, Four, or also known as Tobias. They worked out together to get away from the Dauntless compound and fight people who have been attacking them. At the end of the book, they found a place to stay and will plan/prepare for the future conflicts.

I found the book AMAZING and I can’t even imagine the author coming up to a story like this. How talented she is? And now the movie will be out on big screen next year!! Yes, next year and I still have to wait for it!! I’ve been speechless on how to describe or give my thoughts on the book! All I know is I love the book so much and I will be reading the next book in the next few days!

The Divergent Official Featurette also made me crazy the past few days! Ugh! I am really excited to see this movie.

I admit that I am not really good in doing a review but you could check out the links above to view a better review.

Thanks for spending time with me today! 🙂


So GRATEFUL: Very Inspiring Blogger Award

Very Inspiring Blogger Award #1

What a lovely surprise!! I have been awarded by Fae of Fae’s Twist and Tango. I could not thank her enough for passing four awards on me this month. I am so grateful that I am inspiring somebody through my blog. I never thought that I would inspire one, but now I know I do.


You can choose other badge for this award if you want. 🙂

7 random facts about me

  1. I recently joined Twitter with username @TNScreativecook as I have deactivated my personal account. But this one seems like a personal account, too.
  2. I am hooked into reading anything about Libra – my zodiac sign – but not horoscope. Only the ‘true facts’ or anything that has anything to do with personality/characteristics.
  3. Since I joined WordPress and Instagram, I check the iPod/iPad every time I wake up no matter what time it is and replies to every comment I receive. Yes, even it is 3:00 am, I check and reply. Haha!
  4. Before I go to sleep, aside from applying my favorite scent of lotion – coconut, vanilla or cocoa butter – I also put baby powder on my neck and on my back. I don’t think I can sleep without doing that.
  5. When my birthday is near, I always think of something to buy for myself. It doesn’t matter if it’s expensive or not as long as I have present to myself. This year, all I want is a set of books to add to my collection. Though I promised not to buy anymore as I can download e-books, I convinced myself that it’s my birthday so I have to get myself a present.
  6. I love listening to music with a headphone/earphone and turn the volume to the maximum while doing household chores as I find it easier to do those things with music; I don’t feel that tired.
  7. When not cooking/baking and reading, I can be found in front of the TV watching movies all day! I am also addicted to movies as I am addicted to cooking/baking and reading, that’s why it’s difficult for me to manage my time, haha!

I hope I did not bore you with my 7 random facts. 😀

Now, in no particular order, let me give you other inspiring bloggers:

Sophie’s Foodie Files

The Vanilla Bean Diaries

Baking with Gab

Sweet Baked Life

Laura’s Mess

I need A Feed

Cakey Kate

100 Days of Evelyn

County Baker Mom

My Favourite Pastime

Food Thoughts to Share

The Hungry Mum

Buckwheat Health

Baking Makes Happy

Rabbit Can Cook

The rules for Very Inspiring Blogger Award are:

  1. Visit and thank the blogger who nominated you.
  2. Acknowledge that blogger on your blog and link back.
  3. Share 7 random things about yourself.
  4. Select up to 15 blogs for the award, a link to their blogs in your post, and notify them on their blogs.
  5. Copy and paste the award on your blog somewhere.

Again, thank you so much for this award, Fae. 🙂 

Fae is a lovely woman with lots of recipes to share and worth to try. She also has lots of trivia to share with us. She also loves dancing, which I could not do. Is dancing same as cooking/baking, Fae? I meant, do you get the same feeling when you do those two things? I wonder, as I don’t have any idea how somebody feels when dancing, haha!

Pan-Seared Chicken

Before I begin my food post, I’d like to say thank you to my two new email subscribers – you know who you are. And to the one who just subscribed to my blog yesterday, please comment on any of my photos on Instagram (@thenotsocreativecook) so that I can say thank you and maybe get to know you through Instagram. 🙂
Also, thank you to my new supporters/friends here on WordPress. It means a lot getting to share my recipes and other stuffs to all of you and to the rest of my viewers. Again, thanks to all of you!


I’ve been feeling a little lazy for how many days and I really hate it. It’s like I’ve been so exhausted for some reasons I am unaware of. I feel so bored but I am not into doing anything aside from cooking and baking. But every time I attempt to do so, I find some lacking ingredients. So, I just stayed in my bed and lie down. Visited blogs, checked my Instagram feed and scanned photos. While I was checking photos to be deleted on my files, I have noticed one photo that has been waiting to be posted on my blog. So before time takes away the memories I have about this delicious chicken, let me just post it now!

Chicken Barbeque has been a favorite of mine but I always got myself one when dining out. I have mentioned before that I hate grilling. I know I can grill using an oven but I was afraid to try it. One day, I had this chicken breast staying in the freezer for days and I wanted to cook it – something new that I can share it on my blog. I really didn’t know what to do but my hands kept on getting sauces from the pantry and that’s it, I got myself a new chicken dish. 😀

Pan-Seared Chicken Recipe


  • 200 grams chicken breast
  • 2 tbsp dark soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tbsp ketchup
  • 2 tsp brown sugar
  • ½ tsp garlic salt


  1. In a container, mix everything except the chicken breast. Set aside.
  2. Pound/flatten the chicken breasts.
  3. Put the pounded chicken breast to the mixed sauce and let sit for one hour.
  4. Heat your pan to medium and put cooking oil when hot enough.
  5. Put the marinated chicken breast on the pan and cook for 5 minutes on each side, watching carefully not to burn them.
  6. Serve with any side dish of your choice.

I forgot to flatten my chicken so it took a longer time for me to cook both sides. But overall, the dish was great and with the buttered mixed vegetables? So awesome!! 😉

Chocolate Crinkles

How are you spending your weekend so far? 🙂

As for me, I watched The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones on the big screen. I felt so great that the scenes on the book finally came to life. 😉 I also did watch Epic and The Host at home. I was also planning to read a book but my mind was a little tired and my eyes did not cooperate that well. So, I just finished chapter one of the book I was reading and closed it. To gain my joy back, I knew what to do – I cooked and I baked. No matter how tired I am, I’ll still have the power to cook and bake – those really are my stress relievers.

These baked bites should have waited for its turn to be posted on my blog but they were really divine – they deserve to be posted as soon as get my hands on the laptop, haha! I’ve been eyeing on this even before I’ve had my blog but the thought of waiting made me sad. As I said, waiting for hours for food will kill me, haha! But I baked them, anyways!

I think that cute little one wants some Chocolate Crinkles, too. :)

Chocolate Crinkles Recipe

  • Servings: 28 crinkles
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print


  • 4 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 8 ounces (230 grams) semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 cup powdered sugar


  1. In a bowl, add dry ingredients (flour, salt and baking powder). Set aside.
  2. In a heatproof bowl, combine chocolate chips and butter. Place over a saucepan of simmering water, making sure that the water doesn’t touch the bottom of the bowl. When done, remove from heat and set aside to cool to room temperature.
  3. In another bowl, beat eggs and sugar until pale yellow in color (about 3 to 5 minutes). (You know it’s done when you slowly rise your beaters, the batter will fall back and form ribbons.) Add in vanilla extract and the cooled chocolate mixture. Beat until just combined. Add in dry ingredients, mixing until just combined.
  4. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit in the fridge for about two hours or overnight to firm up.
  5. When you are ready to bake, preheat oven to 325 F. Place rack in center of the oven. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
  6. In a bowl, sift your powder sugar.
  7. Scoop out dough into balls and roll into the powdered sugar, making sure everything is coated. Place the sugar-covered balls on the prepare baking sheet. Leave about 2 inches apart.
  8. Bake crinkles for 8-10 minutes or until edges are slightly firm.
  9. Remove from oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool.
  10. Store in air tight container.

Note: I have tried using dark chocolate chips and semisweet chocolate chips, but I find semisweet chocolate chips are best to use because they produce lovely cracks.

Source recipe: Chocolate Crinkles by Joy of Baking 

Remembering a very SPECIAL woman

First, I have to warn you that this post is longer than my previous posts as this going to be something special to me – the topic and the recipe I am going to share. So, if you dare to continue, I would love to say ‘Thanks’ in advance. 🙂


My mom was a very loving mother and a wife. As a mom, you always do something what you think is best for your children. She was often misunderstood by the way she took care of us and by the way we were raised. She often kept the pain she felt to avoid arguments between her and my father. She was a generous sister, to the point that she will give everything she can that her siblings need.

My mom and I shared common interests: shoes, bags, foods. We borrowed each others’ bags and shoes and I found that cute. We were not the best of friends but I am glad we had some moments together. My mom was a good cook. She was the one cooking for the family and I got this cooking talent from her. The thing is… she did not explore that much when it comes to cooking. I know the answer: my father will not like the new food on the table. That’s why I was not that exposed, too. But I feel great that my mom got me exposed in the kitchen at an early age. There are several dishes that my mom used to cook but I was not familiar with the names. How come I did not ask her? There was this chicken cooked in coconut milk then the chicken (without the coconut milk) is transferred to a another pan to be sautéed, brown a  little then shredded coconut is added. Oh! I don’t know if I said it right; I really can’t remember. 😦

Also, there’s this beef she used to cook especially when there were gatherings or special occasions. It was one of my favorites and my father’s, too.  Since my mom passed away three years ago due to cardiac arrest (may she rest in peace), we have not cooked some of her recipes due to the non-availability of spices; she used to get if from a far away place from our hometown.

From a long time, I was really craving for certain dishes she used to cook but I was afraid to try due to the fear of not getting the same result as hers. Believe it or not but when I have a doubt on any food to cook – I meant the food we used to cook together – I dream of her, telling me what to do. But this recipe I am going to share today is not one of them. I just came up with the idea of replacing some unavailable ingredients with what I have on the fridge. If I a not mistaken, the last time I’ve eaten this dish was six years ago.'sBeef2

Long time, huh?! But I can still remember the smell and the taste. 😀 We used to cook this together but I really don’t have any idea about the name of the dish, so I’ll just call it…

Mom’s Beef-Turmeric with Coconut Love


  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 1 tomato, sliced
  • 5 cloves garlic, crushed
  • Spring onions, green and white part separated
  • 1 tbsp ginger, chopped
  • ¼ kg beef, sliced into small cubes
  • 2 cups potatoes, cubed
  • 3 cups coconut milk
  • 1 tsp turmeric powder
  • 1 tsp salt, or to taste
  • ½ cup fresh shredded coconut, toasted and grounded (recipe below, just in case someone would love to know how it’s done)


  1. Using a mortar and pestle, crush the white part of the spring onion and the chopped ginger. Or you can put them on a ziplock bag and find something strong enough to crush them but if you’re using a bottle, make sure not to crush hard as the bottle may be broken. Set aside.
  2. In a pan (or casserole) with a medium heat, sauté garlic and cook for a minute. Add the crushed white-part spring onion and ginger and cook for another minute. Add in onions and tomatoes and cook for another minute.
  3. Add beef and turmeric powder, mix and cover for 2 minutes.
  4. Add 1 cup of the coconut milk and the toasted and grounded coconut. Simmer for 20 minutes or until the beef are tender. If you don’t like to use all coconut milk, you can use 1 cup of water in this step.
  5. Add in potatoes and the rest of the coconut milk and wait until potatoes are tender. Add in salt and do some taste test.
  6. Remove from heat and garnish with the greens of the spring onion. Serve with white rice.

I’d like to serve mine with white rice, some slices of cucumbers and tomatoes and of course, additional toasted coconut.'sBeef


To make the toasted coconut:

toasted coconut

First thing, you need 1 cup of fresh shredded coconut. Second thing, get your pan ready and put on low-medium heat. Put the shredded coconut and keep stirring until it turns golden brown as shown below. Remember to keep an eye on it because it burns easily. 1 cup should take about 15 minutes.

Toasted coconut to grounded coconut: When done, remove from heat and grind it using a mortar and pestle, or a mini food processor, or whatever way you want. If you’re using a food processor, make sure to do it for a second or two because if more than 2 seconds, you’ll get a paste out of the toasted coconut and you don’t want that.'sBeef3

Toasted coconut has been a part of our dishes. I sometimes eat this with scrambled egg, rice and cucumbers. Also, I’d love to put it in vegetable dishes with coconut milk. When I make this coconut, I usually make 3 cups. 😀


And that’s it! I appreciate the time you spent with me on my blog’s fourth month. Have an amazing weekend ahead of you. 😉

Panko Breaded Chicken Breast

Let me start this post by saying that this is the best breaded chicken I have ever cooked!!

Okay, before I give too much credit for this chicken, let me just go back to the day I’ve made this.

It was dinner time already and I still haven’t cooked anything. I let the chicken breast out of the fridge a few hours earlier but I really didn’t have any idea what to do with it. Soon, I came up with the idea of making a fried chicken. But I wonder how can I make a good fried chicken with a chicken breast, considering that this part of chicken is not my favorite at all… I checked for available breading I have and I found Panko, then I knew what to do.

Panko Breaded Chicken Breast


  • 1 pound chicken breast, cut into desired size
  • 1 egg
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 1 tsp garlic salt
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp pepper
  • ½ tbsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tbsp worcestershire sauce
  • Panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
  • Vegetable oil/Cooking oil


  1. Mix all ingredients except for Panko.
  2. Let sit in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
  3. Heat oil in a deep pan or you may use deep fryer if you have.
  4. While waiting for the oil to heat, remove chicken pieces from the batter and coat with Panko.
  5. Deep fry chicken until golden brown and put paper towels to remove the excess oil.

This may be a very simple breaded chicken but what I loved about this is that even if the chicken is not freshly fried, it will still give you same taste – delicious and delicious! Haha, that’s double deliciousness!

The fun part was I was not planning to take a photo of this nor put this on my blog. I was eating my dinner and hastily, I took the camera and took a shot! My tummy told me that I should share this recipe, simple but very delicious!! I felt sorry for myself because I only fried few. 😀

I never tried making a Japanese bread crumbs at home, but if you’d like to try, just click here. I always use a store-bought Panko. But if not lazy, I will try making one. 😉

Easy Nutella Muffins

As a newbie to Instagram community, I use to check ‘what’s new’ every single time. Addicted, huh?! I was glad that I found new friends in an instant and I am enjoying the conversations I’m having especially with Filipinos with the same interest. I was also surprised to find one Filipina who also has this WordPress account and immediately, I checked out her blog. I found recipes that I’ve bookmarked including this EASY Nutella Muffins. She made brownies and muffins out of this recipe and I just made muffins. 🙂

This recipe has been bookmarked and not to be tried so soon ‘coz I still have tons of recipes on queue but I was craving for Nutella so much and I thought why not give this recipe a shot. The recipe was so easy that even kids can make it, except for putting them in the oven, of course – kids need some assistance on that.

Easy Nutella Muffins


  • 1 egg
  • 5 Tbsp All-purpose or Plain flour
  • 1/2 cup Nutella


  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 F.
  2. Crack egg into the bowl. Add in your Nutella and using a fork, whisk together.
  3. Slowly add in the flour until well combined.
  4. Fill in mini muffin tins and bake for 10 minutes.
  5. Remove from the oven and let cool for a bit before taking a bite.

Note: You can also add nuts or chocolate chips to the batter, if desired. 🙂 Add them after adding the flour.

Source recipe: Easy Nutella Brownies by Butter Love Affair

Easy Nutella Muffins Recipe

I found these little muffins very easy to bake, yet delicious!! I’ve been thinking of a Nutella and Strawberry Muffins lately and tried to write a recipe of it but I don’t know why my hands can’t even write down what I had on my mind. So, I took a strawberry jam from the fridge and put it on these little muffins and I had the most amazing snack for the day!!

O-M-G for the additional AWARDS!!

I was so busy with my life that I have not checked my blog for a few days!

I was again surprised to receive another award, not one, but three awards from the ever lovely and helpful, Fae! Fae really inspires other bloggers and non-bloggers through her blog and even helps others to be recognized by other bloggers. I even want to do a guest post on her blog but I am still working out what to post; it should be ‘something’ to me. 🙂 Anyway, if you have not checked out her blog, click here and you’ll be amazed on how talented she is! *two thumbs up* I think I just over used the words blog and bloggers here!

I am very delighted to receive such awards, and admit it, it takes time when you accept and pass it to others. But this is what I love about getting an award, passing awards to other amazing bloggers. 🙂


Best Moment Award


Please go to  to pick the badge appropriate to the number of Best Moment Award you have received.

Acceptance Speech: I’ll just make this speech as short as possible as I don’t want to bore my readers, haha!

I would like to thank my Mom who kept on calling my attention to be at the kitchen to help her in the slicing stuff and later on, made me have my own adventure in the kitchen. I would like also to thank everyone who appreciates the food I serve and somehow, I put a smile on their faces which makes them proud of me; to all my supporters. Lastly, I would like to thank my pans, my bowls, my measuring cups and spoons, and everything that has been with me through my journey. I’m sorry if sometimes, I had this thought of replacing you with nicer color; I promise it will never happen again. And as what Fae said: INTERNET! Yes, thanks a lot, Internet!! If not because of you, we will never be able to do this. 😀

I am so pleased to nominate the Best Moment Award to these following bloggers, in random order! Congratulations!!

Best Moment Award


 The rules for Best Moment Award are:

– Winners re-post this completely with their Acceptance Speech.
– This could be written or video recorded.
– Winners have the privilege of awarding the next awardees!
– The re-post should include a NEW set of people/blogs worthy of the award; and winners notify them the great news.

RESOURCES: What makes a good acceptance speech?

– Gratitude. Thank the people who helped you along the way – Humor. Keep us entertained and smiling
– Inspiration. Make your story touch our lives
– Get an idea from the great acceptance speeches, compiled in
– Display the award’s badge on your blog/website, downloadable in


Sunshine Award


You can choose other badge for this award if you want. 🙂


1. Who is your favorite philosopher?  — No idea?
2. What is your favorite number?     — 18
3. What is your favorite animal?     — Cat. 
4. What are your Facebook and Twitter?  — No Twitter and no Facebook account for thenotsocreativecook. Do I have to make one?
5. What is your favorite time of the day?  — Breakfast time! 
6. What was your favorite vacation?   — Malaysia and Singapore!!
7. What is your favorite physical activity?  — Cooking and baking, if those can be considered as physical activities. 🙂
8. What is your non-alcoholic drink?   — Iced Tea; I do not drink alcohol.
9. What is your favorite flower?   — Red Rose
10. What is your passion?   — Cooking and Baking

 In random order, these blogger are my nominations for the Sunshine Award! Congratulations!!

Sunshine Award


The rules for Sunshine Award are:

1         Visit and thank the blogger who nominated you.
2         Acknowledge that blogger on your blog and link back.
3         Answer the same 10 questions given.
4         Nominate up to 10 blogs for the award, a link to their blogs in your post, and notify them on their blogs.
5         Copy and paste the award on your blog somewhere.


Versatile Blogger Award


You can choose other badge for this award if you want. 🙂

7 random things about me: I’ll give some favorites of mine…

1         Favorite color: Purple
2         Favorite chocolate/brand: Dark chocolate/Hershey’s
3         Favorite scent of lotion: vanilla or cocoa butter
4         Favorite perfume: Light Blue (Dolce and Gabbana)
5         Favorite baked goodies: Brownies
6         Favorite actor/actress: Vin Diesel, Nicholas Cage/Angelina Jolie
7         Favorite candle scent: baby powder

And for the Versatile Blogger Award, I nominate these following bloggers, in random order! Congratulations!!


 The rules for The Versatile Blogger Award are:

1         Visit and thank the blogger who nominated you.
2         Acknowledge that blogger on your blog and a link back.
3         Share 7 random interesting things about yourself.
4         Nominate up to 15 bloggers for The Versatile Blogger Award, provide a link to their blogs in your post, and notify them on their blogs.
5         Copy and paste the award somewhere on your blog.

I really hope that through this blog, I will inspire other cooks and bakers out there, especially those who are just starting to explore! Again, thanks to all my supporters especially here at WordPress community, especially to those who gave me awards, Rabbit and Fae. *hugs to both of you*

ChocoNana Mudslide Smoothie

With all the new found friends here on WordPress, I kept on bookmarking and bookmarking… I have almost 80 recipes for desserts, snacks and other sweet bites, and almost 70 for main dishes. Well, those were the recipes I have already saved on Word document; I still have on my bookmarks. Out of those numbers, I have only checked off 8 or 9 recipes and more to go! Oh! I still have recipes on my mind, too! Whew! I am good at time management when I am in the kitchen, cooking for a gathering or a party. But I think I’ve lost that talent now. I don’t know anymore how to manage my cooking/baking, reading and other important stuffs in my everyday life. You know what? I really wish that I could cook/bake while reading a book! No, not listening to an audiobook; reading a book, e-book, whatsoever. Hmmm, I would love to have a talent of concentrating to read a book while cooking and baking. Is that possible? Haha! Okay, I think I am being crazy now.

Let me just go back to reality…

The weather was hot and I was craving for ice cream but I was lazy to go out. Since I had chocolate milk available, I went to the nearest market to buy bananas to make this drink.

Another Banana? Yes, another banana recipe. But this time, it’s in liquid form. 😀

ChocoNana Mudslide Smoothie


  • 2 medium banana, about 1 ½ cups, semi-frozen
  • 1 ½ cup chocolate milk, semi-frozen
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp cocoa powder
  • Chocolate Syrup, optional


Put all ingredients in a blender and blend until desired consistency. You can add ice cubes if you want, just adjust the sugar according to your desired sweetness. I just want mine to be pure banana and chocolate so I did not use ice cubes. Put in your preferred glass and drink as soon as possible. 🙂

This is optional: Drizzle some chocolate syrup inside, encircling the sides of your glass and pour the yummy ChocoNana Smoothie and there you have it – ChocoNana Mudslide Smoothie. 😀