Kusina Maria

Food Blog + Food Shop

Category : Tips and Tricks

Cookware Set with Kitchen Utensils [Lazada Kitchen Deal]

Want to start your own kitchen set but don’t know what to buy? Here’s a great starter set currently on sale at 85% off. This 20-Piece Cookware Set with Nylon Utensils contains all the basics you need for your kitchen.

Whether you are cooking for one for two or for a small family, this Cookware Set has you covered. The set contains the following:

  • 1 piece 3.8 Quart Covered Dutch Oven (3.5L) for soups, stocks, stews, and for boiling pasta and eggs;
  • 1 piece 2 Quart Covered Sauce Pan for sauces, small batches of soups, and for boiling vegetables;
  • 1 piece of 1.4 Quart Covered Sauce Pan for sauces and gravies;
  • 1 piece of 21.99cm Inch Fry Pan for deep frying and stir frying;
  • 5 pieces of Black Nylon Utensil Set for use with your non-stick cookware; and
  • 8 pieces of Nylon Measuring Cups and Spoons to help you in your cooking preparations.

All cookware pieces are made with stainless steel with non stick coatings and all lids are made with tempered glass.

Here are some important cookware tips for such pieces:

  • Never fill your pans to the brim to avoid spillage.
  • Clean only with a soft sponge. Never with steel brush.
  • Do not expose the nylon utensils to high heat over long periods of time. Take it off the pan if you are not using it to stir.
  • Make sure all pans, lids, and utensils are thoroughly clean and dry before you store it somewhere dry.
  • Only use nylon or wooden utensils when cooking with pans with non stick coating.

Remember always use your cookware only for cooking. And don’t forget to keep this in mind for your cooking utensils, as well.

Do you have questions about cookware, kitchen tools and utensils, and other kitchen must-haves? Comment below to ask.

Discover #DavaoFood the #SMARTLife Way

Chicken in Coconut Milk cooked in a Bamboo

Nilulot na Manok sa Gata by the Bagobo Tribe of Davao Region

“What is Davao Food?”

For ten years now, I have been blogging and sharing about Davao Food. And that is the question that people often ask me. Truth is, aside from indigenous dishes by the Davao tribes, kinilaw (ceviche), and grilled seafood, I still can’t define what Davao Food really is. Davao Food is a reflection of our “melting pot” culture. Melting pot is a term used to describe the various peoples of Davao. Davao is a proud home to its tri-people, a place where Christian, Muslims, and lumads (indigenous peoples) live and thrive peacefully. Add to that expats, international students, and other visitors from other nations. The Christians in Davao are mostly migrants from other regions of the Philippines. We have a good mix of Tagalogs, Bicolanos, Pangasinenses, Pampanguenos, Cebuanos, Warays, Boholanons, Ilonggos, and Filipinos from other regions. This mix of people is reflected in our cuisine.

Ceviche by Park Inn Davao RBG

Ceviche by Park Inn Davao RBG

Davao Food highlights the fresh produce — various meats, poultry, seafood, fruits and vegetables — of Davao Region, prepared, cooked, and presented in various regional and international cuisines. It’s not unusual to find a Filipino restaurant alongside a Japanese Restaurant, a Chinese Restaurant, an Italian Restaurant, and a Korean Restaurant all in the same street. And yes, we have restaurants specializing in Ilocano food, Halal food, Indigenous Davao food, Kagay-anon food, and other regional specialties. And there’s comfort food everywhere.

Kushiyaki Platter by The White House Fusion Cuisine

Kushiyaki Platter by The White House Fusion Cuisine

This can be overwhelming for Davao tourists. Even locals face a conundrum when choosing an establishment to visit. When people ask me where they should eat, I always ask them back several questions: “What cuisine are you looking for?,” “What’s your preferred price range?,” “Are you looking for a specific dish?”

With the advent of blogs, social media, and mobile internet, food tripping has become more convenient and, to a certain extent, entertaining. You see people post food on Facebook and on Instagram from dusk til dawn. But how exactly can you pick from all these crowd sourced information?

Start off, by doing a bit of research. Just because you saw a restaurant or a dish posted, it does not follow that the one who posted it liked or enjoyed what they posted. Don’t hesitate to ask by commenting on the post or by sending a private (or direct) message. Better yet, take time to research.
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Food Grade Eco Packaging

E-Package Cake Box Premium

E-Package Cake Box Premium

If you’re planning to start a restaurant or a food service establishment, you should think of using attractive packaging which would make your delicious meals even more appetizing. Whether it’s a restaurant, a bakery, a cafe, or a fastfood place, cute packaging can help you market your products effectively. And ensure that whatever your customers take home will be kept well and safe.

In this time of green revolution, food grade eco-packing is the way to go. Check out Eco packaging from The Bong Tree for pretty food service and food package items which are attractivelt designed and structured to contain food. And these are customizable, too.

Mint Pack 500 x Double walled cups

Mint Pack 500 x Double walled cups

Have your branding and your contact information prominently printed on these pretty eco-packaging items to promote your establishment, as well. And do so while helping out Mother Earth save on resources and energy.

Before you decide on your food packaging for your restaurant, check out Bong Tree’s Eco-Packaging items.


Chef Lawrence Zafra of CACS

Chef Lawrence Zafra Flambes Foie Gras

Have you ever been to a restaurant where the chef or wait staff prepared or served your food while it is still on flame?

The method of putting food with liquor on flame is called flambé. It is a French word which means “flaming” or “flamed.” This is usually done for grand events or in high end restaurants for a dramatic food presentation.

More than drama, flambéeing food is done so that with just little alcohol, the dish will develop a rich alcohol flavor. It is also done to caramelize sugar.

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Grocery List


I was inspired by Ate Aileen to suggest a grocery list for people who are new to cooking. I first made this list when I was in college, living alone, and just learning how to cook. Most of the recipes I made were based on food and dishes I saw on TV or have eaten somewhere. 🙂

Here were some of the stuff I always had on my fridge and kitchen cabinet…


It is important, of course, to have corn oil or vegetable oil for sauteeing or frying food. You can store or use other kinds of cooking oil but these two are the best for the health-conscious.

You should also have some olive oil for making pasta sauces.

One must always, always, always have butter. Butter may be used for simple veggies dishes, and to make dishes tastier. But then again, if you’re health-conscious skip this one. For cooking and baking, I prefer unsalted Magnolia Gold Butter. If you do use salted butter, lessen your salt when seasoning your food.


You must always have good soy sauce and vinegar. These are essential in cooking Filipino and Asian dishes. I think cane vinegar is a good choice. As for brands, I use Silver Swan for Soy Sauce and Datu Puti or Del Monte for vinegar.

For those who like Western dishes, you can also stock up on quality balsamic vinegar. If you have extra budget, you may buy Lea and Perrins Worcestershire Sauce, Knorr Liquid Seasoning, Kikkoman Japanese Soy Sauce, and some good mustard and ketchup.

Seasonings and Herbs

For seasoning food, it is a no brainer that you must have salt and pepper ALL THE TIME.

You can also store up on bay leaf, peppercorn, basil, rosemary, and thyme. And because it’s a hassle to make your own broth, buy some chicken or beef broth cubes.

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Baking Chocolate Souffle

Chocolate Souffle

On the very first day of culinary school, the very first thing I made was a Mocha Souffle. And it was a nerve-wracking but very fulfilling task. I enjoyed it because I love mocha. And so did my groupmates.

Mocha Souffle

Mocha Souffle

One of my aunts, Tita Teri, an experienced baker, requested that we bake souffle. She already knows how to bake a lot of pastries but has never tried baking souffle. And it was the very first thing she asked from me after I finished culinary school… baking souffle. Tita asked that we baked chocolate souffle, which I didn’t bake in school but had baked for Kuya Andrew during one of our kitchen testing sessions. So I wasn’t very intimidated when Tita Teri asked for it.

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