Tuesday, December 16

What the...?

Maligayang Pasko! Every year at Christmas time, star shaped lanterns start appearing all over the Philippines. These stars are called Parol. Traditionally made from bamboo and paper or shells, they are one of the defining markers that Christmas has arrived in the Philippines.

For more on the history as well as instructions for making your own visit MyParol.com.

If you have any questions relating to Asian culture, and especially Asian food, feel free to ask and we will answer them right here for you.

Picture courtesy bingbing

Friday, November 14


We got a shipment of gifts in. Everything from small stuffed Maneki cats to Buddha key rings. We even got in some of the ever popular carved shell screens as well as new sake and tea sets. Finish it out with some new statues of turtles, dragons, Buddhas, and more and you have one heck of a selection.

Come by and check them out and keep an eye out for specials as the holidays grow closer. One special I can tell you about now is the vases, they are on sale from 15-50% off. As always, if there is a special gift you are looking for, let us know and we can try to find it for you.

Picture courtesy: crschmidt

Tuesday, November 11

Recipe of the Day

Bibimbap - Recipezaar

I first discovered this dish at a Korean restaurant in Austin. It has since become one of the most common things for me to order when we go to Red Pepper here in Angelo. A good and hearty meal that I think is ideal for cooler weather. If you walk away hungry after this meal, then you should look into competitive eating. Seriously though, this is a great dish. Pic courtesy jslander

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* 18 ounces chicken breasts
* 6 eggs, separated
* 12 ounces carrots, julienned
* 12 ounces cucumbers, julienned
* 12 ounces spinach, cooked and shredded
* sesame oil, as needed
* salt, pepper to taste
* 6 cups cooked sushi rice
* 1 cup soy sauce
* 1 cup sugar
* 1/4 cup garlic, minced
* 1/4 cup chopped white scallion
* 3 tablespoons sesame seeds, toasted and crushed
* 1/4 cup chili bean paste (kochujang)
* 2 tablespoons sugar
* 1 tablespoon water


1. Make the marinade: Combine 1 cup soy sauce, 1 cup sugar, 1/4 cup minced garlic, 1/4 cup chopped white scallion, 3 tablespoons toasted, crushed sesame seeds and pepper to taste.
2. Cut chicken breasts into small pieces, matchstick sized.
3. Let rest at least 2 hours in marinade -- refrigerated.
4. Season egg yolks with salt. Beat until smooth.
5. Lightly oil and heat nonstick pan over medium flame.
6. Cook yolks crêpe-style. Transfer crêpes to. sheet pan to cool.
7. Repeat process with egg whites. (If necessary, add small. amount of cornstarch-water mixture to keep whites smooth.).
8. Julienne white and yellow crêpes. Reserve.
9. Season carrots and cucumber with salt. Set aside 5 minutes. Rinse; pat dry. Saute in sesame oil. Reserve.
10. Stir-fry spinach in sesame oil. Reserve.
11. Arrange chicken, egg, vegetables around rice.
12. Make Kochujang sauce: combine 1/4 cup kochujang (chile-bean paste), 2 tablespoon sugar and 1 tablespoon water in saucepan. Heat to boil, stirring constantly.
13. Cook over medium heat until sugar dissolves and mixture reduces, 3-5 minutes.
14. Serve Kochujang sauce with the Bi Bim Bap.

It doesn't hurt to have a nice side of Kimchi to go with this. As always, if you have a recipe you would like to share, or one you can't find just let us know and we will put it up for you.

Sunday, November 9

Weird Filipino Food

Came across this video and just had to share. While we don't carry most of the things in the video, we can get them in. So if you get a hankering for "Adidas" let us know.

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Mmmm. Masarap!

Monday, October 6

Restocking Update

We just got back from Houston. Despite the lack of working traffic lights we got it done, and got some fish and eggroll wrappers. Also picked up some new gifts as well as a fresh supply of Kimchi. All told, it was a successful trip.

Just a reminder the last chance to ship Balikbayan boxes before Christmas is October 31st. So call or come by if you have boxes that need to go.

Tuesday, September 30

Recipe of the day

Butter Chicken - Recipezaar

I came across this recipe sometime back, and it is probably my favorite Indian dish. Despite it's name, butter is not the primary flavor here. Instead there is a nice combination of spices that adds a lot of flavor. Served with some basmati rice and you have an authentic dish, that tastes great, and is quite filling. I hope you enjoy. Picture courtesy Photo_Mind

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* 2 tablespoon butter
* 1 onion, chopped
* 1 clove garlic, crushed
* 2 large boneless chicken breasts
* 1 teaspoon ginger
* 1 teaspoon chili powder
* 1 teaspoon turmeric
* 1 teaspoon cinnamon
* 1 teaspoon salt
* 3/4 cup fresh cream
* 1 tablespoon tomato paste
* 1/2 teaspoon garam masala


1. Saute onion and garlic in butter.
2. Slice chicken breasts into bite sized pieces.
3. Combine spices and salt and toss chicken pieces until well coated.
4. Saute the chicken each side until golden brown.
5. Stir in the cream and tomato paste.
6. Cover pan and simmer for about 10 minutes until cooked through.
7. Sprinkle with garam masala.

New Snacks

Helen and Tex made a run down to Austin over the weekend and picked up a lot of snacks. They even managed to snag some chicharon!

We are going to Houston this weekend to drop off Balikbayan boxes so call Gigi if you have one that needs to be picked up. Check with us Monday for all the new stuff.

Tuesday, September 2

Recipe of the Day

Fragrant Eggplant- Asiarecipe.com

One of the more popular vegetables among Asian cultures is the eggplant. Today's recipe comes from Laos and is an excellent way to prepare this wide ranging veggie. For those who didn't know eggplants come in many varieties, not just the giant purple ones commonly seen in America. In fact the name is derived from the original form which really does resemble eggs. For more information on eggplants click HERE, other wise click READ MORE for the recipe.

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* 1 large eggplant
* 4 tbl soy sauce
* 1 tbl cornstarch
* 3 tbl sugar
* 1/4 cup distilled white vinegar
* 1/4 cup water
* 1 tsp crushed dried red pepper
* 6 slices ginger, about the size and thickness of a quarter
* 4 scallions, chopped, separate white and green parts
* 1 tbl dry sherry


1. Cut stem end off eggplant. Dice eggplant into small cubes. Sprinkle eggplant with salt and place in a colander to drain. Let sit for 15 minutes. Squeeze as much liquid out as possible.

2. In a small bowl, combine soy sauce, sugar, vinegar and water.

3. Heat 1 tbl dry sherry in a large skillet or wok. Add red peppers and stir. Add ginger, white part of scallion. Stir fry briefly until ginger becomes fragrant. Add the squeezed eggplant and saute approximately 8-10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until eggplant is thoroughly cooked. You shouldn't have any trouble with sticking because the eggplant still has a bit of moisture in it but if it does, add a little bit of water or sherry.

4. Add soy sauce mixture and cook over high heat until most of the liquid is evaporated and eggplant is thoroughly coated with reduced sauce - about 5 minutes.

5. Combine 2 tbl water with cornstarch.

6. Add chopped green part of scallions and sherry mixed with cornstarch. Stir and cook until thick. Serve hot over plain rice.

Picture courtesy: Hoegsberg

Monday, August 18

Recipe of the Day

Takoyaki - Bento.com

If you ever travel to Osaka, Japan there is one thing you must try. Takoyaki or Octopus balls. I first became aware of these little morsels courtesy of Anthony Bourdain's show No Reservations. I highly recommend the show to any of you out there who are foodies like me. Anyways, click READ MORE to see a recipe for this favorite food of Japan.

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* 200g chopped boiled octopus
* cooking oil
* benishoga (pickled ginger) (to taste)
* chopped negi (or scallions) (to taste)
* tenkasu (or rice crispies) (to taste)


* 450cc water
* 1 piece konbu (kelp), 10cm square
* 15g powdered katsuo-bushi (shaved dried bonito)
* 200g flour
* 2 eggs


* commercial takoyaki sauce
* or worcestershire sauce
* or bulldog sauce
* or mayonnaise (Best Foods or Hellman's)

Directions - [Batter]

1. Clean the konbu by wiping it lightly with a cloth.

2. Cut the konbu into 2-centimeter-wide partial strips against the grain, but don't cut all the way to the edge -- see illustration.

3. Add the water and konbu to a pot, and cook uncovered over a slow fire.

4. Just before the water starts to boil, remove the konbu from the pot. The liquid should be a light yellowish or greenish color.

5. Add shaved katsuobushi to the water as it starts to boil.

6. After the liquid has been boiling a minute or two, turn off the heat.

7. Quickly remove the shaved katsuobushi from the liquid with a filter or strainer or cloth. Try to remove the katsuobushi while it's still floating on the surface, before it has a chance to sink.

8. Allow the liquid to cool, then add the liquid, flour and eggs to a bowl and mix.

Directions - [Takoyaki]

Make a small test batch of 4 or 5 takoyaki at first, to check the consistency of the batter. Add more flour or water as needed.

1. Oil the takoyaki pan.

2. Add pieces of chopped octopus to each cup.

3. Pour in the batter.

4. Add benishoga, negi and tenkasu to taste.

5. Cook the takoyaki pieces until they achieve the desired degree of firmness, turning them over frequently.

6. Remove from the pan and serve with sauce and/or mayonnaise.

Enjoy! Remember if you have a recipe you want to share or one you are looking for but can't find send us a message and we will post it for you. Pictures courtesy LWY and T.Hagihara

Tuesday, August 12

Recipe of the Day

Puraw style Bangus

I adapted this recipe off of one I found for Sea Bass awhile back. Thanks to it's similar texture most Sea Bass recipes work well with Bangus. It has become the main why I prepare Bangus.

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4 tbls olive oil
1 tbls of butter
1 onion
1/4 cup white wine
1/2 cup of chicken stock
Salt and Pepper
2 fillets of bangus with skin, if possible (de-boned and marinated are good)


1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees
2. Chop onion
3. Heat 2 tbls oil in pan on medium high, and cook onion until clear.
4. Add wine and reduce.
5. Add butter and chicken stock and let thicken
6. Salt and pepper to taste
7. In a separate (oven proof) pan heat remaining oil on high
8. Season fish with salt and pepper (not really necessary if using marinated)
9. Cook fish skin side down for about 5 mins until crispy
10. Flip fish and cook for 45 seconds.
11. Put the whole pan in the oven to bake for about 4 minutes

Serve the onion sauce on top of the fish. Good with rice, and the rest of the wine you didn't use for cooking. A little bit of greenery like asparagus is also good. I hope you enjoy it, I know we do.

Tuesday, August 5

Recipe of the Day

Chicken Adobo - Recipezaar

A staple of Filipino food is adobong manok or chicken adobo. Easily prepared and very tasty, there is no way you can pass up this meal. This plus steamed rice and I reach a certain level of food heaven most people in America miss out on. Give it a try, you wont regret it. Picture courtesy Ewen and Donabel.

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* 2 1/2 lbs chicken pieces (bones are OK)
* 3-4 cloves garlic, minced (I prefer to smash the cloves, which is more traditional)
* 1/3 cup white vinegar
* 1/4 teaspoon black peppercorns, cracked
* 1 bay leaf
* 1/3 cup soy sauce
* 3/4 teaspoon salt (or to taste (I leave this out))
* vegetable oil or vegetable oil cooking spray (for sauteing)
* 3-4 medium potatoes, cut in 1 in. pieces (optional)
* water (to cover)


1. Combine all ingredients in a deep glass or stainless steel sauce pan.

2. Bring to a boil over medium heat, then reduce heat to medium low.

3. Cover and simmer for about 30 minutes or until the meat is very tender.

4. Gently turn the meat occasionally during the course of cooking.

5. Transfer to a serving platter or bowl and cover with sauce. Serve with warm steamed rice.

Sunday, August 3

Speaking of Ice Cream

We just got back from Austin and made sure to restock on the frozen goodies. This was a light restock, mainly for orders. So if you ordered something, call or come by. Even if you didn't order something, you should still come in.

I'd also like to say welcome to all the new people I see visiting recently. Feel free to leave a comment or suggestion for the site. Also make sure to put your email over there on the right to keep up to date with the latest happenings at the store and with the Asian community of San Angelo.

Wednesday, July 30

Product Focus

Since recent temperatures have crawled up into the triple digits I figured this would be a fine time to showcase one of our more popular products. Green Tea Ice Cream. Now I know to the average American diet this sounds a bit repulsive, but I assure you it is anything but.

Creamy, with the slightest of bitterness from the tea, the ice cream is refreshing and calming. Personally it seems to have a calming effect on my stomach if I have consumed too much for dinner. A truly exquisite way to finish off any meal. But what if you don't have a bowl, or a spoon or the other devices necessary to partake in this divine creation? That is where Mochi Ice Cream comes in.

Japanese rice cakes filled with ice cream. Again it sounds a bit odd, but again totally worth it to try. Lightly coated with powdered sugar to keep them from sticking, they are reminiscent of frozen doughnut holes. Both types are wonderful treats and should be tried at least once. So what better time to try them, than when it is scorching hot outside. Click Read more if you dare venture to see the frozen delights.

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Oops, guess that last one snuck in there. Told you it was hot outside.

Monday, July 28

Recipe of the Day

Yakitori- Japan-Guide

Another favorite of ours, it is quick, easy, and cheap. Great for parties and social gatherings. This common Japanese street food is usually made from chicken, and not just the meat. One of the more common versions contains the "giblets." The version we are posting today is just for the meat, but feel free to experiment and see what you like! Photo courtesy LWY

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  • Chicken without bone and skin
  • Japanese leek (negi), leek, or green onion
  • 4 tablespoons Soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons Mirin or sake
  • 3 tablespoons Sugar
  • 2 teaspoons Honey or maple syrup
  • Small wooden spears

  1. Mix together 4 tablespoons of soy sauce, 3 tablespoons of sugar, a little bit of honey or maple syrup, a little bit of mirin and water, and heat it up until combined.
  2. Cut chicken into 1 inch squares
  3. Place chicken in marinade and let sit (the longer the more flavor, but 15 minutes is long enough)
  4. Cut leeks into 1 inch pieces
  5. Spear the chicken and the leeks with the sticks
  6. Grill until cooked, make sure to turn them over.

You can fix these up in massive amounts shortly, just scale up the recipe as needed. These are also easy for kids to make. You can also cook these on an electric griddle with good results.

If there are any recipes you want to share or can't find let us know, and we will post them for you.

Sunday, July 27

The Art of Furoshiki

In this day age of cost cutting and environmental awareness an old Japanese art has reemerged. The art of Furoshiki, or cloth bag making, is becoming a popular way to carry groceries and other items. Here is a link with more information, I'm also putting a video below. Feel free to bring your cloth with you when you come to the store, and use that to carry out your groceries.

Thursday, July 24

Happy Culinarians Day!!

That's right, July 25th is Culinarian's Day. What better holiday to celebrate for a grocery store than one dedicated to food!

So in honor of Culinarian's Day we are of course having a special. Come in and say "Happy Culinarian's Day" and receive a free gift. What gift you ask? Well you are just going to have to come in and find out. You don't even have to buy anything, just come in and say "Happy Culinarian's Day."

This is only good for the 25th, as it would be silly to celebrate on the 26th which is Aunt and Uncle day. Remember the magic words and get your free gift!

Wednesday, July 23

Recipe of the Day

Moo Pat Prik Thai Dam - Courtesy Recipezaar

This recipe has become one of our favorites. Easy to prepare and tastes wonderful. You can substitute chicken for the pork and still get wonderful results. Vary the peppers depending on how hot you like it. We substitute the 2 large chili peppers for 2 whole dried Thai chilis. Photo courtesy: Hassan Abdel-Rahman

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  • 7 ounces lean pork
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 medium onion (cut into large pieces)
  • 1/2 cup bell pepper, red and orange (cut into squares)
  • 2 large chili peppers, red, remove seeds and cut into stripes
  • 3 tablespoons ginger, cut into thin stripes
  • 1 fresh pepper
  • 1 tablespoons black pepper, coarsely pounded
  • 1 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 1 teaspoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup water or stock
  1. Fry garlic in hot cooking oil until fragrant.
  2. Add pork and keep stir fry until almost ready.
  3. Add onions, ginger, bell peppers, chili peppers, fresh pepper (optional) and liquids.
  4. Add fish sauce, oyster sauce, sugar and black pepper, taste and adjust flavors.
  5. Stir fry for a minute. Let it thicken a little.
  6. Serve hot with white rice.
This is an excellent meal that takes less than 30 minutes to prepare. Hope you enjoy it.

Have any recipes you would like to share or can't find? Let us know and we will put them up for you.

Comments Update

It was brought to our attention that comments were being moderated heavily. I have adjusted this so comments should be more readily available to everyone. Sorry for the inconvenience on that.

Tuesday, July 22

What would you like?

Few stores give their customers the option of shaping the direction the store is headed. We are proud to give you this option.

So what would you like?

Some examples are: cooked foods, sake, more Indian food, certain brands, online store, etc... Let us know by leaving a comment, or sending us a message on Friendster or Myspace. Don't be constrained by the small list I have provided, and let us know what we can do to make your shopping experience better.

Thank you in advance.

Saturday, July 19

Asian Holidays

We are looking for information on holidays from around Asia. Since we are a store that covers all Asian countries we would like to hear about holidays that my fly under the radar here in America, but are celebrated abroad. Here are some examples of what we are looking for:

Japan- May 5 Children's Day

Korea- 8th day of 4th lunar month Buddha's Birthday

You got more examples from Japan or Korea, or even better how bout some Thai, Vietnamese, or Filipino ones? Let us know, so we can celebrate too!

Thursday, July 17

Last Chance and Sushi

We leave for Houston tomorrow, so make sure if you have any requests or balikbayan boxes that you call the store in the morning. We'll post an update when we get back, letting y'all know about all the new products as well as next weeks specials.

To tide you over until we get back, here is video from Howcast on making Sushi.

Enjoy your weekend and see you on Monday!

Mama Nida's Amazon Market

Introducing a new feature of the site is Mama Nida's Amazon Market. Over on the left you will notice a new box with several picture of snacks. When you click on that it will take you to our new affiliate store with Amazon.

So if you find you just can't wait til we restock to get your favorite snack, or if you live too far to drive, you can click on there and order products to be delivered straight to your house! Right now we only have snacks on there, but plan on expanding the selection soon.

If you have questions or want something added to the affiliate store feel free to leave us a comment or give us a call. As always remember to subscribe to our feed to stay up to date with the latest from the store.


Tuesday, July 15


I would like to welcome you to the new and improved Mama Nida's Blog. Those of you coming here from Myspace, make sure to subscribe to our feed so that you continue to get updates about the store.

We look forward to providing San Angelo with more Asian food, and also look forward to hearing from you. Take a look around and tell us what you think!