A friend of mine who went home to Philippines for a month-long vacation came back with great stuff of goodies for me! Some canned goods, imported sticky rice from Calbayog Samar, beauty products that I requested, and this awesome kitchen utensils for my Rice Cake specialty: Puto Moulder or Muffin cups for steamed rice cup cakes!

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Oh, I am one happy chef!

This is truly a great addition to my kitchen utensils. I already have some blue ones of this but only 13 pieces and so whenever I make Puto, I always end up using the paper muffin cups. But with this new addition that not only is perfect but also beautifully colored, I will have fun making more Puto again!

I look forward to having my friend E from Illinois come for a visit so we can enjoy this moulder together cooking Puto and Kutchinta. It is wonderful to have such awesome friends, is it not?


Whether you’ve bought a fixer-upper or have decided the kitchen you redid in the eighties has outlived its usefulness, a remodel can be a frustrating experience. This is especially true if you are not familiar with the process. If you’re wanting a remodel that’s quick, pain-free and within you parameters, here are some tips to consider.

Know Your Budget
You need to know how much you are willing to spend before you move forward. If you’ll be using home equity to finance the work, negotiate your loan or line of credit in advance. This will allow you to avoid hefty interest fees on unsecured loans. Have a firm figure in mind before you begin the project, and make sure that the payment will fit into your budget. There’s no sense in having beautiful new kitchen or bathroom if you are struggling to afford groceries! Sit down and create a new budget that will work for you and your family.

Find the Right Contractor
If you just want a small powder room redone, there’s no reason to hire a firm that specializes in the sprawling kitchens of the affluent. The same can be said for hiring a general handyman to handle a total remodel of your wood shop. Some companies do all sorts of work, and if you are not quite sure of the scale of the project, they are the best type to call for a rough estimate. A remodeling contractor should have no problems providing you with a proper estimate. Anyone who won’t nail down the specifics of the deal is not someone you want to work with, so don’t be duped!

Think of Your Long-Term Goal
Know the real reason behind your remodel. If you’re remodeling just to update the house so you can sell it in the future, remodeling it far above the standard for your area could come out to a financial loss. However, if you plan to live in the house permanently, remodel it to suit your own tastes.

Renovations can be a stressful proposition. By keeping your goals and budget in mind, you can make the right choices and truly be proud of the work. By selecting the right contractor, your experience will be smooth and you’re sure to be satisfied with your new room!