Microwaved and one-pot recipes for the quarantined beginner cook

Font Size

IT must be a challenge to be stuck at home with nowhere else to eat, and all you’ve got are your cooking skills (we’re working under the assumption that they’re not top-tier). We got a few idiot-proof recipes to tide you over during these trying times. Three of these recipes are from San Miguel Foods Culinary Center’s Home Foodie recipes, made using just a microwave and your own two hands. Recipes from restaurateur Myke “Tatung” Sarthou and the late culinary grande dame Nora Daza might sound a bit daunting, but these start with the words “mix all ingredients.” There is no way you could screw this up. The recipes from Mr. Sarthou and Mrs. Daza also have the advantage of keeping well, a true need during times of uncertainty.


As we can say we’re figuratively in a state of war with a microbe, we find it appropriate to crack out Mr. Sarthou’s recipe for Wartime Adobo, a crisis food that saved his grandparents during the Second World War. From his book, Philippine Cookery: From Heart to Platter, he said, “Before they escaped, they slaughtered their pigs, then boiled the pork in vinegar and salt until the liquid dried up and the fat was rendered to take its place… when they stopped to make camp, they would eat pork lard melted on top of steaming rice, boiled camote or gabi, and with a sprinkling of salt that tasted like heaven. When they finally found a place to settle, they would break out the precious meat, heat the lard and fry chunks of pork adobo until golden.”

1 kg pork chunks, preferably fatty parts like pork belly

1 cup vinegar


1 cup water

1 tbsp salt

6 cloves garlic, crushed

2 bay leaves

cracked peppercorns

Mix all ingredients in a pot. Slow-cook until liquid has evaporated and fat rendered. Remove from heat and serve.


We got this recipe from Nora Daza’s cookbook cum autobiography, A Culinary Life: Personal Recipe Collection (written with Michaela Fenix). She swears that the dish keeps for days, and like adobo, “the humba is better-tasting days after it is cooked.”

1 kg pork leg or pork shoulder

2 cloves garlic

1 cup water

2 tbsp soy sauce

2 tbsp brown sugar

1 tsp salt

1/2 cup vinegar

1 sprig oregano

1/2 bay leaf

1 heaping tbsp salted black beans

2 tbsp fat or oil

Mix all ingredients in a pot and cook until pork is tender. Slice pork into serving pieces. Arrange on a platter, set aside. Strain sauce and pour over pork. Serve hot.



1 can Purefoods Pulled Pork BBQ Pinoy Style, heated either through microwave or pan

1 pack Magnolia Cheezee Squeeze

24 pcs taquitos (mini tacos)

1 head lettuce, shredded

1 onion, chopped

3 tomatoes, diced


Fill taquitos with lettuce, onion, tomatoes and pulled pork.

Drizzle with cheese.

Makes 8 servings.

Tips: One can opt to use regular taco shells. Can be served with sour cream.



8 slices Purefoods Fiesta Ham Chicken, microwaved for 30 seconds

1 pack Magnolia Cheezee sliced into 8 equal sticks

Cream Cheese Mixture

1 pack Magnolia Cream Cheese, softened

1 tbsp finely chopped red bell pepper

1 tbsp finely chopped green bell pepper

1 tbsp chopped parsley


In a mixing bowl, combine cream cheese, bell peppers and parsley. Mix well and set aside.

Place a slice of ham flat on a plate. Spread the cream cheese mixture on top. Arrange a stick of cheese on one end and roll tightly. Repeat with the remaining ham slices. Chill a bit before serving.

Makes 8 pieces.



6 pcs Purefoods Sweet Ham, microwaved for 30 seconds

1/2 pack Magnolia Cheezee Milky White

2 pcs large flour tortillas

4 pcs lettuce leaves


Spread half of the cheese on one tortilla. Arrange the lettuce leaves and place three ham slices in the middle of the tortilla. Roll into a tight log. Secure with toothpicks if necessary. Repeat the process with the remaining ingredients.

Cut each roll into five diagonal slices and arrange on a platter.

Makes 5 servings.



1/3 cup Magnolia Cream Cheese, softened

1 pc Magnolia Brown Egg

2 tbsp sour cream

1/2 tsp lemon juice

1/4 tsp vanilla extract

2 tbsp sugar, add more if needed


Mix all ingredients thoroughly in a microwavable-safe bowl.

Cook on high heat for 90 seconds, stirring every 30 seconds to mix.

Garnish with mixed oats and apricots or any preferred fruit. Consume immediately.

Makes 1 serving.