I have a degree in Hotel and Restaurant Administration but I cannot cook to save my life. I am quite adept at working the microwave and the oven toaster to heat stuff but that’s really the most I can do in the kitchen. The mother of an ex-boyfriend once worried about what’s going to happen if I didn’t have a maid. I assured her that I will be fine, I know the delivery numbers of my favorite restaurants by heart. Needless to say, she didn’t like me very much after that conversation.
I think I stand a better chance at baking. I feel that I’ll do well with the precision that the craft requires. Pero, baka feeling ko lang ‘yun! There’s only one way to find out ‘no? Maybe I can give it a shot with some help from Editha’s Way – Sweet Temptations. This is the first release in a series of books authored by Chef Editha Singian who has over 40 years of experience in the food industry – engineering recipes in test kitchens, conducting live demonstrations and styling for photo shoots.
Chef Editha is one of the busiest people I know. She is constantly on the go, flying across the country or even overseas to grace events, speak in front of crowds or supervise kitchen operations. One moment she is in Cebu, after a few days she’d be in Batangas and before I know it, she is off to Australia or Europe. I don’t know how she squeezes in her painting classes and step aerobics and yoga pilates sessions. It is embarrassing how I can’t keep up with her and she is 68 years old!
“I love it, I love what I do!,” she once told me as we sat waiting for our airplane to take off. It was 7:00 am, she had partied until midnight, had only a few hours of sleep, but was raring for the working trip. “Energy is dependent on how a person thinks and sees himself, I believe I will live until a hundred years old!”, she declared with much enthusiasm.
Her book, Editha’s Way – Sweet Temptations has given her another reason to be all fired up. She started working on it in 2011 and was finally able to launch it a few months ago. “I feel so blessed! I am very thankful to Anvil Publishing, my family and friends for their support and encouragement”.
For inspiration, Chef Editha credits love. “I met my husband Eduardo Singian when I was 14 years old. I really wanted to be a doctor. I was excited to tell him I passed the entrance exam for pre-med. I thought he would be happy since my father-in-law-to-be was a doctor. He didn’t want me to be a doctor! Instead, he wanted me to be a housewife—his wife. I reluctantly took up Food and Nutrition and my world changed. When I found out Eduardo’s mom was an excellent cook, I decided to learn how to cook. From then on, I vowed to be the best and remained the best for him!,” she narrated.
Foolproof is how Chef Editha likes to call her recipes. “I made sure they can be well understood and are very easy to follow,” she assured me. I found her promise to be true as I leafed through the 72 recipes for cakes, pastries and other baked items. From Pavlova and Clafouti to Avocado Pie and Dayap Chiffon Cake.
I appreciate how the book brims with bits of helpful information covering a wide range, from storage to service. A few pages are devoted to basic baking techniques and the chemistry of basic baking ingredients. Did you know that cheesecakes and sticky frosted cakes must be sliced with a hot wet knife? Now I do! There was also an item about how to separate eggs. She makes it sound really easy. I can’t even crack an egg properly, the first time I had to do it was in front of an audience at a cooking demo with Adobo Queen Nancy Reyes-Lumen and it was a disaster!
Coincidentally, Meryl, my Texas-based BFF mentioned her intent to get into baking. So I shared with her some of chef Editha’s recipes via Viber. After a few days, she sent me photos of her creation, Food for the Gods. She said she had no trouble with Chef Editha’s method, but Meryl had to adjust the ingredients according to what she had in her pantry. Instead of pili/pecans, she used walnuts.
I was eventually able to send her an actual copy of the book. I can’t wait to see what she will be baking next!
Ako kaya, ano? Polvoron na lang muna!
There are three more installments of Editha’s Way to look forward to — Popular Filipino Heirloom, International Dishes Filipinos Love To Eat, and Healthy Cooking.
Editha’s Way – Sweet Temptations is available at National Bookstore.