Jay's Iceless Creamy Melon Shake

Today is a special day as I mark my blog's first ever recipe that I'll be sharing courtesy of my friend Jay.
This recipe came about when I visited him in Bulacan and we just felt like we had to whip up something like we always do each time I visit.

Have you ever done a shake without using any ice? Well this is the first of its kind.

So we looked into his fridge and all we had was some evaporated milk and frozen melon. We actually tried to defrost the the fruit but since it was as hard as a rock we just jumped in and put it in the blender.



Here's how we did it.

Ingredients:
1/2 whole melon
1 cup evaporated milk
5 tbs sugar

Proceedure:

Peel the melon from its skin, take the seeds out and refrigerate until it is completely frozen.
Mix the evaporated milk and sugar in the blender.
Cut the frozen melon in small cube like sizes before putting it in the blender.
Blend until mixture has a smooth consistency.
You may adjust the sweetness by adding more sugar or condensed milk.
Pour the mixture in a glass and top with whipped cream and a dash of cinnamon if desired.

I actually liked this recipe so much because as the beverage warms up you don't get that bland watery part so much because it doesn't have any ice in it. One more thing that I should mention is that this is very rich in fiber as you get more of the fruit compared to ordinary shake.

I am very sure this would be a big hit to both children and child-at-heart people!

Holiday Stuffing

By this time you must have stopped groaning about how full you are from all of the feasts that you've been to these past few days, or maybe not. But one thing is for sure we've all been willingly stuffing our selves with some good food these season. 


My family, well clan for that matter is no exception to this great Filipino food tradition. Every year we go to our elder's houses and eat at each and every house.

Unfortunately this year we've lost my lolo who cooks my favorite morcon something that I will miss. 


This year however, we still have the star of the table the one that takes the final bow and the one that everybody is racing to finish eating so they wont be left with none, The Leche Flan.

I guess by the looks of the table you've got an idea now of how much my family loves food. This is what bonds us what makes us stay connected. Thank God for food!

Feast At Max's Restaurant

Before anything else and you go on reading this post, let me just state first that this is not a review post. I am not reviewing the food but just sharing the feast that we just had at Max's Restaurant.

So I ate, tasted and drank why not review the food as well? The thing is yes I tasted the food, but I wasn't there to review the dishes that they served. I did not pay attention to how good it was, I ate and converse and engaged my self with the people around so I guess that it would not be fair to review the food. Yes, I'll be saying good or not so good or whatever comment but none of them really is valid as far as I am concerned. So let me share the experience in dinning instead! 


The food isn't really bad to start with but the service was just okay. We had multiple waiters and waitresses attending to us which some might think that is a good thing right? But for me it doesn't, the more people attending to you makes it more confusing when you follow up or ask for additional orders. 




The first batch of rice that we had didn't look as good as this one so I took another photo of this new batch, the first one looked like something that your mom would serve on the dinner table. 


Chicken with sweet potato fries


Kare-Kare


Liempo



Over all the feast that we had in Max's Restaurant was great. The food kept on flowing till it felt like that there's so much food on our table than what we can handle. We actually called for reinforcements to help us eat the rest of the food. LOL!

Now you must be thinking why do I have so much photos if I was not prepared for a review. Well it was because I was the official photographer that day, it was my niece's christening so there you go. 

Max's Restaurant
Ground Level, SM Marilao, Marilao Bulacan





Plant Your Own: Tomatoes

They probably are one of the easiest vegetable or fruit to plant. 

The tomato in the picture is actually planted in a pot around our house. My dad plants them and they really don't need that much attention just helping them with water and some support as they grow, their stems are really soft. 


What is good about planting your own vegetables and/or fruits is that you are sure of what is in it no chemicals or what so ever. 

So go ahead and plant something you'll never know you've always had that green thumb after all. 


Dinner At Annabel's Tomas Morato

With the lifestyle that keep I really don't get to eat much in fine dinning restaurants but through the years there are restaurants that has intrigued me oh how do they last in the industry considering that their market is not that big because of their high end menus. One of them is Annabel's


Thanks to a movie event I was able to finally try their food which I have always wondered how it tastes like every time I pass by their restaurant for coffee (the restaurant is just right beside Starbucks). 

We were served a soup first, which was quite ordinary, something that someone who knows how to cook can do. 



After finishing with our soup the main course was then served, a cup of rice some vegetables and two slices of an fried with some flour coating.

What special about this is the sauces that gives it a sweet and sour taste. I like the way the sauce was made because it has a good balance of both taste, not that sweet and the sour taste is not over powering.


I guess I would have to try more of their food as this dish that I had may just barely scratched the surface of their menu. So I guess I should come back for a real course. 


Annabels Resutarant 
194 Tomas Morato Ave. cor. Scout Delgado St., Quezon City, Philippines

Top Food Choices For Noche Buena

Whenever there is a celebration or holiday there is food, that you can be sure of in any Filipino family's dinner table. We even say "Kumain ka na ba?" (have you eaten) almost synonymous to "How are you".

source: my cousin's feast table lol

1. Spaghetti
Toping my list is no less than my favorite. Hahaha I know I am biased LOL! but this food is a sure way to put a smile on every kids face, just make sure that it is sweet though. =) I can never get enough of this pasta dish so yes, Thank You Italy!

But keep in mind you don't have to stick with just spaghetti, in our family we usually serve two pasta dishes one red sauced (spaghetti) and the other white sauced (usually carbonnara).

2. Ham
Sweet and tender, they say the best hams are made up of just one part and cut and you can check it if it really is by checking the net marks. Hams made up of scrap parts of the pig cannot have such marks as it wont hold up by it self.


Source: Hormel Foods


3. Leche Flan
This holds a special place in my heart, hahaha! but really yes, The perfect lecheflan would look like a cake with no pores and so far I have only seen a few who can make such and I am so lucky to know two of them, my aunt and cousin. Unfortunately they are in US now and I haven't tasted their legendary leche flan for a while now.
source: wikipedia


4. Salad
There are so many variations of salads, but the one that I can eat the most is a Macaroni Salad. I have really good memories of eating this food, specially that when my mom makes them it really tastes like the ones that we eat in Wendy's.

source: wikipedia

5. Roast or Fried Chicken
Another childhood favorite of mine during feasts are fried chickens. As a child we weren't rich, so we only get to taste such food on birthdays and holidays. Which I think is also a good thing because we learn to appreciate food more.

6. Lumpia
Lumpia what!!?? Spring Rolls for those who are not familiar with the name. Meat wrapped in sheets of thinly cooked egg and floor then deep fried into a perfect golden brown. Lumpia is a great finger food and or a beer match.
source: wikipedia

7.Pork Barbeque
By this time I guess you would notice that we just love meat? but yeah we do love meat. Barbecues here in the Philippines are mostly well done and we do love those carcinogenic burns on the meat, makes it more tasty!



8.Embotido / Morcon 
When my lolo was still alive we always get to taste his embotido or morcon which are the best that I ever tasted anywhere.

Embotido and Morcons are delicate meat sausages filled with either egg, fruits or some more meat inside, I can never get enough of these.

If you'd like to try cooking an embotido you can get the recipe here
source alaska milk


9.Lechon
As Anthony Bourdain would say it this would be the best pig that you would ever taste. I specially like the the ones that I tried in Carcar they tasted okay even without any sauce.
source wikipedia


10. Cake
To top it all off a good chocolate cake is nothing but proper. I like the black forest cake the most because of the complimenting tates of cherries and the dark chocolate. What I don't like about it is the tonsilitis I get the day after. LOL!

What ever you decide to put on your Christmas dinner table what is important is that you eat with your loved ones, the ones that matter most. It is not the food that matters its the people whom you share them with!

My Top 5 Must Try Foods In Cebu

They say that you can never say that you've really been to a place unless you have tasted their food. On a recent trip to the Queen City of the South I have made a list of food that you really must try to get a real taste and vibe of the island.

So without further-a-do here's my must try food in Cebu City. 

1. Larsian 
This famous grilled foods food court is located just right beside the Chong Hua Hospital and Robinsons Bldg. (not the mall) along Fuente Osmena Circle. A wide range of sea food, pork and chicken dishes can be chosen from the various stalls that offer different menus.


2. Lechon Cebu 
Cebu is known for the best lechon in the country but the question is where to get the best lechon in Cebu? Well where else but in Carcar!

Carcar is about 40 kilometers away from Cebu city but I tell you traveling to this southern city is a breeze. Just go to the Cebu South Bus Terminal, take an air conditioned bus for just Php 50.00 and get off at the rotonda. March your way to the public market and pick your choice of lechon vendor to buy from.

Note: ask the vendor to have the sauce separate as the lechon it self may not need any sauce anymore


3. La Marea
Probably one of the best pastry and desert shop in the country this ice cream topped hot brownie is best made here in La Marea. Located inside the Asiatown IT Park any one can easily find their shop as it is quite famous in the area.


4. Puso
I love the idea of the Puso. This is basically just rice wrapped inside weaved coconut leaves, but I included it on the list because how ingenious it is, it offers convenience for any one on the go and you wouldn't miss this food because it is offered in almost any food store in Cebu.


5. Siomai sa Tisa
At night Katipunan avenue in barangay Tisa in Cebu turns into a street food haven with a variety of food along the street this area is still dominated and famous for their Siomai.

I must say that their siomai is really delicious I could eat loads of it if not for my kill joy stomach. lol! Tough you can buy siomai sa tisa on other parts of the city, I would still suggest going to brgy. Tisa for it offeres a different experience. 

How about you? what are your must try food in Cebu? Maybe next time I could get to try them too! =)

AirSnacks: Cebu Pacific's Pizza Overload Pie

First off, I want to thank SkyScanner for making this review possible.

We all know that when flying food prices are ridiculous. So we are here to see if Cebu Pacific's Pizza Overload Pie is worth paying for.

As the name suggests, the pie is filled with pizza sauce and lots of cheese. It does taste a lot like pizza that I can assure you.




What I like about I like about the pie is how the bread is made. The bread of the pie isn't actually made up of one slab of dough but layers of it instead. 

I like the way the pie was constructed which gives you a pasta like experience because of how the dough was layered into. 



As for the filling, it was okay though not really over the top goodness I would say that it would not disappoint you if you are looking for the pizza taste. I just wish they included a green bell pepper there to complete the pizza taste. 

So my score for the Pizza Overload Pie is 7 out of 10 Spoons! Not bad.. =)

Stinky Tofu 臭豆腐

They say that it tastes better than it smells like. Well to be honest it really didn't smell that bad, but don't take my word at face value. You see I am a Filipino and many of the food that I am accustomed to has a near resemblance to the Chinese culture. 

Let me give you an idea of what is it that you get with a stinky tofu. Well for starters you get two blocks of tofu (for this grilled version) that was carefully marinated in a sauce that has been fermenting for about two weeks, which is then skewered onto two sticks. The tofu is then slightly cut in the middle to create a crevice for some fermented cabbage and is then 


Stinky tofu actually is one of Taiwan's favorite street snack so be sure not to miss it whenever you get a chance to visit the country. I suggest start with the ones that I had skewered, after that you can move on to a higher challenge with a different kind of stinky tofu preparation. 

Chow!

Saying Goodbye To Haagen Dazs

After reading online that Haagen-Dazs is getting its business out of the Philippines, I immediately included on my list of things to do before August ends, the month when Haagen Dazs' last branch in the Shangri-La Mall is suppose to close. 

their counter was still full of lots of ice cream with different flavors so I asked the crew which one would be the best seller and gave me the Strawberry Cheesecake Ice Cream. 


Compared to your regular ice cream that you can just buy anywhere, Haagen Dazs' ice cream isn't all just air infused giving you more of the real thing to savor. And yeah it was quite pricey about Php 175.00 for a scoop (about $4.16)


I would say that the price is quite high but yeah I would pay that amount for that kind of ice cream, I just wished that with that price comes a bigger serving. =) 


So the verdict is yes it is worth to try and pay for a Haagen-Dazs once in a while to experience it. And by the way before I left and took that blurry photo above with my phone camera while on a moving escalator, I asked the staff it is true that they are only up till the end of August, turns out that for this branch there may still be hope. 


Isdaan: Victoria Tarlac

So one day a group of travel bloggers decided to scale the gigantic Mount Pinatubo. Walking for more than two hours per way and a half hour uphill trek ain't that easy (obese kase ako LOL!) so not to be surprised we were all hungry as we return back to civilization that afternoon.

It was way out of the way but we wanted to experience Isdaan, a popular restaurant in Tarlac.

Ordering food was like any other restaurant would take sometime, well at least enough for me to buy ciggs and smoke a few.


I like the fact that the restaurant offers more than the usually food but also some attractions like the Tacsipayo where you could throw a piece of glass ware to release tension. But we were there to eat so no one bothered to actually do some dish throwing, but of course we did took some shots...... with our cameras.

So the food ey!? Well we ordered Bulalo... and it was... it tasted.... hmmm yeah it tasted like Bulalo!

Ok fine I am going to make this short. The Bulalo wasn't that remarkable. okay?

So for those of you who had been to Isdaan, what food would you recommend that would make you remember that place every time you eat the same dish in another place?

Sheng Jian Bao 生煎包

At first glance they looked like our normal Siomai here in the Philippines. As I looked closer I learned that they are actually fried as their bottoms are toasted.

I could really describe the taste. It was more than what I was expecting. A small dumpling was oozing with so much flavor. It was a bit of every taste and it seemed like the more you much on it the more different it tastes like.

I paid about $35NT for a pack of 10, really cheap compared to our local Siomai here in Manila. I guess food is relatively cheap in Taiwan, and I like it!

The vendor where I bought my Sheng Jian Bao, My first taste of the food in Shilin

Filipino Food On The New British Kitchen

I came across this video on you tube and was surprised on how the Filipino food took center stage in a food show in the UK.

The New British Kitchen showcases different foods from the countries of origin of the people who have made the United Kingdom their home.

So here it is. Geez! I had goosebumps while watching this!

Enjoy!

Shilin Night Market: Lemon Jelly Drinks




I was walking around the food area of the Shilin Night Market when I saw this drink stand. I was quite intrigued on how she presents her drinks with big fruits floating on the side. 

To kill the curiosity  I bought one, I took a sip but still I couldn't identify what was it, so I just asked the lady what is she selling. She explained that it was a lemon flavored jelly drink and those big green things floating on the side are lemon fruits!

They are much like Gulaman drinks that you can find any where here in Manila. But the only difference is that it's flavored with real lemon which we don't usually get to taste here in city.  

I suggest buy a big cup and then go around the market! It would be a great refreshing match for all of Shilin's street food


Shilin Night Market: Taiwanese Sausages




It looks like your regular sausage at first glance but as soon as I got a taste of it I found out it was not the same. I thought it's just gonna be a longanisa but it was much more tamer I didn't get to taste the strong meaty taste that I was expecting.



I didn't got to interview the person who was cooking them but the taste was kinda okay. They cook them by putting them on top of heated stones and are served on a stick.

I'd say it's still is worth a try to taste them so you could compare it with the sausages from around the world. 

Experience: Aling Lucing's Sizzling Sisig Plate Of Disappointment




It was lunch time at the 17th Hot Air Balloon Festival in Clark and as previously planned, we intend to eat at Aling Lucing's  Sisig.

Aling Lucing's Sisig is said to be the where the dish Sisig was invented and we were all excited to experience the home of the original sisig,


All we have was an address and a phone number to locate the restaurant, I called in first and a young lady answered. I asked "Sa Aling Lucing's po ba ito" (Is this Aling Lucing's restaurant?), "Yes" the lady replied. So I asked her "Paano po ba pumunta diyan galing Clark?" (How do I get there from Clark?), I was surprised with the lady's answer she said "Hindi ko po alam" (I don't know!). Suddenly an older lady took the phone and just kept on saying hello, seems like the woman was hard of hearing. 

We ditched the option of asking them for directions since they weren't able to help us and I wouldn't want to waste my minutes on such conversations.

We asked around how to get there assuming that the restaurant was famous enough for everyone to know, we were right! We followed the instructions of the people we asked how to and after two jeepney rides we arrived! 

We looked for seats upstairs thinking that it would be cooler there but we were wrong. There were lesser fans up stairs and way hotter than what we expected. No one was busing the tables as well and the vacant seats were all a mess. Went back downstairs and chanced upon a group leaving so we took their seats. 

The ground level was much tolerable than upstairs since the staff comes from downstairs we just wave out to them and they could easily cleaned the tables for us. 

We ordered right away one sisig for the three of us and 5 cups of rice. The manager   (I think she is) asked whether we were seated already or not. I pointed to her where we are seated and then finally she took our order. 

So what happened next?

We waited..... 30 Minutes after....

We kept on following up on our order and they always tell us that it takes 30 minutes but it has been 30 minutes.

I noticed their staff going out of the kitchen and started grilling pork outside. What we feared came true that they haven't even started preparing the dish!


We asked the staff to bring out the soda first because we were really thirsty we talked a lot and even joked about how long we have been waiting. We were actually willing to wait and we were trying to understand the situation as we may not know that, that day may be more than the usual busy day for them though the restaurant was not that full. 

Finally after almost an hour they started giving out the orders, this is when we reached our boiling point. The staff/cook gave the orders of those who arrived later than us rather than most of us who were waiting for almost an hour. They could have at least rewarded us with being served first right?

Well the waiting is over and here's that much coveted sisig....yeah.... 

We didn't really took time in taking such good pictures of it because all we wanted to do at this point was to eat. I asked Kevin if he can even taste the food, because I can't. We were so frustrated, disappointed  and hungry to even taste the sisig. But I wanted to know if it was worth the wait when it comes to the taste. So I stopped, calmed down and slowed down eating. 


There really is nothing special about the taste of their Sisig. I guess what makes their Sisig make you wanna eat more is the simplicity of its preparation. They used grilled pork minced into small pieces then they heat a sizzling plate put some margarine then the Sisig itself which was the grilled pork and some onions.

I guess I would have to say to be fair is that the food is okay. But I hope that the management would understand that people go to their restaurant not because of their Sisig alone, but also for the experience of eating at the real home of the dish. That is what's more important. 

Some suggestions to the management

Sanitation
Hope you could make the area cleaner. I've seen the floors (even at the kitchen area) are quite wet and muddy, this could also be an accident hazard. 
It would also help if you could assign a bus boy and let the cooks stay inside the kitchen and not serve, let the servers do that. Why because we don't want their hands to get cross contaminated. 

Service and Ambiance.
It would be great if you assign numbers to tables and orders this way you can do a first come first served basis to your customers. I also saw some electric fans not working, hope you could have them repaired.

I am saying these things because I believe that places like this should be revered and preserved. A certain level of respect should be given to the status of a certain place and this restaurant deserves that but I was disappointed with what has happened. Or maybe it was partly my fault to have expected too much out of the restaurant. 

I am still recommending you to eat at Aling lucing's. Just be prepared for the waiting time. Next time I'll try their franchise/branches and see the difference.

Aling Lucing's Sisig
Address: Valdez St. Agapito del Rosario Angeles City, Pampanga
Contact # +6345-888-2317 or +639182126461


How to get there
From SM Clark take a jeep going to Crossing Angeles and ask the driver to drop you off at Aling Lucing's Sisig at Angeles Crossing.