Menu: Tea Party and Fondue for Jodi and Andre (TPFJA) haha!

Most of the time I am not too happy about not following the menu as planned. And no it doesn’t help even if I know few people take notice. But anyway, I have more hits than misses so I guess it’s not as bad as I think it is.

<-(what the fuck! this photo?! is that really the best I can manage)

The tea party was one big mess. The candles went missing and there weren’t any tea light candles available at the nearest marts and fondue without candles is no less a nightmare. Phil screwed up the coffee many times over. First he used ugly cups. Second he let the guests have their way with the sugar and creamer. Third he leaves out milk. I worked hard to clean the balcony and make it look as pretty as I could and my effort goes to waste with those mugs he used. I love coffee and I always make it either too bitter or too sweet but Phil sort of gets away with his random measurements but he didn’t do it for the guests at the time. and Coffeemate?! Seriously?

alright.

I missed out on making my tropical shrimp because I forgot to ask someone to get me fresh shrimp paste. I skipped making pesto cream because there’s no more time. I skipped making applets salad because the jalapeno we bought were too mushy. I also ended up serving pasta because all of them haven’t had lunch yet. There was a misunderstanding because I said it’s a tea party and I guess everyone assumed it was just a theme and not a real “tea party”. I served chicken fritters and forgot about the gravy and the dip. The mashed potatoes were served cold because our microwave oven is busted. Plus I think the hot and humid weather was really bad for the milk in the potatoes.

That’s a mouthful… Moving on to fondue.

The cheese fondue was a mixture of Edam, cheap quickmelt and parmesan. I thought it was perfect for first timers because I was a little bit shocked at the bitter tones of the cheese fondue we had at Old Swiss Inn when we had our first. I am really not as hot as mixing liquor or liqueurs. The selection included shrimp, slices of roast beef and steamed asparagus that I overcooked. haha. For the chocolate fondue, the choice was between dark chocolate buttons and a slice of semi sweet bar. I made french toast cubes out of whole wheat bread. There were also chilled slices of mango, melon, apple plus a banana bunch for some tang and texture. There was a huge pack of sliced almonds and an almost finished jar of maple syrup. Both would have been lovely only if they weren’t that full and if I did not take too long looking for the stupid tea light candles.

For drinks, there’s real iced tea with slices of oranges, coffee murdered by Phil and standby soda cans in the fridge. And oh, how can I forget, that as always I did not take much pictures of the food, what I did to the place and the people holding my big coffee cups because I was too busy cooking and looking for the candles. hahaha. Cheers tayo diyan!

Oh and Jodi brought cakes! (and pistachio ice cream spells greed!!!)

Bakin Awesome at Esteban Abada

We needed something very accessible and I wanted something new so we tried Bakin Awesome which is along Esteban Abada. Boy, did I miss!!! You can’t win ’em all right? Anyway they have decent mashed potatoes. hahaha.

The Tex-Mex Broccoli (160) was indeed cooked just right but it was too bland, too ordinary and nothing texy mexy about it (if you know what I mean). I would have made it a lot better with lemon or lime and perhaps a dash of chili powder or made the cheese a little bit richer. I dunno. There are lots of things you can do with this. I already had breakfast so I ordered this but it was too expensive for something that is more of a side-dish.

The duke which is supposed to be tenderloin was overcooked, overly seasoned and just all around wrong. It was too salty that even if they marinated with a bit of the classic Worcestershire, that was also overpowered by the soy sauce. It seemed very close to the local bistek if they also used a bit of calamansi. I could not taste any meat taste there and at 250 pesos, that is a big “what the hell were you thinking?”

For dessert, well, we walked all the way to Flaming Wings so we can try their Apple Pie a la Mode. At least our dessert wasn’t bad.

not bad at all.

Cheers!

Buffalo’s Wings and Things at Home Depot Ortigas

I have been wanting to try out this place but I end up choosing Jalapeno whenever I am in the area. It’s not a tough choice for me to make because I am not big chicken fan and well come on! If it is between American and Mexican what will you choose? Suit yourself.I honestly thought that it was Wingman but I guess they look all the same to me.

hmmm. We ordered a total of a pound of buffalo wings: half a pound of Firehouse Classic and half a pound of Garlic Parmesan(135 pesos each). I kinda regretted ordering Garlic Parmesan right away and wished that I can swap the whole basket with Phil but I felt guilty. The add ons of fries, ranch dip and blue cheese were priced at 29 pesos each. Though we were tempted to order the Nuclear Armageddon which was the hottest they had to offer, we crossed it out so that we could have dessert.

Buffalo’s Wings and Things is the fifth New York style buffalo wings joint I tried or I am slightly off. So far I’ve tried Yellow Cab’s, TGIF’s, Chili’s and Flaming Wings. I am not counting Pizza Hut’s, Don Henrico’s and Borough’s because I don’t think it’s the original recipe.

They actually offer dessert but I just had to order Apple Caramel Butterscotch from Jalapeño Cantina Mexicana because it is a slice of heaven. The ice cream thing they have at W&T would have to wait. Cheers!

Sancho Churreria Manila at Maginhawa

I’ve lost my faith in Maginhawa food stalls after a big letdown by one of the restaurants we visited. I often say I will try this and that soon  but the truth is that they’re at the bottom of the list of things I want to try. That or maybe it’s just near our place so I tend to look farther. Anyway we ended up at Sancho Churreria Manila because that was the nearest place I could think of where our group can have a dose of sugar. It was actually weird because I wasn’t expecting to have dessert especially that we had bottles of beer right after dinner, our 2nd helping of Woorijib that day.

Honks ordered a slice of blueberry cheesecake and a cream puff. Migs, Phil and I opted for 2 orders of churros con tsokolate. Daddy Jowi had a cup of coffee and a chocolate eclair. But anyway we ended up sharing everything so each got to sample their desserts.

 

All of us went crazy over the cheesecake and we also enjoyed the plate of churros thoroughly. I was thinking to myself that the tsokolate isn’t exactly made the traditional way in the sense that it is not as thick as it is supposed to be. I think it may be watered down however I loved it more. I mean this is a cup of tsokolate that you can actually drink after dipping and eating all the churros served with it. The traditional thick concoction is too rich for me so the watered down part turned out to be a plus.

Their 85-peso plate of churros is quite a treat and the menu for main courses looks promising. This calls for another visit! I guess I’d have to rethink my assessment of Maginhawa street. Maybe not all of the nooks are just “trending”. Funny how that word sounds hellishly negative to me.

and Cheers!

The Fat Skillet at Katipunan Ext.

I don’t really know how Kris does it. Her daughter is barely a year old yet she manages to work, to maintain her business and meet&feed me. And when she meets me she has all these little gifts that I always end up loving. Anyway, it was a long time since we ate out as she usually cooked for me at home. I let her choose where she wants to eat and The Fat Skillet is where we ended up. Boy, how excited she was!

The prawn popper and The Fat Skillet spaghetti are equally good but their Caesar salad is just superb! I love shrimp so it’s kinda hard to screw it up. Then again they did not do much to make it an unforgettable dish. I have to say the same about the pasta. I love the taste but it’s not like I’d be in a hurry to have more and rave all about it. Meantime, the salad was really something because I kinda like the usual recipe of Caesar’s salad. Most of the time people who tinker with the dressing screw it up but this definitely aced it. It’s a bit more tangy than usual and I think it is because of a squeeze of lime or lemon. Also, it has alfalfa sprouts and cherry tomatoes. The result is something particularly more refreshing. Actually, they can give it another name if they want to.

<-That is a tall glass of Kapuziner, a beer I have tried only once so I was glad to have a second dose. Also, the meetup was for me to take shots of Kairi and for them to hand me the invite. Photos are currently lost in between laptops I borrowed since the death of the desktop so I’ll work on those some other time.

I also ordered chili beef  and it tasted just the way I like it. The only problem is that I knew how they did it so there’s no magic involved. I mean much about what you love about a dish is the element of surprise. The taste’s fusion one after the other is what makes it a feast and when you already know what it is, you know how it tastes like and you know what comes after, it becomes ordinary. Sometimes I wish I can erase some of the things I know so that I can be surprised all over again.
Despite my pessimism, I doubt if there aren’t tastes left to be discovered so I say eat more. Cheers!

Menu: Breakfast for Dinner

I wasn’t at all ready to prepare for a grand feast so soon but as I felt we really had to, I opted for a simpler menu. That is precisely why I chose breakfast for dinner.

  • tapa
  • salted egg salsa
  • tinapa cheese sticks/ chili cheese sticks
  • sausage medley
  • saba & tapioca

The tapa was quite easy with garlic, soy sauce and vinegar. The most difficult thing about that is probably waiting for the meat to be tender. If you want it spicier, you can make use of chili flakes or siling labuyo. However, I am more sensitive of people who don’t dig spicy food so I just let them add their heat on their own.

The salted egg, red onions, tomatoes and green chili were cut into smaller pieces before mixing in a bit of vinegar. I topped it with Italian cilantro and served it on a bed of shredded lettuce. Its a little bit salty but it was my intention as the taste of my tapa is not overpowering.

Flaked tinapa, chopped red onions and quickmelt made up my tinapa cheese sticks. Meanwhile the chili cheese sticks simply had a halved green chili along with the slice of cheese. For this recipe I used lumpia wrapper. I have tasted chili cheese sticks many times so I didn’t need to taste it. The tinapa cheese sticks however is something new so I am a bit annoyed I forgot to taste it. I was planning to make honey mustard dressing for these two. I guess I got too busy.

The sausage medley wasn’t really a part of the original menu. It was supposedly just for back up if ever the there wasn’t enough tapa. I still cooked it however for variation. It’s just basically made of three kinds of sausages (bilbao, Purefoods angus  & Swiss Deli’s mini hungarian). I just sauteed garlic and onion and mixed the sausages with a bit of Sriracha.

And finally I am quite happy with the dessert (a rarity for TSG affairs). Mylin prepared minatamis na saba and we served it with tapioca pearls for everyone’s enjoyment. I actually bought eggs for that evening and I was planning to ask how they want their eggs but… Well, most of the time not everything I plan unfolds. But it was alright. Krissy, Karlo and the rest chipped in for beer. It was just right for the occasion.

Paul who was out of the country for a long time came to visit. It was also the first time that Jat, Jonas and Gia joined us for dinner. Cheers for more! (No pictures of the food were taken. Damn.)