Anti Plagiarism

27 December 2010

Thai Inspired Media Noche

I'm still new to trying to update this blog of mine on a daily basis. Anyway, here goes something that I have to put into words before I go stir crazy.

New Year's Eve is fast approaching and although I don't subscribe to all the superstitions associated to the day, I always try to make something that's colorful and yummy, while avoiding chicken and the slow pokes (crabs, etc).

I'm on a Thai food binge! I want to eat something that remotely resembles the Thai food that I've tried from the restaurants that I've been to.

My menu on December 31st would include the following:

1. Crispy pork with cilantro garnish
2. Vegetable and tofu curry
3. (Hopefully) Thai Ice Tea
4. And for dessert, sago in sweetened warm coconut milk.

I just need to buy the ingredients and make sure that they're fresh for Friday night!

I'd post the recipe one by one next year. I hope you'll enjoy the food as much as we will.

Happy New Year everyone!

Food Misadventures at the Manila Ocean Park

After all the walking and sight seeing at the Manila Ocean Park, hubby and I got really hungry. We decided to visit MakanMakan (Makansutra) first. The first time we got there, they were still closed. So okay, we went and looked for something to snack on while waiting for them to open up.

Misadventure #1: MakanMakan Asian Food Village - 2nd Floor of the Oceanarium

We went back to the restaurant and we were seated at once. When we looked for the menu, we were told that they were out of copies. We had to wait for someone to finish looking at the menu and to order their food before we got our hands on it. It's a small thing, but worth mentioning.

The name of the restaurant included something that said Asian Food Village, so I was expecting a lot of Thai food. What a disappointment! When I saw the only page they dedicated to Thai cuisine, hubby and I said that it looked like a mere after thought. But even with that, we decided to go and order Chinese instead.

We called for a waiter and placed our order. I really wished they had the Thai Ice Tea, but they didn't, so I settled for the Singaporean drink Lemon Barley and hubby decided to just go with regular Ice Tea. We had to wait for five minutes for the drinks to be served. We still remained patient and waited for our food. Here is where the misadventure began:

Misadventure A: After we placed our orders, the waiters did not bother to put plates on our table. They made it look like we were supposed to eat from the serving plates when our food arrives.

Misadventure B: Hubby and I were talking and we noticed that food was being served all around us. Those who came in after us had their food on their table and ours was still missing. That's after 45 minutes of waiting for the food.

We called someone's attention and lo and behold! Our order slip was still with the cashier! Meaning that it was not forwarded to the kitchen so that the chefs can prepare our meal!

We asked for the manager and our food, but dang, the first waiter that we talked to didn't even attempt to call the manager, instead he went to the kitchen and placed our order. We had to call another waiter to call the manager for us. Our patience was running low then, we were hungry and frustrated.

So here comes the manager. We voiced out our concern, what did he do? He immediately agreed that we cancel our order! Customer service of this place SUCKS big time! He didn't even offer to resolve the problem. We were not looking for a free meal, what we wanted was for him to DO SOMETHING about the problem, sadly, he didn't.

Misadventure C: While talking to the manager, our food started arriving one by one. The YangChow rice looked as if it was hastily prepared. Rice was spilling from all sides and it looked PALE. The ginger onion fish fillet arrived a few minutes after and again, it looked hastily prepared! Not even worth taking a photo of.

Misadventure D: The food was being served on the table, but again, there were still no plates on the table. If we decided to stay there and eat, HOW WERE WE SUPPOSED TO EAT THE FOOD? ON THE SERVING PLATES? Gawd awful SERVICE!

Misadventure E: Again. we were not looking for a free meal. But when we said to the manager that we will cancel the order, he was LIGHTING FAST AND QUICK TO TELL US THAT WE SHOULD PAY FOR THE DRINKS! There was ABSOLUTELY NO ATTEMPT TO KEEP US THERE AND DO BUSINESS WITH US!

This really ticked me off. I know that there was just two of us and when compared to other groups which averaged at least four people, our business was smaller. But still, business is business. You don't screw up a couple's date with LOUSY service.

In the end, we paid for the drinks and cancelled our food without guilt. Tip, if you want to try MakanMakan, make sure that there's at least four of you in a group, you may get better service.

Misadventure #2: Pancake House, Ground Floor Oceanarium

After our bout with trying to eat at MakanMakan, we decided to go to Pancake House and fill our bellies there. A group just left their table and we decided to sit there. It was a great choice, it was near the windows and it provided us with a good view of the harbor.

Here are the misadventures:

Misadventure A: After seating, NO ONE CLEANED the mess on the table. We tried to get the attention of the waiters (of which there were only two, on a Sunday no less!). But it seemed that they were purposely avoiding us. We were there for about five minutes and not even the MANAGER cleaned or asked someone to clean our table.

Misadventure B: Hubby went to the washroom and on his way, he asked a waiter to clean out our table. He pointed to my location and I know for a fact that the waiter saw me and the mess that was our table. Here's the annoying part, THE WAITER CLEANED A DIFFERENT TABLE!!!

Misadventure C: After about ten minutes, I finally got a waiter's attention and asked him to clean the table. While in the process of picking up the mess, another table of customers called him to complain about their food. The food they served was RAW! What did the waiter do? Instead of calling the manager to resolve the issue, he abandoned all pretense of trying to clean my table and went to the kitchen to resolve the custonmer's issue, without asking someone else to clean the table for us! Anyway, after hearing that they served RAW food, I felt nauseated and decided to leave the establishment.

Misadventure D: While waiting for someone to actually start working on our table, I noticed that there was a mom (another customer) who was complaining about something. Her child was starting to throw tantrums, and guess what, he was HUNGRY! They were waiting forever for something to be served to them. And again, the manager was not doing anything to resolve the issue.

After hearing the complaints, I asked my hubby to get out of the place and look for another establishment. We ended up eating at another restaurant and we were hitting ourselves on the head for not going there in the first place.

We are not heartless. We acknowledge the fact that the holidays may have poured in more customers for all of the establishments in the Oceanarium food area. But, since they are from the service industry, they should have prepared for the influx of customers. Being understaffed is not an excuse, the establishments should have predicted this. It's the Christmas season for crying out loud. Families go out to celebrate the season!

Lesson learned, don't go to establishments which can't handle the rush. You'll probably get ulcer if you decide to wait for them to do business with you. One more thing, if the establishment has lousy service in one branch, chances are, they are lousy everywhere, same training right? And lastly, if the establishment does not want to do business with you, forget about them and NEVER do business with them AGAIN. No more trips to MakanMakan and any branch of Pancake House for us, EVER.

23 December 2010

Spicy Creamy Chicken Macaroni Soup

I don't like oily soups, so this particular recipe got a twist from me.



What you need:

1/2K of chicken breast fillet diced
1/2K of elbow macaroni
2 small carrots thinly sliced diagonally
1 small cabbage head shredded
3 cloves of garlic minced
1 medium onion finely chopped
1 small can of evaporated milk
1 cup of water
2 tablespoons of olive oil or 1 tablespoon of lite-butter
salt and pepper to taste

What to do:

In your soup pot, saute the garlic, onion, chicken and carrots in butter or olive oil.
Add the water once the chicken is cooked and let boil.
Put the macaroni in until the pasta is al dente (don't you just hate soggy pasta?)
Once the pasta is done, add the milk, salt and pepper to taste and simmer for 5 minutes. Before turning off the heat, add the cabbage and turn off the heat when the cabbage is half cooked.



When it's done, sprinkle some powdered cayenne pepper and serve with toasted bread.

Particularly yummy during the cold season.













Update: 07 July 2017: Sorry for the missing photos. My images used to be hosted on Photobucket and Now I can't download them to transfer them to another site so I can show them again here.

The Mango Tree Bistro Experience

I apologize if I wasn't able to join any food memes last Friday because of some responsibilities that I had to attend to.

This week, let me give you a review of one of the newest Thai restaurants in Quezon City, Mango Tree Bistro. The restaurant is located on the third floor of Trinoma mall beside Powerbooks. It opened its doors to Filipinos last October 11th. It originated from Bangkok, Thailand and it now has branches in several international locations including Tokyo in Japan, Macau, Dubai, Kuching, Busan and Kuching and its newest baby, the restaurant here in the Philippines.

The ambiance of the restaurant is relaxing and the crew members were prompt in leading us to a table and giving us the menu.

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Mango Tree Bistro Entrance from the Third Floor Deck


From the photos alone when you open the menu, you might be tempted to order everything that you see.

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Although the dishes had their Thai names written on the menu, it was not hard to place our orders since there was description under every item to help one decide which one to order.

What we had were the following:

Hubby ordered the Garlic Shrimp

The thing that I loved most about it is that it was juicy. There was enough garlic for the dish to live up to its name, but there was also enough juice from the shrimp so that its flavor won't be overpowered by the garlic in the dish. It wasn't spicy too, so for those who would love to try Thai food without the tongue burning spicy taste, I would recommend that you try this one out. From how it was served, I would definitely say that it's kid friendly too.

My choice was the chicken in green curry sauce. I LOVED every bite of it. The smooth curry sauce with the chicken fillet was marvelous! It was mildly spicy, there were chopped finger chilis in it, as well as some chopped cayenne pepper. If you're not into spicy food, you might still find this dish just with the right amount of spice. It wouldn't make you run towards the crew member asking for a glass of water.

For drinks, hubby had regular lemon ice tea and I got the Thai Ice Tea.



Comparing it with the one from Jatujak, this was waaaaaay better. I was able to quench my thirst, enjoy its unique flavor without gagging on bits of shaved ice.

Okay, we were full from what we ate, but I can't pass off on dessert, can I? So we decided to have the simplest dessert available.

It's sago with sweetened coconut milk.

Gross? No, NOT A BIT! It was delicious! I must say though that we were taken aback when it was served. I'm so used to having cold dessert that this warm glass of sago surprised me a bit.

The best thing about it, it wasn't tooooo sweet. We were able to enjoy the coconut milk, the sago and the added flavor that it had, which I finally realized was a touch of mint on the dessert. I'd like to have a glass of it again.

The verdict:
Food Quality: 10/10
Efficiency of service: 10/10 - they were fast in delivering our food on our table, the crew member who served us even led us out to the smoking section where he served our dessert with two glasses of ice cold water.
Ambiance: 9/10 - I have to say that if you're using an ordinary digital camera, you might have a little difficulty in taking the photos. The lighting was ambient and was designed to highlight the food (according to my friend) and using your camera's on-board flash just might sabotage the look of the food.
Cost: 10/10 - we only paid Php1,000 (one thousand pesos) for everything. It's cheap considering that we had two types of viand, two cups of rice, one glass of ice tea each and dessert.

Recommendations:

If you are craving for Thai food that's easy on the budget, Mango Tree Bistro is the place to go.

Would we go back there? DEFINITELY!

I'm now thinking of going to another Thai restaurant just to compare prices and food quality. Till my next restaurant adventure then!






Update: 07 July 2017: Sorry for the missing photos. My images used to be hosted on Photobucket and Now I can't download them to transfer them to another site so I can show them again here.

10 December 2010

Jatujak Mall of Asia - A taste of Thai Cuisine

Eversince I started blogging about food and reviewing restaurants and their services, hubby and I became more picky on the places where we want to eat. Last weekend was no exception. We went to MOA quite hungry, but we walked around the area where the restaurants are until we finally decided to give Jatujak a try.


The restaurant is located at the second floor, bay area side near the cinema. It's quite easy to miss since it is small and if there was no one out front wearing a uniform, we would not have given the place much thought.

When we went inside, the restaurant was quite warm. I think the restaurant just opened that time. I asked the crew if we could transfer to an area near the airconditioner and they gladly obliged. We got the menu and these are the things that we ordered.




The vegetables were cooked just the way I like them, not soggy but not too crunchy to the point that you'll ask someone if they really cooked the thing. It was a curry dish and for someone who likes to eat curry, this one surprised me a lot. I never knew vegetables and tofu cooked curry style would taste that good. Another inspiration for my healthy cooking recipe.

It was served last and it was steaming, fresh out of the pan. I wouldn't say it was spectacular, but I wouldn't call it bland either. It was just right, not too spicy too. Although I kinda wished it was, since for me curry should be on the spicy side.


Our rice was one of the well known varieties of Thai dishes, Thai Bagoong Rice. This one was good! The Bagoong was not salty and the shredded eggs and green mangoes hit the spot. What I loved the most were the fresh onions and cucumber that were on the sides of the rice. It meant that I could choose to put the onions along with the bagoong and the rest of what was on the plate if I wanted them.



And here is what really made my lunch worth waiting for. The crispy pork with cilantro garnish. What can I say? When it was first served, I thought, hey, it's effing dry! No condiments, not even vinegar? Phew! But when I started to dig into it, I found out that the condiment was at the bottom of the pile of pork. The great thing about it was that, it didn't make the pork soggy. So there I was looking at the pork and heaving some tomatoes, onions and cucumber slices along with the vinegar dip onto my plate. And when I tried it with the rice, I was instantly transported to food heaven.

The pork wasn't salty and the vinegar dip complemented the whole thing. I was a happy camper that time.


And with the food adventure comes the curiosity about their signature drink. I had the Thai Iced Tea. I can't put my finger on the exact flavor that they used, but it was definitely something new to the palate. Did I like it? YES and NO. Yes, because it was something new and it tasted good. NO, because there was just way tooooooo much ice inside the glass that it made it hard for me to take a sip and drink my iced tea. I only wish they lessened the ice a bit.

Overall, the Jatujak experience was really good and I would love to go to their other branches located in Megamall and SM North sometime soon. And for everything that we ate, we paid a little over Php700 or roughly $12. I can't wait to go to another Thai restaurant to compare prices and of course the food and service. Hmmm, maybe on Saturday I should try that Thai restaurant that my friend keeps telling me about. Time for another foodie adventure!








Update: 07 July 2017: Sorry for the missing photos. My images used to be hosted on Photobucket and Now I can't download them to transfer them to another site so I can show them again here.

03 December 2010

Adobo sa Gata - Chicken in Coconut Milk

I first came across recipes for adobo sa gata a few years back. My mom loves making this using fish, but this time I decided that I want to make it my own recipe. I used chicken instead of fish and boy, was it yummy!


What you'll need

1K of chicken breast fillet (or any other chicken part of your preference)
5 pieces of cayenne pepper chopped finely or 2 tablespoons of powdered cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon whole black pepper
1 teaspoon of grated yellow ginger
1 cup of thick coconut milk
2 tablespoons of vinegar (add more depending on your taste)
1 tablespoon of minced garlic
1 small onion cut into four
3 tablespoons of olive oil or any cooking oil of your choice
salt and pepper to taste

What to do

1. Brown the chicken in a pan, on medium heat.
2. After the chicken has turned brown, add vinegar, salt, pepper (whole and grounded), cayenne pepper, garlic, onion and ginger. Simmer for 15 minutes on low heat.
3. Add the coconut extract/milk and simmer for 5 minutes or until the coconut milk turns to oil.


4. Serve with steamed rice and Enjoy

Update: 07 July 2017: Sorry for the missing photos. My images used to be hosted on Photobucket and Now I can't download them to transfer them to another site so I can show them again here.







The Chocolate Kiss Cafe (Now Closed)

We came from Antipolo one day last May and since we had our own transportation that time, we decided to look for a nook where we can have dessert.

We found The Chocolate Kiss Cafe along A. Roces Avenue and decided to try their cakes

My take on their cakes


The sansrival had the right texture, but definitely not the taste. It was way too buttery and there was this tang of orange that I really didn't like.

Their sample platter of cakes


The size was just too small and well, the taste, it's something that you can forget. Not spectacular and there's nothing special to them, for me it tasted like something that I can buy from any other cheaper bakeshop.

The Devil's Food Cake's frosting wasn't much, it was a little crunchy like toasted mallows. The cake was dry and the chocolate was just there for color but not much for flavor. The Dayap Cake, all I could think of at the moment I ate it was "where's the dayap flavor?" and the Kahlua Cake was way too sweet!

Overall, the experience was not that good. The service, kinda slow, their iced tea, let's just say that you have to mix your own tea. They gave us one piece of calamansi for their refillable serving, like that's going to last. And the honey they gave, it wasn't pure, it tasted more like sugared water with a drop of honey, it didn't have that sweet pleasant smell.

Maybe it's just me, but since I love desserts and when I say I love them, that means I go to places with desserts and try them all the time. This one was just not for me. And to be honest, after this experience with taste and service, I'm not willing to go back there any time soon nor am I tempted to visit their other branches.

Update: 07 July 2017: Sorry for the missing photos. My images used to be hosted on Photobucket and Now I can't download them to transfer them to another site so I can show them again here.