Litratong Pinoy 36: Eksayted!

What makes you eksayted?

Eksayted ako kapag mayroon akong regalong natanggap at hindi ko alam kung ano ang nasa loob nun.

Eksayted ako kapag nakakakita ako ng long-lost friends. (Lalo na pag may nagsabing “pumayat ka!”) D

Eksayted ako kapag pumupunta sa lugar na hindi ko pa nararating. Siyempre, gusto kong subukan lahat ng pagkain at tanawin doon.

Eksayted ako sa nalalapit naming pagkikita ng aking Irog. <3

Eksayted ako kasi Pasko na!

Christmas Tree 2008

Ngayong taong ito ay medyo kinarir ko ang Pasko kasi ito ang unang Pasko namin ng mga anak ko sa sarili naming bahay. Kaya may I buy ako ng bagong Christmas tree at kahit walang panahon ay pinilit kong disenyohan ito! Ayan, shades of gold and orange over green. Bumili rin ako ng Santa’s stockings, gingerbread house at iba pang palamuti. Nakakainggit kasi ang mga nagkikislapang dekorasyon ng mga kapitbahay. Magastos nga pero ang saya ng pakiramdam kasi parang bumabalik ka sa iyong pagkabata. Showcase ng COD Department Store pa ang pinapanood namin noon.

Eksayted ako, bow. Happy holidays to all!

Filipino desserts

Since I have enough Flickr pics to show for it, here’s my little lowdown on Filipino desserts. Mind you, this is not complete yet. Am craving for guinataang halo-halo right now, and I don’t have a photo to show for it. Kudos to the new breed of Pinoy restaurants, even the so-called fusion ones, for giving new twists to old favorites. Our sweet tooth craveth D

Palitaw at Chocnut

Palitaw with Chocnut (P75) at La Mesa Grill, Mall of Asia. The well-loved local delicacy called palitaw (made of rice flour) is given a different interpretation by adding crushed bits of Choc-Nut instead of grated coconut. The result is equally glorious. The humble Choc-Nut must be in a pedestal greater than Hershey’s if our chefs are making frappes and cheesecakes out of it. The greater question is: why not? I had already taken a picture of this palitaw at Chocnut, without knowing that beneath the fold is a scoop of yummy vanilla ice cream. Whatta treat!

Leche Flan

Leche flan, Kanin Club- Alabang (P120) . One of the most popular Filipino desserts of all time is undoubtedly Spanish in origin. MY son can’t resist this treat too. Kanin Club’s version is topped with macapuno preserves, delicious on its own as a dessert or heaped on a tall glass of halo-halo.

Biko

Biko Barako (P95), C2 Classic Cuisine Robinson’s Midtown. The traditional rice cake (just made creamier) takes on a new form with a generous filling of native chocolate and shavings of latik. Simply gotta have a cup of coffee with this, shown below with a piece of polvoron.

Coffee, with Polvoron

Turon with langka

Turon with Langka (sweetened jackfruit), Breakfast at Antonio’s, Tagaytay. You say bananas are so common? Thank God, we’ll never get tired of turon (wrapped caramelized bananas).Nowadays, the filling you get from the turon is as varied as your imagination. All those who get to taste it love the Kanin Club version with ube haleya, macapuno and every halo-halo ingredient thrown in.

Razons halo halo

Halo-halo, the way they really serve it at Razon’s original stall in Angeles City, Pampanga. Simply refreshing!

HalfMoon bibingcrepe

HalfMoon Bibingcrepe, Tomas Morato, Quezon City. Bibingka, the traditional rice cake which is particularly popular during the Christmas season and the Simbang Gabi, is given a different interpretation by slicing in half and putting a variety of fillings. We like chocolate, as always. The bibingcrepe actually reminds me of the Indonesian martabak.

camote cue

Camote cue, the sweetheart’s favorite (and mine too!) Whew, I almost forgot this one, an ordinary fare that packs a lotta punch D The best things in life cost ten pesos!

My Top 3 Cellphone Peeves

Fight Cellphone Abuse

Word Sell. Inc. has an ongoing group blogging project on Cellphone Users and Abusers. Since the topic is interesting, I now give my two cents’ worth on it. It helps that am in the Philippines, the so-called “texting capital of the world.” This way I get to see cellphone mania in action. Here goes my Top 3 Cellphone Peeves:

1. Texting when it’s not safe.

An example of this is using/not turning off the cellphone in the airplane, before take-off or even upon landing. Am afraid of flying so I get paranoid when somebody insists on texting, as we all know that wireless signals can interfere with the aircraft’s navigation/communication device. There’s such a thing as an Offline Mode, all right, but most airlines still prohibit cellphone use at crucial points, or until the plane has skidded to a complete stop.

Texting while driving … this is self-explanatory really. I just know that somebody’s doing it when am on the road and the car in front of me is moving real slow. Too bad that the law on using cellphones in the road is not fully enforced in the country, in the same way as the seatbelt rule. But yes, you do imagine how disastrous the consequences are using the cellphone while driving in a busy highway? Funny, but am sure some people still insist on doing it.

Oh, I would follow the rule too against using cellphones while inside the banks. With the ever-present possibility of bank or money-related robberies in these parts, there must a reason why security personnel implement the “no cellphone rule.” It’s for our own good.

2. Not using the cellphone’s Silent Mode.

Wonder why even the most educated people are guilty of this, or don’t spare us the ignominy of their ring tones. Yes, there’s such a thing s a Silent Mode when you’re in a meeting, funeral, concert, moviehouse, etc. Nuff said D

3. Using far-from-literate text lingo.

Yes it’s true, in the texting capital of the world, text lingo has evolved into a life of its own, one that will put Uncle Webster to shame.

“Wer na u? W8 me u d2 sa Country Style, 8s nir Bayo.” DUH.

I dread the day when my kids write in text lingo and think it’s the right way to communicate. Am just lucky that the boyfriend texts me with “we’re” and “you’re,” as necessary, not UR or WER D Makes me feel that everything’s normal with the world.

Last word: there’s life after cellphones!

LP 35: Ang pagwawagi

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Nung bumisita kami ni WhizHeart sa Batanes ay nakuha ang atensyon ko ng batang pintor na ito. Patuloy lang sya sa paggawa ng kanyang obra maestra ng walang pakialam sa mundo. Kung ikaw ay mahilig sa sining na tulad ko, kamangha-mangha talagang pagmasdan ang gawain ng mga artists. Wag na nating bilangin si Michaelangelo. Hinahangaan ko ang mga artists dahil kaya nilang gumawa ng mga magagandang bagay sa mga pinagtagpi-tagping papel, bubog ng baso, basura at iba pang ordinaryo sa ating paningin.

Kahit man ako ay nagpapasalamat na makatapos ng mga blog post o artikulo. Matagal na rin akong nagsusulat pero di dapat ipagpawalang-bahala ito. Habang may buhay at ang tao ay malusog, isang pagwawagi ang makapag-isip at makalikha kaya ipagpasalamat at ipagdiwang ito!

Ito ang aking lahok sa tema ng Litratong Pinoy sa linggong ito )

Hellas Taverna: authentic Greek food in the heart of Manila

I work in the Malate-Ermita area and for all its imperfections, I cannot really complain about the diversity in food. Everything’s just a walk away, whether you want hotel food (Hyatt, & Pan Pacific has a very interesting food court), $1 shawarmas at Shawarma Snack Center, juicy Shanghai dimsum like xiao long bao in Suzhou and those Korean holes-in-the-wall which seem to have overtaken this once-glorious tourist district. Am not even talking about the numerous culinary choices in Robinson’s Midtown yet. What to eat, what to eat….? That is the question.

It was a joy discovering a real Greek taverna in Manila, especially since it did not choose to be mainstream, like being situated in a crowded mall! Too bad, my phone’s memory card went kaput so I was only able to save a few pics from my love affair with Hellas Greek Taverna. I still remember the first thing I ordered, the Kotopoulo Kokinisto - a big plate of tomato-based pasta with flavorful roast chicken. I was about to complain that this meal of P300 was beyond my lunch budget, but I forgot that it can easily serve two persons. Most of the courses are meant for sharing.

Baked Fish

This baked fish (psaria) at P400 was also good. Don’t know much about Greek food, but I presume this fillet o’ fish was put the oven with olive oil, capers, herbs, tomatoes and potatoes. Greek cuisine is known to be simple and natural but very healthy.

tsatziki

Tzatziki (P130) is one of the staple appetizers in Greek cookery. It is a divine dip of yoghurt, cucumber and garlic puree. I would also recommend their tirofkateri dip (P155) which is made from ricotta and feta cheeses blended in hot peppers. The pita bread that goes with these are specially made in Hellas’ kitchen.

Baklava

What’s a Greek meal without sampling their glyka (desserts)? Baklava (P170) is one of the most popular. This is numerous layers of phyllo pastry filled with ground nuts and honey.

greek coffee

Greek coffee! I have to remember that they come in small cups when ordered in a Greek restaurant. One also has to choose between black, semi-sweet and sweet. Legend has it that your fortunes can be told from your coffee cup, or at least as it was practiced in Ancient Greece.

hellas - interiors

Bright walls, hand-painted chairs, and you also can’t miss the checkered blue tablecloths.

After the defunct Mati, this is now the Greek restaurant to go to in Manila. It should be authentic because the owner is Greek D

Hellas Taverna
Unit G Bellagio Square
1658 Jorge Bocobo St.
Malate, Manila
Tel. No. 524-5860

Related post:
A Birthday Lunch at Mano’s Green Taverna