Monday, July 25, 2016

Urban Marche: Cash and Carry Weekend Market

There are several weekend markets in Makati today. A few of the posh villages here offer weekend markets for their residents and "outsiders" as well. One of the recent additions is Cash and Carry's Weekend Night Market called the Urban Marche. Marche, according Wikipedia is one of the 20 regions of Italy.

Urban Marche can be found at the parking lot of Cash and Carry in Palanan. The site is where the old "imported" shops were located.

There are stalls selling clothes, jewelry and all sorts of food. I seldom look at the stalls selling clothes and other dry goods because my primary purpose of going there is to eat.

Some of the food I've tried are shawarma, barbecue, pancit, pasta, Ilocos bagnet and  lechon belly. A couple of weeks ago, my doctors told me to cut down on oily and salty dishes. Grabe! It's really difficult lloking for healthy yet delicious food. But fortunately, in this weekend market, there is a stall that sells healthy stuff. Tuna pasta, veggie burger, etc.

The burger patties are made of puso ng saging. It's not really new for me because  my cousin used to make this in the province before. But I still liked the idea that they have it here in Manila.

Urban March is open Fridays to Sundays from 3 - 11 pm.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

SOI restaurant: A Special Restaurant

It was so hot in my room last Sunday I decided to go to SM Mall of Asia to enjoy their free aircon. lol I got there at about 11 am and decided to look for a place to eat before they all get filled with lunch goers. I was choosing beetween Soi Restaurant and Ya Kun Kaya Toast. Since they are both on the North wing of MOA, I decided to just walk by the restaurants to see which has more vacant tables. When I passed by Soi I noticed that the lady by the door (part of the crew) possibly has special needs. Please don't think that there is something unusual with how she looks or she looks weird as how persons with special needs are depicted in television shows. She is not like that. Don't think I was being judgmental. There was just something with the way she talked to me that caught my attention.

She was doing stuff just like the other members of the crew were doing but it still made me ask for the manager to confirm. It turned she was not but the supervisor was there to answer my questions. I just confirmed with him if the lady was indeed special. The supervisor confirmed it. I asked if all branches employ them but apparently it was only at MOA. It was the manager's decision to give it a try.

You may be wondering why I was so interested to know. Well, I work with children with special needs. I know how frustrating it is knowing that after you train them, some of them will not end up having the same opportunities like the others outside. You teach them and train them how to do things the way they are "normally" done in the real world. Then they end up not being able to find jobs because no one will accept them. So it is really special for me to see establishments like Soi that employs people with special needs. Don't get me wrong. I do not have anything against those who do not accept them. They probably have their reasons. But I really appreciate those who do give them the chance to prove their worth.

So SOI, keep up the good work.

Anyway here is what I ordered. For less than 200 pesos I got this meal that comes with  glass of iced tea and a small saucer (yes, a small one lol) of appetizer.

Monday, June 27, 2016

Orange Infused Water - Health Benefits of Orange

Like Lemon Infused Water, Orange Infused Water is also popular. Here are some of the health benefits of orange.

Orange contains soluble fiber which may help in lowering cholesterol level in your body. It also helps regulate high blood pressure.

Orange also contains a good amount of Vitamin C which helps in boosting the immune system. This means that your body will be able to fight infection better.

It also contains potassium which is good for the health of your heart.

Since it contains Vitamin C, many will believe it is acidic in nature. It is true. But only before it is digested. Orange actually contains alkaline minerals to help maintain balance in the body.

To make orange infused water, slice a medium sized orange into disks. Soak them in a jar of water.

Friday, June 24, 2016

Lemon Infused Water - Health Benefits of Lemon Infused Water

The most popular infused water (or at least I think it is) is Lemon Infused Water. Many restaurants serve lemon water now instead of ordinary tap water or mineral water. Anyway, here are some health benefits of Lemon Infused Water.

1. It is a good source of Vitamin C. This helps boost the immune system.
2. It is good for the skin -- giving it an added glow.
3. It aids in proper digestion.
4. It helps fight bacteria that cause diseases.

To make Lemon Infused Water, slice lemon to make thin disks. Soak the lemon in a jar filled with water.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Apple Infused Water - Health Benefits of Apple

An apple a day keeps the doctor away. For you, what does this line mean? This phrase is just a saying and should not be taken literally. But let's give a little meaning to this. In simple terms, if we eat fruits like apple, we'll get a lot of health benefits. This may help prevent diseases so we won't have to go to the doctor's clinic for treatment. But please, let us not keep the doctors away. Even if we're not sick we still need to see them for check up. That is something that many people forget or ignore. To stay healthy, let's not forget to have regular check up with a doctor. This is more preventive than anything.

Anyway, let's talk about apples. Here are some of the Health Benefits of Apple

Apples contain Vitamin C that boosts the immune system. In that case, it could really help prevent sickness. When the immune system is up and running well, we'll be able to fight whatever disease causing agents come our way.

Apples also contain phenols which help reduce cholesterol.This is a fun way of fight thing that dreaded stuff we have in our bodies.

Apples also help increase the levels of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine. This, some articles say, will help fight Alzheimer's Disease.

Some say this may also help reduce the risk of having Parkinson's Disease. Apples help the protection of the dopamine-producing nerve cells in the brain. Had I known about this 7 years ago, I would let my dad eat apples for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Lol

An old "tradition" I learned from an aunt is to eat apples whenever I have diarrhea. She told me it's better than taking d*@*s.

Another help benefit would is about fighting cancer. Apples have antioxidants that will help get rid of free radicals in your body. I don't really know what specific cancers it could help fight but just the same, it's nice to hear that this can help prevent or fight the big C.

Apples are also rich in fibers so it can help flush the toxins away.

Lastly, eating apples can help you reduce weight. How? Since apples are rich in fibers as said above, eating it as snacks or in-between-meals will help you feel full so you won't be eating much come mealtime. It has less calories than meat or whatever you'll eat. 

So, what is my point? Well, I simply would like to tell you that my infused water suggestion for today is Apple Infused Water.

Just like the others, simply cut an apple into small pieces and soak them in a jar of water. I guarantee you, this is nice because it tastes good and looks good too.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Healthy Snacks for School - Healthy Baon for Your Child 4 (Microwave Omelette Cup)

I think one of the good styles to hide vegetables from your children in by putting them inside an omelette. But since some kids are like scientists who easily discovers things, try to use trick I'm going to tell you.

Cook your omelette using a microwave oven. Wait! I'm not done yet. Do not use the microwavable plastic containers but instead, use ceramic mugs or whatever containers you have at home that has cover for easy packing. Here's what you should do.

But first, let's start with the ingredients.

Microwave Omelette Cup

2 large eggs - beaten
3 tbsp grated cheese (or you may use cubed or diced cheese)
3 tbsp cooked ham (or diced hotdogs)
2 tbsp diced carrots (or shredded for easier hiding)
2 tbsp diced potato
salt and pepper to taste

1. Spray oil (just a little or better yet use butter) inside a ceramic mug.
2. Put all the ingredients inside the mug. Mix well. (Fill to about 3/4 of the mug since the omelette will still rise).
3. microwave for about a minute. If the egg is still not yet set, microwave again for a few seconds or until the egg is well cooked.
4. If the mug has a lid, then there's no need to transfer it to a different container. If not, then run a knife around then transfer to your preferred container.

You can use this recipe not just for your child's healthy baon but also for your breakfast at home.

What I want to try is to use mason jars instead of ceramic mugs. It would be nice to look at, I think. I've used mason jars for a number of things already like for cathedral windows, nut layers, etc. But I don't know if you can put it inside a microwave oven. I'm afraid to try, lol. If you're brave enough to do it then please let me know of the result.

Anyway, I hope this simple omelette recipe will be of help. It's very easy to follow -- just like your ordinary hotdog omelette or ham, omelette.

Longan Infused Water - Good for the Heart and ... Sex Life?

Are you familiar with Euphoria fruit? Euphoria fruit or euphoria langana is popularly known as longan. It  tastes like lychee and when peeled looks like one too.

Longan is commonly used by the Chinese as a tonic used for a lot of health reasons. The most common use is for the heart. It also helps rejuvenate the blood. They say it also helps the skin become smoother and gives it it's much needed glow. It improves the eye-sight. It has Vitamins A and C. It also has potassium. And lastly, and interestingly, it is also popular as a sex tonic. Why? Well, some texts I read simply says that since your skin improves, your sex life will also improve. 

So by now you can probably predict how to make longan infused water.

Just soak a dozen pieces of peeled longan in a jar of water and you're all set.

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Garlic and Ginger Infused Water - Garlic and Ginger Tea

Garlic is known to help lower blood pressure. It also lowers cholesterol levels thus they say it is good in preventing heart diseases. It contains manganese, vitamin C and vitamin B6 (for the nerve cells). It also has anti-oxidant properties that we all know is good for preventing cancer.

Ginger is good for the digestive system. It helps relieve irritation of the gastrointestinal tract. It also has anti-inflammatory effects. It helps relieve pain. Many also use ginger to cure nausea. It is also believed that ginger can help lower cholesterol levels and blood pressure.

Now, combining these two seems a great idea. So here is a recipe of Garlic and Ginger Infused Water. Well, this is more like Garlic and Ginger Tea.

What I did to prepare this is to slice garlic and ginger into small pieces. Then instead of soaking in water at room temperature, I used hot water. This will help draw out the flavor from the two. My original idea was to have two separate drinks. But somehow, people find the taste, not to mention the smell of garlic, too strong. So i decided to mix it with ginger which has a more pleasant smell. The ginger will somehow tame the taste and smell of garlic.  

Monday, June 20, 2016

Healthy Snacks for School - Healthy Baon for Your Child 3 (Carrot Pancakes)

I've so far posted 2 Healthy Baon for Your Child. Here's another one. This a recipe for Healthy Pancakes.

Carrot Pancakes


1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
3 1/2 tablespoons baking powder
1 tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. salt
1 1/4 cups milk
1 egg
4 tbsp. melted butter
1/2 cup shredded carrots

1. Mix all purpose flour, baking powder, sugar, salt and shredded carrots in a large bowl.
2. Make a well in the center (make a volcano like thingy).
3. In the center, pout the milk, egg and melted butter. Mix until you create a smooth mixture. 
4. Heat an oiled frying pan over medium heat.
5. Scoop the mixture on to the pan and cook until both sides are brown.

Pear Infused Water

I've posted about two infused water recipes already -- okra and cucumber. Today I'll show you pear infused water. This is a very tasty one so for those who really want a flavorful water, try this pear infused water.

Well, there is really no recipe for infused water since it would always depend on your taste. Just cut a medium sized pear and add it into a jar filled with water. Size of the slices would depend on the container you're going to use.

If you've noticed I've posted only single fruit/vegetable infused water. I think it's best to start with the simple ones. But later on I'll put combinations for a more exciting taste. Just enjoy the single ones first, okay? :)

Friday, June 17, 2016

Healthy Snacks for School - Healthy Baon for Your Child 2 (Healthy Rice)

This second post about healthy snacks that your child can bring is not really snacks. It's about making your child's rice healthy.

If your child brings rice and viand to school and you can let him bring vegetables, it's time to turn to the rice and make it healthier.

What you can do is boil the vegetables that you want like malunggay and cabbage. Use the broth to cook the rice. Your child will not notice it but he'll get nutrients from the vegetables. You can try other vegetables to have different flavors. But I suggest you start with the ones that have mild taste. Or maybe something interesting to them like sweet corn.

I hope this will help you make your child's baon a healthy baon.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Healthy Snacks for School - Healthy Baon for Your Child 1 (Hamburger with Vegetables)

Do you want to have a healthy snacks for your child to bring to school? I have 1 suggestion for you to try on Monday.

Prepare a homemade hamburger for your child. To make it really healthy, add some vegetables. But I'm sure you'll say your child does not like tomatoes and lettuce added to his burger. He'll likely just remove them. So what must you do? Instead of tomato slices and lettuce, add carrots and potatoes. And you'll probably say that's just the same unless you turn the potatoes into fries. Hmmmmm....

What you can do is to mix these vegetables into the burger patty itself. This is simple. Just follow this recipe and you'll be fine.

Hamburger with VegetablesRecipe


1/2 kilo pork
2 small pieces of carrots
1 medium sized potato
1 egg
3 tbsp bread crumbs


1. Wash and peel the vegetables. Cut them into small pieces (like half the size of your thumb...sorry I can't think of a better example right now, lol).
2. Have them ground with the pork. Yes, many meat vendors will allow that. Have the mixture ground twice.
3. Beat the egg in a large bowl. Add in the ground meat and vegetables.
4. Add the crumbs into the mixture. I usually use about half a cup of this but with the potato mix into the ground pork, you won't need much of this.
5. Add salt and pepper to taste.
6. Heat the pan and fry the patty using butter.
 *You may opt to toast the bun of your choice in an oven toaster or on a pan. After adding the patty, add whatever dressing your child wants.

This is a good way to let your child eat vegetables. My cousin actually adds malunggay leaves but since they'll remain distinguishable, your child may opt not to eat the burger at all.

Other than carrots and potatoes, you may also add other vegetables/fruits like sayote (chayote), unripe papaya, sweet potato, apple and squash (the young one). You may have to add more bread crumbs though depending on the texture created by the mixture.

This is just one suggestion if you're having a hard time thinking of what healthy food you can let your child bring to school as baon. I'll add some more suggestions in the next coming days.

#healthysnacks #healthybaon #hamburgerrecipe

Cucumber Infused Water

Yesterday, I wrote about okra infused water. Okra infused water or okra water is popular among people who have diabetes as it is toted as a very good home remedy for diabetes.

Today, I made myself cucumber infused water. But before I talk about that, let me explain first some of the benefits of drinking infused water. In general, here are the things you can expect.

1. Infused water has better taste than plain water. That's plain and simple. Whatever fruit or vegetable you add to your water will give it flavor. It makes your water more interesting to drink. I've heard of people who stopped drinking colored drinks (soda and fruit juices) and turned to water for 'better health' but eventually went back to their old habits because, let's accept it, drinking water alone can be boring.
2. It flushes out toxins in your body.
3. It aids in digestion.

Each kind of fruit or vegetable you use will give specific benefits to add to these.

Cucumber infused water is easy to make.
1. Slice the cucumber.
2. Put them in a jar.
3. Fill the jar with water.
That's pretty easy, right?

Now, for the added benefits of cucumber water - they say cucumber has antioxidant properties. Antioxidants will help remove free radicals in your body that can cause health problems like cancer.

#infusedwater #cucumberinfusedwater #cucumberwater #cucumber

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Benefits of Drinking Okra water

Recently, I've decided to try healthy drinks like okra water. I've been told that okra has a lot of benefits and since it is one of my favorite vegetables, I decided to try okra water.

Okra is also called lady fingers. Okra is commonly eaten as part of the local dish called pinakbet or pakbet. It is a combination of several vegetables like talong, kalabasa, ampalaya, sitaw and okra.

Image taken from Thank you to the owner.

I also like it steamed and eaten with bagoong or shrimp paste.

But anyway, that's not the point of this post. Here are some of the benefits of okra as believed by many.

1) It has high dietary fiber content that has the ability to keep blood sugar levels stable.
2) The high dietary fiber content also helps in flushing out toxins in the body.
3) For the same reason, it also helps control cholesterol levels in the body.
4) It contains vitamin C and antioxidants that is good in boosting the immune system.

How to prepare Okra Water

Image taken from Thank you to the owner.
 1) Wash a few pieces of medim-sized okra.
2) Cut the 2 ends.
3) Slice the okra into 3 pieces.
4) Put the sliced okra in a pitcher or jar.
5) Fill the pitcher or jar with water.
6) Let the soak overnight. 

Nutrition Month - Vegetable and Fruit Homemade Costume Ideas

I'm sure many of you are already looking for ideas for nutrition month costume of your child. Nutrition month is July here in the Philippines. So here are some ideas. Check out this link for Nutrition Month Vegetables and Fruits Homemade Costume Ideas. You may also check this link for other Nutrition Month Fruit and Vegetable Costume Ideas.

Monday, June 06, 2016

Lydia's Lechon - The Landmark, Makati City

Last Saturday evening, I went to Landmark to look for polo barong for the office. I just came from our company outing in Lemery, Batangas but I was too tired too sleep. After looking at their wide selection of barongs, I decided it was time to eat. I went to the food court because I was craving for lechon and I know there's Lydia's lechon there.ia's Lechon, The Landmark

When I ordered the meal which says you can select to dishes served with rice and ice tea, I was immediately told that there's no more 'balat' or the crispy skin that lechon is known for. I said I don't mind because I was really craving for it.

When I got to my table and started to eat, I found out that what the guy served me was mostly BTB or balat, taba at buto. Yes, the amount of 'balat' should have made me happy but they were all makunat. They're not crispy anymore. The amount that I could actually eat was too little. I wanted to go back to protest but I was really too tired to go back to the stall and argue.

Friday, May 27, 2016

The Best Ramen in Town - Vest Ramen in Town by Erra's Grill

I found myself alone last night. All my friends have their own activities to attend to. So i decided to check out this ramen place I've been meaning to try since I've read about it in a food blog a few months back. The place is called Vest Ramen in Town by Erra's grill. I wasn't sure if they meant Best Ramen or what but since the blogger recommended it, I decided to give it a try.

The blog said it is a no-frills ramen house. It's located along a busy street in Malate, Manila. It is an open place, no walls to 'separate' you from passers-by. Yes, you'll get to inhale free smoke from cars, dust from the street and eveything else that's there.

Anyway, I got there at around 8 pm. The place was packed but lucky for me, a table was vacated. A couple, a foreigner and a Filipina just paid their bill and took off.

I was surprised when I saw their menu. You can get Shoyu Ramen for only P70. I got tantanmen worth P100. For P20, I got pork add-on. You can have egg for an additional P15 and spice for the same amount.

My order was delivered on my table in under 15 minutes. It was fast considering the place was really full.

The Tantanmen was very good. The noodle was cooked just right. The broth was not as creamy as I would have wanted it to be but it tasted quite well. It has just the right spiciness. It has just a few greens. Just like the place, the ramen looks plain but it was simply good.

Would I come back for it? YES. Would I recommend it to my friends? YES. But I would warn them that it is a simple ramen house, it looks like a carinderia, it has no airconditioning system (obviously, it's open air) and the seats are made of plastic.

Value for money, this place is.

Vest Ramen in Town is along Adriatico St. cor Nakpil.

#bestramen #vestramen #malate