Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘It’s More Fun In the Philippines’ Category


When you see mangoes in season, you’d think  summer is finally here. And some of the sweetest mangoes are grown in our native province in Pangasinan.  My brother brought a whole crate (kaing) of it when they came over last Saturday to celebrate Mom’s birthday with us.

IMG_4709

IMG_4710

IMG_4711

Read Full Post »


IMGP1062-1-3-1

♫♪♫♪On a clear day

Rise and look around you

And you’ll see who you are

On a clear day

How it will astound you

That the glow of your being

Outshines every star

You’ll feel part of every mountain, sea and shore

You can hear

From far and near

A word you’ve never, never heard before…

And on a clear day…On a clear day…

You can see forever…

And ever…

And ever…

And ever more…♪♪♫♪

I think I am having  a LSS. That’s Capones Island located in San Antonio, Zambales. Someday, I would love to come back here and wait for the sunrise…maybe just greet the early morning with a smile.

Read Full Post »


If there are popular street food in every corner of Metro Manila, there are also popular drinks that you will find in malls and yes, food cart on the street. Buko juice and gulaman at sago are just examples of these. Gulaman is simply the Tagalog term for  jelly while sago are tapioca pearls that go with it.  Don’t ask me why they go together but they taste good especially when they’re home-made. The ones they sell in food kiosks  in malls contain only about half a spoon of gulaman and probably  a teaspoon of sago. That’s P10 for you for a small plastic cup. Sago is also used in those very popular pearl and milk teas. I tried making a pitcher this afternoon, it’s better than sodas or soft drinks.  Gulaman of course is so easy to prepare while sago needs a lot of  boiling time to soften.

gulaman at sago

Read Full Post »


IMG_3634

IMG_3636

I haven’t tasted this for quite sometime but I chanced upon a vendor selling it at 3 pieces for P50.00.  They call it suman sa latik -  made from glutinous  rice (malagkit), wrapped in banana leaves then boiled to cook. It’s the latik (coconut cream mixed with brown sugar) that makes it so delicious and tasty. It’s perfect for that hot cup of tea or coffee.  In our province in Pangasinan, we prepare suman  by wrapping them in young coconut leaves after cooking it in  coconut cream then boil it again to get that nice flavor.  I say, ours is better when it comes to taste, not that I am biased of course because suman sa latik is actually bland without the latik. And would you believe that there are as many ways to cook suman as there are so many provinces in the Philippines? Take your pick from what region they come from and they’ll surely vary in taste the more you explore the countryside.

Read Full Post »


This may come a bit  late for last week’s challenge  but you may have noticed that I don’t get to blog everyday nowadays. Just too busy catching up on things at home that blogging has become my least priority. Well, for one thing, I just set up another blog for my grandson so I am somewhat focused there.

I have only two shots that I want to include here, not because they reflect the challenge at hand but they remind me of the happier days when we used to go on road trips with the kids. These were taken at The Farm, a spa facility that boasts of large gardens and  nature at its best. This is located in Lipa City, Batangas, about three hours away from Metro Manila. Would love to come back here one of these days, God willing.

This is their Lagoon where I spent so much time reading and just looking at the ducks feeding nearby. Why not try visiting this place, they have some excellent reviews from people who’ve been there.

 

IMGP0168

IMGP0162

Read Full Post »


Last Friday, while  we were busy shopping for baby Nate’s needs, I had the chance to visit Kultura at  the second level of SM Makati. I was looking for something to give a  friend who is coming home for a two-week vacation this coming October. It’s always the place I visit every time I need to buy something for balikbayan friends. Their merchandise speaks of the wealth of Filipino culture. Some of the goods on display are hand-crafted. I took some shots, but of course.

Don’t you just love those native bags on display here? We call them “bayong” and they are made from buri  and woven into these lovely bags. Back when I was a kid, Mom used larger version of these  to carry anything and everything from the wet market. Now it has become a fashion accessory, you could tie ribbons and flowers and voila, you have a lovely and fashionable shopping bag. And since most of our supermarkets no longer use plastic bags, these reusable and sturdy bags would be handy for those not so heavy items on your shopping list.

Kultura also boasts of sweets and delicacies from every part of the archipelago.  Learn a little of our Filipino culture when you have the chance to visit any of their branches at SM stores.

Read Full Post »


Five years ago, we spent new year in Batangas to get away from the noise and pollution of Metro Manila. Nestled at the foot of Mt. Malarayat on the outskirts of Lipa City is a 47-hectare spa resort amidst lush, verdant greens, serene ponds and manicured lawns. The landscape is simply awesome. Facilities include the reception hall, the restaurant, library, a large swimming pool, orchidarium, spa, gym and villas.

The health resort can accommodate around 55 clients. There are five different kinds of accommodation each according to style,size and price. We stayed at the Sulu Terraces which are designed after rice huts and have open seating areas on the ground floor. All rooms are air-conditioned. They call the restaurant 85/15 Gourmet Restaurant, meaning, the food served is 85% raw and 15% cooked. The food is a bit pricey though and you are not allowed to bring “baon”. Where would you find a cup of coffee worth P350.00? I almost choked when I saw the price but it was all worth it. Such bliss in a place like this, because I love every corner of their vast gardens. It was another family road trip that we all enjoyed.

Their reception area boast of a water fountain in front and a small store that sells souvenirs.

Just love the verdant greens….

Looking at the views from here, can’t wait to explore the place.

Taken in front of their large swimming pool.

It was more than a two-hour trip from Metro Manila. Tired….

They have these in all corners…meditation huts where you could rest your tired feet.

My youngest…..

Exploring…

#10 Sulu Terraces

We occupied two huts. Good thing they have small safes installed for valuables.

Can’t wait to see what the place has to offer.

The gate of Sulu Terraces…nice long walk.

The ferns are taller than I am.

A close-up view of the peacock, showing its lovely form.

So peaceful, I could stay here all day  just watching the pond or reading but they have a lovely library nearby.

  The lagoon, my  favorite spot during our stay here, a perfect place to idle the time away.

A century old tree…I forgot its name!

Dreaming of my own garden like this!

Ah! The Secret Pool, we all loved it and had a night swim later. The water is heated and the place is secluded.

Look at the intricate carvings at the door, it was simply beautiful.

Going on road trips is such a joy, discovering new places, just relaxing. It was the first time we spent new year away from home.

Read Full Post »


Perhaps you’re wondering how a sour fruit could  be a gourmet food on your table.  As I have said in my previous blogs, you don’t have to be a seasoned cook or a chef in a famous restaurant to learn and improvise  a recipe based on  what is available in the kitchen. I guess, from my experience, it’s more on getting the taste to one’s liking than following certain rules on how to cook  it.

I was searching the net earlier and never found the exact English term for santol. Some say it is wild mangosteen, others call it sandor.  Definitely though, it is considered a fruit. The skin of the fruit  comprises a thin outer peel and a thicker inner rind. The pulp is soft and contains a milky juice. It may be sweet or sour depending on the ripeness.  Our native variety that grows here are somewhat sour but the other variety which they call Bangkok  santol are sweeter and the pulp is thicker too. Here’s what we had for lunch today. Paired with fried tilapia, it’s heaven :)

And you need the following  ingredients for this:

8 pcs. ripe santol, peeled, seeded and finely chopped

3 cloves garlic

2 heads onion

1 pack Ginisa  Flavor mix

3 cups pure coconut cream (gata)

2 cups of water

4 pcs. green pepper

1/4 kilo ground pork(giniling)

salt and pepper to taste

Ideally, you could use fish sauce or “alamang” but my  son is allergic to shrimps so I have to make do with just salt.

Those eight santol pieces would yield about 6 cups of chopped meat. You don’t need to fry the pork  in oil, just let the coconut cream simmer for a few minutes then add in all the ingredients except the santol. Let it boil until the pork is cooked then add in the santol last. Let it simmer until it’s cooked and dried.  When you cook with gata, always add chili since it enhances the flavor.

It’s another dish that is easy to make and it taste “oh so yummy”. Try it!

Read Full Post »

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 743 other followers