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.
Archive for the ‘It’s More Fun In the Philippines’ Category
Posted in Close to Nature, Closer to God, Clouds, guilty pleasures, inspiration, It's More Fun In the Philippines, life, Philippine beaches, Philippines, photography, reflections, silence speaks, tourist attraction, travel, tagged Capones Island, Close to Nature, Closer to God, life, nature, Philippines, photography, reflections, tourist attraction, travel on January 29, 2013 | 6 Comments »
♫♪♫♪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 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.
Posted in food, It's More Fun In the Philippines, life, photography, recipes, what's cooking?, tagged food, native Pangasinan sweets, Philippines, photography, suman sa latik, sweets on December 8, 2012 | 9 Comments »
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.
Posted in arts and crafts, arts and paintings, It's More Fun In the Philippines, tagged Filipino handicrafts, It's more fun in the Philippines, Kultura Filipino, Philippine culture, Philippines, photography on September 17, 2012 | 4 Comments »
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.
Posted in Batangas, Close to Nature, Closer to God, family, gardens, guilty pleasures, It's More Fun In the Philippines, journeys, life, Philippines, photography, tourist attraction, tagged Close to Nature, Closer to God, family life, guilty pleasures, life, nature, Nature Tripping, Philippines, photography, road trips, The Farm in Lipa City on September 5, 2012 | 2 Comments »
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.
#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.
Posted in food, It's More Fun In the Philippines, Philippine cuisine, what's cooking?, tagged cooking with coconut cream, Filipino recipe, food, ginataang santol, Philippine cuisine, Philippines, photography, santol on June 24, 2012 | 5 Comments »
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!