Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Comfort Food

Lugaw / Arroz Caldo (photo from Nestle)

Today, I confirmed that my comfort food is Lugaw (porridge). When I was still working in the network, the pressure of coming up with a good story or the consistency of the continuity of each scene pushes me to look for good food that will make me feel better then I always end up eating congee. 
Champorado (photo from
Whenever someone asks me about my favourite food, I always say “Champorado” (sweet chocolate porridge) because I grow up with it! My mom used to cook it if I got good grades or she feels that I need pampering so I think growing up, I treat champorado as a prize. Most of my foreign friends think that it’s weird eating dried fish with champorado (which Filipinos normally do) but the sweet and salty taste make it so much interesting and worth craving for.
Zousui (photo from
Last night, Taku cooked Zousui, a Japanese rice soup made from pre-cooked rice, water and some vegetables and spices, and I found myself thinking about it while I was working this morning! I know I’ll not be able to have it for lunch because Taku’s working and there’s no Japanese restaurant near my office. I feel so upset but when I walked around the street while I was looking for place to dine in, I saw Ba Noi’s Vietnamese Restaurant and I immediately ordered rau muong xao (stir-fried water spinach in garlic and Vietnamese seasoning) and Pho Ga (steaming hot chicken noodle soup with soy bean paste and chilli sauce). Ba Noi’s Vietnamese Restaurant’s ambience is really cosy (the menu is like a cookbook with ways on how you’ll enjoy eating Vietnamese food) and the food is authentic. I think it’s the best Vietnamese restaurant in Metro Manila next to Bawai’s Vietnamese Kitchen in Tagaytay.
Pho Ga (Chicken Noodle Soup)
Just for your information, according to Mr. Yong Tatlonghari, opwner of Bawai’s Vietnamese kitchen, in Vietnamese, “Ba Noi” refers to to the grandmother on the father side while "Bawai" refers to the grandmother on the mother's side.
My comfort food, regardless of “what” dish, is something with rice and watery or noodle but should be hot. It's a proof that i grew up in Asia and i love rice. Haha.
To support this conclusion, I thought of the times that Taku asked me about what I am craving for lunch or dinner and I remember thinking about Risotto a lot. Risotto is a class of Italian dishes of rice cooked in broth to a creamy consistency (according to Wikipedia).
Risotto (photo by
I’m feeling better now but I still expect to eat Zousui cooked by Taku in the days to come… :)

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

It just comes.

Boracay Trip 2011
Romance can never be forced, you can just set the mood but certainly, it comes unexpectedly.

Everything was in its place during our Boracay trip, even the cancelled flight turned out to be a blessing. I couldn’t believe that there would be a perfect trip or maybe it’s because I changed the way I look at things now. Funny how we tried to spend a perfect romantic moment in the spa treatment when the romantic mood was set with candle lights and aromatherapy, but ended up playing with leaves and flowers in the pool designed for couple that made the therapist say, “Sir, Mam, you still have 5 minutes...” then smile. Haha. Maybe she's thinking "play" to add to her sentence.

My favorite is the parasailing, that's the sweetest moment, i guess. Here's the link: to the photos.

I don’t know why this guy has unlimited ways to make me laugh. I want to put him in my pocket and keep him there hoping he will not change. Haha. 
He's bored in this video but he knows how to entertain himself. Well, normal for a Japanese. :)

Never a Gourmet, Always a Gourmand.

Since I started to live independently, I didn’t find much time to cook for two main reasons: I am normally tired at the end of the day and it’s harder to cook for one person (I don’t want to eat the same food for a week!). I didn’t find time, didn’t prioritize learning, so I end up stagnant with the dishes that I’ve learned from my mom years ago.

Maybe that’s the reason why I don’t know about good food. Haha. I think I’m more of a gourmand, not a gourmet. But I believe that the interest of a person is affected on the level of need, proximity or desire of that person on something, I think it’s a matter of distance to the “subject.”

To prove it, step by step, I found myself learning a lot about wines and food. I explore more and take more time in eating (I eat very slowly ever since so 30 mins is 1hr now!); I appreciate the taste and wonder what’s in it and how it’s cooked.

Why does this happen?

Here’s the array of stolen shots of the pastas prepared by Taku for me to eat for the past days:

My favourite is the squid ink pasta. ------->

And because of this new skill I honed, I don’t think I’ll lose weight. Haha.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Vacation Mode: On

I was dying to have time to write for the past month and I finally sneaked in tonight in my offline journals.
Written at 6:30am on the 16th of September 2011, Boracay, Philippines:

It’s been a while since I stopped and tried to listen to the waves.

Lately, I was feeling so restless and exhausted (I even have a bad voice for 2 months!).  After a few days with some deep cleansing breaths and good laughs with bosses, colleagues, friends, family and Taku, I quite got back to my balance but Taku knows best, I need more and it’s not just going to be a backpacking trip for us, it would be a relaxation and luxury trip.

Taku has been working so hard since he was reassigned in the Philippines last July. He has been working long hours and I never hear complaints like mine (well, since girls are more vocal and emotional, I think I get my balance back when I complain. Haha). Complaining to him is already a luxury to me, hearing his take on the situation regardless of what it is assures and secures me. With him, I feel so intrepid and hopeful.

“Cy, you’ve been working hard, you deserve a break and let’s read a book by the beach.”

Then, we’re off to Boracay.

Our early flight is a bit tiring since there was piled up tasks at work the day before because we’ll be away for 4 days. Despite of having some glitches in checking in the airport, suddenly vacation mode was turned on.

Before taking care of some little things at work that I need to check and double check when I could use my mobile phone again, I noticed that Caticlan Airport was newly renovated. I felt like that was the start of making new wonderful memories of Boracay. I think Boracay trip is a curse to me having some bad things happening after a couple of superb feel-good trip. Well, but this time, I know and I feel that Boracay will be good to me from start to end.

The air was different. The sound was different. It was not my first time but I felt like I was seeing Boracay for the first time, probably from a different angle, different state of mind, better mind, I guess. Haha. We checked in in Regency Lagoon at Station 2. All the rooms were facing the beautiful pool, everyone’s so accommodating, everything’s just right and more than my expectation.

We breathed the air and were amazed by the screensaver-like beach as the sun touches our faces. I touched the white and fine sands and when Taku held my hand going to my favourite Jony’s Fruitshake, I knew this relaxation and luxury trip is going to be perfect.

ONLY RULE: Don’t care about the time and just be spontaneous. Finish a novel and “I am jobless, I’m just on vacation.”

First day was all about feeling good and gratefulness. And the itinerary was:

8:00- 11:00am    Arrival and familiarization. Check in the luggage, wander in d’ talipapa, buy   a native hat, walk in the beach, Banana Peanut Butter and Mango Shakes at Jony’s Fruit shakes at Station 1.
11:00-01:00pm  BBQ and beer at the I love Backyard BBQ that says that “diet is not an option.” Oh! I love that restaurant! Haha.
01:00-03:00pm  Beer and nap at the pool side of the beautiful pool of Regency Lagoon while waiting for the check in.
03:00-06:00pm Swim in the beach, start reading the novel and have a massage.
06:00-08:00pm Chill and watch a movie
08:00-10:00pm Swim in the pool while having a shot of blow job, pina colada and tequila sunrise. It was a nice combination and the bar in the middle of the pool made me love Regency Lagoon more.
10:00-01:00pm Crave and eat Risotto at Cristina’s, walked and slept soundly.

Tomorrow’s going to be a good day.

(Here's the link to the photos: Boracay: even if we have different "Summers)


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