Tuesday, August 30, 2011

I was invited to the Dole Cook-Off Challenge held last Friday, August 26, 2011 at Magsaysay Institute of Hospitality and Culinary Arts located in 5th Level, Walter Mart Mall, Chino Roces Avenue, Makati City thru Jeman of OrangeMagazineTV. So, thanks Jeman for this great opportunity and I am glad to meet you at last.

Dear sweetie, I know I am lucky enough to be present on such event and now I will share you what had happened on that event. So let us all have the event background. As we all know, Dole is the world’s largest producer and marketer of high-quality fresh fruits and vegetables and packaged foods. For years, Dole has committed itself to furthering health and nutrition as is evident in their wide array of quality products such as canned pineapple solids, canned mixed fruits, canned beverages, and packaged fruit snacks. Just a segway, every time my family craves for fruit salad, we always use Dole Mixed Fruits, because it really contains mixed fruits not just pineapples. In line with continuing their long heritage of healthy food products, Dole Philippines Packaged Foods Division launches their tomato sauce through The Great Dole Cook-Off!
The foods served to us have the new Dole Tomato Sauce as one of the ingredients and while eating Chef Jeremy do the cooking demonstration of one of the dish – the CHERRY TOMATO AND EGGPLANT RAGU PENNE. I will post the recipes at the end of this entry. By the way, Jeremiah de Belen Favia popularly known as “Chef Jeremy” is one of the rising young chefs in television today. A product of University of Santo Tomas (HRM Department), Jeremy finished culinary school at the International School for Culinary Arts and Hotel Management. He became an assistant manager for FC Café and worked with Fractured Flowers in Australia. Armed with fresh talent and good looks, Jeremy became part of a hip, cooking show on Q-11 called Ka-Toque Lutong Barkada and Healthy Cravings with the beautiful Iza Calzado.
 After Chef Jeremy’s cooking demonstration, a cook-off between bloggers have started. The five bloggers will cook the same recipe [Cherry Tomato and Eggplant Ragu Penne] in 20 minutes, Chef Jeremy, himself and a Dole representative will be the judges, and winners will be awarded with gift packs and cash prizes courtesy of Dole Philippines Packaged Foods Division.

The below photos are the Bloggers who participated on the Dole Cook-off Challenge together with their finished product.
Ed Leceta | Jeman Villanueva | Ryan Joson-Vargas | Lariza Garcia 
And the winner… [*drum roll*]  Juan Manila Express!
The Dole Cook-off did not end there, because Chef Jeremy will have a cooking demonstration for the second time around - DORY BRAISED IN TOMATO SAUCE.
Let us, savor the world-class goodness of sun-ripened tomatoes in DOLE Tomato Sauce. Naturally rich in lycopene, our thick, flavorful sauce is generously blended with the finest herbs and spices to make your everyday dishes truly extraordinary. Available in 115g, 200g, 250g, and 1 kg pouches. 
Cooked tomatoes, such as, those found in DOLE Tomato Sauce has up to five times more of the antioxidant LYCOPENE than fresh tomatoes. DOLE Tomato Sauce is rich in VITAMIN A, VITAMIN C and is a good source of VITAMIN K. while LYCOPENE protects the cells of your body from harmful free radicals, VITAMINS A, C and K promotes good eyesight, builds resistance to infection and healthy blood functions.
With thick, rich and flavorful DOLE Tomato Sauce, you and your family can cook up and eat delicious meals while loading up on the essential vitamins for a healthier, happier lifestyle.
Some photos to highlight the event.

As I said earlier, here are the recipes by Chef Jeremy:
The Great Dole Cook - Off  - a night of fun and healthy cooking! CONGRATULATIONS to the winners! :D
Special thanks to Ruth dela Cruz of Ruthilicious for the photo of Ryan Joson-Vargas, thanks dear!



Monday, August 29, 2011

I went to the grocery earlier and I found these Goya Chocolates. Even though I do have cold and cough and been sneezing all-day, it will not stop me buying sweets. Actually, my sister also forced me, yes forced me to buy Ice Cream, and I bought it, just like that! Anyways, for the love of chocolates, I bought these three variants of Goya Chocolates – Cookies & Cream, Take-It, and the Splendor.

I love Goya chocolates because it’s not that super sweet and of course it always have something new to offer to its consumers. Goya is also a local brand, but with a word-class taste!
Goya Take-It
Crispy Wafer Fingers in Milk Chocolate

Goya Splendor
Crushed Almonds in Milk Choclate. 
So far, my favorite!

So if you were on a budget and want something chocolate-y, Goya chocolates would be in the rescue. Goya chocolates are much more affordable and available in convenience stores and supermarkets near you.


Sunday, August 28, 2011

Curiosity strike when I saw the TV Advertisement where there were cows and hunks that running topless, hot and smell yummy. :D [you can view the TV Ad here] Thursday, August 25, 2011, I am one of the lucky bloggers who witnessed the unveiling of what has behind of the TV Advertisement teaser, which happened at Blue Leaf, Silk Pavilion, 100 Park Avenue, Fort Bonifacio, Taguig – the grand launched of Highlands Corned Beef.

So, are you ready for the new breed? Highlands Corned Beef – the very first brand of corned beef made with Angus Beef. 
The Premium Breed of Corned Beef
Angus Beef has been a popular choice in fine dine restaurants and steakhouses for its tender meat and rich beef taste. Now, Angus steak lovers will be thrilled to know that their favorite high-quality beef can now be found in a can of Highlands Corned Beef!
Highlands Corned Beef is the very first corned beef out there in the market that’s made with Angus Beef. Why Angus Beef? Because good beef starts with good breed and Angus is a premium breed of cattle that gives high-quality beef. Highlands Corned Beef is filled with the rich beef taste of Angus and has long and juicy beef strands. It has no artificial flavors, so expect that every strand is bursting with the natural taste of Angus Beef. Just imagine having the premium goodness of that mouth-watering Angus Beef in a corned beef, it will surely spice up any meal!  
Angus Beef has been identified as a beef priced at a premium due to its superior quality and taste. But now you can enjoy the premium taste of Angus beef without spending a great deal of money because Highlands Corned Beef is reasonably priced at only P41.50 per 180g. Experience the taste of superior beef; Highlands Corned Beef is certainly a premium breed of corned beef.
The Premium Breed Origins
Angus cattle, also known as Aberdeen Angus in some parts of the world, are a premium breed of cattle that came from the native counties of Aberdeenshire and Angus in Scotland.
Angus Beef is difficult to find back then but fortunately, for us, it has now entered our local restaurants and fast food chains as a premium beef selection. It’s already recognized as a high-quality beef thanks to those fine dine restaurants and steakhouses. Angus Beef is a favorite among steak aficionados. One of the finest steaks you can have out there is definitely a piece of Angus steak.
What makes Angus meat superior to regular beef? One thing that sets Angus beef apart is the marbling of its meat. It has a fine texture and a higher degree of marbling – making the beef tender and tastier.
Angus Beef may be a bit expensive compared to other beef, but its rich taste and fine texture will surely be a unique dining experience that’s worth every peso.

Dear sweeties, meet the premium breed of exceptional talents – the Highlands Corned Beef endorsers. I am so lucky that I met them personally and talked with them even just for a second, plus photo ops.
The New Breed of Actor: Jake Cuenca
Jake is the type of actor who wouldn’t just play a role but would really internalize to become the character he has to portray. “I always challenge myself to be different and not become “me” when I portray a certain role. I want every role I play to be unique and authentic.” Jake explains. His versatility in playing different roles and willingness to learn is what contributed to his success. Jake is always striving to be better and never stops pushing himself to improve his acting skills. He is now reaping the benefits of all his hard work as his career continues to soar into new heights. From cameo roles, he now stars in top rating TV shows and films. Jake Cuenca is truly a new breed of actor as he shows that discipline and passion coupled with hard work really pays off.

The New Breed of Filmmaker: Paul Soriano
Paul is a perfectionist and very passionate about his work, he makes sure that the heart of his stories is always told well. Paul started his career doing AVPs, music videos and events before heading to the direction of making TV commercials and films. “My style is very visual, with pretty pictures that help tell the story well. The challenge for me always is to keep every project visually entertaining without compromising the message or the story. I take risks, and I learn from it.” Paul is able to achieve his success with patience, determination and giving his best in every project no matter how big or small. Paul is a new breed of filmmaker as he takes things to another level, sets new standards for himself, reaches for the unreachable and makes the impossible possible.

The New Breed of Dancer: Angelo Cacciatore
The half-Italian dancer is equipped with a competitive background in dancing as he studied ballet in a prestigious school for 8 years in Italy. Angelo has an extensive knowledge in ballet dance but his skills are not limited to the genre, as he can perform any type of dance. According to him in order to become a professional dancer, one must be very disciplined, possess a good health and good body. “In everything I do, I put my 100% concentration in it. I always prioritize my responsibilities as a dancer, before and after a performance.” Angelo is a new breed of dancer as he is never selfish in his craft. He doesn’t just dance to show off his skills but to inspire his audience with his performance.

The New Breed of Athlete: James Younghusband
James is the English-Filipino midfielder for the RP National Football team also known as the “Azkals”. It took James a lot of patience and persistence to be where he is now, “There has to be a sense of discipline in becoming an athlete, I undergo rigorous practices and take care of my body”. But despite his rising popularity, James keeps himself grounded. “Football is not just a sport I play but a culture I help spread. And with its popularity, I have to make sure that I am responsible on all my actions on and off the pitch.” What makes James a new breed of athlete is his motivation in football. James plays football not for the fame and glory but his desire to make the sport bigger in the Philippines.

The New Breed of Entrepreneur: Luke Landrigan
Luke is the first Filipino to become a part of the Billabong South East Asia Surf Team and he also represents surfing in the Philippines. Luke’s passion for surfing inspired him to put up his very own surf school in La Union. “I make people experience what Mother Nature has to offer, and I enjoy and deal with it at the same time. What other business out there offers you the same feeling and stoke you get from riding a wave?” Luke believes that his enthusiasm and knowledge in his business is what propelled it to its success. Luke is a new breed of entrepreneur as he is a hands-on boss and he works hard to keep his surfing expertise at a high level by competing and traveling so he can teach only the best to his students.
Why these New Breed of Talents Love their Highlands Corned Beef?

“It’s exciting to know that it’s the first corned beef out there that’s made with Angus Beef, it really pays to be a breed apart.” – Jake
“Highlands Corned Beef is a breed apart from my old corned beef since it’s made with the high-quality Angus Beef” -Paul
“Good beef starts with the breed, and Highlands Corned Beef is definitely a premium breed.” –Angelo
“If you love steak like I do, you’ll surely love Highlands Corned Beef.” – James
“I like how Highlands Corned Beef has no artificial flavors, you can tell it’s all natural Angus Beef with the richness of the beef’s taste.” –Luke

Before my post ends, below are some of the photos that highlight the grand launched of Highlands Corned Beef.
By the way, there were many prices given thru a raffle during the event – a gift certificates that ranges from Php2,500 – Php5,000, 3 16G iPADs, and 1 16G iPHONE4 . Unluckily, I don’t get any but I have a loot bag that contains Highlands Corned Beef that given away for everyone.

Like HIGHLANDS CORNED BEEF's Facebook here!


Monday, August 22, 2011

Craving for cheesecake,  I'll recommend Cheesecake Etc. They offer a variety of delectable cheesecakes to choose from. There menu are not only limited to the cheesecake itself because they also offers great cappuccino, Pasta, Sandwiches and of course heavenly desserts.
Without further ado, here are the foods that I already eaten in Cheesecake Etc.

Garlic Longganisa Pasta
Lean Longganisa In Creamy White Sauce for only Php165.
It tasted super creamy and sweet [Paul described it as manamis-namis] pasta. The serving is big and good for sharing, but if you were hungry and eats like there is no tomorrow, then it is good for ‘you’ only.

Seafood Pasta
An assortment of seafood mixed into a creamy sauce for only Php195.
The sauce was wishy-washy, but it has very good taste. I like how the tomato sauce blended well with the seafood bits. The serving was also good for sharing.

Homemade Ice Cream
Trio is for only P99.00 and Single for only Php45.
Choices are Vanilla, Chocolate, Strawberry, Green Tea and Mocha.
I suggest that you go for trio, because you will eat more and save more, just do the math. We ordered Trio – composed of Vanilla, Mocha and Green Tea. Paul and I love green tea, and this was the first time we have tasted green tea in an Ice cream form. Cheesecake Etc.'s Green Tea Ice Cream was mouthwatering. I love how it really tasted like a natural Green Tea [I described that as lasang halaman or dahon. :D]. Surprisingly, it has an amazing taste. 

There you have it! I am craving for cheesecake and green tea ice cream upon writing this entry. I want them now!Is there any good Samaritan out there that can give it to me right away?!

Cheesecake, Etc. | Glorietta 4
2/F Glorietta 4, Ayala Center
Makati City, Metro Manila
Telephone No. (02) 752-8211



Sunday, August 21, 2011

The first time I saw this kind of tumbler was from Starbucks. [Well, aside from CBTL’s mugs and tumblers Starbucks have a variety and cute designs, too!] Every time I visit Starbucks, I always looking forward to have something like this, because I need one for my office since my almost 4-year’s old tumbler had already broken its handle, but then, It’s not practical to buy something like that for Php 575.00, it’s quite expensive! 

Last week, when we dine-in in Shakey’s, they offer this tumbler for only Php 99.00 pesos. At first, I was quite hesitant if I will purchase this because it might not have the good quality and might be broken in a few days of using it. The crew said that it has the same quality with one in the Starbucks since they do have the same supplier. Wow! What a good deal, same quality but with lower price, that's why I bought one – in orange color! They offer three groovin’ colors - red, orange, and black!

But wait, there’s more! It comes with a free drink [choice of Coca-cola products, I chose Sarsi] when you buy a Large or Party size pizza between August 12 and 26, 2011. Moreover, if you will dine-in again and you’ve bring your Shakey’s Tumbler, your drinks is free, this offers is valid until December 31, 2011! Visit the nearest Shakey’s restaurant in your location now!



Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Terrific on its Yummmminess Peach Mango Caramel Crepe!
From the variety of healthy and sumptuous fruits, I love mango above all. In every restaurant that Paul and I visited, I am always looking forward to order something on their menu that has mango. It is so good to taste different variants of Mango on every dish that certain restaurants serve. I am always amazed how creative and tasted-with-a-twist mangoes are after the thorough analysis on how it should taste. 

In the photo above, this was my one of favorite dessert in Tokyo Café, a super yummy Peach Mango Caramel Crepe, which contains of peach, mango slices, whipped cream, and mango ice cream drizzled with caramel sauce. Putting caramel, mango, and peach together always comes out with this terrific heavenly taste, a mouth-watering dish! Aside from that, the food presentation was so enticing! 

Tokyo Café’s ambiance was so relaxing. The staffs were so friendly and approachable. They always made sure that we are comfortable and enjoys the food. Tokyo Café always have the quality that we always wanted in a restaurant –a good service, a good food, a good ambiance, a comfortable chair, and a superb dining experience.


Tuesday, August 16, 2011

New York Cheesecake (for me) + Original Glaze (for him) + Coffee = FUN

Paul and I always had a good conversation over these yummy foods. A cup of coffee was enough to compliment the doughnut's sweetness. It's our way to unwind and relax after too much walk due to mall hopping and window-shopping though. 


Monday, August 15, 2011

There was a food fair happened on Megatrade Hall A and B located in SM Megamall last Aug. 12-14, 2011. The exhibitors were from different places across the Philippines. We looked, explored, and hopped on every product that the participants had. Then, we stopped on the small booth that selling Soya Milk – the Marc Daniel’s Soya Milk that retails for Php 35.00 only per 500ml.

I love Soy Milk and Marc Daniel’s Soya Milk has no preservatives added and no cholesterol – meaning a healthy Soya Milk that most of us look for any foods and beverages that we buy.

 By the way, I found the below benefits of Soy Milk here.


As the taste of commercial soy milk improves more and more people are drinking it as enjoyment. But many people drink soy milk for the added health benefits. So what are the benefits of drinking soy milk as compared to cow’s milk?

Soy milk contains only vegetables proteins.Vegetable proteins have the advantage that they cause less loss of calcium through the kidneys. It is known that a diet rich in animal (and dairy protein) creates a higher risk for osteoporosis.

Soy milk contains no lactose. About 75 percent of the world population cannot tolerate lactose. Some ethnic groups are more affected than others. For example 75 percent of Africans and 90 percent of Asians have lactose intolerance. As an additional benefit, soy milk contains the prebiotic sugars stachyose and raffinose.These prebiotic sugars boost immunity and help decrease toxic substances in the body.

Fewer people are allergic to soy milk. Only 0.5 percent of the children are allergic to soy milk, whereas 2.5 percent is allergic to cow’s milk.

Soy milk reduces cholesterol. The saturated fats in cow’s milk are unhealthy and increase your cholesterol. The protein in cow’s milk has no benefits for the cholesterol. Soy protein can decrease cholesterol levels. The FDA (Food and Drug Administration of US) confirms that soy protein, as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol may significantly reduce the risk of coronary heart. The FDA recommends to incorporate 25 grams of soy protein in your daily meals.

Soy milk contains no hormones. Cow’s milk contains natural hormones (from the cow) but also synthetic hormones, which can influence the good working of our own body. The synthetic hormone rBGH (recombinant bovine growth hormone) increase milk production by as much as 20 percent.

Soy milk does not cause insulin dependent diabetes. Although no general consensus exists among scientists, some studies have shown an association between drinking cow's milk in early life and the development of insulin dependent diabetes. This association does not exist with soy milk.

Soy Milk is rich in isoflavones. The presence of isoflavones is the most important and unique benefit of soymilk. Each cup of soymilk contains about 20 mg isoflavones (mainly genistein and daidzein). Cow’s milk does not contain isoflavones. Isoflavones have many health benefits including reduction of cholesterol, easing of menopause symptoms, prevention of osteoporosis and reduction of risk cancers (prostate cancer and breast cancer). Incidents of these cancers are very low in countries with high intake of soy products, including soymilk. Isoflavones are also antioxidants that protect our cells and DNA against oxidation. 


When I was a kid, my mom always bought us Taho every morning and now that I am a grown up kid, I drink Soya Milk as frequent as possible.

Stay Healthy Sweetie!