Trying out Dome Cafe

Last Saturday was such a busy day for me starting off with meeting a potential client, signing a contract for a new job and finally attending a blogger event.

I miss food blogging. I think last time I did  food review was a feature of Vikings last year. Since right now I’m kind of catching up with myself (from all the things I loved doing), I grabbed the opportunity to accept an invite from a known cafe in Mandaluyong.

After I’ve finished meeting with the client and signing the contract for a new job, I braved the traffic along Mandaluyong to attend a food tasting event for bloggers at Shangri La Mall.

Let’s check out Dome Cafe, which is one of the classic restaurants of Shangri La Mall.

We were first served with our chosen drinks. I didn’t get much sleep so I opted to try their Iced Cappuccino with Jelly.

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Starters

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We had Mozzarella Sticks w/ Tomato Salsa,Spiced Sausages and Chicken Fingers. The Spiced Sausages is  definitely an appetizer with a kick! Italian sausages with olive oil and garlic, tossed with roasted bell pepper, mustard and chili flakes.

Pasta

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Vigan Longganisa pasta

This Vigan Longganisa pasta is for the win! The piquant flacor of longganisa bits in spicy aioli sauce and roasted bell pepper creates a different kind of flavor which suits my palate.

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 Seafood Aioli Pasta 

SANDWICHES 

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Chicken Pesto Sandwich 

Definitely the type of sandwich that would satisfy your hunger. I only ate half of it because I need to make room for the other dishes. Perfectly grilled chicken fillet in basil pesto with mayonnaise spread, lettuce, fresh tomatoes and onion rings.

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Dome’s Classic Club Sandwich 

I tried half of this one as well and I love the combination of cheese omelet, pine honey ham and fresh tomatoes.

HOT KITCHEN SPECIALS

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Grilled Pork Ribs

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Bangus Belly

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Fish and Chips

CAKES

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Carrot Cake

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Blueberry Cheesecake

Some facts about Dome Cafe:

dome Cafe is an Australian-based company that also offers varieties of food which they refer to as Dome-fied dishes like their best sellers beef belly, porkchops, bangus belly, longganisa breakfast and other Filipino cuisine.

Dome CAfe also have regular acoustic nights every Friday and Saturday wherein they offer unlimited cocktail drinks while you get to enjoy extremely good music o your choice.

Dome Cafe is located at the ground floor of Shangri La Mall.

Mooncake Madness at Vikings Luxury Buffet

It’s the Mid Autumn Festival celebration and we’ve been seeing a lot of Mooncakes everywhere!

I’m actually used to having just the regular traditional mooncakes being sold in supermarkets. It isn’t really a must every year for our family. I would only buy a box if my kids requested for it.  I’m your typical mom who always make sure that we have enough to cover for our usual one month supply of food, and it’s always the basic needs that goes first in my grocery list. The kind of mooncake we buy at groceries are the typical round ones with a flower stamping and a Chinese letter or symbol on top that only costs 200 per box. I really don’t find anything special about it and my idea of a mooncake is just the one similar to a hopia.

Well today, I was given an opportunity to try out  a variety of mooncakes.  I’m very grateful for the invitation I got from Vikings Luxury Buffet to try them out and this is the first time I joined a Mooncake Festival along with the food bloggers.

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I actually prepared myself for this. I decided to have a light lunch before leaving the house. I know I’d be in for a lot of mooncake tasting and knowing Vikings…it’s always a FEAST!

Twinnings tea perfect for moocakes.

We were served the first set of mooncakes under Hot Dishes based on their menu.

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 Beef Bourguignon Mooncake with Choron Sauce and Minced goat cheese Mooncake with Mango Coulis 

Minced goat cheese Mooncake with Mango Coulis 

I tried the small one first the fact that it doesn’t look threatening to eat which is just perfect for this whole tasting thing. I was not surprised with how good it tastes, knowing that I love any food that’s got cheese in it—especially goat cheese. The Mango Coulis added a bit of sweetness to it that makes for a good combination which really suits my palate.

Beef Bourguignon Mooncake with Choron Sauce.

The top layer of this Beef Bourguignon is very crusty, while the inner filling is firm. The flavors of the red bean is very distinguishable plus the beef is so flavorful  This is perfect if you’re really hungry coz having one is enough to make you feel full. To be honest, my tummy is happy already but this is only the first set!

Mooncake Madness at Vikings Luxury Buffet

Asado Mooncake and the Crusty Shrimp Cheese Mooncake

Now for the second set of mooncakes, we have the Asado Mooncake and the Crusty Shrimp Cheese Mooncake

Crusty Shrimp Cheese Mooncake

This is one of their extraordinary mooncake because the crunchy outer layer resembles that of a cream puff. It has an unpredictable taste. Creamy cheese with a hint of shrimp that really tickles my tongue. Surprisingly, my demanding appetite craves for more and I am pretty sure that I won’t have to eat dinner later.  You can order this for your kids which is perfect for a light snack .

Asado Mooncake

One of my best recommended mooncakes at Vikings!  This is my kind of mooncake where it gives the most intimate burst of flavor I’ve ever tasted.  It has the right amount of sweetness and saltiness of the asado.

Mooncake Madness at Vikings Luxury Buffet

Mooncake Madness at Vikings Luxury Buffet

 Salted Lotus Mooncake

Salted Lotus Mooncake

Ok so I’ devoured three and a half mooncakes in total. Do I still have space for this big Salted Lotus Mooncake?  The answer is definitely YES.  I chose the one with the flower crust on top, I only ate a half slice because this is surely gonna cause me to stare into space once more (that’s how I am when I just had a very hearty and heavy meal). One thing I noticed is that it’s not too moist compared with the first two I’ve tried. I cannot distinguish the lotus seeds as well or maybe it doesn’t have lotus seeds? I’m just assuming given it’s name. As for the salted part? it’s definitely salty and sweet at the same time.

Mooncake Madness at Vikings Luxury Buffet

The Traditional Mooncake

The original, traditional mooncake we usually see in groceries and Chinese Restaurants. But this one separates among those sold commercially. The usual basic ingredients consists of red beans lotus seeds and fresh egg yolks but Vikings made sure that they incorporate their own recipe creating a unique classic taste that can only be found in Vikings.

With me having a sweet tooth, the last set of mooncakes made me so happy! With it’s super sinful, delectable work-of-art mooncakes, it makes you want to just stare at them and not eat.  This is in fact the highlight of my whole mooncake tasting experience.

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Wild Berry Cheese Mooncake and Choco Trifle Mooncake

As mentioned above, these are the highlights of my day. I love the sweet taste and the surprise it gives after taking a bite. It’s definitely a comfort food. Having a bite will instantly make you happy, coz you can just imagine my millimeter smile pasted on my face. I really savored the taste of these cute baby mooncakes. I’m actually looking at my fellow bloggers’ plates and kind of hoping they don’t like it so I can eat them instead, but all plates are wiped clean.

Now I would definitely eat mooncakes this weekend at their SM Mall of Asia branch coz it’s near our place. I’ll have my kids taste them too!

This is the perfect month to treat your family at Vikings Lucury Buffet! You must try their delicious traditional and non-traditional mooncakes served every weekends!

photo credits from Rochkristin

Eat like a Viking and visit Vikings Luxury Buffet at the following branches:

By the Bay, SM Mall of Asia

Bldg. B, By the Bay, Seaside Blvd., SM Mall of Asia Complex, Pasay City

846-3888, 846-4888, 846-5888
SM Megamall

4th Floor, Mega Fashion Hall, Bldg. D, SM Megamall, Julio Vargas
cor. EDSA, Mandaluyong, Philippines

656-3888, 656-4888, 656-5888

SM Mariikina

2nd Floor, SM City Marikina, Kalumpang, Marikina City

570-3888, 570-4888, 570-5888

SM North Edsa

4th Floor, The Block, SM City North EDSA, Quezon City

376-3888, 376-4888

Soon to open

SM Aura

Jazz Mall

SM BF

Visit Vikings Luxury Buffet

Like their Facebook page Vikings Luxury Buffet Restaurant

Don Henrico’s: Italian Pizza made in the Philippines

I’ve  been clueless for years thinking this pizza place was a franchise from another country (yes,that clueless) Don Henrico’s is a very popular pizza restaurant here in the Philippines and has been functioning since the 90’s. Don Henrico’s is totally different from other pizza place out there because of it’s Italian food with a Filipino twist.

So, I’d be spilling the juicy beans why it’s been a hit among Filipino families, starting with its history.

HISTORY

Don Hen, as most of the people calls him,  opened up his first branch along Session Road in Baguio back in 1993, hoping to create something that would click with the University students in the city. However, the food,  especially the pizza,  became an instant hit not only among students, but also among families in Baguio and tourists as well. Word spread and it instantly became famous that he decided to open its first branch in Metro Manila.

Surprise Surprise. Yes, Don Henrico’s Pizza came all the way from Baguio (at least to those who don’t know yet, including me.)

THE FOOD

I was one of the lucky writers to try and taste their ever famous specialties. One thing I noticed is the humongous serving on each plate. There are just enough for three people.

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Summer Salad 

For starters, we were served the Summer Salad which is a combination of three crisp lettuce with mango, grapes, kiwi, mandarin oranges and walnut; served with vinaigrette dressing. I took this opportunity to gorge myself on fresh greens and fruits.  The explosive fresh burst of juiciness coming from the fruits are hard to resist.

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Tutto De Mare Pasta 

Shrimps and squid cooked in flavorful marinara sauce with garlic, chili, tomatoes and selected herbs smothered over linguine noodles. I got about three forkfuls and to be honest, I’m halfway full already. It’s very delicious and not too salty.

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XO Seafood Pasta

They have this in oil based, for those who are not a fan of tomatoes. I love this better than the Tutto De Mare. It’s very flavorful and remotely healthy. I was able to finish this plate, down to scraping it bare with the use of the garlic bread.  I’m downright full. But hello…there’s more!

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The famous Chicken ala Buffalo 

Ok. I’m gonna title this one as “the-chicken-that-made-me-forget-about-diet” . Seriously! This is the traditionally upstate New York style tender pieces of chicken marinated, cooked and coated with tangible BBQ sauce. The best part I love about this chicken is the crispness.I took my time to really savor the goodness of it that I almost forgot about the pizza. It’s tender white meat is so flavorful and the aroma of the BBQ  just makes you want to request for a cup of rice.

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Screaming hot

And now, this meal wouldn’t be complete without the bestselling pizza in history.

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Don Henrico’s Supreme Pizzza

Their signature creation. Pepperoni, beef, ham, mushroom, pineapple tidbits, onions, bell pepper and black olives, homemade ricotta cheese and tasty cheese served with red sauce.

Pizzas are one of those food I eat when my spirits aren’t high. It belongs to my ‘pick-me-upper food” category. So, for me, a pizza says a lot of things about the maker. First thing I look in a pizza is the dough. How crusty and soft the dough is, the ingredients just follows. You can’t have an awesome pizza if the dough is as stiff as a cardboard.

This pizza really passed my evaluation. Actually, I gave it Exceed Expectation as its highest score. It’s ingredients may look ordinary to you but the taste having it’s secret recipe makes you want to grab another slice and finish the whole pan!

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The Seafood Romano Pizza

This is a combination of marinated shrimp and squid spread on green and red bell pepper with evenly reached mozarella cheeses over a unique mixture of pizza and pesto sauce with chopped parsley.

My love of seafood made me grab another slice of this even after having two slices of the Supreme.  Call me a glutton but that’s why this is called a food review right? You have to really dig on it and taste each food served in front of you. One thing the managers love about food reviewers are appreciating what they offered you. And here I am more than appreciating! Their pizzas are to die for. Dough is super soft, that melt-in-your-mouth cheese and the very flavorful ingredients of the seafood will surely make you want to order another pan. It’s not greasy also. I’m not sure what kind of oil they used for their pizza but I’m guessing it’s the healthy kind. Maybe sunflower oil since most Italian pizzas used it coz they say it allows the tomatoes and the mozarella cheese flavors to really come out, just like Pizzeria Da Michele? Well, no sense figuring it out since I don’t even know how to make my own pizza.

Ok so moving on, here’s my favorite part and the most awaiting part of this whole food tasting event. the desserts!

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Salted caramel chocolate cake

(moist chocolate cake with chocolate ganache filling and covered with salted caramel buttercream. Perfect balance of saltiness and sweetness.)

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Red velvet cake 

(velvety smooth chocolate cake topped with cream cheese frosting)

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Toblerone cheesecake

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Choclate Nirvana cake 

(moist chocolate cake with chocolate ganache layers topped with dark ganache frosting)

I tasted each slice. My belly is furiously saying NO but my sweet tooth just aches for MORE. Each bite is heaven.

More reasons to love Don Henrico’s 

An eating atmosphere is one of the things customers consider when dining at a restaurant. Yes, there’s the good food, but without a comfortable and relaxing ambience, people will probably prefer to take out food instead. At Don Henrico’s, the lighting is soft, enabling people to relax throughout their meals. The seats are also comfortable to sit on. It’s like having a meal at one’s own home.

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cheese

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The great thing about Don Henrico is that you can also hold your meetings and functions here while paying only for the food. In other restaurants, they would also have to pay for the room and electricity on an hourly basis.

So what more can you ask for. Great food. Great ambiance. A chance to be with your friends and family. More value for your money.

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With the managers (Mr Noel Santos, Operations Manager and Mr. Anthony Mercado, Business Development and Corporate Marketing Manager) and Wheninmanila.com writers.

Soon to launched…4XL Pizza!

The fact that they already have bigger-than-usual-pizzas. They continue too keep on offering BIGGER than usual size of pizza and maintain the image of BIG SERVINGS for a GREAT SAVINGS.

they will be offering the 30 inches in diameter pizza with special feature of FOUR FLAVORS IN ONE. It’s super big and meant for gatherings and party huge enough to satisfy any hungry giant.

You may visist Don Henrico’s at the following branches:

Session Road Baguio     
G/F Puso ng Baguio Bldg.,Session Road, Baguio City
Tel.Nos: (074) 442-8802 ; 444-3600

Sm City Baguio            
Lower Ground Floor, SM City Baguio
Tel.Nos.: (074) 619-7808

Malate            
JPL Bldg. Roxas Blvd cor. Pedro Gil St. Malate, Manila
Tel. Nos.: 524-9134 ; 524-9141

Alabang                
2nd Level near Bridgeway Entrance, Filinvest Festival Supermall
Tel Nos.: 850-3915 to 17

West Avenue     
West Avenue cor. Examiner St., Quezon City
Tel. Nos.: 371-7171 ; 372-7272 ; 372-3777

Mall of Asia
Ground Level of South Entertainment Mall, Mall Of Asia Complex, Pasay City
Tel. Nos: 556-2848 ; 556- 2904

Glorietta 1
2nd Floor, Glorietta Mall Ayala Center, Makati City
Tel. Nos: 511-1542; 511-8196

Greenhills
2ND Floor, Connecticut Arcade, Greenhills Shopping Center, San Juan City
Tel. Nos.: 571-3911 ; 571-3912

Tomas Morato
Toledo Building, Tomas Morato Avenue cor Sct. Limbaga St., Quezon City
Tel. Nos: 332-2201 ; 332-2254

Sta. Lucia           
The Brick Road, Sta. Lucia East Grand Mall, Cainta, Rizal
Tel. No.: 681-5242 ; 682-7095

You may visit their Facebook Page

Don Henricos

and visit their website 

PROMO: Use your Metrobank card at Just Thai

Good news for Metrobank card holders who are also fans of Thai Food. Starting today until November 30, 2014, simply dine at any of the two branches of Just Thai and use your Metrobank card to make the payment.

 

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What do you get out of it? You get an extra plate of Thai Spring Rolls when you order one. If you’re dining with family, you can order up to a maximum of 3 and instead of 3 plates, you get 6. Isn’t that awesome?

What makes it better is that this Thai Sping Roll is so good that you can pair it with rice and Tamarind and you’d be having one of the best lunch of your life.

 

 

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Just Thai has two branches.

Forbestown Strip (alongside Burgos Circle), Fort Bonifacio,

Molito, Alabang

(02) 4038718; (02) 519-8135 ; (02) 808-4058

http://www.instagram.com/justthaiph

Vikings Luxury Buffet: New Southeast Asian menu

This is literally what I call “pig out”. And when you want to give justice to the word itself, you should enjoy it with someone who totally appreciates food, someone who doesn’t care about their figure, and someone who’s living life while their young.  When you feel like you want to make the most of your money on excellent and very delicious, extraordinary food, your best option is dine at an all you can eat restaurant! Perfect choice for this is of course, Vikings Luxury Buffet.

 

I got very lucky to try out their new Southeast Asian menu, which will be served every weekend for the month of August this year. The menu consists mainly of street food from Southeast Asia. But I particularly got excited with the Indian food!

My foodgasm now activated! Here’s what we had yesterday, cooked with love from our Vikings talented chefs!

 

SOUP

 

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Laksa shrimps, Vermicelli and Bean Sprout soup

Did you know that Laksa in Sanskrit |Laksha” means One hundred Thousand?  Well, I think it’s got a lot of meanings but I veer to the Indian culture so hearing this word gave me some sort of recollection about a few Sanskrit words I knew. I could perhaps describe this soup as” having One hundred Thousand kicks” mainly because of the flavorful brilliant ingredients all thrown in a bowl. The soup is very delicious, with the hint of spiciness in it and  not too oily.

STARTERS

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Indian appetizers

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A trio of Indian Samosa, Falafel in Pita and Tandoorie Chicken Terrine  with a

Licama, Mango and Coriander salad

with Lemon Vinaigrette.

I looove Indian food. So the Indian appetizers rock! I love the exact spiciness, the flavorful sauces that goes with it. The apple of my eye for this one is the Mango and Coriander Salad—sweet and with a hint of saltiness coming from the Chicken Terrine. Amazing combination!

MAIN COURSE

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Lamb Shank Rendang with Hainanese Chicken rice and Potato Bhajis, served with a cucumber,

Pepper and Pomelo Relish.

This one blew my mind! I literally float after consuming this humongous serving (it’s humongous for me ). At first glance you would think you can gobble it in one sitting, but I was wrong. Picked up my knife, started slicing the juicy meat and because of the softness of it, it fell right out of the bone! I was hesitant to try it  since I just came out  from being a vegetarian and looking at the meat kind of scares me at first. To be honest, this is the first time I’ve tried eating a lamb,  so pardon me if this was my reaction.  After religiously slicing the meat, I tried one slab first, and you know what? I swear I am going to kiss whoever made this recipe. It was just that delicious!  Now I understand why there are a lot of females falling in love with a chef. If your husband can cook like this, you wouldn’t think of diet. Having a delicious meal everyday plus great romancing is enough and you’re in heaven!

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Sate Udang and Kampot Squid

Because I just made a relationship with the Lamb Shank Rendang, I have to say that this second dish is my love affair. After about a few minutes of rest from the foodgasm I felt with my first love, I gave the Kampot Squid a chance to prove itself. I took a bite of the juicy squid, chewed for a few minutes, and I must say this is the best squid I’ve ever tasted in my entire existence. No exaggeration. It has its grilled taste, soft squid meat inside, which at first I thought was stuffed with a different meat like pork or chicken. Squid is not rubbery, like other squids that made you chew endlessly like bubble gum.

As for the Sate Udang, I should really apologize because I just took a teensy bite of it. My stomach feels like it’s going to burst!

Thinking I had just finished the main course, I took a rest and stare in space for a few minutes. That’s how I am after eating a heavy meal. You won’t be able to talk to me. I’m totally spaced out and my mind is floating elsewhere.

Then, I totally forgot about the other dish that’s right beside my plate.

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Indonesian Mee Goreng

Whoah! I thought “this looks like Italian spaghetti” , and because I have to try everything, I forked a few strands and tasted it, and found out it’s actually fried noodles.  This would rock my world if it’s more spicy, if it sort of tingles and burns my throat.

DESSERTS

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Sampler plate of Southeast Asian sweets

My day won’t be complete without desserts! I tried each of these and all of them passed my evaluation. Not overwhelmingly sweet.

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Waffles in a stick and Tamarind syrup

I’m a sucker for waffles and pancakes. So I feasted on this one. Got myself three sticks and didn’t care if I’ll get deadly stares from the others.  I love the taste of the syrup, like a coconut jam though I can’t distinguish the tamarind taste. This one is pretty easy to make at home.

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Ice Kachang

Ice Kachang is like a Halo Halo, but less ice. It’s not too sweet as well compared to our traditional Halo Halo that’s drowning in milk. What I love about this is the red beans, the soft green jelly cubes and how the ice melted in your mouth.

By the way, let me introduce the Chefs behind these delectable menu.

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This weekend, eat like a viking and head on at Vikings Luxury Buffet and experience a one of a kind dining. Vikings is not just your ordinary buffet. Being adventurous when it comes to food is a must. They offer a wide selection of dishes from European to Asian to American.

Vikings Luxury Buffet

By the Bay, SM Mall of Asia

Bldg. B, By the Bay, Seaside Blvd., SM Mall of Asia Complex, Pasay City

846-3888, 846-4888, 846-5888

Check their website here

Like them on Facebook

Made In Candy: Candy Chefs and Sugar Art

I love how people nowadays are becoming more artistic. Injecting art in all things you can think of.

I came upon this cute candy store  at Alabang Town Center. They’re not  your usual candy store mind you. I was amazed how they have what they call  “Candy Chefs” who mold these pretty candies and turn it into a work of art.

 

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Free attraction from random passersby

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Variety of candies being sold in cute jars.

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Cute designs

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Bought my kids 2 jars of the smallest ones

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Refills costs 100 php only.

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These candies taste really yummy. The sweetness is not overwhelming compared to those candy canes being sold during Christmas. They have free taste for those who want to try before purchasing.

Made In Candy is available at SM Megamall and Alabang Town Center

Check out their page on Facebook.

Effective cure for Gastritis: Lipton Lemon tea with Ashitaba

I’ve been tossing and turning last night till 4:30 am clutching my knotted stomach, wondering what I’ve eaten that caused me the  excruciating pain in my belly. I’ve spent almost 20 minutes in the bathroom, just sitting there waiting for an eruption to happen, but only got sweat dripping down my distorted face, wincing every minute or so from the pain. Then I realized it’s probably  another attack of Gastritis. I remembered having three cups of coffee yesterday morning, then another 2 cups before going to bed. If there’s one thing I’m addicted to, it would be drowning myself in coffee everyday, preferably brewed.

So I waited there, feeling nauseated and sweaty. Without success, I left the bathroom and decided to fix myself a cup of hot lemon tea to perhaps calm my restless tummy. I remembered my mother-in-law gave me these bunch of potted plants called Ashitaba, which promises to cure all sorts of illness.

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Ashitaba plant known as Angelica Keiskei

From an article online.

Some facts about this magic plant:

  • “a powerful tonic drug.” In folk medicine that is claimed to be diuretic, tonic, to improve digestion, and, when applied topically, to speed wound healing and prevent infection.
  • widely serves as pasture for cows, being known to improve their milk’s quality as well as the yield and to maintain their health at the same time.
  • good for dry skin.
  • it’s more known in Japan as Ashitaba, “The magic plant”.
  • can cure and prevent cancer
  • can help to cure Asthma
  • beautifies your skin complexion
  • can also help cure depression

and a lot more.

Thinking this would be the perfect time to find out it’s effectiveness, I concocted up my own recipe.

Recipe for Lipton lemon tea with Ashitaba

RENOIR

Ashitaba leaves (4-6 pieces)

lipton

Lipton lemon tea

and

Honey to sweeten

Procedure:

Super simple. Boil the leaves of Ashitaba,  then mix it with your lemon tea, add honey to sweeten.

 

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So after 2 cups and a 15 minute home-TV-shopping-show later, I felt my tummy began to behave and settle. I’m amazed.

There I was, feet up on the coach, farting like there’s no tomorrow and finally falling into a mouth-opened deep slumber.

If you want to try it out for yourself, I do have a lot of pots of this magic plant and I can give you some for free. We have healthy, fertile soil here in Cavite so it’s easy for us to grow these plants. You may find these plants being sold in Tagaytay, Batangas and Baguio.

For additional info, you may check out this website  here.  I did my bit of research before consuming this plant of course.. Very informative website with all the infos you need to know about the magical plant.