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Top 5 Must-Try at Sofitel Spiral’s Flavors of India | September 11-17

Sofitel Philippine Plaza gives patrons the best reason to keep dining at Spiral through Flavors of the World. Flavors of the World is a culinary celebration that highlights exotic flavors from the culinary world. This means that at least every quarter, patrons can always expect new gastronomic adventures and experience at the Spiral buffet.

This September, the French luxury hotel celebrates the exciting flavors of India. From September 11-17, Spiral’s Indian Master Chef Halim Ali Khan enhances his sumptuous selection at the North Indian Atelier (Indian food section at Spiral). Chef Halim adds more dishes that originate from different regions of India from Mumbai to Kashmir.

Top 5 Must-Try Indian Food at Spiral’s Incredible India | Flavors of the World

1. Start your incredible Indian food journey with Sev Puri

Sev is a popular Indian snack food consisting of small pieces of crunchy noodles. It is made from chickpea flour paste, seasoned with turmeric, cayenne, and deep-fried in oil. 2-3 pieces of Sev Puri is enough to whet your appetite for other distinct Indian flavors and fare. Pair it with any of the featured Indian beverage such as their blended mango-yogurt drink.

2. Satisfy your Indian Rice craving with Kashmiri Pulao

Kashmiri pulao is a very popular Kashmiri rice dish. It is prepared with dry fruits, nuts, and fresh fruits that level-up our rice experience. It is far from our Filipino plain rice and is simply exploding with sweet, fresh, nutty, and citrus flavors. This is the best rice to pair your next Indian dishes with.

Other Indian rice dishes include Prawns Masala Rice and Yahkni Pulao.

3. Enjoy authentic Gosht Rogan Josh from Chef Halim

Rogan josh is a popular Indian dish that Indian food lovers like myself typically order from Indian restaurants such as New Bombay. It’s a different experience here at Spiral, scooping your own lamb pieces and gravy to your heart’s content. Chef Halim’s rogan josh satisfies any craving for Indian flavors and hits the right spots with the dish’s distinct aroma, Indian spices, and superbly tendered lamb.

Pair it with Palak Paneer for a creamier experience of fresh cheese combined with pureed spinach, garam masala, and other Indian flavors and spices.

4. Buttered Chicken Tikka Masala is perfect for Indian Food “would-be” lovers

Chicken tikka masala is another popular dish. While others can consider it mainstream, it is still the perfect lure for those who’re just trying to love Indian Food for the first time. Say you want to bring a friend or partner to Spiral’s Incredible India feast, then this is a must-recommend Indian dish.

Chef Halim’s Tikka Masala is juicy, tender, creamy, with just the right amount of spice and Indian flavors. It’s a heavenly experience to scoop and enjoy as much masala gravy as you want.

For the more adventurous option, try the Chicken Vindaloo that is mixed with cubed potatoes and is said to have more intense flavors than a traditional Chicken Tikka Masala.

5. Indian desserts to complete your culinary journey

Indian desserts are close to the Filipino’s taste for sweet and starchy treats. At Spiral’s Incredible India celebration, go for Indian desserts like Gajar Halwa. Gajar Halwa is a sweet carrot pudding, like carrot bread but with so much more freshness with real carrot shreds and spices like cinnamon. Don’t let its “vegetable” looks deceive you.

There’s also the vegetable samosa that’s also close to our empanada but of course, Indian Samosa has a distinct spice and flavor that an authentic Indian master chef perfectly combines. Semiyan Kheer is also a dessert that we don’t see often, it is an Indian dessert that’s made with milk and vermicelli strands. A very interesting combination indeed.

Flavors of India at Spiral | Rates for Lunch and Dinner

Sofitel Manila’s Spiral Indian Masterchef, Chef Halim Ali Khan

Flavors of India at Spiral runs from September 11-17. Lunch buffet is at P2,600 and P3,100  for dinner buffet. Book your table at http://www.spiralmanila.com/and follow Spiral Manila on Facebook for more updates on promos.

Other Flavors of India events are:

Cooking Class featuring Chef Halim Ali Khan | 12 September 2017 | 4 PM | Davao – Boracay Show Kitchen

Chef Halim presents a featured culinary workshop with selected recipes. Rate is set at Php1,500nett. Kindly book your participation early to guarantee your slot.

Chef’s Table | 14 September 2017 | 11:30 AM | Davao – Boracay Show Kitchen

Be part of an exclusive dining engagement for discerning gourmands as Chef Halim Ali Khan presents a specially-curated menu showcasing the wonderful flavors of India. Rate is set at Php2,600nett per person.

Mommy Lace is a blogger from the Philippines. She started this blog to share information on pregnancy, breastfeeding, childcare, family, and health.

Easy Camaron Recipe with Grande Rice Bran Oil

Camaron is the Philippines’ version of Japanese Tempura. It is one of the top Pinoy dishes present in family gatherings and social events. It’s easy to think Camaron is a difficult recipe but is actually very easy and simple to cook! You just need the right preparation and good quality oil for deep frying.

For this recipe, I use Grande Rice Bran Oil. Rice Bran Oil is new to me but I’ve heard and read about its health benefits. Rice bran oil is extracted from the rice bran, which contains naturally present anti-oxidants such as Vitamin E, Phytosterols and Gamma-oryzanol. This brand I’m using called Grand Rice Bran Oil is physically refined. This means that nutrients are not lost during its processing and I’ve learned how nutrients is very important in keeping our body fit and well.

Rice bran oil is the top choice for deep frying Camaron and other recipes that require this frying method. As you can see in this photo, Grande Rice Bran Oil keeps its clear, golden appearance even after a long time of frying.  With Grande Rice Bran Oil, you can cook at higher temperatures without it starting to smoke and break down. Now let’s cook!

Easy & Crispy Camaron Rebosado Recipe by Mommy Lace

INGREDIENTS for Camaron Rebosado

  • 500 grams jumbo shrimp – I use Pacific Bay Seafood’s frozen fresh shrimp that’s ready to cook, peeled and deveined. You can do this yourself in advance
  • 6-10 pieces of Calamansi
  • 4 tbsp flour
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 tbsp milk
  • 1 egg
  • Grande Rice Bran Oil for deep frying

PROCEDURE for cooking Camaron Rebosado

1. Marinate shrimps in calamansi. Use a ziploc bag to do this. Put the peeled shrimps in the bag, squeeze calamansi directly on them. Sprinkle salt to taste. Leave for 30 minutes.

2. Prepare the batter – in a bowl, mix together flour, cornstarch, milk, egg. Season with salt and pepper.

3. Prepare the oil – in low heat, heat Grande Rice Bran Oil. Use 2-3 cups for deep frying in a deep pan.

Deep Frying Camaron

1. Place 3-4 shrimps in batter. Coat well.

2. Test if the oil is ready by placing 1 shrimp or a drop of the batter mix. If it sizzles, it is ready.

3. Deep fry battered shrimp. Place 3-4 pieces one at a time only. When the shrimp floats and has a golden brown color, your Camaron is ready.

4. Place cooked Camaron on top of paper towels to drain excess oil.

5. Serve with sweet chili sauce or ketchup.

The cooking oil plays a big factor in making your Camaron crispy. Rice bran oil is really suitable for deep frying and does not burn. It has a clean taste and the camaron is very tasty but not too oily or tasting like oil. You’ll be proud to serve this to your family and friends.

Happy cooking Mommy!

Mommy Lace is a blogger from the Philippines. She started this blog to share information on pregnancy, breastfeeding, childcare, family, and health.

#PambansangManok: Chicken Cooking Tips

Magnolia Chicken proclaimed itself as the “Pambansang Manok” or National Chicken. Did you know? The trademark brand, Magnolia Chicken started way back in 1973, when most of us millennial moms were not yet born. Of course, I first knew about Magnolia through my mother who was an excellent home cook. Now it’s my time to cook for my own family and chicken is my primary choice of meat. Cooking is like a crown passed from one generation to the next.

WATCH: Magnolia Chicken TV Commercial

Over the years, I’ve picked up chicken cooking techniques and tricks. Some from my mother and aunt, others from cooking shows, and these days from the Internet! Here are some Chicken Cooking Tips I’d like to share with you.

Top 5 Chicken Cooking Tips by Mommy Lace

#1 Choose Fresh, Healthy Looking Chicken Meat – you may be attracted by promos like Buy 1 Take 1 whole chicken, but before putting them in your basket – check mo muna. While you can save a few pesos, low quality chicken that’s  been frozen for a long time, have traveled long and far, may not be the best for your taste and budget. Low quality chicken meat often come in poor packaging, look rock frozen, and have pale color. They may not last very long once cooked or have weird taste once served.

Magnolia Chicken is:

• Free from anitibitotic promotants
• Rich in Omega-3
• Free from hormones and sterioids
• Grown in stress-free environments

#2 Store Your Chicken Meat Properly – whether you buy your chicken whole or in parts, make sure that they are wrapped and sealed in their own packaging. If in doubt, wash them and transfer to a ziploc bag. Chicken must be stored in the freezer to avoid bacteria growth. If your chicken smells funny, it should not be served and must be discarded.

#3 Prepare Your Chicken Meat for Cooking - are you guilty of taking your chicken meat out of the freezer at the last minute? How about cooking your chicken meat while it’s still frozen or have ice crystals? Thaw your chicken in advance. I am not a food expert but what I do at home is to transfer the chicken meat from the freezer to the chiller or refrigerator the night before I cook it. This makes it easier for me to prepare, cut, and cook the chicken the next day. This also prevents you from thawing the chicken on the sink which may be dangerous for cross contamination.

If you need to marinade your chicken, also do it overnight and use a liter Ziploc bag which is hygienic, saves your marinating sauce, and seals in all the flavors into the chicken meat.

#4 Extend Your Chicken Meat! – buying whole chicken can save you money. Different chicken parts offer different cooking options. Here’s what I do with a whole chicken and how I extend it to more meals:

– Chicken Thighs & Legs (4 pcs.) – Fried Chicken

– Chicken Breast & Back – Tinola, Chicken Chorizo, Pininyahang Manok

– Chicken Wings – I collect them until I have 6 pieces and make honey chicken wings

Of course, if you want to extend more just go for soupy dishes. Leftover chicken from roast chicken can be used for Chicken Sopas, Chicken Macaroni Salad, Chicken Sotanghon, Pancit, and Chicken & Veggie Stir Fry.

#5 Cooking Chicken Evenly - when I was just starting to cook simple things like Fried Chicken and Turbo Chicken, there were times when I was embarrassed at the table when family slice the chicken and see the inside is not yet done. Just imagine. Here are tips to make sure your chicken is done inside and out:

– Follow my tip on thawing chicken in advance
– Get the oil, oven, or broiler to the correct temperature before cooking your chicken in them
– Cook the chicken in low heat, low temperature
– Use a timer, follow the recipe that you’re doing

I hope these tips allow you to enjoy the #PambansangManok even more. Chicken is every budget mom’s best friend, it is easily available, healthy, flexible, and all of us like it!

Do you have Chicken Cooking Tips too? Leave a comment below and share with other mommies!

Mommy Lace is a blogger from the Philippines. She started this blog to share information on pregnancy, breastfeeding, childcare, family, and health.

Sofitel Philippine Plaza: French Month Specials July 2017

Every month, Sofitel Philippine Plaza in Manila celebrates Flavors of the World and this July, Sofitel Manila puts the spotlight on French cuisine. They have flown in the French Master Chef Patrick Terrien himself, one of the shining stars of Le Cordon Bleu. You can read more about him here. I happen to have seen a news feature many years ago about Le Cordon Bleu and learning about one of their chefs being in Manila would mean as close as I can get to eating a Michelin Star meal in France.

The Chef’s culinary animations are now featured in the Sofitel Manila’s Spiral French Atelier. There’s always something new to look forward to in Spiral because of Flavors of the World.  Anyone who have seen the film Ratatouille will absolutely delight in these authentic French dishes that stem from Chef Patrick Terrien’s many years of experience (all around the world). As you know, some chefs are a legend in their realm and Chef Patrick is one of those most sought after kitchen masters.

At one point during lunch, the Chef roamed around looking at people as they enjoyed his creations. He asked our table, how is the food? Everyone had something to say. As for me, I was transported to a luxury hotel in France, maybe Sofitel Paris Le Faubourg where I am giving compliments to this French Master Chef.

French Month Activities at Sofitel Philippine Plaza

Aside from the featured French dishes at Spiral, there are more special experiences that await guests this July at Sofitel. These activities are open to all guests who want to enjoy the French Culinary Culture. One thing you’ll walk away with is how serious the French are with their food with several rituals and customs that revolve around well, eating.

Cooking Class with Chef Patrick Terrien – July 19, 2017 at Spiral from 4pm onwards with rate at Php1,500nett per person. This exclusive class is limited for 10 aspiring artisans. Book your table for Cooking Class at Sofitel Manila.

Degustation: French Wine Dinner – July 21, 2017 at La Veranda with rate set at Php3,500+++ per person. Book your table for French Wine Dinner at Sofitel Manila.

http://farm6.staticflickr.com/5568/30045995361_5de0b04319_b.jpg

If I have to choose one, I highly recommend the French Wine Dinner. It is a very special experience with Sofitel’s French wine connoisseur, Tanguy Gras where guests can freely learn basic to intermediate knowledge on how to pair French wine with food. My husband and I have been to a Sofitel Wine Dinner last year. It is one of our most special and memorable dates, especially it was time for us to level up our dating game and F&B knowledge as grown ups of the world :)


Walking in the clouds of Spiral’s culinary heaven!

Happy French Month and see you at Sofitel Manila!

Mommy Lace is a blogger from the Philippines. She started this blog to share information on pregnancy, breastfeeding, childcare, family, and health.

DIY Family Movie Night Ideas with Cheers

When was the last time you allowed yourself to relax and just enjoy time with your family? This sounds simple but truly, mommies like us have endless tasks to complete. Sometimes the thought of having fun is great until we realize all the preparation, travel, and expense that are attached to a great family bonding experience.

Here’s an idea that can make staying at home extra special. The best part is, it’s simple, fun, and will allow you to practice your creativity!

DIY Family Movie Night Setup

Movie nights is an activity that many family enjoy but for this particular “viewing party” I wanted to surprise my family. I did this by setting up a cozy spot where we could all lounge and enjoy all our favorite movie-time snacks.

What you’ll need:

  1. A bath towel
  2. Banana bed or any bean bag
  3. Throw pillows, neck pillows
  4. Laptop desks that will serve as mini food tables

You can work with anything you have and you don’t have to buy anything. Now for the picnic or mini-party setup, you’ll need:

  1. Drinking station – Pitcher of your favorite drink. Disposable paper cups.
  2. Snacks station – our choice is leftover pizza, burgers, and snacks lying around the kitchen

3. Paper plates, Cheers table napkins, Cheers disposable spoon and fork

4. Trash station – To make your party mess-free and to help prevent you cleaning after everyone, get a laundry basket and just line it with Cheers garbage bag. Instant trash bin!

The secret for a successful family movie night without any tantrums from kids (and adults!) or needing to get up and get something from the kitchen, all really boils down to planning and having the right tools. I stock up on disposable plates, utensils, and party napkins all year-round. They allow moms the much-needed break from cleaning up! Thus, helping us also enjoy the bonding time we planned and truly unwind after a busy week.

Here are some items I recommend. All of them are Cheers brand which is also made by Sanicare. My older sister who likes throwing parties and get-togethers educated me on why it’s important to have these.

Jumbo Kitchen Paper Towels – it’s 2017 and “basahan” should not be your primary tool to wipe surfaces clean. Sometimes I wonder if “basahan” is really cheaper because they can harbor bacteria, you need to wash them often, and very time-consuming to use. Just imagine.

Kitchen towels is a grab and go solution, even for outdoor picnics or parties. Food spills, kitchen, and cooking mess are some examples where you can use these.

Interfolded Party Napkins – these aren’t just for parties but for your dining room. It’s rare to see Filipino homes have table napkins and as a mother, I learned how having table napkins easily accessible will save me time wiping my child’s mouth and hands! This is instead of using “lampin” to wipe food from a child’s face and then be miserable about the stain during laundry.

It also makes spot cleaning more instant, especially when you don’t want to get off from your seat and miss the conversations.

Flat Napkins – this is my favorite napkin to use when serving food. I like using flat napkins to sometimes line plates to absorb oil and to line surfaces like for this movie night, I lined the laptop tables with these flat napkins to protect surfaces.

When family members like to enjoy pizza or burgers with their hands, I offer flat napkins to wrap and handle their food in to avoid spills and greasy hands.

Cheers Picnic Pack – here’s an all-in-one solution for any celebration or get together. This picnic bundle from Cheers has everything you’ll need: pull napkins, cutlery, and a garbage bag to clean up with.

I hope you try this idea and surprise your family with a stress-free weekend celebration as simple as enjoying a favorite movie at home.

Cheers Mommy and Baby!

Mommy Lace is a blogger from the Philippines. She started this blog to share information on pregnancy, breastfeeding, childcare, family, and health.

Fat Daddy’s Smokehouse – RIB Dinner Review

Fat Daddy’s Smokehouse is located at Burgos Circle in Bonifacio Global City. We wanted to try their famous rib dinner that Pinoy Vlogger Mikey Bustos raved about. We’ve never been to barbecue or smokehouse states like Texas but, according to Mikey – the restaurant feels and tastes like the authentic smokehouse stuff.

The restaurant has a relaxed vibe which is a welcome break from mainstream options we usually go for.

The place is suitable for families like us. We especially like the second floor seating that makes you feel like dining in a friend’s or relative’s house.  Spacious wooden tables and chairs are of course, Instagram worthy but most importantly – great for people with huge appetite like us!

On Father’s Day, I invited my husband to a rib dinner at Fat Daddy’s – my treat. It was super sulit and as advertised on their Facebook page. Here’s what we ordered:

Crispy Fried Pickles P165

Boredom is the root of all evil! My family and I like to try new (even weird) stuff just for the experience. Growing up, I hated pickles and just the smell of it will launch a fight between me and my pickle loving big sister. That memory was enough to order these fried pickles. My son Ashton and Daddy Az loved it! I kind of liked it too, see my reaction in the video below. It was exciting and fun to eat, I recommend you try it with your family too.

Mac and Cheese P160

For the kids and the young at heart, this mac and cheese will not disappoint. It is gourmet mac n’ cheese and you won’t regret ordering and eating it. I made sure to order coffee to enjoy this mac n’ cheese with, yummy! Next time, we’ll order more than one kasi nagka-ubusan nanaman kami.

Fat Daddy’s Smokehouse serves coffee, no worries for coffee addicts like me.

WATCH: FAT DADDY’S SMOKEHOUSE EXPERIENCE

This is what we came for! I thought it was the perfect treat for my husband on Father’s Day and something that everyone can also share and enjoy. This set is a steal. 1 whole pork rib and you get 4 side dishes for less than P1,000. On top of that, you get to enjoy it in this cozy restaurant with very good service. Sulit talaga.

Pork Rib Set (Whole) with 4 side dishes P950

Fat Daddy’s Pork Rib was cooked for 10 hours or more and it shows. The meat has a wonderful charred flavor and smoke to it. The meat is also soft, tender, and juicy – the barbecue style is “family style” where the taste can be easily enjoyed by everyone.

While the pork rib is good on its own, the more sauce the saucier haha! So, do try both of Fat Daddy’s signature BBQ sauces. I like the dark brown one which is sweeter while the lighter in color sauce is more tangy.

Our Side Dishes of Choice:

#1 Macaroni salad – al dente macaroni noodles that’s creamy with just the right amount of flavors. Perfect pair for the meaty rib without the umay factor!

#2 Coleslaw – if you want to keep it light, go for the slaw.

#3 Rice – this is no ordinary rice and our kid kept it to himself we never tasted it. I think it’s wild rice combined with some other ingredients. Point is, order more than one next time.

#4 Buttered corn – our kid’s choice and maybe yours will love too.

Fat Daddy’s Smokehouse offers dishes with real flavors. It’s rare to find a diner these days that don’t shower their food with sodium. Fat Daddy’s Smokehouse serves homecooked quality meals with the right and thoughtful flavors.

The Best Peach Cobbler Ever

At my age, I’ve seen and tasted a lot of a la modes from apples, peaches, etc. These are served hot and with ice cream on top. Fat Daddy’s Peach Cobbler is the best ever of its kind that I have ever tried. The cobbler is crusty on top, chewy at the bottom. It is not swimming in brown sugar but is instead, topped with QUALITY vanilla ice cream.

I think the quality of ingredients and the heart to make this dessert are what makes it such a wonderful dessert experience.

Fat Daddy’s Smokehouse is moving to UP Town Center Katipunan

When I was just planning our next family treat at Fat Daddy’s Smokehouse, the staff informed me that they are moving to UP area. That’s a little far from us people from the south but for the sake of their pork ribs and peach cobbler – it might make us visit their soon to open branch there!

For more updates, visit Fat Daddy’s Smokehouse on Facebook to get a heads up on their promos and menu offerings.

Mommy Lace is a blogger from the Philippines. She started this blog to share information on pregnancy, breastfeeding, childcare, family, and health.