Christmas Wish List: Cookbooks

I’m no gifting guru, but maybe you have a friend like me, someone who doesn’t cook but loves cookbooks.  These are the top 2 on my wish list and I bet your friend will love them too:

Cravings: Recipes for Al the Food You Want to Eat by Chrissy Teigen

Chrissy Teigen shares recipes of her favorite things to eat in the most entertaining way possible — with stories of their everyday life and a lot of self-deprecating humour.  You can view sample recipes on Amazon, like this one:

 

 

It’s All Easy: Delicious Weekday Recipes for the Super Busy Home Cook by Gwyneth Paltrow

My Ross passed on her copy of GP’s first cookbook, It’s All Good, and it turned out to be exactly my kind of cookbook filled with my kind of recipes.  This means that many of them are so simple they can hardly be called recipes at all.  It’s All Easy promises to be more of the same, and I know this because it’s got the word “easy” in the title.

 

All Screen Caps via Amazon.com

 

Green Bar is Lyf

Green Bar is currently my favorite all-vegan restaurants in Manila.  They make the best cruelty-free sandwiches, wraps, bowls, nachos, and doughnuts that aren’t necessarily healthy but always hit the spot.  So damn good.  Now if only parking wasn’t such a problem.

GREEN BAR, 2/F West of Ayala, 252 Gil Puyat Ave., Makati, Metro Manila, Telephone (632) 885.7537

Mothers Who Brunch x Uashmama

Over the Asean long weekend, I found myself back at the Viking Range Showroom for the Mothers Who Brunch x Uashmama Philippine launch.  Uashmama (pronounced “wash-mama”) is a line of washable paper bags and pouches that look and feel like real leather.

Designed and made in Italy, the paper products look and feel like leather, but washes with ease.  The bags are soft yet resilient, where the manufacturing process is similar to leather as the paper is stretched and tanned making it durable to withstand washing and daily use.  Uashmama washable paper is made using a virgin fiber through cultivation and not deforestation. Paper that washes like fabric holding it’s form so it can be used over and over again promoting sustainability perfect for catering and home wares. Countless and ever new, depending on taste and trends, which do not follow any fashion, only the inspiration of its creator: Marco Marconi.

At the event, we were divided into teams and tasked to style our own corner of the showroom with Uashmama products.  Meet my teammates: Char, Sheila, Lucien, and Market.  We were assigned the nook under the stairs.

 

And this is how we styled our space.  Not bad right?!  We didn’t win, but we had fun and we were happy with the outcome:)

After getting to know more about Uashmama, it was time for lunch!  And in true Mothers Who Brunch style, what a feast it was.

This gorgeous spread is a combination of catering by boutique caterer Yogi Brunch + food lovingly prepared by Mish and Sab, and even sous vide steak by Nino, Mish’s husband.  Earth Origins supplied the organic produce and ingredients.

I was so happy to finally meet Joy of Yogi Brunch.  I’m a big fan of her chana hummus and order from her regularly!  I loved everything Joy prepared for us at the Uashmama event, and it was my first time to try her cookies and they are THE BEST!!  Joy let me take home some of her extra cookie dough and we made more cookies at home.  My kids went crazy over them.  I need to order more of those soon, because they taste like Christmas.

Michelle of My Mom-Friday and Jackie of Go Jackie Go were my lunch seat mates, and it’s always a fun time hanging out with these mommas + Mish and Sab.

After partaking of the feast, we were treated to a raffle with  bongga prizes sponsored by Uashmama and Severin (I won a Capri backpack — see below), and we got to take home goodies from Uashmama, Earth Origins, Cusina, and Yogibrunch.

Thank you so much for having me, Mothers Who Brunch and Uashmama!

More blog posts about Mothers Who Brunch x Uashmama (I’ll be updating this list):

Cat Juan

At Home with Mrs C.

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INEXPH Inc. is the exclusive distributor of Uashmama in the Philippines.  Follow Uashmama on Facebook at  www.facebook.com/uashmamaph or on Instagram @uashmama_ph.

Babyzen YOYO+, the Rock Star of Strollers

Whyyyy did I have to find my dream stroller now that I’m done having babies?

This is what I kept asking myself as I road tested the YOYO+ at Babyzen’s launch last month.  The stroller is strong and sturdy, but easily folds up into a bag you can carry on your shoulder.

And then you throw it open in seconds (with just one hand and a baby in the other arm if you are as fit as Iya Villania, the brand’s endorser) — and you feel just like Batman.

I didn’t expect to have feelings for  stroller but man, if I were having another baby, I would absolutely want a YOYO+.

If you are on the hunt for a perfectly portable, lightweight, and durable stroller, then search no more.  BABYZEN is a rockstar in the stroller world, known for its compact, versatile, and featherweight creations. Designed in France using top quality materials like high grade aluminum and engineering grade DuPont plastic for the frame.  No wonder superheroes like Gal Gadot swear by it!  Other YOYO+ celebrity users include Kim Kardashian, Keira Knightly, Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds, and Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel, among others.

A stroller that you can carry on your shoulders means that it makes it great for travel. But it doesn’t end there. The BABYZEN YOYO+ is so compact that it fits in a plane’s overhead cabin compartment. In fact, it is the first stroller certified by the IATA for cabin baggage. It can be brought along as hand luggage, allowing the busy parent to zoom from place to place.

You may view and try out Babylon strollers at their Pop-Up Store in 3F, Bridgeway, Powerplant Mall, or purchase online through Babyzen Philippines’ social media accounts and Qrius.ph.

Freeze by Pressed Juicery

This is my favorite discovery from our NYC trip last year.  Yes, last year pa, and I’ve never posted about it!

FREEZE by Pressed Juicery is an all-natural soft serve made with fruits, vegetables, and nuts (depending on the flavor).  All flavors are dairy-free, sugar-free, and gluten-free.  I only got to try the vanilla and chocolate, as they were having trouble with the green soft serve both times we dropped by.

  • Vanilla Almond Freeze is made with almonds, dates, vanilla bean, and sea salt
  • Chocolate Almond Freeze is made with cacao, almonds, dates, vanilla bean and sea salt

I can’t even begin to explain how much I loved this soft serve.  They’re ice cold and creamy and totally luxurious, and you get to choose your own toppings such as berries, nuts, or cacao drizzle.  Both flavors we tried were so damn good, we were back for more the very next day.  I had to ask them what kind of liquid they used to blend the freeze, as there has to be some liquid in it to achieve this consistency.  The woman at the counter seemed a bit taken aback at the question and said, “Uh… water, I guess?”

In any case, Pressed Juicery’s Freeze is THE dessert of my dreams, and I can’t wait to go back to the U.S. just so I can have more .

PressedJuicery.com

Addiction Aquatic Development

I’m a sucker for old places that have been converted into something new and exciting (think PMQ in Hong Kong or The Never Ending Summer in Bangkok), and this is just one of the reasons I loved Addiction Aquatic in Taipei.  Continue reading “Addiction Aquatic Development”

Eslite Spectrum

ESLITE stores can be found all over Taipei, but Eslite Spectrum feels special because of its unique location on the grounds of Songshan Cultural and Creative Park, which was converted from an abandoned tobacco factory.  My friends and I walked all the way from Taipei 101, crossing the park to get to Eslite, and the walk itself was enjoyable.  We passed Ecology Pond, which is an oasis right in the middle of the city.

The Eslite building includes a large bookstore, a department store filled with young artisans and creative brands, vinyl, DIY workshops, traditional Taiwanese tea shops, and lots more eye candy.  Everything is gorgeous as well as expensive!  We had dinner at a Thai restaurant called Kiki Thai Cafe (inside Eslite) and we enjoyed everything we ordered (except the stinky tofu which served only as dinnertime entertainment).  *Sorry to have zero photos to share, but please google “Eslite Spectrum Songshan Cultural and Creative Park to see more of what it looks like!

After eating, we walked around and just enjoyed the open grounds by some abandoned and rather creepy warehouses, pretending we were in a horror movie.  Elite Spectrum is so beautiful and one of my favorite new places in Taipei!

Mala Hotpot

My friends and I were in Taipei a few months ago, with no other agenda except to shop and eat.  We headed straight for Mala Hotpot right after checking in to our hotel.

If you’ve never been to a hotpot restaurant in Taiwan, you will be astonished by the wide selection of soups, meats, seafood, noodles, fresh and handball meat, fish, and veggie balls, fresh vegetables, sides, sauces, and condiments.  It’s hotpot heaven!  Dessert is usually included, and at Mala, we got to choose from four chest freezers filled with Haagen Dazs and Movenpick ice cream.

Tip: ask your hotel concierge to call the restaurant for reservations, so you won’t have to wait as long as we did (2 hours!!).

MALA HOTPOT XIMENDING, #62, 2/F Xining Road, Ximen, Taipei, Taiwan, Phone: +886-2-2314-6528

Taipei Itinerary: 4D3N with Friends

If you plan in advance, it doesn’t happen, but when you viber each other late at night that PAL tickets from Manila to Taipei are on sale at US$75, you all end up booking a trip on the spot!  At least that’s what happened with me and my high school friends Grach, Pauline, Jane, Isang, and Charlene.   Continue reading “Taipei Itinerary: 4D3N with Friends”

Lake Pandin

We spent the day at Lake Pandin, Laguna one day last month.  It’s a 2.5-hour drive from Metro Manila, and you have to leave your car in a small, unpaved parking lot and get to the lake on foot.  There is simply no way to drive there directly.

The facilities of the lake are definitely rustic and third world, but the lake is unspoiled and beautiful. Pandin is cared for and run by about 20 locals who operate the bamboo rafts as well as prepare the food, and guests are asked to register with a woman they refer to as “Pangulo.” They can serve you lunch on the raft (fresh caught tilapia and bangus from the lake) or you can opt for just the balsa ride.

 

The lake is clean enough to swim in but there are no changing rooms or even proper toilets around the lake (just a rather dirty makeshift toilet and you have to pay P5.00 per head to enter). We all changed into dry clothes in the car.

Also there is a 20 minute trek through a narrow dirt road from the parking lot to the lake, and it gets really muddy when it rains. The path sometimes slopes uphill or down, and I wouldn’t recommend it for seniors or very young kids. John had to carry Naomi both ways and it wasn’t easy. Still we all really enjoyed our day at the lake, and the kids are calling it “an adventure.”

Tips:

  1. Ideal for kids 6 and up, not suitable for very young children, seniors, or disabled.
  2. Bring your own water and snacks for the balsa ride if you don’t intend to order food (they serve fresh fish, rice, and vegetables).
  3. You can also order a fresh coconut to sip on, which is a nice touch but they don’t serve them cold since they don’t have refrigerators.
  4. Best to go in good weather (no rain).
  5. Wear swimsuits if you want to go in the water, but be ready to change in the car.
  6. You can also text in advance to make reservations – 0907-9952983 or 0929-9789565.

LAKE PANDIN, San Pablo, Laguna *you can simply enter “Lake Pandin” on Waze

 

Taste by Grace Home Manila

I’ve been wanting to try Taste by Grace Home Manila, and lucky for me, my friend Ross generously shared her Arte Fino loot when we visited her house:)

First we tried baking these 70% Ecuadorian dark chocolate chip cookies in Ross’ toaster oven.  They turned out really good…

…but a bit too expensive for me at over P1.200++ if I remember correctly.  If you are sosyal like Ross, this shouldn’t stop you –  she’s re-ordered these cookies already!

We also tried these dips.

The Quattro Formaggio spread was my absolute favorite.  So good and so worth it!  Please get me this if you don’t know what to give me for Christmas.  I think this is around P600+.

Check out Grace Home Manila and The Spoiled Mummy on Instagram or text/viber 0906-3618374 for orders and inquiries.

All Home

Have you been to ALL HOME?  I had the chance to check out their Quezon City branch not too long ago, and the place is huge!  It’s four whole floors of everything you need to build, furnish, or improve your home. Continue reading “All Home”

Chef Margarita Fores for L’Innovation de Nespresso

Nespresso is now in the Philippines!  John and I were invited to one of their launch dinners at Hey Handsome, where we were surprised to be greeted not by Chef Nicco Santos, but by Margarita Fores (she hid behind the TV monitor as guests started coming in so as not to spoil her surprise — just one clue as to how down to earth she is despite being Asia’s Best Female Chef 2016.). Continue reading “Chef Margarita Fores for L’Innovation de Nespresso”