Thursday, October 23, 2014

Lemon Chicken Kale on Noodles

 It's been probably forever, since I last posted a recipe here.  So I was so happy to oblige when one of my readers asked for me to post one.  I actually cooked this the day after attending the launch of the second season of  Mmmmary's Kitchen brought by Carnation milk.  It was so timing that I was so spurred on coming back to my kitchen to whip up something for the family, after a three-day trip to Bohol.

To give you my short story on the event, actually it would rather be really short, since I came a little before everyone was done with the event's activities, except for the unending degustation prepared by Commune Cafe.

So to make up for my not being able to participate, when I got home, I pushed myself to make something out of the recipe cards, and milk cans I went home with from Carnation.

So here was what I came up with.  A rehashed version of one of the recipes prepared during the event - Lemon Chicken Spinach Fettuccine.  

I found their dish too sour, even my kids didn't like the too lemony taste with the creamy, milky sauce so I reduced the amount of lemon juice and zest used, giving it just a tinge of lemon tang but has that enough sour kick to it.  I also had to admit that I only have one piece of lemon left on my fridge so that's got to do.

Also, I didn't have a pack of fettuccine on my cupboard so I used Excellent's Hongkong Style Canton Noodles.  Okay, another reason why I used this is that, I'm afraid to make pancit canton from scratch with and we have a lot sitting here from their recent event.

But you'll be surprised how this kind of noodles worked pretty well with pasta sauces.  You can read about our account on that here: Oodles about Noodles, An EXCELLENT Cooking Demo

I'm sure you'll be saying, "Canton noodles as a pasta replacement is absurd!"

So, you can use any pasta you have in your homes, however, if you need to buy different kinds of pasta noodles, we are selling them, click HERE if you want to see our pasta products.

Moving on to my recipe, here is it...Have fun!

Lemon Chicken Kale on Noodles


500g noodles, cooked as directed
250g chicken thigh fillet cut into small cubes
3 tablespoons butter, plus 1 tablespoon more
4 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons flour
1 1/2 cup Carnation Evap
1/2 cup chicken broth or water
juice and zest of 1 lemon
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
a handful, or about 3 to 4 leaves of fresh kale,  finely chooped
grated parmesan or any cheese

To do:

1. In a skillet, heat butter and saute garlic and spinach over moderately low heat.  Cook the chicken pieces in it.  Pour in the chicken broth or water.
2. Once the chicken is cooked, pour in Carnation Evap, zest and lemon juice and salt, then the nutmeg.
3.  Simmer until thick and smooth.
4.  Add in some grated parmesan, mix and turn off the heat.
5.  Lastly, add the kale leaves and mix slowly.
6.  Toss the noodles and arrange on a plate, put more kale and parmesan on top, if desired.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

2nd Philippine National Barista Championship Winner

Six baristas made it to the final round of of the prestigious Philippine National Barista Championship staged last October 17, 2014 at the Resorts World Manila.  Anually,  World Coffee Events (WCE) holds this event dubbed as The World Barista Championship (WBC), where seasoned baristas come to compete.  The said rendezvous was organized by Allegro Beverage, a leading coffee and beverage supplier in the HoReCa industry and Association of Filipino Baristas, inc., with  Resorts World Manila as the prestigious platinum partner and sponsor.

Four espressos, four cappuccinos, and four original signature drinks to exacting standards in a 15-minute performance set to music is all what it takes for a barista to be a World Barista champion. The baristas were judged in both sensory and technical aspects of making coffee.

A number of sensory judges  including Lauro Fioretti, chief engineer of espresso coffee machine maker Nuova Simonelli, and Leo de Leon, founder and president of Allegro Beverage Corp, noted the “consistency” of Lumaban’s drinks and communication skills.

Among the six only one stood the greatest, Aldrin Lumaban of  Craft Coffee Revolution, won the 2nd Philippine National Barista Championship and yes, our country has a representative for the World Barista Championship in Seattle, U.S. next year.  He have beaten 23 contenders during the three-day competition which started October 15, 2014, at Treston International College.  Last year, wasn't a good year for Lumaban, but he proved that passion and the drive to serve the best cup of brew paved the way to an even promising year for him and the Philippines.

Congratulations from us here at Gastronomy by Joy, may you bring home the bacon.

Monday, October 20, 2014

A Foodie-mom's Skin Confession

Photo captured by Lara Antonio of Mabuhay Magazine

Now that my kids are not babies anymore, I have ample time to take care of myself.  I'm proud that at an early age of 9 and 10 years old, I find my girls not only busy at school but in the kitchen as well. That means, I can do more while they help me cook our lunch, or while they prepare their own snacks, even more tastefully done than mine.  

I guess, I have thought my kids well, to be responsible enough for each other and to themselves, so they grow more independently and resourceful.  However, there is one thing that I truly detest learning and doing just now, that I'm nearing my forties.  

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Century Park Hotel Flares Anew with its Post Anniversary Treats

Are you counting down the yuletide season already? Why not begin it with an ultimate RnR (rest and relaxation)?  You might want to consider Century Park Hotel, as they flare anew with promotions and offerings to make the celebration merrier.

They are still hyped up from their anniversary celebration so they designed a post-anniversary treat. Century Park's special room package is lengthened and still up for grab for the whole month of October. Enjoy the extended celebration in the Superior Room at P 5, 500 net/room/night and Deluxe Room/ Jr. Suite/ Park Tower Suite at P6, 500 net/room/night. Packages include complimentary breakfast for two plus a free Century Park Elite card worth P 2,000. Guests also get a special rate of P3,888 net/room/night for Superior room and P4,888 net/room/night for Deluxe / Jr. Suite / Park Tower Tower for the succeeding nights.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Photo Diary: Palawan Subterraenean River Tour

Giant sisig kicks off Big Bite! The Northern Food Festival

It was another pleasurable epicurean tour I
 had yesterday as I witnessed the launch of  MarQuee Mall’s Big Bite! The Northern Food Festival.  The event kicked off with fireworks, a marching band, street dancing and serving of the largest plate of sizzling sisig in the country.

Big Bite! is in partnership with the North Luzon Expressway, Department of Trade and Industry, Department of Tourism, Angeles City Tourism Office, Bank of the Philippine Islands and the Lifestyle Network.

The event's launch program was hosted by RJ Ledesma who also hosted last year's Big Bite.  Graced by Umagang Kay Ganda hosts, the early 7 am opening was a blast (hoping that you spotted me on TV as it was featured live on GMA 7 yesterday).

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Mmmmary's Kitchen, On it's Second Season for masarap! an appreciation savored from a yummmmy dish or food! also for Mmmmary's Kitchen.

Mmmmary's Kitchen is Carnation's new project, a cooking serye which features a newly wed housewife deals with her new challenges in home-making.  The video focuses on preparing delicious new recipes where Carnation products comes in to enhance every dishes.

Mouthwatering Festivities at Marquee Mall’s Big Bite! The Northern Food Festival

Pampanga, a haven for sought-after savory Filipino such as Sisig and Tibok-tibok is now ready for the food-loving Filipinos as MarQuee Mall, Ayala Malls’ premier destination for shopping, leisure and entertainment in the province, presents Big Bite! The Northern Food Festival on October 17- 19, 2014.

In partnership with Department of Tourism, Department of Trade and Industry, Angeles Tourism Office, North Luzon Expressway, Bank of the Philippine Islands and the Lifestyle Network, Big Bite promises a three-day celebration of all things delicious for tourists, locals and foodies. Cooking demos, food art, free food samples, live entertainment and more await festival goers.

Over 100 best and homegrown food merchants from Region I, II, III and the Cordillera Administrative Region are going to be featured at the food market.   From condiments, spices, to coffee and jams, to local favorites such as Ilocos empanada, bagnet, puto calasiao, there is something for every taste bud. Enjoy these foods or bring it home for pasalubong.

To celebrate the country’s growing street food scene, Big Bite offers a new aisle on the festival grounds that offer Street Food specials. These are the food delights that people flock to in every street corner, from ice scramble to strawberry taho, to binatog (boiled corn with grated coconut and salt), and sorbetes (local ice cream).

Kicking off with a marching band, fireworks and a giant sisig cook-off, the event also highlights Angeles City’s major contribution to Philippine cuisine - sisig. Hailed as the best pork dish by the New York Times, sisig has been celebrated in the province for more than 40 years.   Traditionally made of pork parts, mixed with spices, and served on a sizzling plate, sisig now comes in other delicious variants.

Art installations by award-winning visual artist Leeroy New and the Pampanga Arts Guild will be on display throughout the festival days.

Visitors will also have a chance to see their favorite Lifestyle Network chefs, Chef Sandy Daza of Foodprints and the lively Chef Sharwin Tee of Curiosity Got the Chef up close as these masters share their culinary skills and talent through live cooking demonstrations.

The festival also comes with the Big Buffet promo, where MarQuee Mall shoppers can get free food samples for a minimum P1,000 purchase from any Marquee Mall merchant.

So, come and celebrate the biggest gastronomical festival in Marquee Mall’s Big Bite: The Northern Food Festival on October 17-19, 2014.

            For more information, contact (045) 304-0110 to 11. Like and follow MarQuee Mall’s social networking sites, Facebook:, Twitter: @MarQueetweets, and instagram: @iloveMarQueemall.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

TRAVEL: Bohol Photo Journal 2014

One year on from the Bohol earthquake, the Boholanos have managed to struggle and survive the massive losses of loved ones, their homes, their profit and most of all visitors who used to come to marvel at the province beauty.

Tourism dropped tremendously!  Leaving more businessmen earning really less, jobs have been scarce and many, if not all, are still wondering whether they can still go back to their normal lives, back to where they were enjoying a comfortable life with their own roofs on their heads while having their faith in God intact through the antiquated churches that used to stood at their barangays' frontier.  
It was heart-wrenching after having to witness the devastation right after the news was still fresh. Bohol is my second home.  It is  where my father had been educated and was brought up to be the best person that I know and so are my grandparents, uncles and aunts.   Though most of them have established their lives now across different countries, I do believe their hearts truly belonged to Bohol.

After a year, I stood amazed and sparked at how Bohol and its people have been rich in tenacity and kindness that in spite of what have been brought to them, they did not waiver with hardship.  

Last October 1, I found myself basking in the glorious sunshine of Bohol and prancing around towns with my camera on one hand and melodrama on the other.  It was a three-day tour from the Department of Tourism and it was an awesome trip worth recommending, but have your heart ready to see some of what the 7.2 earthquake has brought upon Bohol.

It is easy to understand how God has covered them with endless grace and now more than ever they are ready to welcome us visitors and tourist to come, see, taste and experience Bohol in a whole new spirit revived through their stories.

I'm sharing the three-day itinerary that was organized by the Department of Tourism and CCT.168 Travel & Tours, headed by Ms. Edna M. Faustino, their Product Development Manager. 


0920H ETD Manila via PR2773
1035H ETA Tagbilaran Airport 
              Tour Highlights:
                       TARSIER viewing in CORELLA SANCTUARY
                       Sta. Monica Church in Alburquerque ( a newly restored church)
                       LOBOC RIVER CRUISE & LUNCH
                       CHOCOLATE HILLS  viewing deck
                       CHAP- Chocolate Hills Adventure Park 
                      (for adventure activities such as bikezip & rope courses )
                       Drive through the mahogany man-made Forest

              Late afternoon check in Panglao Bluewater 
2000H           Hosted Dinner by Panglao Bluewater 
     Overnight Accommodation 


Do you know that just by visiting the Tarsier Sanctuary in Corella, you are already supporting the efforts of conserving the tarsiers under  the care of the Philippine Tarsier Foundation, as all fees goes to this cause?  Deep in the forest of Corella, Bohol, is a tightly observed place to keep safe another endangered mammal and making sure humans do not anymore make as a factor why their numbers are lessened.

The place is enclosed to keep predators like house cats away, though the tarsiers are free to jump from one tree to another and hunt for food during the night.

When seeing the tarsier, you will be asked to be as silent as you could while trekking the stony grounds of the place, not to disturb or scare away our cute friends.

Prepare an entrance fee of P50 pesos per person, you may also drop some cash to a drop box located at their lobby to support their cause.  Visit their website to know more about this info, here.

 Sta. Monica Church in Alburquerque

According to our tour guide, the church was declared as an Important Cultural Property by the National Museum and the National Historical Commission of the Philippines last October 22, 2013. The parish advocated to Santa Monica was canonically established on June 18, 1869 but was actually being studied that it may have been built in 1842.

Just even before the earthquake struck, major renovations have been made which may have probably preempted serious damages. 

This old church like most of the other stone Catholic churches were made from coral stones, taken fom the sea and caved into blocks.

The courtyard with the bridge adjoining the convent and the church.

Now coming inside is just an amazing idea, the ceilings are painted so magnificently, that I just had to commend the artist who pain-stakingly painted these.

Even the floor tiles are antique.


The church of San Pedro (Saint Peter) in Loboc, Bohol is the second oldest church established in Bohol. Built in 1602 originally, and reconstructed in 1638.  

Though the chuch gained a few interests among us cousins, we never get to appreciate it that much. What really gave us some thinking and talking about was the hulk of a big old unfinished bridge positioned right in front of the church's facade.

When we last visited it to check the museum out (we might see some golds, you know) it had given us goose bumps, now all you can find are piles of rubbles and what seemed to be underneath are the relief's and items in the museum and church.

The town center beside the church walls.  The coral stone bricks where stacked properly awaiting to be rebuilt.  

What was now left from the church's bell tower.


The view of the Loboc bridge from the "balsa" also known as the floating restaurant.

The lunch!

At a point in the river, Loboc's cultural art dancers welcomed us and presented their local dancing.

Chocolate Hills Adventure Park (CHAP)

At last, Bluewater Panglao

Our room...


0500H Wake up call 
0530H Quick Breakfast  
0630H Pick up from resort for ISLAND HOPPING to PAMILACAN/ BALICASAG via                            outrigger boat
Activities: (Pamilacan) - Dolphin Watching, snorkeling & photo Ops 
                         Morning native snacks will be served 
Visit TIEZA’s Balicasag Dive Resort - lunch & snorkeling
1300H Depart Balicasag, proceed to VIRGIN ISLAND 
Back to Panglao Bluewater after the tour, freshen up 
1530H Depart resort  for Hinagdanan Cave 
1630H Proceed to PUNTA CRUZ watch tower in Maribojoc (15mins drive) to view the                                   ‘elevated shoreline’
1730H       Proceed to Manga Market after the tour ( Seafood Market) 

Mangga market is one of the secondary markets in Tagbilaran City.This is the favorite place among locals to go in the afternoon for fresh seafood, since the 70’s.  Nearby are small restaurants, (carinderia type) providing ‘cooking services’ for   Seafood’s brought from the market.
1830H              Firefly watching in Abatan River in Cortes
1930H              Dinner at Lic Lic Fastfood & Sutukil, at Mangga, Tagbilaran
2100H              Back to Bluewater for rest

Morning beach sighting, before the island hopping.

From the outrigger, I can see the other media people getting on a kayak, to go to our boat. 

Looking for dolphins...

Where have they gone?

Getting closer to Pamalican Island, without a sight of any dolphins...

Look at how tranquil this place is.  The town has a number of people living in it who earns through fishing and as a guide for tourist who loves to snorkel or dive.

watching in Abatan River in Cortes

The lobby where they welcome guests

A ritual was made to make sure we were cleansed of bad vibes, haha, and accordingly to keep our trip safe.  A girl with a clay pot filled with charcoal and a burning incense.


0700H             Free time to check the whole reasort 
                        Breakfast at the resort (at our most convenient time) at Aplaya Restaurant 
Swim at the Bluewater pool
Breakfast is open from 6AM till 10PM 
1100H Check out, settle incidentals 
Proceed to Bohol Bee Farm for lunch and shopping
1330H Baclayon Church Visit
1400H             Transfer to APRONIANA SOUVENIR SHOP 
1500H Transfer out to Tagbilaran Airport, drop off luggage  
1640H     ETD    bound for Manila
1755H ETA Manila (NAIA Terminal 2) 

Then, we had to say goodbye to this!!!  Thanks Bluewater Panglao!

Bohol Bee Farm photos...

At the entrance, my media friends (girls) flocked over the accessories being sold.  Me, I just revel on the surrounding, I love the homey, country ambiance. 

Inside one of the dining halls.

Heading to our dining site, we passed through this building, apparently where the owners reside.

The spectacular beach view of Alona beach from our dining table.


With my Bluewater Panglao room mate, photographer par excellance, Julia Wimmerlin, representing Travelife Magazine.

The indoor pool at Bohol Bee Farm

Earliest bird catches the biggest worm...Don't you just love how they have set up early for Christmas, their store is truly inviting and I guess I just have to say sorry to my credit card for now.

Baclayon Church

Aproniana Pasalubong Store

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