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Jamba Juice in Manila

November 10, 2011

So the first ever Jamba Juice in South East Asia has finally opened, and it’s in Manila! The store is located at Bonifacio High Street in the Fort Area, Taguig. It’ll be officially opening tomorrow at 10am but along the line they will start opening at 7am, for all you early health food/ sport junkies to get your fix before hitting the gym or those who need a little vitamin and nutrient boost before work.

I’ll be creating/serving/selling/making your juices and blending up a storm tomorrow evening at 7pm at the shop. Come by and let the Fat Kid Inside show you his juicing skills (i don’t have any -humor will ensue)

For those of you who don’t know Jamba Juice, here’s an exerpt from their site:

“It all started with a blender, a bunch of fruit, and a vision that’s equal parts good and good for you.

From these humble beginnings, Jamba Juice has grown into a favorite destination for better-for-you beverages and foods, making its way into hearts and neighborhoods across the country with more than 700 locations.

The Jamba menu has grown a bunch, too.

Organic tea lattes. Steel-cut oatmeal. Grab-N-Go wraps, salads and sandwiches. California Flatbreads™. But for all the additions, some things haven’t changed. Everything’s still made with goodness you can taste and feel. All of our products have no artificial preservatives, no high fructose corn syrup and 0g trans fat.

So while we’ve blended things up over the years, our feel good mission hasn’t changed one iota:

to inspire and simplify healthy living for active, on-the-go lifestyles. Which means whether Jamba invites you sip, bite, give back or create, you’ll be left thinking the same thing: that felt good. ”



Oriental a GoGo

November 6, 2011

So we took a quick 2 day trip to Hong Kong the other week and like most people who visit the city for such a short amount of time, the only thing on our agenda was to eat until we drop and then shop (do not do it in that order, or else you’ll be tempted to buy bigger sizes than your own-trust me on this). When i travel to foreign places, new or old, i always research some time before to make sure that i have a list of every and any kind of food/drink outlet ready to go. If we suddenly feel like having pastries? I’ve go just the place. cocktails? I read up the new out of the way hot spot on some blog. Entrails and offal? No problem. I highly recommending doing this, as food take such an importance place in understanding cultures and immersing oneself in a country completely. So before taking a trip out, make a list of any genre/type of restaurants and bars that interest you, even if you wont be able to visit them all, it’ll prevent having a bad meal, falling in tourist traps and will save time when the following reoccurring conversation starts up: “What do you want to eat?” “Anything. You choose”….etc…etc…you’ve all been frustrated by this at one point i’m sure.

So, in our 2 days there, we ended up eating in a traditional restricted menu dim sum place for lunch #1, a back alley cantonese restaurant for lunch #2 (yes we had 2 lunches in one day) and a sichuan restaurant for dinner. The next day, we ate in a ramen place for breakfast (dont judge me), a full on dim sum place for lunch and a Vietnamese restaurant for dinner. Im purposefully not giving out the names of these places because i want you to do the research (or im lazy).

The Vietnamese place, was the type of restaurant that doesn’t take any reservation and which draws in a crowd, lining up outside, 15 minutes before it opens its doors; always a good sign, especially if those in line are locals. We filled out little table up with lot’s love and devoured it in 30 minutes. We had bo bun, shrimp toast, fresh soft shell crab spring rolls, steamed vegetables and a bahn mi. Everything was fantastic, except for that anemic, dry, excuse of a bahn mi. So im going to show this restaurant (Nha Trang) how to do it properly.

Black Pepper Chicken Bahn Mi

Black Pepper Chicken Marinade

Mix 2 Chicken Breast (4 filets) (Sliced like sashimi) with 1sp garlic powder, 1 tsp ginger powder, 3 crushed garlic cloves, 1 red onion, 2 tsp of black pepper, 3tsp of fish sauce, 2tsp of oyster sauce, 2tsp of vegetable oil, red chilli flakes. Let marinade at least 1 hour.

Pickled Carrots and Daikon

Peel and grate 3 medium sized carrots. Peel and julienne 1/2 Daikon. Seperate in two preserving jars (which have been correctly sanitized). Take a sauce pan and mix in 1/4 cup rice vinegar + 1/4 cup white wine vinegar, 1/2 cup white (or raw) sugar, 1 tbsp salt and 1 cup of water. Bring to a boil, let cool and top off the two jars. Let sit in fridge for at least 1 hour or overnight for better results.

Staple Vietnamese Dipping Sauce

Mix 1 thai chilli, 1/4cup of fish sauce, 1/4 cup of white vinegar, 1/2 cup of water, 1/4 cup of sugar, 1/4 cup of lemon/lime or calamansi juice and minced garlic.

Quick and Dirty Mayo

Take a metal bowl stick it in the freezer for a bit, once nice and cold put one egg yolks in the bowl with 1tsp of lemon juice, 1 tsp of vinegar, 1/2 tsp of salt, 1/4 tsp of mustard and then add in a very slow stream (over 5 mins) 3/4 cup of olive oil until nice thick and white.

Cook of your chicken until well coloured and still moist.

Assemble the whole thing. Take your small baguette (crispy skin), you want something at least 20cm long, and blast it in the oven so it gets crispy hot on the outside and warm and fuzzy inside. Open it up halfway, put 1 tbsp of mayonnaise, 2 pieces of Laughing Cow (Vache qui rit) cheese, your chicken, drizzle with sauce generously, top with crisp sliced small japanese cucumbers, top with your pickled daikon and carrot, and finally a bunch of fresh picked and washed coriander and some basil if you’re feeling snazzy.

Simple is Best

October 29, 2011

Bordeaux is a fantastic city that is usually coveted for being the capital of wine in the world (well for the purist) but what most people don’t know, is that the city was actually built as a mock-Paris. It was the city where all the revolutionary architecture of Haussman would be tested before the principles were to be successfully applied to Paris.

So I’m sure you can imagine how beautiful this city is. What I loved about it, is that you can really feel and authentic vibe emanating from the buildings. Moreover, the people or so much friendlier and open minded than most of the difficult Parisians. You get the best of both worlds, a buzzing metropole with a country mindset. The wine and food of this region, follows this trends, anywhere you go, wherever you order a glass of red, rose or white, you are sure that you won’t be served anything bad, because the business owners wouldn’t dare sell something they are not proud of, secondly they have a no fuss approach to food that is so comforting.

We went to one of the most famous little eatery/bistrots of the city and I ordered the tomato with jalapeno. It was literally just that, tomato with jalapeno, but it was so masterfully executed. It had a nice crisp sear that gave it an almost meat like texture and the jalapeno was bathing in extra virgin oil, imbibing the whole dish in a controlled heat.

It was great and it reminded me vegetables are exciting. Something we so easily forget. One of my favourite veggies is quinoa, which is very often mistaken for a grain. Its the perfect, filling, healthy food that will leave you wanting for naught more. This recipe is one I make a lot throughout the week, because of its simplicity, freshness and overall balance of flavour and nutrients.

Herb and Banana Quinoa Salad with Olive Oil Poached Tuna


– Quinoa

– Cherry tomatoes

– Mint and Parsley

– Olive Oil

– Red Wine Vinegar or Balsamic

– Lemon

– Saba Banana

– Thyme

– Tuna

– Red onion

– Cayenne Chillies

– Leek Onions

– Garlic

– Salt and Pepper

– Butter

– Sour Cream

1. Cook your quinoa as per packet instructions, except do it in chicken stock for extra flavour.

2. With the quinoa, mix in your olive oil, a dash of vinegar, salt and pepper, chopped mint and parsley, chopped red onions, lemon juice and cherry tomatoes.

3. Peel your banana and fry in salted butter.

4. take 250ml of olive oil in a pot with thyme, chopped chilli, salt and pepper, leek onion stalk and crushed garlic. Bring to a small boil, reduce heat and let stand 15 minutes at about 130 degrees.

5. Season your tuna with salt and pepper. Make sure oil is at 130 and drop in the tuna for about 5 minutes.

6. Assemble the whole dish and enjoy with the sour cream topping!! Remember to season the tuna again if you need it with salt, pepper, olive oil (the one you were cooking with) or more lemon juice, also for an extra kick you can mix some capers in with the sour cream.

Soundtrack: opening by Serge Gainsbourg, then soundtrack of Drive and soundtrack Submarine (must see movies).

Breakfast Essentials

October 12, 2011

The Cap Ferret is a little arm of sand of the Coast of Bordeaux and by the Bay of Arcachon. It’s the most fantastic place where lazy Sundays are an everyday thing. You have these immense areas of forest, sand and sea that are completely deserted that literally become your own little playground: rent a bike and go through hundreds of trails, go naked and show off your manhood to the Atlantic ocean, visit oyster fisherman and sample their best straight from their cultivating zone with a spurt of lemon and a glass of pale rosé, of course.

What I enjoy the most of this type of atmosphere is that all activities must be completed within the day, because come night time the island basically shuts down; in any case there are no lights on the streets, so good luck biking home. We have all evolved into an owl patterned population: with the advent of the internet, call centers, streaming movies, torrentz, ipads, etc. , we go to bed much later than we used to. I look at my own sleeping patterns and its incredible how much they’ve changed.

  • Ages 0 – 5: Absolutely no clue
  • Ages 6-12: Bed by 10pm, Up by 7am
  • Ages 13-15: My first Playstation, Bed by 1am, Up by 6.30am
  • Ages 16-17: Girls and sneaking out, Bed by 3am, Up by 6.30am.
  • Ages 17-21: College, cram sessions, work experience…Bed by 3am, Up by 8am.
  • Ages 21-23: Working in Russia. Bed by 2am, Up by 5.30am.
  • Ages 23-24: Back in the Philippines, trying to live a healthy lifestyle. Bed by midnight, up by 7.30am.

I’m pretty sure that everyone can pretty much relate to the above sleeping patterns. At this stage in my life, especially when I make sure to work out every day, I find myself wanting to fall asleep as early as possible. If you think you can function with 4 hours of sleep under your belt, that’s great for you, I want at least 8am, I’ll ended up looking and feeling better than you. Remember, your body needs those 8 hours to recover, build muscle and more importantly relax your mind; and let’s not forget the most exciting part about sleeping. It’s probably the longest amount of time you will go without eating, therefore you wake up absolutely famished!  In comes Breakfast.

Breakfast is a religion, it’s a God, a mantra, a way of life, simply put, breakfast is love.

When I was on the heavier side I never used to eat brekkie and would then proceed to eat ludicrous amounts for lunch and dinner. This meal is definitely the most important of the day, not only does it jump start your system, it wakes you up, but it also makes you happy. Who doesn’t want to start the day happy? (Peanut butter with bananas and nutella? Go for it!!)  I will seriously dedicate a whole post about breakfast one of these days but for now, all I want to say is when I was in the Cap Ferret, I realised that the French know how to do breakfast right. Its fresh, made from scratch, its varied, balanced, available and atypical.

Every meal should be like that, and here is my version of a well loved family breakfast, a dish that is cooked everywhere but seldom done 100% homemade: Pancakes (use your imagination and put your own twist on it)

Erwan’s 4-1s pancakes with cane sugar coconut caramel, fresh mangoes and lychee cream.

Makes 3-4 pancakes


–          1 cup of milk

–          1 cup of self raising flour (highly recommended for fluffyiness)

–          1 egg

–          1 heaped tsp of baking powder + 1/2 tsp of salt (only if flour is not self raising)

–          Butter

Cane sugar coconut caramel

–          60 grams of pure cane sugar

–          50ml of water

–          10 teaspoons of coconut milk

Lychee Cream and Mango side

–          Plain greek yoghurt unsweetened.

–          Fresh lychees

–          1 Mango

  1. Beat pancake mix until smooth, set aside.
  2. Boil sugar and water together, reduce to simmer, thicken up until thick, add coconut milk. 2 teaspoons of coco milk can be reserved for the end to loosen up the sauce. It has to be like molasses or maple syrup. Taste once cooled.
  3. Take 2 tbsp of greek yoghurt and mix in with about 8 peeled, pitted, chopped sweet lychees.
  4. Cook pancakes (keep an eye on them to make sure they get fluffy), for thicker nicer pancakes, make sure the size of the pan is the size of the pancake you want, and fill up with a ladle and some melted butter.
  5. Once cooked, stack and spread a little butter on top, put the lychee cream, sliced mango, and drench with the sauce.

Make it your own: when you first put the batter in the pan and the pancake starts cooking, this is the point where you can get really creative. That white underbelly of the pancake is where you can add different ingredients: fried bacon bits, lemon or lime zest, orange zest, grated fruit, chocolate chips, a nutella center, jam, blueberries, dulce de leche…. add anything and cover with a little more of the batter (a really tad bit) and you’re set to flip it.

Read me on Print!

September 30, 2011

Hey  Everyone,

If you read my blog, you just might be interested to read Esquire as well. I am their Food and Drinks Editor. Join me every month, as i explain kitchen skills/recipes, bar essentials, stories and random facts.

This October- the first issue of ESQUIRE Philippines hits the newsstands.

Esquire defines, reflects, and influences what it means to be a man in contemporary culture. It delivers facts, opinions, and ideas on a variety of subjects that relates to the lifestyle of today’s successful man – from politics, to technology, to beautiful women.
Well-written and visually inspiring, it is the essential manual for men- intelligent yet stylish, compelling with a sense of wit. 

Esquire is “Man at his Best”.

The team are some of the best in the industry – from creatives, journalists, writers, and stylists–congratulations to Raymond Gutierrez (Style Director), Liz Uy (Editor at Large), Ces Olondriz (Art Director), Vince Uy (Group Creative Director), Erwan Heussaff (Food and Drink columnist) and to Erwin Romulo (Editor in Chief). BMS. 

Here you go…The Fat Kid Outside

September 28, 2011

Since people have been asking and i guess to serve as proof, so that you know my “eat healthy” rants bla bla bla are based on actual fact, here is, drumroll, my before, fatty, picture:

Take that biggest loser.

Year 2006. 240 pounds. 19 years old.

i want to pinch my own cheeks.

Now: Year 2011. 150 pounds. 24 years old.


Gluttons in Paris

September 26, 2011

Hello Everybody,

After jogging at 6.30 AM in front of the Louvre, best way to see sites without any people around.

First of all please do not hate me (those who care) for taking so long to post something new up. I arrived in Manila last week and as you can imagine it’s been nonstop since then, 1 trying to catch up and read all work related emails, 2 seeing friends and 3 getting back to a healthy lifestyle. Which brings me to the following: I ate for 3 people every day during this 2 week vacation. 1: I ate for the fat kid, 2: I ate for the cook in me and my culinary knowledge, 3: people keep saying the world is going to end, so I gorged. I travelled to Paris (first stop on our little trip) with my Family, my Girlfriend and my Friends. We all had to be in the city of lights for a wedding of a dear friend of ours and after which we all went our separate ways. The dangerous aspects of groups like this, well, we all mostly don’t live in Paris anymore, therefore when we do get to go back, Bakeries tremble in fear. To give you a little preview, we arrived at my apartment at 7.00am from the airport, our first day, at 7.10am i was walking  to Erick Kayser, at 7.30am I was walking back to the apartment with croissant, pains au chocolat, baguettes, pain de campagne, pain au lait, brioche aux raisin, éclair, tarte au citrons and croissant aux amandes. By the time i got home, half of my baguette was already eaten (i blamed it on the pigeons). Yes all this food was for 6 people. We all sat down, fried some eggs, unleashed our bread spread, with salted Breton butter, fresh fig preserves from the countryside, peaches, sweet plums, rhubarb jams, St. Moret, greek yogurt, country ham, red vine tomatoes and brewed coffee. This is after a 16 hour flight. We would usually shower and change clothes first. But food has that effect on people. (We had 5 other meals that day)

One of the things I look for when in Paris, is beef Tartare. I absolutely love the stuff and it is served in most bistrots and brasseries around the city. Even though, when dinning in Paris, it’s very important to research your restaurants first, as the offer is huge but quality is fickle, the tartare is always either good or redeemable with enough Tabasco and mustard.  something about raw minced meat, with little veg and some basic sauces, screams cave man and hits the spot all the time. Ironically enough, one of my favourite restaurants in Paris, is this no-reservation-always-a-line-outside lao/Cambodian/Vietnamese restaurant in China Town (Lane Lao Xang ), and they have their own “version” of tartare which is also a popular dish in Loas. This Beef Larb is what inspired this perfect healthy and refreshing bite.

Spicy Lean Beef Larb with Sweet Potato Mash

For 1

Sweet Potato Mash

–          3 small/medium sweet potatoes

–          4 tablespoons of heated coconut milk

–          Salt and pepper

  1. Boil potatoes in salted hot water. Cook until tender. Remove the skin and mash until smooth with the heated coconut milk and season with salt and pepper.

Lean Beef Larb

–          150grams lean tenderloin (the fresher the better)

–          1 red chilli

–          3 shallots

–          Lemon balm leaf (or lime leaves)

–          Mint

–          Basil

–          ½ green pepper

–          Drop of sesame oil

–          ¾ tbsp peanut oil

–          1-2 tbsp of fish sauce (to taste)

–          1 onion leek (white + green)

–          1 lemon

  1. Slice the meat in small cubes, add chopped onion leek (white), sliced shallots, sliced chilli, chopped herbs, diced pepper, sesame oil, peanut oil, fish sauce, juice of 1 lemon, pepper and mix.
  2. Get a pot sizzling hot with a little oil and fry (just to colour) both sides of the patty like mix. Barely 15 seconds per side. You want the insides to just slightly warm but still raw.
  3. Remove quickly and serve on top of bed of mashed sweet potatoes, season and top if needed with S & P, lemon rinds, or onion leeks (green part)
  4. Enjoy!!!

Paris isn’t complete without a thorough food experience, check out the following restaurants/places next time you are in the city, this is my little black book of food tripping:

Seafood – Le Jarasse

Crepes – Breizh cafe

Cool resto – Le Dauphin, Chateaubriand,Vivant, Frenchie, Spring, les fines gueles.

Simple Resto –Comptoir + Avant Comptoir, Chez Michel, L’Ami Jean, Chez Paul.

Cocktail – Perscription Cocktail Club, Le Molotov, Le Carmen, Le Shmuck, Le Wildrick

Italian – Casa Bini, al taglio, Coopérativa Latte Cisternino

Cakes and stuff– Berko

High Tea– L’absinthe, le grand Colbert, Cafe Louis Philippie,

Ice Cream – Grome, It Mylk, Bac a Glaces

Brunch – Ralph’s, 37m2, Home in Paris, le Bal Cafe, Le Bruch de L’Ouest Parisien, Rose Bakery

Awesome lunch – Cafe cache (104), La belleviloise.

Drinks – Le Mansart, Renoma Cafe, La Conserverie,

Wine Bar : Le Garde Robe, Le Rubis, Le Frenchie Wine Bar, Wine by One, Saturne. O Château. Le Verre Vole,

Chocolate : Jacques Genin, Josephine Vannier . Christophe Roussel, Choroom Via Chocolat, la maison du chocolat, pierre marcolini. Patrick Roger.

Patisseries : Stohrer, Carl Marletti, Eric Kayser.

Oysters: L’huitrier

Coffee: La Cafeotheque

Asian: Lane Lao Xang