Saturday, October 26, 2013

Foodiscovery | Beef Stewed Chaolong

Rediscovering food from my hometown brought a lot of funny memories to me. In Puerto Princesa City, where I spent my college days, we usually hang out in a "Chaolongan" after school. Chaolongan is a Vietnamese restaurant that serves this noodle dish - chaolong. If  "Lugawans", "Pares" or "Gotohans" are the popular after-drinking-session hang out in Metro Manila,  Chaolongans, scattered around my favorite city are the most popular among locals and foreigners alike. 

Chaolong is a Vietnamese noodle dish brought to Palawan by Vietnamese refugees who escaped Vietnam during Vietnam war and found home in the island in the 70s. Contrary to Vietnam's "Chaolong" which is a congee or rice porridge with pork innards, Palawan's Chaolong is made of rice noodles top with stewed beef, pork, or chicken meat. Appropriately, this Vietnamese noodle dish is called Pho (phở) in Vietnamese cuisine. 

Raw toge (Monggo or bean sprouts) and mint leaves are added on top of the steaming stew before eating. Vietnamese baguette or bánh mì with choice of fillings from chicken, pork, beef, butter and garlic spread or longganisa is chaolong's best partner. 

Note: Rene Saigon in Pardeco, Niche at Manalo corner Burgos Streets, Bona's in Manalo Extension, and Pho Saigon located in San Manuel are the most popular Chaolongans.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Ginataang Saka-Saka (Mangrove Snail in Coconut Milk)

Saka-saka is a mangrove snail found in Malampaya Sound in Taytay, Palawan, my hometown. I had a chance to rediscover this exotic food last week when I went home for 4 days. Straight from my cousin's copper, cooked from her humble "kalan" (stove using wooden fire), I took this picture using my camera phone. I apologize for the resolution.

This is an authentic Coyunon dish, I think so. I hope to share the recipe and a glam photos too by December when I visit home again.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Breakfast at Hotel Centro, Puerto Princesa, Palawan

Hotel Centro is perfect for those who've been and not been to Puerto Princesa and want a more friendly approach to the Philippine's last ecological frontier - Palawan.  

Hotel Centro's sumptuous buffet breakfast is one of the best experiences I had when I stayed in this top-notch accommodation last week. And here's an inviting post to feast your eyes on....

While most of the hotels in Puerto Princesa City are offering plated or ala carte breakfast, Hotel Centro located at the very heart of the "city in the forest" is one of the few that offers buffet breakfast at affordable price. Buffet in style - apart from the eggs which a friendly crew cooks right in front of you - pandesal, good toast, baguette, fruit jam, butter, cereals and fresh milk were all on offer.  The French bread came from local business bought probably from a Vietnamese maker.  From its smell, I knew it's fresh. I put some fruit jam and butter on and toasted it in an electronic bread toaster while fixing a cup of brewed coffee as I wait for the bread to be toasted. Soon, a familiar promise of a great morning filled the air. 

Chicken noodle soup gave warmth to my cold hearted soul brought by that wintry morning. Ooh, Christmas season is fast approaching, I figured.  Dipping a piece of pandesal into chicken soup is one weird habit I have so I checked around to see no one's looking, LOL. The atmosphere in the room was relaxed;  fellow guests chatted across tables about their weekends - no stilted silences here. Service crews were very attentive, rounding, making sure their guest were attended. I can't help but notice, the friendliness factor is a huge asset here.

Lamayo, Palawan's version of Cebu's Danggit was the one I was looking forward to try but was not available. Delicious Eggplant Parmagiana, Corned Beef and sausage flowed freely instead. I can't complain, the main course was superb with sticky garlic rice, cooked the way I want my garlic rice to be. 

Tea, juices and fresh tropical fruits are abundant at the back of buffet table too. I had fresh fruits paired with hot tea for the sweet ending.  

While hotel breakfast is often a deal-breaker for the great foreign and local holidaymaker, tastefully, Hotel Centro's breakfast is undeniably fantastic. 

Hotel Centro
National Highway, Brgy. San Pedro
Puerto Princesa City, Palawan
Telephone Number: (048) 434.1110 

Friday, October 18, 2013

Ilustrado Restaurant's “Breaking Bread with our Heroes” at The Maya Kitchen

Ilustrado, the home of heritage Filipino-Spanish cuisine shares well loved dishes from our heroes’ hometowns at The Maya Kitchen, 9am-1pm on October 26, Saturday with Boni Pimentel, Ilustrado president and his chefs taking center stage. 

Recipes include Umbuyan, tinapa flakes sautéed in olive oil and wrapped in pechay leaves has its origins in Manila where Andres Bonifacio was born. Bagnet with KBL Sauce is an Ilocano version of lechon kawali with kamatis, bagoong and lasuna as sauce. Juan Luna and Antonio Luna are the proud sons of Ilocos Norte. Manok ng mga Bayani, chicken simmered in bold textures of dill, kamias, ground peanuts and toasted rice is inspired by no less than President Manuel Luis Quezon who hailed from Baler, Aurora. National hero Jose Rizal from Biñan, Laguna inspired Jaleang Bayabas, very ripe guavas peeled and mashed in milk and sugar. Rounding off the recipe line-up is Paella Ilustrado, Spanish rice dish with pork, chicken, seafood, chorizo bilbao, peppers and peas which is a consistent bestseller in the restaurant menu.

Ilustrado located at 744 General Luna Street, Intramuros, Manila opened its doors in 1989. Through the years it has expanded all over the metro and has also made a name in catering for clients such as Malacañang Palace and other government agencies, foreign embassies, multinational corporations, local businesses and prominent personalities. It is also a favorite wedding reception venue due in part to its proximity to some of Manila’s historic churches.

For more information on other course offerings, log on to  or e-mail  or visit The Maya Kitchen Culinary Center every Tuesday to Saturday at 8F  Liberty Building, 835 A. Arnaiz Avenue (Pasay Road), Makati City or call 8921185 / 892-5011 local 108 / Mobile No. +63947 835 2290.

Press Release: This means that this material is fully and directly from the company issuing the press release. This also means that this website is not the author of the statement being read. The Cuisineuer is simply providing the information for readers who may be interested.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Welcome to Hotel Centro, Puerto Princesa, Palawan

Lemon Grass Juice, a trending welcome drink among hotels I've visited. With different tastes and presentation, Hotel Centro's version is one of the best!

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Chocolate Fondue

For the grand finale, we had the cutest mini chocolate fondue yesterday after our Taco day Fiday courtesy of Nika. Set up as shared communal dish on our manager's station, she used ready made chocolate mixture to coat our dippables. Apples, Banana and heart-shaped marshmallows were our dippers. We used barbeque stick to push through the pieces of dippers. 

This was what, our absent teammates, who were unfortunately on leave, missed last Friday!

Thank you Nika for the sweet and elegant treat!

Food Friday: Mexican Taco

From the undisclosed company I work in, everything is love! Especially the perks of the quarter end. Since quarter three of this year has just ended, higher management treated us with food from Richmond Hotel last week. To top it all, my colleague Nica and I thought of celebrating quarter end within the team. We brought Taco today for The Canadians and everyone were delighted. 

Nica prepared the garnish of diced tomato, cabbage, white onion and grated cheese. I prep the ground beef filling earlier today at home. Here are the ingredients;

750g ground beef from Monteray (regular)
40g McCormick Taco Seasoning Mix
250g Hunts Tomato Sauce
2 tbsp oil 
3 tbsp McCormick Italian Seasoning
1/2 cup water
1 Medium red onion, chopped
salt to taste

Here's how I made it;

Dissolve McCormick Taco Seasoning in 1/2 cup of water, set aside. Sauté onion in oil until translucent. Add ground beef, break it up using your spatula to brown meat. Pour in tomato sauce and stir, add salt and the dissolved McCormick Taco Seasoning. Add a little bit of water, if necessary. Mix it with your spatula once in a while to prevent burning. Simmer for 15 minutes and set aside.

Scoop a spoonful of beef filling, place inside a taco shell, add in the garnishes and enjoy!

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