Thursday, April 19, 2018

Franny Mommy Favorites : Dr. Mama Milk Storage Bags

If you're someone who's just as OC (obsessive - compulsive) and a neat freak like me, then let me tell you this. Expect this OCness and neat freak-ness to escalate to greater heights once you have a baby. I've honestly lost count of the number of times I've cleaned my hands with soap followed by a splash of isopropyl alcohol in a day or how much I value our UV sterilizer that I would literally sterilize everything within arms reach from my twins. From their toys to their bottles, I would make sure to sterilize them most especially at this stage where they're teething and would put everything in their tiny mouths.

When it comes to their milk, then that's another level of sanitation. My twins were exclusively breastfed for the first few months of their lives but lately, we're starting to introduce formula milk as the pedia wanted to "bulk" them up. Not wanting to fully wean them off my breast milk yet, I would just give them formula 1-2x in a day and the rest would still be breast milk. I don't know but I do find great joy in nursing my twins. Somehow, I take those moments to bond with them one by one...and if they get hungry at the same time, then tandem feeding it is. It's extremely tiring, yes but I know that soon they'll grow up and I'll miss moments like these.

dr mama ph 7
Storing breast milk is actually very tricky as it's extremely sensitive to change in temperature and can spoil easily. I would still refer to the hospital guide when I'm not sure and Paul and I are very careful about storing them. I never really thought much about it but one of the best gifts that I've ever received were boxes of milk bags. Not only are they space savers, it makes it easy for me to freeze my extra milk for them for the next 6 months.

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

#FrannyCooks : Angus Beef Tapa Lettuce Cups

Lately, I always find myself running out of time. Do you have those moments too? In fact, my day starts earlier than usual as my twins are now extra playful and they're usually wide awake before 8AM. Despite how hard I try to keep my eyes shut, I can't ignore their playful kicks and non-stop babbling with high pitch shrieks here and there.

jam angus tapa 2
That's how my morning begins and this is followed by a more regular schedule of feeding and napping. Sometimes we would go out either to the mall, to play with their Achie A or to visit my in laws. Before I know it, it's close to dinner time and we have to prepare them for bedtime. Add to the fact that good help is so hard to find and we take turns in doing a couple of chores to help lighten the load for our current staying help. Eating out or ordering food may be the best option to go for but we also miss that homey flavor of our home-cooked dishes.

Thankfully, I recently received a 700g pack of Original Angus Beef Tapa (Php. 600) from JAM Foods. This has been mine and Pan's favorite tapa since we used to frequent Mercato Centrale. We love how the flavor has this good balance of savory and sweet. The beef strips, albeit a bit on the fatty side is so tender and good. Very good marinade, excellent beef cuts, what are you waiting for?

The most common way to enjoy this is to pair it with a bowl of garlic rice and egg. However, we wanted to try something different and as we're inspired with the Chinese Duck in Lettuce, here's our very own version -- Angus Tapa Lettuce Cups.

Here what you'll need:
- (1) 700g pack of JAM Foods Angus Beef Tapa (you can opt for the spicy kind too)
- (1) head of fresh lettuce
- 2 cups of atchara (pickled papaya)

Do it in easy 3 steps!
1) Using a non-stop pan, pan-fry the Beef Tapa until it's tender and thoroughly cooked.
2) How to assemble: Use one piece of fresh lettuce, top it with a teaspoon of Angus Beef Tapa, finish it off with atchara. You may opt to add some chili for that extra heat too.
3) Bon Apetit!

I love how the savory beef tapa was perfectly cut by the fresh lettuce. I was contemplating to use some Korean bean paste or fiery hot chili for that extra kick too.

To order contact Jam Foods at +63 917 5331371. 

Thursday, April 5, 2018

24 Chicken Delivery Manila : Korean Fried Chicken Done Right!

Do you still remember the time when I attended my first ever Mommy blogger event with Mothers Who Brunch for Mustela? The event began with us standing up to introduce ourselves and to share with the group one of our guilty pleasures. I was halfway through my pregnancy with the twins then and I remembered that I shared that carbs and chips were definitely my guilty pleasure. One thing that I also remembered is that a number of moms mentioned that online shopping is their guilty pleasure and while I chuckled together with the group, I couldn't relate with them then. Yes. I wrote that in the past tense and it's simply because things have changed greatly since my twins were born.

Being a new mom entails a lot of work, that's a given but with that temporarily goes your freedom. Forget being able to leave the house as that won't be possible for at least their first two months of life.  Then comes bidding adieu to 8 hours of sleep. Now, we're talking about short power naps which eventually will turn to a number of short sleep cycles throughout the night. For all new moms and mommies-to-be out there, believe me when I say that things will get better. Anyway, since it's always just me and either one of my babies that's up at the middle of the night, I've found ways to keep myself busy. Going through my phone is definitely one of them and little by little, I found great joy shopping.

Then again, I'm a foodie through and through so my online shopping means ordering boxes of cookies, brownies or going through Instagram accounts of home bakers, home catering services and more. Luckily, Paul also do enjoy these sweet and savory treats so as I am mindful of keeping our expenses on "wants" at a minimum, he allows me to indulge once in a while. Speaking of food delivery, I was contacted by 24 Chicken Delivery Manila a couple of months back as they offered to share two of their best-selling chicken flavors with us. I can definitely not say no to fried chicken, can I?

24 chicken 2
We got Jack Daniels (what was I thinking?!) and their famous Yangnyeom which comes in 3 spicy levels. We got the mildrest tasting one and it was very delicious. There are some dishes where you need a little heat to perk up the taste but for this one, it was perfect the way it is. Of course, if you want it more spicy then go up a notch or two.

See Menu here:

24 chicken delivery menu

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Snack Time: Oishi Gourmet Picks Potato Chips in Salted Egg Flavor

What?! Just when I thought we're over the salted egg phase, a big basket filled with bright yellow bags of potato chips suddenly arrived on my door step. I was seriously so surprised to received this as I didn't know a delivery was to be made and I've never seen this specific chip variant ever before.

It's the new Oishi Gourmet Picks Potato Chips in...*dan dan dan dannnn*...Salted Egg Flavor!

oishi potato chips 1
If you remember back when I was still residing in the Lion City, I got into this major salted egg craze starting from that memorable dinner at Irvin's Live Seafood House. Yes, that popular salted egg chips that got the entire region hoarding actually had a full service restaurant before and that's where those chips were born. Two years after that visit, the entire Lion City went Salted Egg crazy! From the traditional liu sha bao (salted egg custard bun) to all sorts of creative salted egg infused dishes from Chicken Cordon Bleu stuffed with Salted Egg, Salted Egg Pasta, Salted Egg Pizza, Salted Egg Croissant and of course, my all time favorite -- Salted Egg Pork Ribs.

Monday, April 2, 2018

Gourmet Home Delivery with Carlito's Catering

Do you ever have those moments when you'd wonder where did that time go? I do.
Every. Single Day.

Since I delivered my twins, I would always have an early start in the morning where I'm awaken by either L or J. It really depends who wakes me up. L would normally wake us up with a sudden high pitch scream followed by minutes of whining. J, on the other hand, is the jollier twin and he would start babbling really loudly. At times, to get my attention, he'll start kicking too knowing that that will really push me to stand up and pick him up. One thing they do in common is as soon as they see my face, they'll give me the cutest, most adorable toothless smile ever. This is followed by changing their diapers, playing with them, feeding them, getting them to nap and the cycle goes around about 3-4 times in the day. Before I know it, it's 6pm and we start their bedtime routine by giving them both warm baths, turning on their sleeping music and putting them to bed. Yes, for the past 5 months, that pretty much sums up my life as a twin mom.

carlitos catering 1
I can't believe how much they've grown!
They're probably 2x the size now from the time this photo was taken.
Looking at old photos, I can't believe it has been 5 months! Seriously, where did the time go? I can still vividly remember the night when we celebrated their 1st month. For us Filipino-Chinese, this is an important milestone as we call it mua-ge. To me, it's when I am finally done with my monthly confinement, I can finally take a bath, I'm so done eating all the ge lai dishes (so long black chicken and fried livers!) and it's the day where I celebrate surviving a full month taking care of them. Actually, since they stayed at the NICU for the 1st 2 weeks of their lives, that means, we've only been on full time parenting duty for 2 weeks then. Nonetheless, we got all the reasons to celebrate....and celebrate we did!

Thanks to Carlito's Catering for sending over 3 delicious dishes for our family to enjoy. Not only that, they also sent an amazing cake from Rabbit Hole Manila too! We got the Fruit Basket Cake (Php. 1700) and it was delicious! Each layer got slices of fresh fruits, fresh cream and the lightest and fluffiest chiffon cake. It was so good! Hands down, one of the best fruity cakes that I've had in my life.

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Unli-Yang Chow Fried Rice at Super Bowl of China

"Rice is Life" and that's a fact. I believe that most Asians would agree with me that no meal will ever be complete without rice. Personally, fried rice is my weakness. As a kid, a meal immediately becomes extra special whenever Mommy would cook her signature fried rice. It's nothing fancy but it's a very garlicky rice with hotdog, ham, spring onions and egg. It has a distinct taste that I know only Mommy can make. In fact, I tried to recreate it several times when I was living in Singapore but I could never get close to the real thing. That's what makes it truly amazing.

super bowl of china 1
So, given my immense love for fried rice. I couldn't pass up the chance to check out Super Bowl of China's Unlimited Yang Chow Fried Rice promotion. It ends on 30 March 2018 so please hurry over TODAY or the next few days. Paul and I took a quick Mommy and Daddy break from our twins for a nice dinner out. I haven't been to Super Bowl of China for years but I do recall my favorites there -- Super Bowl Fried Rice, Dimsum Combination Platter, Lemon Chicken, Steamed Fish Fillet and their complimentary bowl of kropek. I'm happy to share that all these are still available at present. 

super bowl of china 2
So how does the promotion work? Everyday from 11AM to 2PM and 6PM to 8PM, all guests of Super Bowl of China can avail of unlimited refills of their signature Yang Chow Fried Rice for only Php. 70! That's a great great deal as one bowl of rice normally costs Php. 40 already so just imagine just paying this little to have as many bowls of fried rice as you can. The best thing about Yang Chow Fried Rice is how it complements almost all dishes in Super Bowl of China. I also love how the fried rice stays non-greasy and it has huge chunks of veggies too. 

Thursday, March 22, 2018

#FrannyCooks: Four Cheese Fusilli Bianco with Anchor (Meatless Special)

Growing up in the Philippines, there's a common practice wherein some items (common nouns) are referred to by a particular brand (proper noun). For example, "Don't forget to close the Frigidaire (a popular brand of refrigerators)" or "Do we still have Colgate? (toothpaste)"  As a marketer, I'd honestly take great pride if my brand will be used as such. Perhaps, this is one indication that the brand as made it as a household name. Similarly, when using butter, I often times would hear my Kongkong would say "Just add Anchor and sugar" when he actually meant "Just add butter and sugar". Well, Anchor Butter has been around for as long as I can remember and growing up, this is what I would also see in our fridge which we use to spread on bread, pancakes, on sweet corn and more. In fact, my favorite childhood breakfast was pretty simple. It's a piece of toasted bread with melted butter and sprinkled with white sugar. So simple but so so so good!

So, when I recently received a beautiful crate filled with more Anchor products, I was surprised to find out that they actually have more than their glorious butter. There's a wide variety of milk from UHT to powdered as well as different types of cheeses -- mozzarella, grated cheddar, parmesan and cheddar block. Dairy, after all, is a staple in every Filipino pantry and it's one of the most versatile ingredient when cooking and baking too.

anchor philippines 5
A few days ago, I attended a 6-course lunch at Single Origin where we got the opportunity to know more about Anchor. One thing that I'll never forget is how a good product relies greatly on the source. Did you know that the cows that produce the milk that Anchor uses are mainly grass-fed and are well taken cared off in New Zealand. By this, I meant they are massaged, well-fed and they even listen to classical music. This reminds me of the kobe beef cows in Japan too. Our lunch spread allowed us to enjoy the wide uses of the different Anchor products. We started with a platter of Melba Toast with Garlic and Chives Butter. This gave me a good idea! I've always wanted to make my own flavored butter. With the blocks of salted butter that I have here at home, maybe I should give it a go. This was followed by a delicious bowl of Pumpkin and Cinnamon Soup with Anchor Culinary Cream. I love creamy pumpkin soup and I love how the cinnamon powder perked up the taste. I should try this add home.

anchor philippines 6
Next, we had the Four Cheese Pizza with three kinds of Anchor cheeses -- mozzarella, parmesan and cheddar. I was initially planning to do the same thing at home but I was worried that the taste might come out flat. Hmm how about if I add some bits of garlic in it? What do you think?

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