KFC Gravy Recipe Philippines

There is one problem with getting KFC taken home or delivered: you won't have access to the unlimited gravy. And we all know that the gravy is one of the most important factors that make KFC one of the most awesome fast food chicken providers in the known universe.

kfc gravy philippines
Libreng Sabaw?

I woke up today and remembered I had some leftover KFC chicken in the fridge but got disappointed when I noticed there wasn't any gravy. It's just not the same. It's depressing, actually. It makes me feel as if there is no hope in this world.

One of the first articles I ever wrote that got me into the whole earning through blogging thing would be the KFC Delivery Philippines I posted on my Wordpress site one time when I was sick and I had KFC delivered to my house. I noticed that my traffic surged and realized that this was because I was ranking already. I would have to say that a lot of it was luck and randomness. And I quote from that blog post:
"I am sure they put something illegal or radioactive in their recipe. It is surely more than just salt and pepper that makes their recipes so good and addictive. There was a time in my life when I wanted to work for KFC just so I can climb their corporate ladder until I am given security access to their secret ingredients and then after that expose it to the public. I do believe that their KFC chicken recipe has something to do with the Holy Grail or maybe the aliens who built the pyramids"
Later on I wrote KFC Menu Philippines on my HubPages (this is where I get most of my earnings) and slowly made my revenue and content grow. Then eventually, I decided to create this blog, one dedicated specifically to eating and cooking. So really, I owe a lot of my inspiration for writing about food to KFC.

My urologist actually advised me to avoid gravy. He says uric acid is dangerous for my history of kidney stones. That's when I shoved all the office and medical supplies on his desk onto the floor. I walked out of his clinic, climbed atop his receptionist's desk, and then addressed my fellow patients:

"Give me liberty or give me death!" I shouted, "you can take away everything but don't take away my gravy!"

Itlog na Maalat na may Kamatis (salted egg with tomatoes)

Salted eggs with tomatoes, very easy to prepare and absolutely delicious. This classic Filipino favorite is surely satisfying in spite of its simplicity!

Itlog na maalat na may kamatis (salted eggs with tomatoes)

I was going through the fridge, looking for something to eat and figured I should prepare myself this classic dish and eat it with rice. It's really so simple to make and for something that's this simple it's really so good.

There's this wonderful contrast of textures and tastes with the salted eggs and the tomatoes. And the yolk, my favorite part, is so complex. It really goes perfect with the freshness of the tomato.

Plus, it's very affordable. I remember eating it when I used to live alone during college. And since I had a fixed weekly allowance, for something that's this affordable, I really got my money's worth.

It's interesting how this blog continues to earn in spite of lack of posts. Since I told myself I will be focusing on blogs and articles that are more profitable, expect to see more frequent updates here in this blog. Thank you for dropping by!

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Omakase Menu - American Dream and Unidon

I have discussed in my previous blog post about Omakase how I'm not so fond of fusions and modern innovations and use of deep-fried ingredients in maki/sushi. So when I was in Omakase again for a dinner, I figured I have to make the most of it and order one that is a fusion and one that is classic and authentic.

omakase american dream
American Dream

American Dream is a deep-fried maki made with salmon with cream cheese. It does make a lot of sense. Anything with salmon and cream cheese is good so what more if you make a maki from those ingredients and then make it deep-fried. It's around 200 or 300 pesos, if I remember correctly. I'm not entirely sure though (sorry if I'm not really helpful haha). It's one of their bestsellers so it's surely a must-try.

omakase unidon

And then something super simple and classic: my absolute favorite Uni (sea urchin) on top of a bowl of sushi rice. I can't even describe in words how pleasurable and sensual this meal is. It's around 300 as well. I'm not even sure if this is something you can consider authentically Japanese. When I was Mindoro, a fisherman explained to me that the locals there have been eating raw sea urchin for a very long time. I guess what makes it very Japanese is the sushi rice, the kikoman, the wasabi, the seaweed wrapper strips and the other random garnishes restaurants put that make such a harmonious and balanced taste.

I want uni right now.

Libreng Sabaw Resident Blogger's Comfort Food

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This is as close I can go to "connecting with the earth". For now, I guess. I really want to go mountaineering soon or something similar like camping or going to the beach (not the typical beach plan most of you would think of) and just allow myself to connect with the earth. Also, you just can't see in the photo (because it is black and white), but I'm also absorbing sunlight (again, makes a lot of sense because the sun is the giver of energy and life). I remember this concept of sungazing and its alleged benefits. On a good day, fair weather and all, maybe in the afternoon or early morning (this would be better), it would be very advisable to eat outdoors.

I've always assumed that L-Tryosine is found mostly in meats but eHow.com says that crabs and shrimps are also very high in this amino acid. This is good for increasing dopamine in your brain. This is why, I always use the example of the lion in Madagascar who wanted to eat his zebra friend. We get happy when we are satisfied with what we eat.

So what better way than to go for Japanese cuisine, something I consider to be one of the most pleasurable and artistic kind of comfort food. I will need 5-HTP, of course (for the serotonin). I will as soon as AdSense pays me (30th it is, yeah?). There are supplements being sold in those "Healthy Options" type of stores.

Then there's dim sum, like hakaw specifically one of my ultimate favorites, another culinary concept I consider to be comforting (and romantic and sensual much like the experience of eating sushi or raw salmon or sea urchin). Plus, the chili oil that comes with it supposedly releases endorphins (yes, spicy food does that, some say). The wrapping and the perfect texture of the steamed shrimp is just indescribable.

Then freshly squeezed orange juice (no photo though). Vitamin C is just so helpful. Pirates got scurvy before because they didn't have citrus fruits or something like that. I don't even know what scurvy is and I'm lazy to Google.

Maybe the other aspects of it can be tackled in my other blogs. What matters is that I write and people read. A quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog. Are you interested in what I think about food? Is that why you are here?

#NowPlaying: Lojik - Get Up

I Got Interviewed About Alcohol and here are My Answers

1. Do you drink? How often?

Yes, very often.

2. What do you drink (beer, hard drinks, cocktails, liquor, wine, rum, gin, etc.)?

Beer is my favorite but i'd usually drink anything (except those that taste like mouthwash).

3. What do you look for in a drink? What should it have/do?

Depends on the drink:

With wine I like it red, the dry and earthy type. And yung parang may heat sa aroma (I can't really explain well because I'm not really so knowledgable with wines but I do have personal preferences)

Nowadays I like Belgian beers (Stella Artois/Hoegaarden). There's just something so different with the way they brew their beers but of course I still absolutely love our own local Pale Pilsen (it's really much of an acquired taste that's hard to explain).

With cocktails/mixes, I'm usually partial to those that are creamy or with coconut flavor. I'm not so fond of the ones with a lot of sugar/syrup as from what I've heard it may add to your hangover (I used to love rum coke but not anymore cos of this)

With whisky, I prefer Bourbon over Scotch, again very qualitative type of acquired taste that's hard to explain (parang mas "mapakla" ang scotch). And scotch tends to make me do things I'll regret the next day more than the bourbon.

But at the end of it all, as long as I'm with good company and chillout place, I'd drink anything. :)

4. What would make you go for this certain drink instead of the other?

Price/budget, quality, type of inuman i'm going to or people I'm going to be with.

5.What makes a drink sexy/cool/fun?

Have you seen the "From Where You'd Rather Be" Ad of Corona?! Damn! That's what makes a drink sexy/cool/fun! It's so chill. I'm not even a big fan of Corona before but this Ad changed my mind. So I guess brand identity would be a big factor. here's the vid:

6. Have you tried lambanog? What's your take on that?

I went on a Laguna road trip before and bought some lambanog when we passed Pagsanjan. It even had santol on the bottom, very intriguing, very strong. Tried it shots lang and no other way. I hate the brand "Orgy". I just don't like the flavors they have. There's a thrill about getting the real thing from like the locals and just knowing it's real and authentic local lambanog. It adds a travel aspect to it. I guess it's similar to the Corona Ad I was talking about in the previous question.

This is form a real interview from a student who needed people to answer for an advertising class :)

When in Chic Boy

It's very late at night and you unconsciously sway with every step. There is no voluntary reason for coming here. It is already your body compelling you. It is carnal desire.

chic boy chicken skin

When in Chic Boy, this is my modus operandi. It is pleasurable and deadly. It is the taste of freedom, of danger. Like most of the really good things in life, it's something you'd regret, the type you'll get guilty about when you wake up in the morning. It's something you swear you'd never do again but also can't resist to come back for more.

If this is a vice then I wish no virtue.

#NowPlaying: iBenji - Boneless

Bulalo Recipe of the Philippines

The bulalo is probably one of the best recipes that Philippine cuisine has to offer. It's basically the beef leg bone part (I don't really know what it's called) softened and cooked to perfection in a very simple broth. No fancy ingredients or techniques needed.


Eating the bone marrow part is probably one of the most pleasurable things you can do here on earth while you are alive. And with that pleasure, of course, comes risk. It is very unhealthy and dangerous but I guess that is part of the thrill of eating bulalo. It is like the extreme sports of food. There's a big risk that it can kill you but it's fun and it reminds you that it's good to be alive.

Last night when I got home, it was the best surprise to see a steaming hot bowl of bulalo on the kitchen table. And being that I live in a hypertensive household and that I am an 'only child', I can have the bone marrow all to myself. It was gluttonous and sinful. It's so good that it should be illegal (this is a metaphor because I do not support prohibition or lifestyle regulation by the state).

And it's not just the bone marrow. It's also the soft, melts-in-your-mouth meat, the fats and litid around the bone and within the meat itself. When asked to describe it, it's really a lot closer to pleasurable than just plain delicious. And then top it off with some soy sauce, calamansi, and chili.

And now all I can do is recall the memories of last night as I write here in front of my laptop hungry and bored.

Mercato in the Fort

After a fun night out with your friends in the Fort, it's perfect to go food tripping in Mercato food bazaar.

It was actually my first time there and I felt like a kid entering a huge toy store not knowing where to go first or what to buy with the money I had. And I guess that's one of the main problems of such a competitive market such as this food bazaar: you won't be able to try everything in just one night and you'll miss out on so much unless you come back for more.

The prices aren't as attractive as the food they are selling though. Surely the rent in this place is very high because so many things are overpriced, in my opinion. I ended up spending 25 pesos for a stick of isaw which on the streets would only be around 5 pesos each. I'd have to say that having around 200 pesos or higher would be perfect for a good food trip night here in Mercato in the Fort.

Food places that open until late (or 24 hours) are always a the best and now what more if it's a bazaar with competing stalls! Those who are indecisive will surely be tortured in this place and bombarded with seemingly unlimited choices. Several suggestions from friends that I have to try when I go back there would be the Japanese hotdog, the Angus kebab and many others.

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Eating Gotong Batangas in Batangas

The best place to eat Gotong Batangas will of course be in Batangas. We were actually in Lipa on our way home from Laiya. And that's the most perfect thing because Gotong Batangas is also most of the time referred to as Goto ng Lipa.

goto restaurant in lipa

After a tiring weekend at the beach, getting to eat a warm bowl of Gotong Batangas was the absolute reward. Ideally, I'm not even allowed to eat this (mas masarap ang bawal!). I'm advised to avoid internal organs and other stuff high in uric acid and bring us to the popular Filipino concept of "Minsan lang naman e". hehehe.

gotong batangas

Gotong Batangas is differnt from normal goto because it doesn't have rice. When asked about it, I usually respond that it's a bit similar to the popular goat preparation of papaitan (we actually have a whole dead goat in our freezer right now, I'll blog about that as soon as we cook it).

It's weird how some Filipinos themselves are deterred by these kinds of ingredients. Last night, I was watching the Vienna episode of No Reservations and saw that these kinds of ingredients were actually a delicacy there and something that they're really proud of whereas here, even when it's all local produce, people will actually consider it exotic. McDo mentality. They are missing out. Oh well, to each his own.

I usually get Gotong Batangas right by the entrance of Nasugbu in Tagaytay (which is technically also Batangas already). You'll surely pass it on your way to Punta Fuego or Tali. It's really one of my favorites. In fact, if you Google search "Gotong Batangas" you will see one of my old entries on HubPages as the number on result on the first page:

gotong batangas recipe

You'll be surprised to see how many people search this every day and it is surely a significant contributor to my earnings as a blogger.

And, another reason why I love this is beacause people who serve this will usually give free refills of the soup to those who order. Yup, libreng sabaw. :D

Steak Marinade Recipe

harry twitter
Follow me on Twitter

Anthony Bourdain has been torturing me for a few days now throug his show No Reservations that I've been marathoning. Because of this, last night at around almost midnight already I decided to look around for food that I can cook. Luckily, I found a bunch of raw t-bone steaks in the freezer.

steak marinade
Random Marinade Recipe

I just got whatever I could that I figured could make the taste of the steak better for the marinade. I really would have preferred A1 steak sauce but sadly we currently don't have any. So going through our stock in the pantry, all I found was BBQ sauce, worcestershire sauce, and Tabasco. It's a pretty good mix. The internet said that when you have no time to marinate, it's best to make rubs or something like that but then I didn't really have the ingredients required for that so just ended up mixing whatever I could find.

cooking medium rare steak
Cooking the Steak on Butter

This part is kind of tricky. I ended up making my steak a bit medium well when I was going for medium rare. I guess I underestimated the electric stove (it's usually weak plus the steak was still very cold). So just after a few minutes of bathing in the random marinade I made, the steak was cooking in butter and later on ended up in my stomach. I didn't even get to take a photo of the finished product because of hunger.

Well there's some more left on the freezer and I'm planning to cook some again tonight.

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Anthony Bourdain is Cheating Through Life and Torturing People Like Me

Watching No Reservations is a lot like torturing yourself. It's just too much of what's too good and currently too far to reach. And I come to the conclusion of one thing: Anthony Bourdain is the luckiest man alive.

Uni and Salmon Roe on Rice

Yes, he's a brilliant and talented TV show host and writer, giving the world a unique perspective on food and travel but he himself said before eating that meal above that he feels like he's cheating for being paid to do that. And I was here in front of my laptop getting tortured as I watched him eat that heavenly bowl of pleasure.

Anthony Bourdain drinking vodka in Ukraine

And every episode, all he does is drink. It's like he's paid to get drunk and eat amazing food. The girl he was with in Hokkaido called him a professional drinker. After watching how much vodka he drank in Ukraine, I'd have to agree.

Hey, I'm already getting paid just for writing about food here. Surely there's something there, yeah?

Like he says: always be hungry for more.

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Instant Vietnamese Noodles (Phở)

On my way home the other day, I decided to go to 711 to buy food so I can eat something while watching the stuff I downloaded or while surfing the internet.

I saw this instant vietnamese noodles. Vietnamese food is actually one of my favorites ever and probably even beats my love for Japanese food. The photo on the right side panel of this blog is actually me eating vietnamese noodles.

The instant noodles was 55 pesos, if I remember correctly. It's quite pricey compared to other local instant noodles but quite cheap compared to other imported instant noodles (the Japanese ones are very expensive but very good as well).

It wasn't really that good. I guess cause the experience was incomplete. It didn't have the bean sprouts and the leaves (I'm not sure what they are and I'm lazy to Google). It didn't have the meats. The soup was bland perhaps because I usually put sriracha sauce (one of my favorite sauces ever as well).

So all in all, I wasted 55 pesos but at least I learned. Next time, Yakisoba na lang ang bibilihin ko.

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Kanin Club — I ate here last night!

It's always a delight to get a random call that you are getting free food most especially if it's one of your favorite places to eat in. It was my really good friend's birthday yesterday and his family treated him to some food in Kanin Club.

kanin club

My apologies for the not so appetizing photo. I was in a hurry to eat! On the left of my plate you will see the very classic crispy dinuguaan along with their other specialty sinigang rice. The one on the right is something that I tried for the first time last night. It's their pad thai recipe and it was unbelievably good, I swear. It is an instant favorite for me.

I got to try many other things from the Kanin Club menu such as the laing, adobo, binukadkad na tilapia, and crispy pata. One thing I noticed is that they really have mastered the art of deep frying and making things crispy. This remains true for many of their specialty dishes. Just writing about their food right now makes me so hungry.

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Clara Ole Asian Salad Dressing, California and Kani Maki

Here are some photos and thoughts form my recent encounters with some oriental flavors.

clara ole asian dressing
Salad prepared by Adrienne Nicole Bernal

I love the taste of sesame seeds and any other product used with it. Sesame oil, for instance, gives off such a powerful oriental flavor. I remember using it in my burger patty recipe that I blogged about before. This is the same flavor that can be found in Clara Ole's Asian Salad Dressing. For around 40 pesos, if I remember correctly, you can get those small budget packs that will surely enhance your salads or anything you want to add a wonderful asian flavor to.

For example, in the salad you'll notice that there's chicken meat from the breast part. I usually hate the white meat part of the chicken but with the asian dressing makes it so flavorful and appetizing, I swear. It's surely a must-try! This is something you can use not just for salads and in my opinion slays any other kind of salad dressing being that I am partial to oriental flavors.

california maki, kani maki
Home made California and Kani maki

Speaking of Asian and oriental flavors, I recently had a chance to learn more about making your own maki/sushi. My mom's friends with the owner of the Japanese restaurant Hanakazu, located in BF, Parañaque. We got to borrow some of their knowledgable employees for a day and they prepared some maki for us.

It's much easier than I thought. The rice is basically just flavored with some special vinegar and sugar then you just roll whatever you want inside with the seaweed wrapper and then maybe add some roe around it if you want.

In my blog post about Raw Fish Recipes, I expressed how much I love Japanese cuisine. It's been one of my top favorites since I was young. I've always been so intrigued by its complexity. Their cuisine reminds me of origami, their artform of paper folding, very delicate and requires skill, technique, and discipline. I've always been thinking that unlocking the secrets of Japanese cuisine can make one's life better.

You may have noticed a bit of change in the design of this blog. I'm really just experimenting with the ad placements, hopefully to increase my earnings. I plan to blog about it more over at my other blog Beating the Search Engine, so be sure to check that out if you are curious.

How to Cook Poached Eggs

Sick of fried egg? Just a few moments ago, I decided to cook some poached eggs for the first time in my life.

my not so helpful tutorial video on how to make poached eggs

I used to watch Top Chef all the time and I remember some challenges would require the contestants to cook poached eggs because it requires a lot of skills and techniques. Basically it's just boiled egg but making it look perfect requires a lot of delicate movements and timing. So I decided to make some for myself and try it out instead of just going for the typical fried egg.

I still prefer fried egg, of course. Healthy food would usually sacrifice taste. But hey, it's my first time so I'm sure I'll learn more about it as I cook it more times. I need to practice on sauces and other things that will compliment the egg. I'm sure eventually my poached eggs will be more preferable than my fried eggs (and more presentable too).

There's really no excuse anymore in having conventional and boring meals. The internet gives us all these information on different recipes and cuisines most with step-by-step guides and tutorials. Plus, even without the internet, there will always be the imagination that provides reckless and unrestricted creativity.

I am the eggman.

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Longganisa for Breakfast

Nagluluto ng longganisa

frying egg
piniprito ang itlog

yan ang aking almusal
longsilog; wag kalimutan ang spicy vinegar

#NowPlaying: M Black - Heartbreak (Bare Noize Remix)

Our Calamansi Tree

I remember when this tree was very small and now it's way taller than me. Many times, this is where we get our calamansi, something that Anthony Bourdain referred to as ubiquitous to the Philippine cuisine. So it's really very useful to have our own calamansi tree.

calamnsi tree
Our Calamansi Tree

Growing your own fruits, vegetables, and herbs make a lot of sense. This has a lot to do with the concept of sustainability. We also have a sili (chili) plant. And they're not that hard to grow, I am assuming. We don't really bother buying complex fertilizers or minerals for the soil. Just watering it from time to time is fine. And during the rainy season, you don't even have to do anything.

One day I want to have my own garden complete with my favorite herbs, spices, and vegetables (fruits too, but I think they're too big for a home garden).

#NowPlaying: Phaeleh feat. Soundmouse - Afterglow (Akira Kiteshi Remix)

Alabang Country Club Chicken Satay Recipe

Satay is actually originally a Thai dish, I think. The first time I was able to try it was in chinatown in Singapore. Talk about complex fusions and overlapping cultures.

alabang country club chicken statay

Here's the one that's available in the menu of Alabang Country Club. It's actually pretty good. A friend once commented that it's even better than what she tried in Singapore. One of the chefs is actually a friend of my parents and his Singaporean. I think his name is Joseph and he's from Sta. Elena (they're currently the food concessionaire in the club).

satay philippines

I really love the complex combinations of flavors of satay. It's very unique and not so prevalent in Philippine cuisine. And so right after coming back from Singapore, I wanted to try cooking it right away. Luckily, you can buy these instant mixes of the marinade and the sauce. I found mine in South Supermarket in Alabang.

I'm actually still here in the club, in the library. I just came from the sauna. Such a lovely experience. I feel so healthy and detoxified. Just using the wifi here. But yeah, I'm so sleepy. If you follow me on my twitter you'll know why. So be sure to follow me to get updated on my latest blog posts and other random things happening in my life: @harryinitiative

Mga Kwentong Alinsunod sa Kakulangan sa Pagtulog

Gusto ko sanang kumain sa Jollibee. Alas-dos na ng umaga. Naalala kong 24 hours nga pala sila dito malapit sa bahay ko sa Laguna.

Kaarawan din nga pala ni Rizal noong isang araw at naisip kong ito’y magandang oportinidad na mabawi ang aking pagiging higit pa sa hayop o malansang isda. Dito sa bayan ng Laguna lumaki si Jose Rizal, sa may dulo lang ng SLEX, sa Calamba.

jose rizal

Ang Jollibee ay isang institusyon na sa Pilipinas. Basta pritong manok, makakaasa kang hindi magsasawa ang mga tao (lalo na ang kabataan) sa kanilang chicken joy na talaga namang huling-huli at swak na swak sa panlasang pinoy. Ika nga nila, “laman muna, balat later!” Talaga namang panalo at nakakatakam.

Natakot silang mapatumba ng inihaw na manok ng Bacolod kaya’t binili nila ang Mang Inasal na siya namang hinahamon ngayon ng Chic-Boy. Nakakamangha talaga ang mga benipisyo ng kompetisyon sa merkado (yan ang tunay na apelyido ni Pepe!).

Naging laganap at popular ang konsepto ng unlimted rice. Isang bagay na talaga namang nakakaakit at tinatangkilik ng mamamayang Pilipino. Ang ating bansa ay mayaman sa agrikultura at ang kanin ay talaga namang parte na ng ating araw-araw na buhay.

Konting ulam para sa maraming kanin—isang isyu ng kahirapan o kaya naman ng katakawan? Hindi ko alam. Pero may kilala ako na nakapag 9 na extra rice sa Tokyo Tokyo. Meron din namang may kaya ng apat na siomai ipapagkasya sa apat na kanin, idaan na lang sa toyo at chili oil. Bukod sa panlasa, para sa mga pinoy, mas importante na nakakabusog. Kanin all you can = kanin all the way.

Sa pagtuloy ng aking kwento, hindi na ako kumain sa Jollibee. May bayad pa kasi ang parking doon sa Paseo De Sta. Rosa (aba, extra rice na din ang sampung piso!). Bumili na lang ako ng siopao sa 711 (bumili din kasi ako ng prepaid load).

Kaninang hapon bumili nga din pala ako ng manggang sorbetes, mga instant noodles (si Jose Rizal ay mahilig sa pancit), liempo, at ang matagal ko ng pinagiisipan bilihin na salami milano (ang alam ko ay isa to sa mga naging paborito ni Rizal noong siya ay nasa Europa). Di ko alam kung ano talaga ang patutunguhan ng sinusulat kong ito. Basta tunkol sa pagkain ang blog na ito, diba? Maaga pa ang gising ko bukas at wala akong shower water heater kaya dapat ako’y matulog na (mahirap maligo ng malamig na tubig kapag puyat ngunit hindi pa ako inaantok).

May mga nagsasabi na muntik na daw mag retract si Jose Rizal dahil sa kanyang chicks na si Josephine. Sabi ko nga: kahit si Superman ay meron din namang kryptonite. Parang ikaw, ikaw ang aking kryptonite.

Bukod sa extra rice mahilig tayong mga Pilipino sa libreng sabaw. Beleyted na Happy Birthday, Dr. Jose Rizal.

Kung nagustuhan mo ang sulating ito baka magustahan mo din ang:
1. HarryLeaks - gusto mo bang umunlad ang ating bayan? halina't bisitahin ang blog na ito at alamin kung paano.
2. Ang Aking Twitter - maging una sa mga makakaalam ng mga bago kong blog post at iba pang nangyayari sa buhay ko.

Why is Omakase so Successful?

The concept of "by word of mouth" has certainly evolved because of social media. And I think Omakase has really penetrated this evolved "by word of mouth" marketing. There's Facebook, Twitter, Foursqaure, blogs, and many others. Without having to promote themselves, their own customers become their marketing agents.

omakase restaurant

To put this in Twitter terms, Omakase is trending. Most of my friends are staunch believers of Omakase and will stand by their experience of eating there. It is always full and many times you will have to wait before you can get a table. I actually just ate there a while ago for lunch and figured I should write about my thoughts.

harry twitter
Follow me on Twitter: @harryinitiative to get updates on my latest blog posts and other random things happening with my life

In any competitive market, patronage goes to those who are innovative. Suppliers are always kept at their feet and forced to provide better service in fear that their competitors will outsell them. And that's what makes the market economy so democratic: the fact that consumers can voluntarily vote with their money and decide who stays and who goes. Innovators are rewarded with profit and it is this profit incentive that keeps the competition running.

So I guess we can consider Omakase as innovative. Their recipes are certainly very different from competing Japanese restaurants. They've provided something unique and the market responded well.

I'm personally not so fond of it. I mean, deep frying, adding Japanese mayo and other fancy designs and plating—these things won't impress me. I'm more of a purist, I guess. I'm the type who'd prefer the traditional and authentic Japanese cuisine. But then again that's just me and the majority of consumers, as I have said, have voted otherwise. And, of course, I must commend them for their innovations and creativity regardless of my own personal preference.

The internet and social media really gives power to consumers. I was eating there a while ago and now I am writing about them. So restaurants of the world beware—every single customer can share their experience, good or bad, to their own personal networks and to the world (in realtime!).

So I guess I'm writing here again. It's more of observations, I guess. I mean, I'm constantly training myself to see what others can't see, to look beyond what is apparent, you know. The love for eating or my "cooking" may eventually return as well, we never know. Ah, women, they are my Waterloo, yeah? Even superman had his kryptonite. Weaknesses does not define one's super-ness, okay? So leave me alone hahaha.

It seems that in spite of not writing here, it has proven to be the highest contributor in my earnings among my blogspot blogs. Gotta suck it up and blog! On that note I leave you with a beautiful song I've been listening to all day:

Google's New Recipe View

Google now has the "recipe view" feature that will surely revolutionize the way we look for recipes online.

You can filter your search queries by ingredients, cook time, and even calories! You can even put what ingredients you have and those that you don't have.

The search results are a bit biased toward the more credible authority sites though and seem to have disregard for small time recipe blogs. This could really be a bad thing, I think. There is that different feel when an independent blogger shares an experience as compared to just reading about ingredients and directions in big recipe websites.

Of course a part of me is somewhat annoyed, also being that I had a similar website idea and that some of my ranking articles are about recipes and my traffic might be affected. But hey, this will only force me to innovate even more and really test the limits of my creativity. Competition is good, even when your competing against a giant like Google.

Speaking of competing with Google, the reason I haven't been blogging here is because I've been focusing on the more lucrative side of blogging for now. But of course this does not mean that I will no longer be posting here, no way. As useless as it may seem compared to my other blogs, Libreng Sabaw is probably the closest to my heart.

So anyways, introducing my newest blog about technology, social media, and search engine optimization: Beating the Search Engine.

What nourishes you also destroys you

It's my mom's birthday party today. Lechon will be served later on tonight. I am not as excited as I should be, I noticed. I haven't really been in the mood for food.

You know there's this concept called "Inedia" or the ability to live without food. It's not really about starving to death or whatever. I feel that it's more spiritual, actually. I guess it's more of how we usually eat more than what's enough and it becomes just so unhealthy. Most of hunger is just in the mind, I believe, and many times our mind plays tricks on us.

Sometimes I wonder, how come I can eat 1 cup of rice and be full and sometimes eat more than 1 cup of rice and still be in the same level of fullness? It's as if I was just being impatient for the satisfaction to sink in and the excess food wasn't really necessary.

You know, most of our energy actually comes from the air we breathe. You can survive 30 days without food and yet only 3 mins without oxygen. I remember this story about a girl who survived 7 years without food and gets all her energy from the sun. It does seem like a fake story. But hey, it's true I spend most of my time in front of this laptop or out at night and not under the light of the sun--the one that gives our planet heat and life.

A few months ago, when looking for an internship job for school, I actually wanted to write about food. Someone even told me that it's ridiculous and that I can't write about food--I guess because I never really expressed interest in it or ever wrote specifically on food alone. That's why it's quite heartwarming when someone tells me "nabasa ko yung food blog mo ah"--oh wow, people actually like the way I write. It's authentic surprise, actually, and not trying to be condescending at all.

But then, as I have said, I don't really have that much appetite for food nowadays. I feel that all the unhealthy stuff (fats, caffeine, alcohol, sugar) or overeating will just add to my current disarray. Lately I've just been having what I believe to be enough as compared to how active (or lack of being) my lifestyle is.

Also, I focus on water, something I believe I lack, and is something that composes 75% of my body. We all know that we need at least 8 glasses of water a day and yet I know many times we don't reach it. I learned this the hard way around almost 2 years ago when I got kidney stones (some say it is something that is even more painful than giving birth).

I'm just really not in the mood; some sort of generic distaste for everything. Right now, you can tell me I've won a trip to Hawaii to tour the set of the TV show Lost and I probably would just shrug it off and not care. Everything is tasteless and black and white.

How to Properly Fry Dumplings: a Culinary Epiphany

A discovery that will change the way you cook and eat dumplings for the rest of your life.

And so I was merrily walking around the kitchen and preparing myself some dumplings. I figured I should fry it then eat it with rice. It's not every day that one can have fried dumplings as ulam, I figured, but somehow I wasn't that excited. Then I realized that perhaps there has been something very wrong in the way I fry my dumplings. Little did I know that this little blurb of curiosity will change the way I cook and eat dumplings for the rest of my life.

fried dumplings
The image you see on the left is the typical way we see fried dumplings such as the Japanese "Gyoza" (one of my ultimate favorites when it comes to Japanese cuisine). The other image, the one on the right, is how I've always fried my dumplings; thoroughly and golden-brown. The most staggering difference is that with the one of the left, only a certain portion seems to be fried. And yes, apparently this was the case.

So the idea is for you to fry the bottom part of the dumpling in cooking oil until it is golden-brown and then pour water on your pan, turn the dumplings, and cook the other side in the water and let it simmer. This gives that beautiful balance between crunchy and soft; truly a harmony of textures.

Regret filled my heart as I ate the dumplings I cooked. Why do I discover this only now? It is as if a small part of my life had been a lie all along; a charade of wasted dumplings. But all that matters is I now know what I know and I can write about it and share my glorious epiphany to the world.

For the sauce, I conjured this interesting mix of Kikoman soy sauce, sesame seed and sesame oil, and sweet chili sauce. Surely I didn't want to submit such a discovery to a mediocre sauce and so I thought of making that sauce mix and to my surprise it was actually very good.

For something so basic and can easily be done, it is something I have overlooked. More than a good meal, this was also a great lesson. I put all my experiences of bad dumplings behind me. I move on and survive to cook another day.


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