The Month of the Heart of Winter

the new leaf of January is my Month!

Tag Archives: dinner

team dinner

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*Sweets overload from Q2’s dinner at Chili’s, too sweet! ♥

I know, I know I’ve been so neglectful of this blog, I hardly had any post when in fact I’ve been juggling in and around of the city most. Actually, I’ve been idle because work had been gruesome the past months, weeks, days, it’s taking all my energy that even before my 6:30pm time-out I’m already dog-tired and heavy-eyed. On weekends when I’m supposed to draft some fresh events, I’d normally end up curled in bed until noon, so I had very little time to squeeze a write-up by then. And by the time I’ll sit by and get myself ready to write, I’ll find myself lost because I can’t remember the whole event that sometimes the pictures were not enough for me to bring forth the better part.

I said work these days was gruesome, for reasons, I have a senior staff which I need to monitor from time to time, I have trainees that need my one hundred million attention and I have a grumpy staff whom I need to tone down. Life at work has never been this demanding way before, it used to be less taxing and less evil I count. But actually those challenges were the ones adding a lot of spice to my 15-year old career, without those, life at work would be monotonous, it’s like a senate hearing without Miriam’s poking. 😀

Anyhow, I’m trying to get by everyday even it means I have to hold my anger and be still. Even it means faking a smile or a convo which I’m not very good at. I can’t be tactless and pointless. I can’t be unsympathetic. I can’t be the real me when I’m really irate. But I’ll willing to trade off and forget about my own gripe and sanity (?) for a while if the opposite will mean harmonious relationships all year round, let me just take one step back and roar… I’ll be okay after, seriously, I can go with the flow and pretend like were bestfriends everyday. Hahaha.

Because I can live like antagonism isn’t an issue here, I can co-exist with them even after work. And because I’m a “pleaser” and a good boss (ehem), if it just means rewarding people for their hard work, I had this team dinner approved by the big bosses so the team can go out once in a while and taste a little bonus even if it’s not yet the Christmas month. I know this is too small to brag but let’s take baby steps now, there’ll be bigger opportunities and breaks for people who can wait. After all in most cases those who can patiently wait always bring home the bigger slice of the cake.

These were team dinners during the first and second quarter.

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This was how we fared during Q1 (January-March). The first of the many dinners to come, hopefully!

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Q2 (April-May) dinner was more relaxed and progressively delicious that’s why we had more photos to count…

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Now that we’re almost ending Q3, I’m hoping for the best despite of all the postponement and delays, hello to port congestion, and thank you Mr. Mayor for lifting the truck ban, finally you made something right! 🙂

 

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Jun 12. I somehow missed spending holidays with the husband –I mean wandering at the mall or to someplace nearby, we used to go on daytrips too when we feel like going to but with his current work sched our vacationing and dating became numbered. Sigh!

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During last year’s Independence Day we were at the MAFBEX event at World Trade Centre, it was our second year of attending this event however we failed to visit his year. We missed the foodie event because he had to work on a holiday, now you know why his current work is really annoying me…to the nines! 😦 And I’m seeing a lot worse soon as the café is up and running. Oh well, I’m trying to survive the schedule and all that’s why each time he’s free I make sure we don’t just sit and stare at each other at home –I need a breather, a turn into the mall or a decent kind of food to keep me happy and sane.

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We used to frequent Icings in Market! Market! for their affordable yet yummy baked treats –flavored muffins, English muffins, ciabatta and cakes. Take note that my personal favorite is Hearts on Fire. ♥ During its temporary closure we missed more the bread sale that happens every day few minutes before its closing time. And maybe because we no longer frequent BGC that much we have no idea that Icings was already up and running again, on a rather bigger location inside the mall and it’s now more than a bakeshop, a café is open this time. Since I had a full lunch at home (and the husband had his usual free lunch at the office, I assumed) we didn’t plan to eat anything heavy for dinner, a light meal would be just fine to cap off the day.

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Premium House Blend P75. I didn’t get to taste his coffee but I got the free almond biscotti, I liked its cake-like flavor other than its dry and crunchy consistency makes it the perfect coffee pairing. We went home with a pack of it.

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Banana Walnut Muffin P???, I forgot how much each cost but it’s inexpensive and substantial for its price.

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Spanish Sardines P155 from their Filipino Breakfast plate for the husband. Who says I’m the one addicted to sardine?  I told you we can survive months eating this and gourmet tuyo. 🙂

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Old Fashioned Spaghetti P170. The sauce was very classic, on the sweet side which I’m think would be perfect for kids. I loved it by the way.

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Classic Caesar Salad P165. Mixed green tossed in Caesar dressing, parmesan cheese, bacon bits and croutons. I just find the dressing too average, I don’t know how to describe it but it didn’t passed my standard of Caesar dressing.

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I know our dinner choices are becoming repetitive of the last –pasta, salad and sardine, but we really like to keep it this simple especially that after dinner we have no more activity to exert ourselves. We’re just trying to balance our week day’s meals with what we’re having on sundates and family weekend dates.

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…and we’re happy to choose our battle versus food. 😛

 

 

Icings
G/F Market! Market! – New Wing
Carlos P. Garcia Ave
Fort Bonifacio, Taguig
T. +632 728 3580
 

italianni’s, illy and cucina andare

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A Saturdate. I had a quite fulfilling, tiring day yesterday but I’m no way complaining despite Manila’s very hot climate, despite the scarcity of fund to splurge and shop, despite the aching toes from window shopping. It’s the day of the week I always look forward to aside from Sunday. It’s the day I could care less of all the issues I have in my bag. And it’s a day I can snatched my husband from his pestering routine. 😦

Like most weekend I have plans for us but most of the time those plans but becomes the next weekend plan and so on and so forth until we really find time. You know how I’d love to wake up on weekends before and indulged to some breakfast plate, I love it when most people are out early, savoring their hot cup of coffee while reading the papers and chitchatting with family. I love it when the sun is up and kissing me gently. ♥ But because we tend to go out more often on Fridays this time (he’s mostly off on a Saturday so it’s permissible even if we stay late, very late on Friday nights) we’re more likely to extend sleeps on Saturday mornings and get up late for breakfast, it doesn’t took any advantage for me that there are a lot of restaurants these days offering all-day breakfast, still I want to eat my breakfast at around 7-8am, the best time for pancakes and omelets, ham and bacon, corned beef and spam, dried fish and hotdogs, coffee and oj, and cheese and butter, hmmm…I’d die with the smell of breakfast alone!

Other than we missed breakfast again yesterday, and it was past lunch already when we arrived at the mall. I have nothing so specific in my list for lunch tho I’d easily discarded the husband’s penchant to eat Chinese-y. I’m not in the mood for dimsum and chili flakes and noodles, I’m not in the mood to eat rice either, so we’d happily found ourselves settled at this not so cheap bistro. That normally happens when we’re not decided for anything it’s either we end up in turo-turo or in a fancy restaurant that we feel like.

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Italiannis isn’t our run of the mill restaurant; sometimes we need to wait for a special occasion to come by to excuse its pricey pasta and pizza. But yesterday was like a form of reward, I had a pretty good week or probably it’s what I’d like to believe. 🙂 Seriously, I think I’ve said what I needed to say, I think I made myself very clear, and I was able to listen in as well. And for that, I’m not so guilty to eat to my heart’s content.

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*this was the second serving, tuscan bread

To start we had complimentary home-baked Foccacia bread which we dipped in olive oil and aged vinegar, and because we were famished already we had a second serving of Tuscan bread this time.

I would have wanted to eat a refreshing healthy salad but calculating my resources I can make my very own feast at home, so we skipped and rather picked the pasta of our choice.

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Shrimp Fra Diablo. Fettuccini sautéed with shrimps, garlic, spinach, asparagus and feta cheese in tomato cream sauce. It’s a default for us that we order our pasta with seafood, we loved it especially the generous serving of shrimps.

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We’re a bit thorn between Truffle Mushroom and Quattro Staggioni pizza, I love the latter because its four flavored already however the former won because of the black truffle cream and prosciutto which were both very foreign to me.

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The dough which we both love had some bite and chew; I can attest that it’s freshly made.

By 3pm we’re done, satiated and all, I couldn’t afford to have dessert unless it’ll be given free. Hehehe. Italianni’s once again impressed me with another great experience –good food and service was evenly superb! Burp!

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Husband and I split ways after, he was running some errand without me so I was left in the big mall. But sometimes I love it that we have our alone time, and I guess it’s another secret to a happy marriage, me-time! 😀 Tho the downside of it I always end up with the luxury side of self-nurturing, and retail therapy becomes a necessity. Hahaha. I went to window shop but eventually end up with a loot from Forever 21.

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By the way, for the first time I was able to try Illy Café Delizio at the Ground Level of National Bookstore, I thought it was the perfect break from the sweltering summer heat plus I need a good place to sit down, a bit remote from the clatter of mall ambiance.

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I had Iced Mocha, it was steep at P181.50 and I swear to myself that I’m not going back there for coffee or frappe, its way over my budget. I’d probably go back for the Tiramisu alone.

Before dinner time the husband and I met up once again, we had a quick round at Rustan’s Supermarket and bought our weekly supply –forest ham, cheddar cheese, paper towels, chips and fruits. It’s a must that we have a good stock of fruits at home because that aids me from digestive disorders, the limitation of being old and out of shape.

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And because I’m maximizing our couple time, we made a trip at Cucina Andare’s new location. I wanted a carefree dinner and The Link’s roof deck was perfect for Manila’s very warm climate now, it’s windy up there. Other than the food market need more ads to continue its operation. Unlike at its old location, it’s in plain sight and people who are just passing by would normally stop and peek around. I noticed that there’s not even a tarp at the entrance of the Link, and the visible signage so far was placed no more than at Level 7 of the parking area. I suggest that they put a classified at the elevators so people would see it right away. 🙂

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Anyhow back at Cucina Andare, the choices were a bit limited now, but we happily settled with one of our favorites –baby back ribs! Cheap at P120 only with a kind serving of rice already.

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We got another order of Cajun Pork Chops with mashed potato at P130 only, everything was so dirt cheap and that gave me no guilt to splurge on sweets, all from Cakes by K.

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We stayed late because my BIL made a call, he was pretty enjoying the video calling thru facetime and we thought our signal would slow down if we move out right away.

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My Saturday was far from being dull, it’s a day out I’d love to go over again, it’s just right that we spent time together and it’s rational that we enjoy what we earn. Tomorrow is the start of another workweek and I’m more than ready to face all the challenges coming my way, after all I believe everything has its own resolution, I’m confident you know. 🙂

 

 

Italianni’s Restaurant, Glorietta
Level 2, Glorietta 4, Ayala Center, Makati City
T. +632 757-1323 / 757-1324
 
 
Illy Café Delizio
Ground Floor, National Book Store, Glorietta, Glorietta Complex, Makati City
T. +632 4753834
 
 
Cucina Andare
Roof Deck, The Link Glorietta
 

olive oil and spanish sardine pasta

Because it’s Lent and we’re trying to eat healthier all over again most of our dinner are home-cooked meals nowadays. And tho it’s a real tedious thing to cook after my 12-hour office work, the wonderful feel of eating fresh and wholesome dish is a relief from the clamor of my not so-happy environment, it’s like a form of reward which I’d like to relish with the one I love. ♥

I’d like to believe that I copied effortlessly the recipe here, with a little adjustment on the quantity because we had it for two nights.

 

Olive Oil and Spanish Sardine Pasta
Serves 4 

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons reserved oil from bottled sardines
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1/4 cup diced tomato
1 cup flaked Spanish sardines
5 cups cooked capellini pasta
salt and pepper, to taste
8 sardine fillets for garnish

 

 In a large sauté pan, heat olive oil and oil from sardines. Sauté garlic until fragrant. Add diced tomatoes and toss quickly. Add flaked sardines and cook for a minute. Toss in cooked capellini pasta. Season with salt and pepper.

 Place two sardine fillets on top to garnish.

 

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Voila! My very own Spanish Sardine Pasta with black olives and shaved parmesan cheese. ♥♥♥

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It’s good, soooo good that I’m doing a repeat of the dish this week. 😛

 

tong yang dinner with RMD

I don’t have too many friends, that’s reality 🙂 , you can check me on facebook, on twitter and even on IG I don’t have too many on my list. My network is very limited if you’d ask but I don’t really mind, I don’t really care at all because I don’t believe that every person you meet or every person you had little conversation can be friends right away, right? Friendship for me takes a very deep beginning, a hard earned trust and respect and constancy. Not that I am picky in choosing my friends it’s more of I’m taking the long route to friendship, always.

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And these individuals were the very few I made friends long ago. Our friendship wasn’t the perfect one either, we’ve failed each other, we had falling out, we had some bad days, but those were the challenges that helped us grow and gave us the room to breathe. Let’s say we just don’t want to suffocate each other and we let out a natural bloom in our friendship to take place.

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Feb 27. I met with my college buddies once more. It was a date I piloted after R’s birthday in February. And since I recently marked my 40th I guess its timing too to puff that belated birthday treat. Unlike M, I don’t have the money to splurge in hotel buffets and I can only afford the mall type, so, we ended up in Tong Yang. Mind you it’s the newest branch and it looks classy in a way. Hehehe. R, M & I went ahead without D, the plan was to wait for D at the office so he can pick us up but M was already complaining and our very friendly elevator was shutting down by 7:30pm, 😀 so we pushed R that we should go, she drives anyway. We arrived just in time in Tong Yang, I love the interiors because it’s bright and the buffet area is clean and classified but I somehow dislike the seating area because it’s a little bit cramp but none that a good dinner and a good convo can fix.

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We had a good one, a satisfying one with all the shabu-shabu concocts and meats and breakfast items we grilled with much gusto. See, we’re real friends because we share the same liking for breakfast chow anytime of the day.

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And it’s not just that, look! we love our crabs in chili! 😛

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Dinner was secondary to this meeting because a good convo with really nice people goes first. There was genuine laughter, a special bond and yet there was freedom to be found. And I hold that belief that there is no such thing as a perfect friend or friendship, its crap you know, but there are really great friends who’d borrow your luggage and everything, 😀 in most cases you just don’t recognize them easily.

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To more dinner dates and friendship, cheers to us! ♥

 

 

TONG YANG Shabu-Shabu & Barbecue Restaurant
G/F New Promenade, Greenhills, San Juan City
T. +632 4632625