Thursday, March 21, 2013

All Packed Up

This blog is on vacation.

À tout à l'heure! (See you Soon!) 
just saying.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Galileo Enoteca Deli

My siblings have been raving about Galileo Enoteca Deli because they now have a branch at Eastwood, but they try to eat here whenever I am not with them because they now how I try to stay away from carbs. Hahaha.

Galileo is on the second floor of Dulcinea.
You can arrive hungry, because they will serve you chewy bread and dips.
We decided to try it for New Year's Day
so I wore red for good luck.
Sofia with Lola Yaya.
The place was very quiet we were the only customers.
Me and Ads, Photo Credit: Sofia

We busied ourselves taking pictures and eating the bread, because we were waiting for Timmy to arrive before we ordered.
We ordered Italian Sausage with Peppers.
This was really good with the chewy bread.
The small morsel packs in a lot of flavor!
Fried Calamari is always a hit with Sofia and Timmy,
but in fairness, this was good Calamari.
Sofia was rationing the Calamari for her Ninong.
We ordered the four cheese pizza.

It was good when it came out of the oven,
but not really worth the calories when it starts to cool.
I think we also ordered the Tutta Carne (All Meat).
Timmy and Ady's favorite is the Risotto con Porcini Mushroom and Truffle Oil,
but I find that this dish just smells so much better than its taste.
Over-all it was a good meal, just a bit lacking on meat,
but easily addressed by grabbing a box of 10 Chicken Nuggets,
for us to snack on from McDonald's.

We didn't order any main course meat items because we heard reviews that they don't do it as well as the Pizza and Risotto, so we just didn't risk it. just saying.

Galileo Enoteca Deli
Eastwood Branch
Ground Floor, City Walk 1, 
Cyberpark, Eastwood City, 
Bagumbayan Quezon City (Beside Dulcinea)
Open from Monday to Sunday 11-11pm
with branches in Mandaluyong and Boracay

We visited Galileo again for my sister's birthday last week. The quality seems to be inconsistent as the Tutta Carne Pizza came with onions this time, the calamari wasn't exceptionally good (it was fried with Japanese breadcrumbs instead) and we ordered Main Dishes (two of the chicken ones) and it wasn't something I'd ever order again. Bottomline, I can't wait to go to Italy and eat real Italian food. just saying

Monday, March 18, 2013

My new Raclette Grill

I am so happy with my new toy. Maybe in my own way, I am getting domesticated. Except my domesticated tendencies leans more towards the nicer non-essential things in life such as Coffee Machines, Milk Frothers and Raclette Grills. I guess you can only really get away with that if you live with your parents like I do. Hahaha.
Raclette that's just about ready to be served.

My friend Anna and her Mom (Tita Lits) has been very influential in the home gadgets that make it to my to buy list. Before, Raclette was just something I ordered sometimes in restaurants. But when I came back from Singapore in August, we had a Wine and Cheese night with friends from work while we were still staying at Oakwood because Anna volunteered to bring the Raclette with her mom's portable Raclette Grill.

from the Raclette and Wine Night at Oakwood

When my aunt asked me if I wanted anything from the States, out of curiosity, I just looked at Raclette Grills on Amazon, and I was so surprised because they were so affordable. I immediately ordered one and had it delivered to my aunt so she could include it in the box she was sending home.

This is my new toy.
Can you believe it? It's only $16.95!

It just took a while for the box to get here. The good thing is, my aunt who sent it to me was here when the box arrived so I said we need to have Raclette and Sausages before she left so we could try it. It was her last night here, so we had Raclette as starters to go with their Filipino dinner. Hahaha.

My bill from Santis was more expensive than the Grill. Hahaha.
I asked them to slice more for me because I wasn't sure 1 pack
would be enough.
The only catch with the grill is that its 110v.
There's a detachable top grill.
Let the cooking begin!
This was the first one we tried! Wheeeee! My toy works!
I aslo bought Hungarian Sausages for grilling.
This didn't work out so well.
My parents with Auntie Celita and their cousins.
This time I joined them.
Photo Credit: Sofia
The heat on the top grill isn't too intense. I had to cut up the sausage so
we could eat it before everyone went home. 

I love love love my new toy. Thanks Auntie Celit for sending it home. Now I can have Raclette anytime I want some. just saying.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Shilin Night Market and Lantern Festival Fail

Taipei is famous for it's Night Markets. There are a lot all around the city. Some markets are known for shopping and some markets are known to only sell food, while some have both. Shilin Night Market is the biggest and most famous one in Taipei, it's a tourist destination known for the food stalls selling street food as well as a place to shop for Taiwanese products and souvenirs.

Entrance to Shilin Night Market

We went to Shilin on our first night, so my tired
 daughter had not yet recovered from our flight
that arrived at 1am. She only naps in cabs.
The cab driver dropped us off on the main street that leads directly to the Shilin Market entrance (pictured above).
The street is lined with game booths similar to those in a carnival.
This one was really funny. Even Sofia woke up to look.
Go Angry Birds! Knock out those pigs!
Before we entered we saw this cart
with candied fruit kebabs.
It looked interesting but we didn't get to try it because
we wanted dinner first. Plus the vendor holds them with no gloves!
For dinner, we headed straight to the Hot Star stall for
XL Fried Chicken Chops (NT$55 or Php 80).
The line was so long it was snaking.
This was when we got closer.
Ooooh, look at that yummy pile of Chicken Chops.
The Chicken Chop was bigger than my face!
Beside the Chicken Chops Place,
there's a juice stall with a different Bitter Gourd variety (which they juice).
Ady just ordered the classic Lemon Plum Juice (lemon juice with kiamoy).
Then a few more stalls down is the giant sausages.
NT$100 for a few slices, served with raw garlic. Go figure.
My dad thinks we were ripped off, but it was still good.
We saw a sign that said there was a food court in the Basement so we attempted to go down because we thought we could find some seats (and perhaps more things to try) and eat there.
It looked very busy, with the seats provided by specific eateries.
It also looked more like a wet market than a modern food court.
Though there was cooked food, we decided it was just too stressful.

We just sat on the benches in front of the fruit stalls and nibbled on our chicken and sausage in peace instead.
The fruit looked so good but we were all so full.
They serve the strawberries with condensed milk.
They also had the green round fruit that is common in Vietnam.
They stuff cherry tomatoes with prunes.
Everything looks really yummy.
They also give you free taste of cut fruit when you pass.
Giant Balimbing (Starfruit)
The guavas were so huge. I have never seen ripe huge guavas before
because in our house, my dad likes eating it before it gets ripe.
Beside the row of fruit stalls, there are also game booths for kids.
Sofia was dying to play,
but I told her she can only play if she was a good girl while we shopped.
The local kids like catching fish.
While the adults were catching shrimp.
It seems like shrimping is quite a fad.
They have a small grill where you can cook the shrimp that you catch.
There were a lot of stalls with cutie stuff.
This place has bags that are a cross between rootote
and Cath Kidston.
These bags can pass for a Medium Roo.
There are also generic bags that have definitely been influenced by the IT-bags I've been wanting to own, but no, the local version doesn't have the same appeal.
Can you spy a bag inspired by the Celine Lugage Tote?
They managed to make a Gucci 1970 in Blue!
I didn't know it even came in that color.
There were also stalls with adult merchandise.
and of course, the usual souvenir shirts.
I didn't see an "My --- went to Taiwan and all I got was this lousy shirt!"
There were a lot of spoof shirts.
We bought a lot of the cute socks and patterned tights.
Papa and Sofia like it when there are seats beside the stalls we shop in.
Aside from the Main Shilin Market,
there are also a lot of alleys and side streets around with food and shops.
I wanted to buy this for me and Fi, but it wasn't cheap.
 Sayang for the Phils were there is no winter.
There was also a massage place there they massage your shoulders
by pounding you with a bundle of what looks like sticks.
I heard there were also places where they massage you with a Cleaver
(as in real Knives!) but this one was at the underground mall
of Taipei Main Station (NT$220 or Php330 for 10 minutes).

There were also stalls serving weird drinks that we were not adventurous enough to try.
Brown Sugar, Ginger, Dried Longan anyone?
It might go well with the Prawn Crackers that were popped, not fried.
We were also very intrigued by this stall called
"Wow Frog eggs".
It looked like they had lime and Jelly
but I don't really know what Frog Eggs look like.

We walked all the way to the back of Shilin Market which leads you to the old Shilin Cixian Temple.
The whole street is lined with food stalls.
They had grilled isaw (pork intestines),
just like the ones in UP.
The Cixian Temple was originally built in 1796.
A lot of the people used the steps of the temple
as their picnic place after buying food from the stalls nearby.
Me, Ady and Fif in front of the temple.

After we got tired of walking around, Sofia got her reward for being patient with us because we finally let her play some games. The guy told us that 1 game was NT$50 (Php75) or we could get 3 games for NT$100 (Php150). We opted to pay for 3 games so he gave us 3 tokens. 
Sofia's first game was where you roll the golf balls.
Happy to play.
She was very happy when she scored a 10 instead of a 2.
Then when we asked what prize she got the lady told us that they were not giving any prizes!!! She said that the tokens were only to be allowed to play. She said if we wanted to choose from the toys - we had to exchange our unused tokens for the toys without using them to play. Or atleast I thought that's what she said, language was a little bit of a barrier.

I was so irritated because either it was such a rip-off, or they were trying to take advantage of us, so I told Sofia to exchange her 2 unused tokens for a toy instead so it wouldn't be such a loss. It was even more irritating when I saw the toys Sofia could choose from. I could go to 168 and buy half a dozen of them for a fraction of the Php150 (NT$100) I already paid!!! Grrrrr. Don't get me wrong, it's not the amount. I just didn't get why there were no prizes for the games. If Sofia won a shitty prize, I wouldn't complain because she played for the fun of winning.
Anyway, we found a travel game
that I don't think I've seen in 168.
Sofia was happy to play with it,
so that makes it worth it.
But next time, we'll go straight to buying a toy.
No more useless games with no prize.
Save for that kiddie game rip-off the Shilin Night Market was a lot of fun. It's worth a visit.