felix felicis

felix felicis: August 2012

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Siopaos, dumplings, mami and everthing Binondo has to offer

My siblings and I have always wanted to discover more of Manila ever since we memorized the major nooks and crannies of this bustling city. It’s dirty and dank in most urban spaces but this city had always had this charm to us. I’m inclined to believe that much of Manila’s romance lies on its rich history and cultural heritage. It’s both beautiful and sad at times, you know. The ruins of the old contribute to the overall nostalgic feel of the city, but then again, you think that Manila would be a better place to live in if we’ve just tried to revive the glories of the past by using the tools of the present. Oh but anyway, I guess it’s something we’ve always had to work hard for.

On a less serious note, to celebrate the remaining dregs of the long weekend, my siblings and I decided to do a mini food trip at Binondo. A lot of blogs have already told their own Binondo food experiences and on average, all of them found it good and would definitely come back. I thought why not try it on our own? Hmmm. So yun. Me, Nik, Beth and Tel rode the jeepney to Carriedo, walked along Ongpin and the rest was history. Charot. 

My teammates. Hahaha. Wala ako jan. 

Here’s the stuff we tried.

Love at first bite
It’s already 11am and we haven’t had our breakfast so to temporarily fill our growling tummies, we looked for the store called Shanghai Fried Siopao. It’s located along Ongpin Street before you reach Mang Inasal.

Yummeh siopao na babalik balikan. :D

Winner ang siopao. It’s small—kung me jumbo siopao ang iba, ito yung junior size. It’s not really fried, actually yung ilalim lang nya. Pero kebs, yummy and filling naman kaya go na. :D This costs Php 16.00.

Lunch Detour
After that yummy siopao thing, we continued our walk to reach Benavidez Street. We looked for Wai Ying Restaurant, one of those food stalls much recommended by bloggers because of their Roasted Duck Congee and Curry Beef Siomai. Yay we found the place. Pero sad face pa din because we did not get the chance to eat there. The place was jampacked when we entered. We took a detour and headed to a nearby resto, Masuki. It’s also along Benavidez. They are famous for their Beef Wanton Noodles kaso they ran out of beef so we ordered their Original Mami Special (costs Php 110) and their Regular Chicken Mami (not sure if it really costs Php120 hehe). We also asked for their Special Siopao Taipao (costs Php 80) which is famous for its size.

From left to right: Ok, so that's my youngest sister and the Masuki ambience. 
Then, their Chicken Mami. Masuki's signage. T
hey also have pictures with the ~stars as part of their interior design. 
Jumbo Siopao. Jumbo Siopao Part 2. Hehe

Hmmm. I’ve always known myself to be a mami non-fan and syempre confirmed sya sa aming Masuki experience. I wasn’t able to finish my share. The mami was just ok. Siguro if we had the Beef Wanton Noodles it would have been a good thing. Anyways, their siopao taipao was a hit. It’s really big but the real steal is when you open your siopao to see a hefty serving of pork asado, chicken slices and egg yolk. Nomnomnom. J

So there. If you want a filling side dish or looking for a heavy merienda, I recommend Masuki’s siopao taipao. Win!

Pa-hard to get dumplings
Since Wai Ying was still packed when we passed by it after our Masuki lunch, we headed to Yuchengco Street to look for Dong Bei Dumplings. This small eatery is located on the corners of Yuchengco and Tytana Streets. But before we got there we first had to scour the length of Yuchengco. Tsss. Because we took the wrong street turn. Fail. Do not forget, when you see Shopper’s Mart, take a right turn and just walk, you’ll see their washed signage. Anyway, as soon as we got there, we had to wait for a few minutes before we secured a seat. The place is small—it only has five tables. Before we also get the much recommended dumplings, we also had to wait in line because they are made fresh. A small table just as you enter the store is used to prepare these little treats. Customers get to see their food prepared fresh. How cool is that? :D

Because we got a bit hungry again, we ordered Steamed Dumplings (14 pieces for Php 100) and Fried Dumplings (14 pieces for Php 150). I forgot about the Fried Stuffed Pancakes. Too bad. Anyway, I vowed to go back there. We totally loved the dumplings! They’re light and squishy and yummy. My tummy grumbles on the thought of it. We really enjoyed these dishes. J

Dessert anyone
We’re still cherishing the heavenly dumplings we had when we accidentally saw a store offering Korean ice creams. Ok so this goes off the Chinese food fare we have but kebs, it’s still Oriental so keri lang. We were about to take Melona Ice Creams when I suddenly remembered RJ telling me to try the chocolate Korean ice cream he had. He told me it was better than Magnum. Hmmm. I asked Kuya if they have that ice cream and he told me, “Ah, yung Encho. Oo meron kame, eto o.” Wow! Encho costs Php 25. This ice cream is another treat from heaven. It is a vanilla ice cream slathered with ~enriched chocolate and peppered with nuts. But wait there’s more. The ice cream has a chocolate bar inside. Yummmmeh! Way better than Magnum nga plus sobrang mura so keriboom boom talaga. We were so happy with our ice cream bars that we decided to forgo Shin Tai Shang’s Assam Milk Tea. Tsaka we’re running low na rin on budget. We just bought Green Tea and Coffee Mochis from Shin Tai Shang Fastfoods. They’re both Php 40. We brought them home as pasalubong for Mama and Papa.

We were really happy with this food trip experience and will definitely come back for more. I’m planning to buy Ivan Dy’s Complete Food Wok Map of Binondo to maximize my next foodie adventure. Next Monday’s going to be another holiday so that would be a potential date for another gastronomic chorva. Or well I could just choose to watch a movie. Hahaha. Overall, if you are looking for good food on a limited budget, head over to Binondo. You’ll always be surprised by the choices they’ll offer you. Haha. Enjooooy! J

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Thursday, August 9, 2012

Paying it forward :)

We’re going for an Ondoy 2.0. Everywhere we look—from newscasts to social network updates; we see how every one of us struggled with the inclement weather. With Ondoy in 2009, the rains poured incessantly overnight. The next day we’re trapped in Waterworld. This year, Gener just got out of the country’s area of responsibility but the rains were still there. We thought they were just remnants. And just when we’re about to do our personal daily grinds, the waters swallowed almost all of our roads. Two more days and the sun still shied away from the skies. The murky waters are still there and the rains continued to pour. Most of us were trapped inside our houses, while several thousands of families are congested inside evacuation centers. A number of our fellows have already died. Rescue missions are on their way. Then we ask, when will this stop? We dunno yet.

For now, we press on and share the message of hope to all those in need and are suffering. We continue to encourage others to pray and to find ways in which we can help—the same spirit of bayanihan we showed when Sendong ravaged Mindanao in the dead of the night.

For those who would want to send in their help, the list of organizations conducting relief ops is compiled by GMA News and can be found through this link.

Also, Gerry Roxas Foundation is conducting its own relief ops. Here’s how you can contact them:

We hope that the waters would recede today and in the coming days. Also, we pray that should more typhoons or disasters come our way, we will be more than prepared. I know we all learned a lot of lessons because of this monsoon, albeit the hard way. I just hope those lessons do not remain inside our minds, it must be taken into heart and put into action.

Finally, let’s continue to pray for our kababayans who were heavily affected by the fickle weather. Oh and yes, let’s refrain the bickering (read: anti-RH advocates whotell us this is the wrath of God). It wouldn’t really help in any way. 

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