Showing posts with label Food. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Food. Show all posts

Friday, December 02, 2022

Christmas markets (Christkindlmarkt) in Germany

Weihnachtszauber in Gendarmenmarkt

Christmas markets are a holiday tradition in the German-speaking part of Europe that date back to the Middle Ages. So the best Christmas markets, known locally as Christkindlmarkt or Weihnachtsmarkt, are definitely in Germany. While the markets originated in Germany, they can now be found in many other regions of Europe and among German communities in North America. I got to visit the one in Chicago when I was at Purdue.

City-Weihnachtsmärkt at Gedächtniskirche

During the pandemic, I got to visit several in Germany including the Weihnachtszauber in Gendarmenmarkt and the City-Weihnachtsmärkt at Gedächtniskirche (Kaiser Wilhelm Memorial Church), both in Berlin.



Of course, I went there for the food and the Glühwein (mulled wine), especially Feuerzangenbowle (rum-soaked sugarloaf set on fire and dripped into mulled wine). 


At one of the markets, I had Lángos, a deep-fried flatbread that originated from Hungary. I had a simple one topped with butter and garlic. Others are topped with cheese and vegetables.



I also had Handbrot (hand-rolled flatbread) topped with sour cream, bacon, and spring onions.


The Handbrot is baked in a wood-fired oven.


Of course, there are pretzels and sausages. I had a Rostbratwurst.

I also got to visit two Christmas markets in Köln (Cologne). Super crowded despite the pandemic!


At the Weihnachtsmarkt in Aachen, I got to try Reibekuchen (potato pancakes).

Aside from food, you can also get Christmas arts and crafts at the markets.

Santa Pauli Hamburgs Geilster Weihnachtsmarkt

In Hamburg, we dropped by the Santa Pauli Hamburgs Geilster Weihnachtsmarkt, the Christmas market of Hamburg's red light district.




I got to try Grünkohl (kale) with KohlwurstBärlauch-Hacksteak (hamburger steak), Currywurst, and Flammkuchen (tarte flambée).



For drinks, I got Eierpunsch (egg punch) made with delicious Eierlikör (egg liqueur) and white wine. While it is sometimes referred to as the German version of eggnog, the difference is that Eierpunsch is made with wine while eggnog is made with milk.


And since it was Christmas, we got some Plätzchen (Christmas cookies) from one of the bakeries in Ulm!

What's your favorite food at German Christmas markets?

Thursday, June 05, 2014

Isaw at Mang Larry's in UP Diliman

Isaw at Mang Larry's in UP Diliman
As a student in UP Diliman, I grew up enjoying isaw at Mang Larry's. His stand used to be right in front of our freshman dorm. He's moved now to the empty lot between the swimming pool and UP Law. And his booth has noticeably leveled up. But he still serves the same favorites we enjoyed back then.

From left to right, there's atay ng baboy (pork liver), isaw baboy (small pig intestines), isaw manok (chicken intestines), pork barbecue, tenga (pig ears), special isaw baboy, balun-balunan (chicken gizzard), botsi (chicken esophagus) and goto (large pig intestines). He has two sauces, sweet brown sauce and spicy vinegar. They also serve siomai too! Lines can be long, but it's worth the wait. Enjoy!

Here's a list of where to eat in UP Diliman!

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Binondo Chinatown late night food trip at a discount!

Late night food tripping in Binondo Chinatown can be really fun! Not many people know that a number of restaurants drop prices for selected dishes usually after 9 p.m. Just ask the restaurant if they have a late night promo.

The other month, we made a dim sum stop at Wan Chai Tea House. All dim sum (except the Hakaw) sells for Php47 per serving after 9 p.m. We had Pork Spareribs, Siomai, Goto Curry and Pipa Tofu.

Several years ago, we tried the late night shabu-shabu at Golden Fortune Seafood Restaurant offered with a hefty discount depending on the ingredient. Also check out the dim sum at King Chef at Lucky Chinatown Mall. Yes, it's happy hour for Chinatown treats! I'm getting hungry! Time to head out to Binondo!

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Recess by Chef Chris serves the original panizza!

Recess by Chef Chris
The original panizza is now in Makati! Long before commercial pizza outlets served rolled pizza with arugula and alfalfa, we were already enjoying them in Clark, Pampanga! Chef Chris Locher now brings his panizzas to Makati with Recess by Chef Chris.

Recess by Chef Chris
There are two sets of panizzas in the menu, the Original and Pinoy Originals, panizzas with Pinoy toppings. I got one pick from the Original, Tin Sn 50 with chorizo, bacon, ham, salami, assorted peppers and mushrooms for toppings. Others interesting choices are Platinum Pt 78 with Angus beef, Gold Au 79 with barbecued chicken, and Magnesium Mg 12 with barbecued pork.

From the Pinoy Originals, I got BeTa which is beef tapa, onions and pickled sayote atchara. There's PoTo with pork tocino, red onions, and salted eggs, TiTo with smoked bangus, red egg and onions, and CoBe with corned beef, egg, caramelized onions and potatoes.

There's much more on the menu. But if only for the panizza, you've got to visit Recess by Chef Chris!

Recess by Chef Chris
50 Jupiter Street, Bel-Air, Makati
Telephone No. (02) 8991818

Monday, March 10, 2014

Hong Kong: Dim sum at Tim Ho Wan & One Dim Sum

Hong Kong Dim Sum
Dim sum could very well be Hong Kong's national dish. So where can one find the best dim sum in Hong Kong that won't make a dent in your budget? Tim Ho Wan usually comes to mind when one asks about good but affordable Hong Kong dim sum. The restaurant (with various branches) has had a Michelin star since 2010; but prices remain affordable. Few visitors have heard about One Dim Sum, which had a Michelin star in 2011 and 2012. So I went in search of both!

My first stop was One Dim Sum near the Prince Edward Station (15 Playing Field Road corner Tung Choi Street). I went during the off peak hours (between lunch and dinner) and easily got a seat. They don't have a signature dish but everything is definitely good.

One Dim Sum, Hong Kong
Take note that the moment you sit down, you are served tea and charged HK$3 per person for that. It's called pu-ehr and you'll experience that in other restaurants including Tim Ho Wan. The paper placemat doubles as your menu. You are given an order sheet for you to write down your choices. If you need photos, they have a picture menu translated into several languages. There were a lot of things I wanted to try. I missed out on the glutinous rice dumplings which are too big for one person to handle. So since I was alone, I limited myself to three or four choices which were actually good enough for two people.

One Dim Sum, Hong Kong
The first order that arrived was the Char Siu Cheung or Steamed Rice Sheet Rolls with BBQ Pork (HK$18). They pour a sweet soy sauce over it. This was my favorite!

One Dim Sum, Hong Kong
One Dim Sum, Hong Kong
Then came in the steamed dumplings which included Choy Miu Gau or Vegetable and Shrimp Dumpling (HK$18) and the Chiu Chow Fun Gor or Chiu Chow Steamed Dumplings (HK$15). The wrapper of the Choy Miu Gau was so thin and delicate, so definitely good! With it came the Steam Sliced Chicken Meat Roll (HK$15).

One Dim Sum, Hong Kong
I spent HK$69 for all four including the pu-ehr. Not bad especially if there were two of you sharing it. And the good thing about One Dim Sum is that their last call is up to 12:30 a.m. So it's conveniently available for a late night snack.

Tim Ho Wan, Hong Kong Dim Sum
Of course, I had to try Tim Ho Wan too. I was treated out by a member of the Filipino community. We went to the branch at the Hong Kong Central Station. Hands down, the main attraction are the Baked Buns with BBQ Pork (HK$19). That's definitely their best seller!

Tim Ho Wan, Hong Kong Dim Sum
Tim Ho Wan, Hong Kong Dim Sum
We also ordered Steamed Fresh Shrimp Dumplings or Ha Jiao (HK$26), Pan-Fried Turnip Cake (HK$16), Steamed Rice Rolls stuffed with BBQ Pork (HK$21) and Steamed Egg Cake (HK$15).

Tim Ho Wan, Hong Kong Dim Sum
Tim Ho Wan, Hong Kong Dim Sum
It took quite a while before we got seated since this is the more publicized restaurant. Make sure to register with the restaurant reception table. They will ask how many you are in your party and give you an order sheet with a number. So you can choose your order while waiting for your number to be called. They will call your number twice. The first time is to collect the order sheet so that your food can be prepared and served the moment your sit down. The second is when the table becomes available.

Have you tried these restaurants in Hong Kong? What other good value dim sum places in Hong Kong do you know of?

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Indonesia: Eating in Medan

Masakan Padang in Medan, Indonesia
Medan, Indonesia is know among locals for its food because of the many different cuisines available there. Among the ethnic groups represented in Medan are the Malay, Acehnese, Javanese, Batak, Minangkabau (Padang/West Sumatra), Chinese, Southern Indians and Northern Indians among others, each with their own unique cuisine. So although not as popular as other Indonesian tourism destinations, Medan is one great place for food tourism. Here are some of the dishes I got to try during my tip to Medan. And it's definitely just the tip of the iceberg.

Ikan Bakar Padang in Medan, Indonesia
You will find many Masakan Padang at Padang-style eateries and restaurants, with Nasi Padang dishes on display on high stacked-plates in glass-covered food carts or restaurant windows. Padang is capital of the neighboring province of West Sumatra (Sumatera Barat). A popular dish they serve is Ikan Bakar, a generic term for grilled fish or seafood, which can be prepared in many ways and various flavors. At the restaurant I had lunch at, you could order on for take-away, with rice, vegetables and sauces, packed in a banana leaf and brown paper.

Ayam Goreng Padang in Medan, Indonesia
For lunch, it was Ayam Goreng, a generic term for chicken deep-fried in coconut oil. But Padang-style Ayam Goreng has spicy granules. It's served with vegetables, rice, sambal belacan (chili) and tempe goreng (chips). I opted to add deep-fried tahu (tofu) with chili sauce to complete my lunch.

Beef Rendang in Medan, Indonesia
In Parapat, I had more Padang dishes including Beef Rendang, beef chunks stewed in coconut milk and chili gravy until dry. With it, I had Telur Dudur Padang (Padang-style omelette) and Daun Singkong (cassava leaves in soup.

Sate Matang Aceh in Medan, Indonesia
Sate Matang Aceh in Medan, Indonesia
Back in Medan, I was craving for satay. Too bad the stall beside my hotel selling Sate Padang (in thick yellow sauce) was closed that day. So I got introduced to Acehnese cuisine through Sate Matang, served with peanut sauce.

Martabak Telur in Medan, Indonesia
Martabak Telur in Medan, Indonesia
With it, I had Martabak Telur (savory egg pancake) topped with pickled onions and chili. For dessert, I had Roti Cane, a sweet version of Roti Canai served with sugar on top instead of curry on the side.

Mie Aceh in Medan, Indonesia
The next day, I tried the Mie Aceh (spicy Aceh-style fried egg noodles) at another stall near the hotel.

Durian in Ucok Durian, Medan, Indonesia
Of course, because North Sumatra has a lot of durian plantations, you have to try the durian! Beside my hotel is Ucok Durian, a popular durian supplier which is open 24/7!

But then again, those were just a few dishes. And there were thousands of others to choose from! So take your pick and food trip in Medan, Indonesia if you get the chance. Here are some helpful tips about Medan and its attractions if you do decide to visit.

Sunday, February 09, 2014

Ilocos Norte: Empanada, tupig & bibingka food trip

Even after my trip to Ilocos Norte, the taste of the crunchy and savory empanada is still vivid. I was finally able to complete my Ilocos Norte empanada experience by trying out the Dinardaraan (Dinuguan) Empanada at Johnny Moon Cafe and Elvie's Sweet Empanada near PLDT.

Johnny Moon also serves Bagnet Empanada and Sisig Empanada. But I don't think the bagnet meat is tasty enough for an empanada for you to notice it. So I really recommend the Dinuguan Empanada if you want something different.

And speaking of different. While most empanadas use the garlicky longganisa, Elvie's offers Ilocos empanada with sweet longganisa. The sweet taste of the longganisa plus the sour sukang Iloko makes a very interesting combination.

From Batac to Bacarra, here is my list of the best empanadas in Ilocos Norte.

I also didn't realize they took their tupig (glutinous rice cakes with coconut) quite seriously in Ilocos Norte. They even have an intense competition every year to determine who makes the best tupig. But those from Currimao and Sarrat are the ones which stand out.

I got to try the Sarrat tupig during a trade fair at the Ilocos Norte Capitol in Laoag. They use purple glutinous rice which is why the tupig is dark purple.

We drove to Currimao the next day to try out the tupig at Irene's Native Delicacies along the National Highway. They mix in margarine, milk and cheese to add flavor to the glutinous rice and coconut.

And instead of the usual tupig grill we see on the street, they cook their tupig by baking it in a traditional wood-fired oven.

In Currimao, they also make bibingka with glutinous rice and coconut, and topped with peanuts. The consistency actually reminds me of tikoy.

What other Ilocos Norte delicacies do you like?
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