Sunday, January 15, 2017

look who's cooking!

Okay, I don't actually have a photo that you can look at, but the answer is me! I've been cooking!

Those who know me understand how this is quite a big deal. I've never been comfortable in the kitchen, and only know to do the most basic things like fry eggs, fry bacon, fry hotdogs... you get the drift. I did try some years ago to go beyond frying, but I just wasn't into it that much.

And then, Buzzfeed Tasty came along.

I randomly encountered a Buzzfeed Tasty post on Instagram - you know, those sped-up videos where they show the entire process of cooking a dish. Seeing the entire process done in just a minute somehow convinced me that cooking was actually quite easy. The "even I can do it" kind of easy. Of course, I understood that in reality, preparing all the ingredients and putting them together would take much time and effort, but still, it gave me hope that cooking was not as complicated as I imagine it to be in my head.

So I tried my first dish: Grilled Citrus Salmon with Asparagus. And this is how it turned out:

It turned out really good, if I do say so myself! As in masarap! I packed some for Michael to have for lunch at work, and I got so kilig when he texted me to compliment my cooking hahaha. 

Here's another one I cooked, which also turned out quite well: Pesto Chicken and Veggies.

Garlic Chicken and Veggie Pasta:

Meatballs with Caprese Salad:

This here's a bad photo, but this is one of my favorites: Lemon Pepper Shrimp with Broccoli for Michael and I, then Popcorn Shrimp for Sloan's baon. The little boy LOVED it.

I am still not over the fact that I cooked all these. Or that I'm cooking at all! These days I actually linger in the spice section of the supermarket, and am finding it quite exciting to plan menus. Ako ba 'to??? Lololol.

But the best part about all of this is that I no longer eat mindlessly. Before, I usually just settle for what we have in our lunch room, where it's a hit or miss if the meal will satisfy me; or I go out and buy from a nearby fastfood or resto, where I often end up overspending. I sure hope I can keep this up. Of course, every now and then, I will still go for the lunchroom or eat out, but at least that would be lessened now. Also, I like that I have a wider variety of baon options for Sloan.

Me, cooking. Whowouldathunk! Buzzfeed Tasty, you're my hero!

Sunday, January 8, 2017

bangkok day 2: a flock of crows and a missing cafe

On our second day in Bangkok, Reyna and I set off to find another food joint: Cafe Bangrak. We thought we'd have lunch there, and since we had time, we decided to drop by Lumpini Park first.

It was scorching hot that day and my top easily got soaked as we crossed the wide highways on our way to the park. But I didn't complain as I'd rather have that than the heavy rains from the previous day. Besides, Lumpini had a lot of trees that offered shade and the sun did calm down after a while.

Lumpini is a gem amidst the bustling city. It has wide open spaces that joggers and cyclists could take advantage of, an artificial lake, playgrounds, and picnic areas. We sat down in one of the wooden benches to relax a little after the walk, and marveled at the huge flock of crows that feasted on scavenged bread. I have to admit that we were a little creeped out by how the crows were so huge and quick on their feet - it's like they could attack at any given moment! Lol. It didn't help that they looked so fierce. Seryosong medyo natakot ako haha.

Maybe the birds sensed my fear and thought they'd play a prank on me, because as we were strolling, Reyna noticed that I had bird poop on my shirt! Kaloka hahaha. There I was feeling cute in my cold-shoulder top, e may ipot naman pala ng ko ng ibon sa likod ko lololol. We laughed it off as we made our way to Cafe Bangrak.

...which proved to be a struggle lol. We had a map but couldn't quite pinpoint the exact location of the cafe, so we'd ask for directions at every chance we get. For some reason, people kept on telling us to go right. After walking quite a distance, Cafe Bangrak was still nowhere in sight, so we retraced our steps until we were right back where we started. We took one left turn from there, and voila! Cafe Bangrak, finally!

It may have been quite an effort to find, but the food and the local artworks they had more than made up for the hassle. After a sumptuous meal, we were off once again. This time, back to the Centara World area, where we will go pasalubong shopping at the supermarket.

Supermarkets are always my go-to place for pasalubong shopping. I like buying local snacks or popular brands that come in local flavors. We went to the supermarket at the basement of Siam Paragon mall, and wow, the pasalubong section seriously blew me away! There were spices, dried fruits, chocolates, rice crackers and more, all of which came in such pretty packaging which always wins in my book. We bought quite a lot of stuff, good thing our hotel was near so we didn't have to commute with shopping bags in tow.

That night, we cleaned up for the gala night of the Sports Industry Awards Asia. Before heading to the event, we first stopped by Uno Mas restaurant and bar to avail the complimentary sangria and tapas courtesy of the hotel. Located atop the Centara Grand Hotel, Uno Mas offered a spectacular view, and again I found myself feeling all grateful for being there.

The gala night was held at the Bangkok Convention Centre, which was linked to the hotel. Drinks were free flowing and the hor d'oeuvres were delicious, so Reyna and I were understandably happy.

When we were finally led inside the ballroom, we found ourselves in the company of a variety of nationalities, all of whom have impressive sports initiatives around Asia. More than once Reyna and I found ourselves overwhelmed with the whole thing. It was, for me, definitely a "What am I doing here?" kind of moment lol. And while our two entries did not end up winning, it still was an accomplishment to have been named finalists.

...I will admit that of course it would've been so much better if we won lololol.