Saturday, December 6, 2014

EGGS EN COCOTTE #SoulFoodSaturday

As you all already know, I don't have much time for my domestic duties lately so weekends are absolutely sacred to me, as they allow me to hop over to the kitchen and make myself proper food. I am so so so tried of munching on chips to get me through my day or eating cheap sushi from Family Mart. It's a pretty disgusting diet, and one I am really trying to change now that we have launched and I actually leave the office at 6 and not 930 pm.

So this morning, I decided I wanted to make myself Baked Eggs, or Oeufs en Cocotte. Technically, all you need are eggs and some cream et voila, fancy breakfast! But really, you can add whatever you want to it. I wanted to put bacon originally, but it was frozen, so I dug up whatever I had in the fridge instead and came up with tomato, basil, toasted garlic and feta baked eggs. It's super easy! Here's how:

Ingredients:
1 tomato
3 large basil leaves
1 teaspoon toasted garlic
2 large eggs
2 tbs cream
salt and pepper, to taste
2 tbs. crumbled feta
Paprika, for garnish

How to:

Rub an oven-proof ramekin with some butter
Add the tomatoes, basil and garlic
Break two large eggs into the ramekin, keeping them intact.
Add cream
Add salt and pepper
Add feta
Bake for 10-15 minutes on 350 C
Sprinkle with paprika
Enjoy :)

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

FKSK Work Out Tip #HowTo

Just monkeying around while doing inversions!

When I don't have time to work out, as has been the case lately, I spend 30 minutes doing HIIT and some yoga poses. Contrary to what people think, it is not necessary to be at the gym for two hours a day to get or stay fit. Admittedly, if you are trying to lose a lot of weight, cardio is necessary so you might be working out longer, but don't let your entire life revolve around your work out schedule. Instead, try to blend it seamlessly with the rest of your daily activities so it does not seem like such a chore.

Monday, December 1, 2014

CALYXTA has arrived #BeautyBuzz



Top Left Clockwise: Introducing myself as Calyxta's EIC and Sales and Marketing Director to Press and VIPs; Some of the Calyxta team including our CEO Alfonso de Dios, COO Lyda Aguinaldo, Cover Girl Mari Jasmin and Creative Director and Marketing Manager Dane Gonzalez; FKSK Cleans up well, don't you think?
So I'm about to do a completely shameless plug here, but heck, we have been working so hard on this that I feel like we deserve a pat on the back and to shout it out to the world! We launch TODAY, December 1 so go visit the site!

Calyxta was an idea that grew into something bigger than we expected, and will only continue to do so. Dane and I, along with our team, were hired to plant the beauty seed and grow it into something yet unseen in this e-commerce industry. When we started, we didn't even have a name yet, we had no website and no products. All we had were ideas and the go-signal to build.

First of all, the name Calyxta traces it's roots back to the Greek name Kallisto, meaning "Most Beautiful," and that is what we at Calyxta want you to feel, the most beautiful versions of yourselves. Our philosophy of aspirational but attainable beauty encourages women of all ages to be accepting of their natural beauty, but constantly wanting to improve themselves inside and out.

Instead of being merely an e-commerce site, we decided that a magazine format with loads of content would make more sense, especially since we are carrying a lot of new brands that you all might not be familiar with yet, so we are making it as easy as possible for you all to make decisions before purchasing, plus you get to visit the site whenever you want for beauty tips and tricks! Our contributors are known in the beauty industry, either as writers or make up artists, so you know you are getting real advice from credible sources.

Wanna know more? Experience it for yourselves! Visit www.Calyxta.com and take a look around. Our first cover girl Mari Jasmin is as pretty as ever so do check out the cover story before you head to the shop. Expect new content weekly and new products monthly.

Hope you enjoy exploring beauty with Calyxta!

Visit www.Calyxta.com

Creme de Marrons #ManicMonday


I had been craving for Creme de Marrons, or Sweet Chestnut Cream for a few weeks now. I first tried this in a crepe last year and decided I wanted to try to make it myself. It's really not that difficult, it just takes patience to peel the chestnuts by hand. I suppose you can buy roasted chestnuts in a can, but why would you do that when the Christmas holidays is the best time to get fresh roasted ones almost everywhere?

This is is a nice way to jazz up crepes, toast or even chocolate cake or cupcakes with a flavor that's a little bit different than usual. I honestly love it most when it is still hot and I eat a big spoonful of it. If coming from the fridge, keep it standing for awhile until it gets to room temperature so it's easy to spread.

Ingredients:

  • 200 grams peeled roasted chestnuts
  • 1.5 cups cream
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 tbs. brown sugar
  • 1. tbs cognac
How to:
  • Put all ingredients into a sauce pan.
  • Simmer for ten minutes. Don't forget to stir constantly or the bottom might burn.
  • Remove from heat. Whiz with a hand blender until smooth and creamy.
  • Enjoy!

Saturday, November 29, 2014

FKSK ADVENTURES - LEWIS GRAND HOTEL #Travel




If you've been following our instagrams, you would know that Erica and I have basically been living for work, scratch working for a living.. we've been breathing, sleeping, eating work. Now that we're in the final stages of launching the site, we're basically holding our breaths. Hence, a little runaway time was necessary, so of course, as you would, we headed to Angeles (under the pretense of being on the way to Mexico!).

We stayed at the Lewis Grand for the weekend, and honestly, I didnt know what to expect, what with Angeles not exactly being the kind of place I would choose for an escape. What awaited us was quite the surprise. If you know me at all, you will know, anything white with a contrast of dark woods and lots of light will get me packing my bags any day. We checked in and hung out in the restaurant for a bit, devouring what we now know (seriously) as our favorite sisig in Angeles City - made our of pork belly. It wasnt oily and I didnt feel disgusting after eating it, which is probably the first time I have ever felt this about any sisig. Not to mention the mexican food that the chef ordered up for us especially.. after a few whiskey amarettos, I was a happy camper, and we headed back to our room to get back to work - and play.

The suite we stayed in was fit for a honeymoon - I say suite because it was twice the size of my apartment, with two bathrooms, a hot tub - and I got to share a california king with my twin. It was beyond romantic! The next morning, after a night out "people-watching" and taco-eating, I spent the morning in the sun on the terrace, working, as usual, while getting a tan.

It was hard to leave, and I'm not even exaggerating when I say, the only time I will probably be back in Pampanga, Angeles.. will be if I get to stay in this joint. Thank you Lewis Grand for the lovely weekend!

As a bonus, right next to the hotel, there are several shops where Erica and I stocked up on potted plants. I am now a proud owner of a little palm tree, sitting in my hall like it owns the place. My hydrangeas, on the other hand, are not so happy in my smoky little studio - but my happy little Aloe vera plant looks like it feels right at home by my living room window!

Lewis Grand Hotel
Don Juico Ave, Angeles, 2009 Pampanga
(045) 625 3947




#SOULFOODSATURDAY: TAQUERIA REAL

Last weekend, Dane and I went to Angeles, Pampanga for one reason- TO EAT. Our buddy Angelo owns a hotel called Lewis Grand and a Taqueria along Walking Street right outside High Society,  so we decided to get out of the city- something we've been needing to do for months now- and head north to the food capital of the Philippines.

No this was not a food tour. This was solely to visit Taqueria Real, a small after hours joint that serves authentic Mexican street tacos and look they even sell Jarritos (I love the sickeningly sweet pineapple one!) Unlike a lot of establishments who's owners leave their staff to their own devices, you will most likely find Angelo here most nights making sure the food is on point and everything is going smoothly.



Don't: Expect anything fancy. This is a STREET taco place. There are a few stools to sit on but you are really meant to eat standing up or on the go. Don't expect a place setting or for someone to put a napkin on your lap.

Do: Expect nice, messy food. The kind that will have you licking your fingers after and chugging down their horchata. They also have a salsa bar where you can add your own toppings to your tacos and nachos.

What to eat: They have rice plates, quesadillas and burritos, but I say go for the tacos! My favorites were the Beef Barbacoa and Tinga de Pollo, but also try the Carne Asada and Angelo's favorite Al Pastor. For a Pinoy and Kapampangan twist- get the Fried Carnitas- aka SISIG TACOS!

What to drink: Jarritos if you like diabetes sweet soda (and hey we all do sometimes) or Horchata if you are like me and love that stuff!

What else to do: People Watch! You are on Walking Street in Angeles, Pampanga- you know what to expect! :) If you feel like working off all the calories, Angelo's club High Society is just a few steps away.

Why you should be happy: Taqueria Real has a one day only pop up at Brgr Project along Jupiter street, makati. TOMORROW, November 30, 2014 so head over and get a chance to pig out the way we did last weekend. I'll probably see you there!

Taqueria Real is located along Walking Street, Angeles Pampanga. Follow them on Instagram: @taqueriarealph


Tuesday, November 18, 2014

OVERNIGHT OATS #TuesdayTummy #HowTo



These days, there is no time for anything - and I'm a notorious breakfast-skipper, which screws me up mid-afternoon, and sends me running to convenience stores, craving for chips, because my blood sugar crashes, and then all sense is lost in my stomach area.

So I hear about overnight oats, and I'm like, what thaaaat? No cook oats? Leave-in-the-fridge overnight oats? WHATTT.

And so I tried it. In my first attempt, I didn't add enough liquid, and it was a bit smooshy and dry the day after. Also, in most recipes, they add the fruit the night before, which then fuses with the rest of the ingredients, but it just wasn't tickling my taste buds - it was a tad blah. I can't have boring breakfast food, because it will just make me want to turn to black coffee. Which send my blood sugar crashing like there's no tomorrow. Finally, last night, I decided to just "segregate" to contain the flavors. Well, I finally ate all my breakfast this morning. Welcome back, blood sugar!

INGREDIENTS

- 1/2 cup thick rolled oats
- 3/4 cup soy milk
- 1 tablespoon chia seeds
- chopped honeydew melon
- 1 kiwi
- 1/2 cup greek yogurt
- 1 tsp wild honey
- 1 tsp strawberry preserves

PREP

the night before:
Combine rolled oats, soy milk and chia seeds in a glass jar. Shake well. Store in refrigerator.

the next morning:
The oats and chia will have soaked up the soy milk. Pile the fruits on top of it, then topping off with the greek yogurt and adding the wild honey and strawberry preserves on the yogurt.

ENJOOOOY

What are your favorite quick and easy breakfast recipes?

Happy Tuesday to all the workaholics like me and Erica! x

Friday, November 7, 2014

POISONBERRY SMOOTHIE #TGIFToast



Since most of my drinking these days involves Erica and a bottle of wine, I didn't wanna bore you with a non-recipe. Here is something I made myself for breakfast - I know it's non-alcoholic - but who says you can't add a shot of Vodka to make it a little more interesting?


INGREDIENTS

- 1 kiwi
- quarter cup of red grapes
- quarter cup of frozen blueberries
- half cup passionfruit juice
- one tablespoon chia seeds
- two cups crushed ice


1. Blend red grapes with kiwi and one cup ice.
2. Blend passionfruit with blueberries, one cup ice and chia seeds.

SERVE

(ADD VODKA)

Enjoy!

#happyfriday


Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Herbal Cleanses #ALLTHERAGE


As a beauty Editor for many years (our beauty pages also featured a health section) and being fitness and healthy conscious for the past few years, I have tried my fair share of cleanses. I've done three day home ones that would not allow me the luxury of heading out of the house because I was constantly running to the toilet, and I've even tried the super embarrassing and invasive Colon Therapy (OMG never again!) so my experiences with cleanses has always been uncomfortable and/or a hassle and disruptive to my daily schedules. So when I was asked to try out this 7 day Herbal Cleanse, I had a lot of questions!

Will I be running to the toilet every five minutes?
Can I eat?
Do I have to go on a liquid diet?
What are the effects?

I have a full time job now, which means I need to be at my office at 10 am everyday, which means I can't be worrying about overdoing the bathroom time and if I do have to deal with that, I can't be in the comfort of my own home. Fortunately, my fears were unfounded as 1. No, you will go to the toilet regularly, but there is no sense of panic or urgency, 2. Yes you can eat. The package comes with a list of recommended meals. 3. No, you don't have to go on a liquid diet but it is recommended that you eat healthy while doing the cleanse, 4. The effects are more regular bowel movements, and less bloated feeling at the end of the week plus possible weight loss and of course, most importantly, gently cleansing your system.

I decided to try it out because aside from bad eating habits as of late (because of the lack of time for anything due to job duties) I was also feeling a bit too tired all the time, my skin was rebelling against me and I was feeling generally unwell- all signs that I was due for a cleanse. I could imagine the toxins in my body from too much sugar, alcohol and not enough exercise or sleep. I had not felt this in years because I was so healthy and fit and lately it's been going downhill.

The ReCleanse Herbal Cleanse Whole Body 7 Day Detox Kit contained two bottles- a colon cleanse and a multi-system cleanse + a food chart to help you through your week. I like that it's not disruptive and all you need to do is take two of each (four in all) with a tall glass of water before breakfast, and again before dinner. The effect is going to the toilet about 20 minutes after, and urinating more frequently as well. This is partly due to the fact that it is suggested that you drink at least 8 glasses of water a day.

By the end of the week, my stomach felt lighter and I was not bloated at all. In fact, my tummy was absolutely flat! Also, I was forced to eat healthier- forcing myself to make time to prep my meals even if I was absolutely knackered after work. I would definitely do this cleanse again, maybe every few months.

For more information on ReCleanse, visit http://www.recleanse.com/

The 7 day kit is Php1,100 and available in the following studios/stores 
  • Sugarleaf Makati
  • Got Heart Whiteplains
  • Bikram Yoga QC, GH
  • Beyond Yoga GH, QC, Fort
  • Urban Ashram Manila Pasig, Fort, Makati
  • Yogaplus Makati, Fort
  • Options Studio Fort
  • ThirdEye Wellness Fort


Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Working Out at Home #HOWTO


It truly depresses me that I have absolutely zero time to go to yoga, pilates and kinesis on a regular basis because my job is taking over my life. I used to work out every day, and now it's more like twice a week if I'm lucky, and the workouts are definitely not at a level I'm used to doing.

If I do find myself with a bit of extra time in the morning, even if I have to get up extra early, like before 6, I try and squeeze in a 30-45 minute workout in my living area. For those with the same problem as me, all you need to do is purchase a few basic things so you can have your own mini home gym- no machines required. Here's what I have:


  •  A ten pound disc weight. For crunches and squats.
  • 2 6 pound free weights. For plank rows, weighted step ups and lunges.
  • A jump rope. For cardio.
  • A yoga Mat. For yoga poses and for padding when I do other workouts.
  • Ankle Weights. To make exercises just a tad bit more difficult. 
  • Exercise Ball. For several exercises including crunches, side crunches and things that help with balance.
  • Ab Roller. Ok this is a bit difficult to use and I don't recommend it if you are a super duper beginner.
  • Pull Up Bar. My plan was to get my arm strength back but I haven't installed it yet! I will get that going very soon.

So aside from the pull up bar, I use all the other things I mentioned above. I really like taking classes or having other people around me when I work out, but desperate times call for desperate measures. In this busy world we live in, we don't have the time- we make time- and that goes for everything from friends, relationships, family, work and yes physical activity!

Here's hoping I can motivate myself to get up at 5:30 am every day to make sure I get my work out in. :)

Monday, November 3, 2014

Sugar Skulls #MAKEUPMONDAY


Many people don't know that I used to do makeup professionally. I still miss it but I'm definitely rusty. Any chance I get, I try different looks on friends or myself just for fun. This was FATKITCH-SKINNYKITCH as sugar skulls for Halloween.  I mixed Snazzaroo face paint and some regular make up products from my kit. Dane is the more crafty one between the two of us so she made the flower crowns.

This look is pretty easy to do and always a hit when you need a quick costume but don't have time to come up with anything. Just use white face paint all over your face but leave two circles around your eyes until above your brows and your nose bare. Paint those areas black. Lastly, have fun designing your face! I find it is more fun when you add some pops of color.

Hope you all had a great time celebrating my favorite day of the year!

Sunday, November 2, 2014

THE EVERLASTING BOYFRIEND JEAN #HowTo



Sorry for the prolonged absences - our jobs have taken over our lives. In terms of food, I refuse to post anything current and food related - an obvious attempt at denial in its purest form. Instead, let's talk about denim, more specifically, boyfriend jeans.

We've all seen the likes of Emmanuelle Alt and countless models pull off this look, but I got an email today asking me if I think boyfriend jeans will last, and if so, how to pull them off. I'm a huge fa of baggy jeans, so I was disappointed to find that I don't have one pair of boyfriend jeans in my closet - which probably has loads to do with the fact that I am single.

Thus, the challenge is on - this week, I am going to make time to find the perfect pair (or pairs) because in my opinion, yes - in this day an age, where feminism is taking over on a global scale, and we are still forever enchanted by the nonchalance of the 90's and under-dressing, the boyfriend jean will stay for a little while.

Here are my favorite looks - and ways for you to pull them off.

Who says boys clothes can't be chic?

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

The CROW #YogaEveryday


I started doing yoga in 2012, after a lot of resisting (It's too slow) and scoffing (It's too easy) I finally went ahead and joined a class because I was going through a lot internally and needed to quiet my mind. I thought it would be 90 minutes of... actually I don't know what I was expecting it to be, but the word that came to mind was definitely not DIFFICULT.

I was so wrong about all my pre-conceived notions about yoga. Not only is it challenging to the body, it is also a challenge to the mind. You are intended to focus on your breathing and the task at hand, and for a chronic over-thinker, do you know how hard that is?

In the beginning, I was so rusty and could not even hold poses for very long. Even if I was flexible (remnants of being a child competitive gymnast) I could feel my muscles screaming in pain every time I would do anything.

I wish I could say I practice everyday, but I really don't. I would say 3 times a week is my average, whether at home or at a class. Every time I work out, I try to start or end my exercise with a few poses, just to practice. In this picture, I am doing my first attempts at crow pose, which requires a lot of core and arm strength. Soon, I'll be able to do it better!

Remember that yoga is not a competition, and I highly suggest you refrain from looking around so much when practicing with a class and just focus on yourself. Everyday you learn something new, and everyday you get stronger.

My secret dream is to drop everything and become a yoga teacher! Someday, it will happen! :)

Take a class with me at One Life Studio: 2F BCS Prime Building, 2297 Chino Roces Avenue, right above Juju Eats. Reservations required 09178513297

TARRAGON CHICKEN ADOBO #WIAT


As a kid, I hated adobo. I know, how un-Filipino of me. I realized later on, when I started cooking, that I just did not like the way all the adobo I ever had was cooked. So, I experimented. To date, I have about 6 really good adobo recipes for chicken, beef, pork and even lamb, using different vinegars and herbs and spices for all of them. This is one my daughter likes a lot so I make it most often. It's not far off from your traditional adobo recipe, but it's what you put in it that matters. For instance, I use a more subtle white wine vinegar for this recipe and I add a handful of tarragon while it's simmering. I love chicken and tarragon together so I thought, why not? Here's how:

Ingredients:

1 kilo chicken, I like using thighs and drumsticks
1 cup white wine vinegar
1 cup light soy sauce
3 cups water
1 head of garlic, chopped
1 head of garlic, peeled
peppercorns, crushed
bay leaf
2 Tbs brown sugar
Handful of Tarragon

How to:


  • Place white wine vinegar, water, light soy sauce, garlic, peppercorns, bay leaf and tarragon in a big pot.
  • Add chicken and turn on heat and bring to the boil. Then lower heat and simmer for about 45 minutes or until sauce has reduced by half.
  • Turn off heat and place a frying pan on the burner and fry chicken , with some of the sauce and garlic and adding the sugar little by little to slightly caramelize chicken.
  • Return to sauce and serve OR store for the next day. (I personally think adobo tastes better the day after) 
  • You can opt to fry a second time if serving the next day and serve the sauce on the side instead.
  • I have this with cauliflower mash, when I'm feeling a bit like being healthy.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

QUICK AND HEALTHY QUINOA MEAL #TuesdayTummy


When I want to make myself an all in one meal, I usually take quinoa and see what veggies I have in my fridge that need to be cooked and go with that. One of my favorite combinations is this one- Tri-colored quinoa with roasted squash, crispy bangus flakes, chopped tomatoes and feta cheese. I make a big batch and bring it as baon for a week, or bring it to potluck parties. Here's how:

Ingredients:

1 cup dry quinoa, washed
2 tbs chopped onion
1 tbs chopped garlic
2 cups chicken stock
3 native tomatoes, chopped
1 cup roasted squash
3/4 cup bangus flakes (I used Century and cook it down until crispy)
100 grams crumbly feta cheese
juice of 1/2 lime
2 sprigs parsley, chopped

How To:


  • Place quinoa in a pan and cook for a few minutes until dry (and slightly toasted)
  • Pour in 2 cups of chicken stock plus pepper, to taste.
  • Bring to the boil then lower to medium heat for 15 minutes or until all liquid is absorbed.
  • Fluff the quinoa and set aside.
  • In another pan, add quinoa, bangus flakes, roasted squash, tomatoes and mix well.
  • Squeeze in juice of 1/2 lime and scatter crumbled feta and chopped parsley.
  • Mix well and serve (Warm or room temperature are both fine )


Monday, October 27, 2014

BOXING #TryThis


I have my favorites when it comes to working out but I always enjoy trying new things. I often times go back to my preferred workouts but once in awhile when I have the time or get the opportunity to, I will do something I don't normally do, like BOXING. Believe it or not, I actually used to box regularly before (about 5 years ago) but to be honest, I always hated being one of the few females in a gym of sweaty men. It's a bit unnerving.

I tried it again recently and while Elorde is still Elorde- no frills and straight to the point, I noticed that there were a lot more women working out, which made me feel more at ease. When I asked, I was told that they had a lot of female regulars working out there.

I started with about 20 minutes of running, but in my case more like a jog/walk situation, followed by another 15 minutes of jumprope. You don't think you'd get tired but you will, specially if , like me, you have not been on the ball with your workouts.

We started the mitt work after and I am probably the girliest boxer you will ever see. I wonder still if my whole look while moving will ever change to look more like a fighter, but unless I box all the time, probably not!

Boxing is about stamina, yes, but it is also a lot of hand-eye coordination. My biggest problem has always been the speedball, as I never can seem to get it right (only with one hand!) I'm hoping to have more time to box when work settles down a bit so that I can do a month straight of boxing and see/ feel the difference in my body. I see now how a 9-5 can make you gain weight! No time for exercise or even to eat proper meals sometimes so it's all about what you can get. Boxing and it's extreme cardio can help fix all that!

My favorite part of any work out is ab work and stretching. You will be doing this for about 30 minutes towards the end of your work out. All in all, expect to be at the gym for about 2 hours. Imagine the calories you will burn and the muscles you will condition if you did this even three times a week?

Tell us your boxing experiences in the comment box!

Angulas #ManicMonday

This is probably one of my favorite things to eat EVER. Those who are not familiar probably are thinking, Ew, they look like worms! These, my friends, are Angulas or Baby Eel, a Spanish dish from the Basque region that was originally known as a fisherman's dish.

The real Angulas can cost about 30 euros up for a small can, but the demand has been so high that they have started to make imitation Angulas, called "Gulas" and this is what they sell here in the Philippines (and even in supermarkets in Spain where I got all of mine) At this point, It does not matter to me anymore if I am eating Angulas or Gulas (actually it does but the former is expensive and unavailable here!)

I have this sometimes when I am too lazy to cook. All you need with it is some crusty bread and chili and garlic to cook it with. It takes all of 5 minutes to open the can or bottle, put in a pan, brown the garlic and infuse the chili. A can you can buy at Terry's is good for two as a starter or with something else or as a full meal for one.

If you are still unsure of how to eat this or cook it, head over to Terry's or to Cirkulo, where the picture was taken and try it there first. Promise, you'll love it!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

JACK DANIELS OLD NO.7 MUSTARD #TryThis



Known for doing a dance around standard spices such as salt, I am constantly on the lookout for new things to substitute. Cayenne pepper has been my hardcore favorite up until now, but given the chance to combine my love for liquor with my love for a great Dijon, how could I resist?

This mustard comes in different flavors; Hickory Smoke, Honey-Dijon, Horseradish, Spicy Southwest, Stone Ground Dijon, and finally, Old No. 7. This one is my favorite, although I haven't dissected the flavors in the others yet - I use this mixed with canned tuna, and it adds some zing to my salad dressings.

My only complaint is that it doesn't come in tiny bottles I can carry around in my purse.. yes I'm a freak like that!


You can find Jack Daniel's Mustard at any SM Supermarket.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

LOUD LIPPIES #BeautyBuzz

If there is one make-up product that can change a look instantly, it's lipstick. A single swipe instantly brightens up your face and a simple color switch can take you from day to night or change your look from simple to sultry in seconds. Don't be afraid to try something new. After all, it's just make-up and can be removed immediately.

I never used to be a lipstick girl, as I would always focus on my eyes. Smoky eyes were always my favorite whether full on or subtle but lately I find myself spending less time on my eyes (liner and loads of mascara) and more on deciding what lip color to wear for the day. My most used at the moment is Lime Crime's "Wicked" looks so pretty and vampy at the same time, but I'm definitely not afraid to experiment. Today I mixed some colors together to get this metallic periwinkle shade. Remember, it's about having fun! What's your favorite lip color? Share them with us!

Monday, October 13, 2014

STYLISH CASUAL FOR MEN #HowTo



No matter how far I delve into my new mission in foodblogging, I can't escape my roots in fashion. Thus, when approached by a girl friend who admitted to being flustered about her boyfriend's non-style, I decided maybe it was time to do a little 101 on how boys should dress. I myself a huge fan on unisex and understated dressing, I figured a good way to start was by listing bulletpoints as a guide - and starting with the basics.

I've dated guys with different dressing styles - most men stick to what's safe, so sometimes you need to help them out a little, especially when they ask for help. I've had many fun trips to the mall with them.. I love dressing men and showing them styles they never thought they could pull off. If you are a bit of a style nazi like myself, your man might get intimidated and not know where to even start in matching your look. I always always prefer an understated casual look - but I will never say no to a man in a good suit.


  • As for us girls - know your body and what looks good on it.
  • Stock up on basics. Not everyone can pull off bold prints and trend pieces, but every man looks good in a plain white t-shirt.
  • Invest in great footwear - and take care of them. Timeless shoes will go a long way.
  • Wear your pants like they fit you - chinos look good on every man, as long as they don't look like your crotch will pop when you sit down. 
  • Know what to pair with what - this goes especially for the pants + shoes combo.
  • Less is more - monochromes are always a good choice, so stick to black and whites and neutrals, except for those days when you are feeling a bit more adventurous.
  • Don't be afraid of accessories - but make sure they work with the rest of the outfit. And don't pile them on - you don't want to out-accessory your girlfriend.
Invest in key pieces:

  • A few good pairs of chinos
  • A perfect pair of black denim
  • A classic white button down shirt
  • Several plain white black and white shirts
  • A classic black boot
  • A squeaky clean pair of white sneakers
  • Neutral Vans slip-ons
  • A black belt
  • A loose knit sweater
  • A black skinny tie
  • A classic slim cut black suit
Wait - this list could go on and on. The bottom line is - find clothes that fit you well. And when all else fails - watch Ryan Gosling in Crazy Stupid Love.. or ask your girlfriend. She knows, haha.

Happy Monday!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

PANCAKE HOUSE PAN CHICKEN #WIAT (What I Ate Today)


I don't care how many places that serve "comfort food" pop up, Pancake House is the ultimate, least pretentious comfort food for me. I grew up eating here with my grandmother and I crave their pan chicken at least once a week. Sometimes I go weeks wanting to eat this, and I stop myself every time because I'm trying to eat healthy. If I keep it real real, I can honestly say I would eat here once or twice a week. Sometimes I eat the fried chicken with rice and gravy, and other times with a cheese waffle and maple syrup. Either way, until I find a fried chicken that satisfies me as much, and in a reasonable price range (a 2 pc pan chicken with rice is less than P200 as opposed to the ones I've seen at 550 and up an order) I'm sticking to the classic. Pancake House forever!

Monday, October 6, 2014

QUINOA FUSILLI WITH SPANISH SARDINES AND CLAMS #ManicMonday


I've been really trying to eat only healthy food lately but like any normal person, I have my carb cravings and days when all I want is to stuff myself with pasta. Low and behold, I passed by healthy options one day and found a healthier version of one of my comfort foods- fusilli made out of quinoa! Although it's not much lower in terms of calories, it definitely helps that it has more protein and less carbs than regular pasta or even rice. I decided to treat myself without over-indulging, but without feeling "bitin" either. A big plus is that it takes about 15 minutes to make from start to finish- great for a Manic Monday.

Ingredients:

1 pack quinoa fusilli
1 jar Spanish Sardines
1 can smoked clams (optional)
1/2 lemon
1 tomato, chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
salt and pepper, to taste
olive oil (freehand pour, to taste
2 oz feta cheese, crumbled
few sprigs of parsley

How to:


  • Bring water to the boil and cook pasta according to package instructions. Remember that quinoa pasta cooks faster than normal pasta.
  • While this is cooking, sautee garlic and tomatoes in a bit of olive oil until softened.
  • Add spanish sardines and clams (optional) and shred sardines into the mixture.
  • Ass salt and pepper, to taste.
  • Add drained pasta noodles to seafood mixture. Add more olive oil if needed.
  • Add juice of lemon and sprinkle with crumbled feta and parsley.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

STARCROSSED LOVERS PLAYLIST #HowTo



I had such a good time making the first playlist, and it seems you all like new music, so I made y'all another one. Don't get me wrong, I'm not at all lovesick but its fun making these.. and since its currently a sunday, this is the kinda vibe I'm on. Only musically, naturally. Haha


A LULU FEAST #SoulfoodSaturday



If you know me, then you know how much I love a multi-course sit-down dinner. I'm just a sucker for anything that is plated to perfection. So when we were invited by Lulu's for a little get-together, we just couldn't say no. I don't even know where to start with describing which of the dishes were my favorite - so I'll let the photos guide me.

I'm normally not a huge fan of anything involving foam - I'm a total fusion-snob, the traditional girl I like to claim I am. But the seared scallops were my favorite. The foam just added a bit of zest without disrupting the flavor of the scallop. I wouldn't mind having some of those right now actually.

My favorite at Lulu's has always been the steaks. This one didn't disappoint - love my steak with a bit of fat on it - that's where all the flavor is. And being the dessert fiend I am.. the entire pallet was perfect, and normally I am not much of a peanut-butter kinda gal, but take it from me - the PB&J bomb was.. well, BOMB.

Here's the full menu - but before I exit this post, can I just say - I AM NOW STARVING.

Thank you for your hospitality, Lulu!

LULU Restaurant

Salcedo Village

G/F V Corporate Center, 125 LP Leviste StSalcedo Village, Makati(0927) 375-9467













Grazing 

Argentinian Hand Chopped Empanada With Chimichurri

Pulled Pomegranate Duck In Steamed and Fried Buns

Lobster & Crab Pao Poached Lobster, Crab, Lemon Mayonnaise & 
Caviar in Steamed & Fried Buns

Seared Scallops in a Carrot & Pumpkin Puree 
with Citrus Seafoam

My Green Mind 

Seared Tuna Nicoise Crusted Tuna, just Seared on the outside, with 
mesclun greens & Citrus Vinaigrette

Off the Hook Seafood 
Citrus Glazed Mahi Mahi In a bed of Lemon & Pea Risotto

Cuts 

 Lamb Shank 12 Twelve Hour Sous Vide Tender Lamb Shank, 
scented with Rosemary & Marjoram with 
Bejeweled Couscous

Rump of Wagyu Steak Adorned with Biodynamic baby Vegetables

Happy Ending 

Lemon Glazed Yoghurt Cheesecake 

Peanut Butter & Jelly Bomb  

Butterscotch Apple Crumble 


Saturday, October 4, 2014

THE BAD APPLE #SoulFoodSaturday


It's SATURDAY which means you can forget your diet for a couple of days and indulge, but for the health conscious like me, who will think twice about eating KFC even if I LOVE it, here's a great compromise. I call it "kinda healthy" food because it seems like a calorie fest but there is actually a nutritious element about it. For instance, this Apple Pie caramel apple from The Bad Apple (Salcedo Market on Saturdays and Legaspi Market on Sundays) is one of my "kinda healthy" favorites because it has a thin layer caramel and an outer layer of graham cracker crumbs and cinnamon, but it's also a fruit aka better than eating a chocolate bar or a pint of ice cream. Also, what I do is, I cut them into wedges and share with my daughter because everyone needs a treat once in awhile without feeling like they over-indulged. The one thing though is that it's HARD not to want to eat the whole thing because it's so freaking good. Taste for yourself this weekend! Follow them on instagram: @TheBadApple_ph but don't say I didn't warn you if you get hungry!

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

KALE CHIPS #TuesdayTummy



Like any other PMS-ing woman I know, I love to snack on anything crunchy and salty when my time of the month is coming. The thing is, I hate feeling even more bloated that I naturally get during this time, and eating salt-loaded chips won't really help in that department. For those who can't keep their hands our of the chip bag, here's a healthier alternative that's oh-so easy to make. Kale is high in fiber, Vitamin K, iron, Vitamin A, Calcium and Vitamin C, while being low in calorie and having ZERO fat. How can something this healthy be yummy? Here's the recipe!

Kale Chips

Ingredients:

1 bunch Curly Kale, with middle ribbed removed and torn into even sized pieces
1 tablespoon olive oil (Even better if you have the oil in a spray can for more even coverage)
pinch of sea salt
pepper, to taste
parmesan cheese, to taste

How to:

Add all ingredients in a mixing bowl and make sure to coat all Kale evenly.
Lay on a tray with baking paper, making sure not to overcrowd the Kale so they crisp up.
Bake for about 10 minutes at 325 F.
Remove from heat and enjoy with a yogurt based garlic aioli.
Thank FatKitch-SkinnyKitch :)

Thursday, September 25, 2014

CHIA SEED EGG OMELETTE #TryThis


I just got back from Sydney yesterday and when I opened my fridge and pantry this morning, I was in a semi-panic because I had nothing healthy to eat. I ate a lot of delicious but not very good for you food and definitely one too many bottles (yes bottles not glasses) of wine. So, I really did not want to indulge "just one more time" by eating the Lucky Charms that were staring at me from the kitchen counter. I checked to see what veggies we had, and we only had a pack of tomatoes, some garlic and onions and left over bangus flakes. OK, I knew I could make that work. To add a bit more on the health benefits side, I added some chia seeds to the egg mixture as well as wheat germ. What I ended up with was a delicious, healthy brekky, and definitely better than Lucky Charms! Add some dried herbs if you wish. I'd usually do fresh, but like I said, NO FOOD! Must do a grocery run this weekend! You don't even taste the wheat germ and chia seeds but get all their health benefits.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

JUJU EATS #WIAT (What I Ate Today)



Ever since I started doing Yoga and Pilates at One Life Studio along Pasong Tamo, Juju Eats salads and wraps have been a staple in my life. I LOVE having something fresh and healthy available to me whenever I'm there and hungry after a work out. To make it even better, although they have many different salads to choose from, I like how they have an option to customize your own. My favorites so far are the pumpkin salad, but with pesto dressing instead of balsamic vinaigrette, and this one above, the thai beef salad (tweaked to my taste) with thai beef, crispy catfish, corn, egg and nam pla, a Thai fish sauce based dressing. If I'm not eating a salad, I usually go for a chicken caesar wrap sans croutons and dressing on the side. They are opening one in Eastwood soon, but I live near Rockwell and Ortigas, so Juju Eats, please open in Kapitolyo or Rockwell, I'm begging you! 

Juju Eats is located at G/F, BCS Building, 2297 Chino Roces Ave, Makati City, Metro Manila
(02) 551 3968

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

GRILLED CHICKEN WITH CREAM CHEESE MUSTARD & WILD HONEY #TuesdayTummy



I know as much as anyone else, that a simple grilled chicken breast can sometimes border on drab. That's why I like to experiment with different spices, and cooking methods, to make the simplest of all diet meals, with the most flavor. I made this the other day, on an "I-hate-myself-for-not-having-visited-the-gym-in-over-a-week-day" - and it gave me a good excuse to put my new grill pan to test.

INGREDIENTS

  • two filleted chicken breasts
  • salt and pepper
  • dried parsley
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • Spanish paprika
  • cream cheese
  • Dijon mustard
  • wild honey
PREP

Rub chicken breasts with Worcestershire sauce, parsley, paprika, salt and pepper (marinade overnight if you have time). Put grill pan on low heat. Add a dash of extra virgin olive oil (optional). Add chicken to pan and cook slowly.

Whip cream cheese into Dijon mustard, making sure the cream cheese is no longer in chunks but blends in. Measurements are more or less equal parts cream cheese to mustard.

Cook chicken evenly on both sides until golden brown. 

Serve with the cream cheese mustard and some wild honey to garnish.


I add the wild honey because I have probably been fine dining a little too much lately, and I'm finding every excuse in the book to mix unusual flavors. The trick is to keep it simple and keep trying different combos.. when it works, it just does. But again, this comes from the girl who likes to dip her french fries into her sundae. In my defense though, I think a great fig jam on cheese is the perfect appetizer.

Okay, wow, all that just makes me sound weird.. but you have to try it!

Bon appetit!

Monday, September 22, 2014

WILDFLOUR BREAKFAST CAZUELA #ManicMondays



Happy Monday!

So, on a day like this, who has the time to bother with a complicated meal. This is one of my favorites from my main spot, Wildflour. I am there so often, it's bordering on becoming an extension of my dining room. This dish is a total no-brainer - white beans in tomato sauce, chorizo, topped with two perfectly poached eggs with a side of bread. For the diet-conscious, skip the bread, but frankly, I think there is no better way of enjoying this dish than by adding a bucketload of cayenne pepper on it and then running bits of bread through it.


Wildflour Café + BakeryFort Bonifacio

G/F Net Lima Bldg4th Ave cor 26th StFort Bonifacio, Taguig(02) 856-7600

Saturday, September 20, 2014

HONEY BALSAMIC CHIPOLATAS #SoulFoodSaturday


Last weekend was my brother's birthday, and since we're in Australia and the weather has been turning into real spring weather, we decided to have a BBQ! I made my signature steak and these honey-balsamic chipolatas. I usually use chorizo but since we had these in the fridge, I just went with it. It has a nice sweet and sour flavor, mixed with caramelized onion and garlic and great as a pass around food or pica pica during parties.

Ingredients:


  • Pork Chipolatas (sliced into thirds)
  • 1 medium onion
  • 3 cloves garlic, sliced thin
  • 2 tbs. honey
  • 2 tbs. balsamic vinegar
  • 1/3 cup red wine
  • Pepper, to taste

How to:

  • Fry onions in a little bit of olive oil until soft and then add the chipolatas.
  • When sausages are browned, add garlic and pepper. Fry until caramelized.
  • Add honey, balsamic and wine and cook until sauce is reduced and sticky.
  • Serve with toothpicks or with bread.
  • Don't forget the wine!


Friday, September 19, 2014

P'AZTEQUE #TGIFToast #Paris



Four weeks into my being back from the land of fromage and love, I am still somewhat reeling in the memories. I have to laugh when I realize that this year alone, I have been to Paris a crazy amount of 3 times, and that's not even counting the times I passed through. This is it, my life is over, I've done all the traveling I need to do for a while, and consumed copious amounts of liquor in the process. Sorry, liver.

On a balmy night in Paris, our Parisian host kidnapped us at took us to a little taco joint, dragging us through it, past burritos and latin-looking couples snogging on high chairs, through a door and down a rabbithole, into a secret little bar, as dark as an underground prison cave, but rich in cute bartenders and strange concoctions.

P'AZTEQUE

  • Tequila Ocho Blanco
  • Cocci Torino Vermouth
  • Suze Saveur D'Autrefois Liquor
  • Watermelon juice
  • Mint leaves
  • fresh lemon
  • Chuncho bitters
La classe! I miss you, Paris.