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discoveries after the wedding bells

Vday Surprises (Part 1): Salcedo Saturday Market

this is a long overdue post of the fun we had at the salcedo saturday market last vday.  so here goes…

im sure a lot of people reserved tables at various restaurants today but not hubby and i. we wanted to veer away from the cliche, postponed our vday dinner next week and went to the market for valentines day. yes, you read right, we decided to go to the market on hearts day, the saturday salcedo market that is!

now ive learned tons about salcedo market from various blogs and articles but never got around to satisfying my curiosity about this weekly event until today. the morning person that i am did not really have a hard time getting up early (unlike the slow to warm in the morning partner of mine) so that we could be at tordesillas street in salcedo makati by 730am. when we got there there were a couple of shoppers already exiting the makeshift market (a parking lot accross one salcedo) and there were quite a number of cars already parked all the way around the block. boy these people really get up early dont they!

upon entering you could feel the hustle and bustle of the market place just as it is starting to begin. there were potted herbs,
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fresh seafood (literally splish splashing in the tub of water!

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and a blanket of wonderful this and that all around.

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we went around the market first to survey what was in store for our tummies and after much dilemma (from choices overload!), hubby chose the food stall called Gigi La Crepe for his breakfast treat.

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this is operated by a jolly frenchman who strikes up short but witty conversations with his customers as he concentrates on flipping the paper thin crepe that envelopes his bretton galettes. unlike the traditional crepe, galettes are cooked on one side only and garnished meats, egg, cheese, fruits and other spreads in various combinations.

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hubby and i chose to have the sausage galette and the ham, egg and cheese galette (AKA complete galette) each costing P100 each.

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the sausage galette was simple yet delicious! the sausage used was peppery and intense.

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the complete galette was a treat. it is said to be one of the most popular variety.  you could taste all the 3 major fillings which settled well in the crepe covering.

we washed down our yummy breakfast with sugar cane juice. a small cup will set you back P25. i found it a little steep compared to the 0.9Sing$ sugar cane juice that came in a glass twice as large as the one we had today. but nevertheless it was good! i guess thats what really matters.

i heard a lot about the barbecue of salcedo market and definitely did not want to leave without trying so even if we were satisfied with our galette breakfast, we went to sample the much talked about grilled pork.

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there are 3 sizes costing P25, P45, and P65. we sampled the P25 size and i realized i was the only one getting 1 piece of barbecue! all the other customers were hoarding it like winter was coming! i came to the right place then, i thought. one bite of this thick pork meat will make you faint in delight!  i know you must be thinking, a barbecue i is a barbecue, but this is exceptional!

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it is thick but tender and flavorfully juicy! and im not even exaggerating! our stick was in the trash in no time!!!

with barbecue greased lips, we went on another round of the market place which brought us to the center of the walkway to a man giving away taste tests of his homemade frozen yogurt like there was no tomorrow!

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frankly all the market goers were pleased to get a sample.

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he first had me taste the mango and vanilla which was de-li-ciou!!! and just as i was finishing the hefty sample, he handed me the banana which was surprisingly ok to taste. then came the dark chocolate. chocolate lovers out there, i tell you this is sooo good!!! my mouth is watering just at the thought! then the one with a special blend of berries (and oh i could not remember because i was eating like a kid with a priced lollipop) which was interestingly yummy too. after another gastronomic dilemma i decided on the mango and vanilla.

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as my frozen yogurt was being scooped into my cup, i learned that froyo is freshly homemade from 100% yogurt, with no refined sugar added by the vendor.

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because it is pure, it is a bit more sour than the ones you find in the malls. the consistency is also another difference as froyo is more compact and a personal order will last forever! yuuummy! i do recommend this item. i will surely get some every time we come to this saturday market. but i think they sell some at serendra, i will have to check. i learned that they have froyo at arama, beside lary’s bar. ooohhh!!!

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the personal serving around 150 grams will cost you P65, 1 pint is P190 and 1/2 gallon is P650. if you visit salcedo market dont miss out on this item!

as my yogurt cup was emptied, we chanced upon a lady tasting coffee from a stall. the caffeine lured me towards TonG coffee owned by Ike Miranda. he told us that he picks the beans himself to create this perfect blend and roasts them weekly just for the saturday salcedo market. he pointed out that the beans still had oil on them because they were newly microroasted.

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this means that the pack that you buy will always be fresh. a free taste test of this unique coffee blend will positively make you leave the stall with a pack in hand. the sample was not hot as it was in the small coffee press sitting on the stall and i did not add cream or sugar but it smelled strong and wonderful and tasted even better! personally, a true test of good coffee beans would be enjoying it unadulterated, with just hot water added and frankly, this is one of the best ive tasted!!!

i bought a 400gram pack of unground beans and walked away happy!

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there was a stall that sold tapa of two sorts, venison (deer) and wild boar (as in baboy ramo).

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a good lot is sold for P360 and is smoked (or dried, sorry my blood flow was directed to my tummy after everything i ate!) and will keep for several weeks ready for frying. this looked good for breakfast but we decided to pass this time.

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this stall also sold aged and seasoned cuts of steak. a box of 3 cuts will cost P750. not bad! im sure we will try this sometime soon!

a more thorough walk into the small alleys made by the stalls brought us to Everybody’s Cafe, a kapampangan stall which sold exotic delicacies. i felt like andrew zimmern would appear around the corner anytime as i was scrutinizing the odd food items.

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there were stuffed frogs, crickets, and of course our favorite sisig

we were full from our morning’s buys and decided to move on. we chanced upon this burger stall that had a challenge.

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we looked at the big burger grilling and said, hey, i think i could do that if i wasnt so full. the lady on the other end of the counter corrected our misconception and showed us the burger bun which was involved in the challenge. it was as big as a personal size pizza! ok, that is quite a challenge!

we decided to buy a pack of home made ham freshly made without any preservatives.

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this will last 3 days in the fridge but if placed in the freezer will last for several months according to the stall owner.

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with coffee and ham in hand and a lot of other treats in the GIT, hubby and i left the market two satisfied customers!

February 23, 2009 Posted by | Gastronomic experience | , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

Vday Surprises (Part2)

we were supposed to watch the mazda club drifting event at the fort after our saturday salcedo market visit but we were there a little too early and were too impatient to wait. so we headed to megamall to buy a canister to keep my newly bought TonG coffee fresh.

walking around the mall, we decided to have lunch and scouted the new atrium of megamall for somewhere good to eat. we didnt want to have vday dining along with the other couples today, so our reservation for a restaurant we’re excited to try was postponed to next week. because hubby wanted to try secret recipe as he has never tasted the food there, we went to get a table to satisfy his curiosity. surprisingly they were running a promo that will avail you of a 4 course meal for couples that costs only P999! the offer was too good to pass up and so started or 1 hour and 1/2 journey to all things good!

our waiter MJ was very helpful in the options that we had for the promo.

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i love service that gives intelligent opinions on the restaurant’s dishes and this is just what secret recipe in the atrium of megamall offered. (i do hate it when you ask which of two dishes you like is better and get an answer such as “kayo po ma’am, or pareho lang po”, it goes to show the waiter does not know his work, thank goodness you wont find this in secret recipe)

the first course was a choice of either mushroom or pumpkin soup.

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i of course chose the pumpkin soup. this was truly a good tasting soup that settles well in an empty stomach (or a full one im my case!)

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and hubby got the mushroom soup. this was obviously made with a lot of mushroom because the taste was intensely good!

in short both were delicious!

the 2nd course was asian chicken salad.

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what a beauty the bowls were! the colors of the leaves, tomatoes, dressing and chicken pops were ones a camera could not resist! and it tasted wonderfully good! just a hint of spiciness touched the crisp greens.

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why cant i ever whip up a salad like this?! i could honestly live on this alone!!!

the third course was the main course. you could choose from the grilled chicken menu and the asian specialty dishes.

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hubby chose the tom yum (why was i not surprised!). this was definitely a hot dish! it was too spicy for me but enjoyably yummy for the numbed-tongue hubby of mine. he loved it as he started to a get runny nose from the spiciness of the dish. for the brave ones out there or the spicy food lovers, this is a must try! (i think ill stick with the intensity of jatujac tom yum)

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i got the singapore laksa. i was interested because this was one of the dishes we were not able to try during our trip to the lion city. it consisted of a creamy milky soup which was mildly spiced with round noodles, tofu, shrimp, and another ingredient which looked like fish sticks. i loved it! it was super!

the last course was the dessert and coffee. you could pick from any cake or cheesecake.

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hubby generically got his favorite blueberry cheesecake

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and i got the white chocolate macadamia which this turned out to be a humongous slice of cake. this is a mixed smooth white chocolate with a texture of partly ground macadamia in between a sponge cake.

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both our desserts were wonderful with my favorite lavazza coffee.

both stuffed to the brim, we happily left secret recipe satisfied with the food, service and price!

i guess our deferred vday dining was not postponed after all…well, call this an intro to our dinner date at jes suis gourmand in the next couple of days

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this promo is good for couples until the end of february (sorry i forgot to ask if the other secret recipe branches had this promo). so couples out there, if your hungry and looking for some delicious food that will satisfy your empty stomach, hurry to secret recipe!

and oh yeah, we did find a really great canister for my prized TonG coffee.

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asian blend in an italian glass canister! what a beauty!

February 14, 2009 Posted by | Meandering | , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments