Friday, October 28, 2016


Heard about Shawarma Bros when the new wing of UP town Center opened. One lazy weekend, the hubby and I decided to try it out for a late lunch. The places wasn't full so we took time to ask about what was good to eat. The food server recommended their specialty Lamb Steak Rice Meal over the Beef  Shawarma Rice Meal. So that's what I had.

While the hubby got the Chicken Shawarma Rice meal.

He got the "Big bro" serving so his meal was served with  Keema on the side. Keema is stewed minced meat with potatoes (though traditionally it should be peas) often used as bread filling in Mediterranean restaurants.

Both meals were served with salsa topped with a smidge of yoghurt and yellow rice which is supposed to be Turmeric rice but didn't taste much like it. Which is fine by me since I think plain rice always works best with grilled meat.

The Chicken Shawarma was spiced just right- not too hot, not too sour and not too salty.

The lamb steak was flavored to my liking. However, it was tough and rubbery which usually happens when there's not enough fat in the meat or if was cooked too fast in medium high heat. Lamb get tender when cooked in low heat over a long period. The lamb on my plate seemed to have enough fat so  I think the latter is the reason for the  chewy dining experience I had. Disappointed? Yeah. Maybe because they had set my expectation high by telling me it was their specialty. But I think I will give their Beef Shawarma a try next time.

Shawarma Bros.
2/F UP Town Center, C.P Garcia Avenue, Diliman, Quezon City

Saturday, October 15, 2016



When the rain starts pouring in the evening, a bowl soup always fills my mind.  So I prepared for rain tonight and made Scallop and Shrimp Cream Soup.

Local scallops or Bay Scallops and are smaller than their Sea Scallop cousins. But don't worry, when it comes to these bi-valve mollusks, size does not matter. Taste is what counts. The pinkish shells encase the  round creamy white meat called adductor muscles the part that allows the shells to open and close. In most bivalves like oysters ang mussels, the adductor muscles are tough, but in scallops these are tender,  creamy with a hint of sweetness.

Now, with your scallop 101 done, go and try to make this creamy wonder so your rainy nights need not be clammy.

  • 250 g. Bay scallops, removed from the shell
  • 250 g. shrimps, shelled
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 can of canned cream style corn (about 200 g)
  • 1 cup fresh milk
  • 1 cup all-purpose cream
  • 1 pc. onion, medium, diced
  • 1 pc. potato, large, diced
  • 1 pc. carrots, diced
  • 1 pc. celery stalk, sliced
  • 2 tbsp. butter  salted
  • 1 1/2 tsp. Old Bay seasoning (or mix in equal parts celery salt, red pepper, paprika)
  • salt and pepper to taste
1.  Saute. Over medium-high heat, melt the butter in the pot and saute the onion, carrots, celery, scallops and shrimps. Flavor with half a teaspoon of the Old Bay seasoning. When the shrimps are have changed color on both sides, remove from heat. Let it cool.

2. Chop. Once cooled, place the mixture in a blender and roughly chop using the pulse mode.

3. Make the Cream Soup. Return the chopped mixture in the pan, this time over medium-low heat. Stir in the chicken broth, milk then the cream. Add the corn and the remaining Old Bay Seasoning. Mix gently as you bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat to low and let it simmer for 5 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Once the soup has reached a creamy consistency, remove from the heat and serve.

Next time, I'll make a chowder variation and see how that works.

Sunday, October 2, 2016


Food has been sexualized in Cinema countless times. And why not, food and sex are two pleasures if taken in extremes can become sins of the flesh. But often, when sexualized, food ends up as a prop used to get laughs (that apple pie in "American Pie") or used for shock value (that feces feast in the Italian film "Salo").  Bringing food to a level of eroticism takes more sophistication and less prejudice. When food and sex go beyond sexuality,  the imagination is fired up, slowly building a simmering anticipation for the delicious pleasures  we crave so much.

Here's my list of the 10 most erotic food moments on Cinema.

This 1963 British comedy classic has a scene where a hearty meal between  is a prelude for a late-night romp.  This movie is proof that biting into a turkey leg and slurping oysters can get you some.  And no, it does not star Tom Jones, the "Sex Bomb" singer.

Stepping on your food is not sexy. But in the grape stomping scene of this 1995 romantic film, the women get into a frenzy that leaves them wet and the men's mind, dirty. The scene ends with a saccharine kiss between Keanu Reeves and his leading lady Aitana Sanchez-Gijon... that leads to some more steamy kissing in the bedroom.

Based on the magic realism novel by Laura Esquivel, this 1992 Mexican film is about subverting tradition through food. Tita (Lumi Cavasos) is forbidden to marry Pedro (Marco Leonardi), the man she loves. And in true magic realism fashion, Tita, burning with passion for Pedro, inspires lust with her Quail in Rose Petal Sauce.

This 1983 Hollywood romantic drama is best known for the highly charged dancing of its lead star Jennifer Beals. Less remembered is the quiet yet sexually charged dinner scene with her leading man Michael Nouri where they exchange notes about each others turn ons while hungrily eating lobster. They never get to dessert because dinner is interrupted by a footsie.

This 2002 romcom has a young Jason Isaacs (the guy who played Lucius Malfoy in "Harry Potter") romancing Sofia Milos (who played Detective Yelina Salas in Season 3 of "CSI:Miami") after she serves him Seafood Paella, Fried Codfish Fillet, Lobster Casserole and Shrimp; and, Swordfish Mozabique. They never got to finishing all of that because they got busy with licking fingers and other body parts.

The 1997 remake was as controversial as the 1947 version. The movie starred a 17-year old Dominique Swain as Lolita and multi-awarded actor Jeremy Irons as Professor Humbert Humbert. One of the more contentious scenes had Lolita sucking on a banana as the professor tries to elude the car that he thinks has been following them.

Bernardo Bertolluci's 1972 erotic thriller about Paul (Marlon Brando), an American who gets involved with Jeanne (Maria Schneider), a young French woman, earned an X-rating on its first screening in the U.S. And like any French recipe, this movie has butter. In a quietly violent sodomy scene. 

This French-Japanese art film pushed boundaries back in 1976 with its unsimulated sex scenes between the lead stars Tatsuya Fuji and Eiko Matsuda who played  lovers indulging in intense sexual experiments that lead to death and a decapitated penis. The erotic food scene involves an egg being inserted into a female orifice that is not the mouth. Taken in the context of the film's narrative, the scene, perverse as it may seem, is one of the may acts of surrender.  It is so graphic that if you search for it, only porn sites have clips of it. Definitely NSFW.

This 1985 Japanese comedy is about noodles, a widow and a pair of truck drivers. No, it's not porn. And the scene that many find steamy involves an egg, cracked open and passed on in an almost kiss from the gangster (Koji Yakusho) to his lover (Fukumi Kuroda). This scene takes the phrase "exchange of fluids" to a different level.

1)  9 1/2 WEEKS
This 1986 romantic drama stars Mickey Rourke as John, a Wall Street trader  who seduces Elizabeth (Kim Basinger), an art gallery assistant, with food from the fridge. If you imagine all that expired dairy in your fridge, it doesn't sound too hot, right?  Good thing Elizabeth stocks up on fresh produce and unexpired processed food. Her taste buds go into overdrive when John blindfolds her and lets her lick, suck and bite whatever he can get his hands on- honey, cherry and even a hot jalapeno pepper. For sure, couples looking spice up to their evening romps have tried this and found themselves in a sticky mess the morning after.