VEGETARIAN WHO?!

I know I have talked about this before (maybe a little more than I should) but now that I’m getting close to some real holiday celebrations, I might as well write something about it again.
About three months (?) ago, I decided to get into something I never thought I’d ever get myself into. I’ve always been an absolute carnivore and it’s always been a struggle to eat vegetables. But having a small part of me that is always curious over a lot of things which leads me to try different stuff on the most random times, I ended up deciding on getting myself into vegetarianism.

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If you’ve been with me since I started the journey, you should know how days went and how much of a struggle the first few days have been. I must admit that right now, this whole system’s not too difficult for me anymore. Yes, there are days when I find it hard to find something to eat but I have this new found excitement to find good food without meat (exploring different food places is super fun too). BUT as exciting as the last few months have been, I know I cannot forgive myself if I let the holidays pass without enjoying the celebrations completely. And honestly, I don’t think I would enjoy the celebrations to the fullest if I would continue depriving myself of meat.

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So with all the holiday dinners, vacations and (possibly) family reunions that are lined up for the weeks ahead, I just know that I need to allow myself to eat meat again. But that does not go without any challenge at all. The challenge for me would be to control the amount of food I’ll be taking in. I have lost a good amount of weight already (blog for that coming soon) so I need to make sure that I don’t gain them back just because I allowed myself to eat meat for a couple of weeks. I don’t know how the next few weeks would go but you can bet that I cannot wait to enjoy the celebrations with all the meat already. I’ll think about how I’ll transition back to vegetarianism (or if I would) once the celebrations are all over. I honestly can’t be bothered to think about right now.

So for the next three (?) weeks ahead, I’ll try my best to write about how the festivities would go for me. Hopefully, I’ll get to sneak in some exciting food features in between too! Right now, I need to start calming myself down because my carnivorous self is just so ready to be unleashed!

 

GIFs are from giphy.com

 

Day 40 – LAST DAILY POST!

We’ve arrived to the day when I’ll write my last daily post. This does not mean though that I will be abandoning this blog anymore. As hassle as this whole thing is, I know I’m doing something I truly enjoy so I wouldn’t let go of this anymore…

My mom and I had a pretty good breakfast. She had fried rice with longganisa and dried fish while I ate our leftover Mattari Okonomiyaki from our dinner at Chibo Okonomiyaki last night. We didn’t bother preparing anything else because we’ll be heading out for a surprise birthday celebration for one of our family friends. When we got there though, I didn’t get to eat much (I think) because, obviously, they wouldn’t adjust their menu for me. Luckily, they had penne with white sauce and mixed vegetables with quail eggs so I still got to eat something. It was a rather intimate party (considering how big our community is) and it seemed like everyone had a lot of fun. Maybe I did to because the time went by so fast. After the party, mom and I headed to the closest mall to finish up on our Christmas gift list which we packed when we got home a couple of hours ago. Before heading home, we grabbed something to eat at Project Pie (again cos mom’s total sucker for good pizzas). We had the usual… mom had all-meat pizza while I had no-meat pizza and we ordered our favorite James’ Project. It’s a salad with mixed greens, candied walnuts, feta cheese, craisins and raspberry vinaigrette. The sweetness of the raspberry is very subtle and getting a serving of all the components makes everything so much better.

It’s been a really good weekend. Probably one of the best in a very long time. There is just something about the holidays that makes me really happy and spirited and excited for a lot of different things. I don’t know how to feel about the fact that I am not longer gonna be posting everyday but I guess this is all for the best. I want to stop compromising my posts just to meet my daily requirements. Keep watching out for my future posts. I’ll make sure to make them better in terms of content and flow. Sleeping happy tonight, yehey!

Day 34 – CORN ALL DAY!

Warning you, the next bits can be a little gross…

 

Whenever I eat corn, my body doesn’t digest it well that I always end up releasing whole bits (or chunks lol) of it in hours. And that’s what I am expecting to happen tomorrow morning upon waking up. I didn’t get to eat breakfast before leaving but not because I got out of bed late. I just didn’t feel like eating something. Well, I did take a small bite from our leftover pizza but that’s very much it. Right after that, I headed straight to our set-up for an exhibit starting this Wednesday.

 

I had a good lunch with some noodles and tofu (AGAIN!) but I didn’t feel enthusiastic enough to take shots of it. For one, I am not feeling this day (or week huhu) and also because I ate with some workmates so it could have been totally awkward if I took pictures in front of people who aren’t used to me taking pictures of my food (so please excuse my pictures in very low quality, I’ll make it up soon). So I skipped taking pictures and got to work after eating. On the way home, I bought a pack of Kettle Corn (sweet and salty variant) because I have been craving for it for weeks now. I also got some fresh corn which I finished even before reaching our house. And my corn-ception did not end there. I had Corn and Mushroom soup for dinner. I’ve had it for days in our storage and it surprisingly, it’s still pretty good!

 

I’m losing it over this daily blogging because I feel bad for writing about stuff that aren’t even interesting but I really really wanna have a journal for my daily progress regardless if it’s interesting or not. But if you’ve been legit reading my posts since day 1 then I am sorry because I’m starting to lose good stories to write about (even my pictures are starting to look bad). But, I’m trying to turn things around quickly. I’m also trying to plan things out in my diet system (vegetarianism), content releases and basically just this whole online journal thing better. It’s gonna be a choice between posting everyday but with very subpar topics (unless, of course, if my day’s really interesting) or to lessen posts but make it more profound and interesting. I’ll try to weigh everything because everything’s becoming less vivid now but I don’t think my motivation to lose weight and be in this whole vegetarian system isnt’ wavering. I’m focused on being healthier (relatively) and achieving my long-time dream of being an actual food (and, possibly, lifestyle) blogger. Cheers for the uncertainties of tomorrows guys!

4 MUST TRY MEAT-FREE DISHES!

Tonight, I am celebrating my first month of being vegetarian.

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Well, it wasn’t the easiest especially for an absolute carnivore like me. I could literally devour a dozen pieces of fried chicken in one sitting (ask my friends who once gave me a bucket of KFC fried chicken as their birthday gift for me). I may have a lot of inconsistencies as well when it comes to my eating habits but I am confident enough to say that I managed to stay within the whole vegetarian system for 31 days now. CAN YOU BELIEVE IT? 31 FREAKING DAYS!

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Through those first 31 days of being vegetarian, I got to eat in different places I otherwise would not have eaten at. Among all the foods I got to try, there were absolute standouts. These standouts definitely made my experience less of a struggle and more of a memorable experience for me. So in this post, I’m sharing 4 of my most favorite vegetarian-friendly dishes which I have tried over the last few weeks (I’ll most likely drool while writing this…). 

Shitake Mushroom and Malunggay Burger (The Urban Farm)

I came in their place in BF Parañaque with absolutely no expectations. It was quiet when I got there and I had the place all for myself when I ate. Their menu has some pretty good choices but somehow, I decided to try their burger as soon as I saw it.

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They serve their burger with, what seemed like, sweet potato chips. It was crisp and the sweetness of the sweet potato was definitely coming through (Tip: add a little sprinkle of salt). The star of the show isn’t their chips though– it’s their burger. The patty’s sandwiched in a simple bun with oats on top, lettuce, raw onions (which I took out) and puréed tomatoes. It was a rather straightforward combination, which gives a more distinguishable focus on the bun itself. If you eat the burger without knowing what it was, you’ll definitely find it difficult to distinguish what it’s made of. It maybe a little dry but that’s totally understandable for me. What I love most about it is the fact that even with the prominence of the rest of the ingredients, the patty still holds on its own. You definitely would recognize that the patty is there. It’s not at all bland, maybe not as meaty as regular patties (TOTALLY JUSTIFIABLE) and works so well with everything that’s on the plate (IT’S NOT GREASY TOO)! It was a really great way to start my vegetarian journey.

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The Urban Farm Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato


Agedashi Tofu (Kenji Tei Ramen House)

I’ll admit: I found it really hard to decide which of the two Agedashi Tofus that I have tried is better. But, I am settling with Kenji Tei’s.

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I’ll have to give it to the tofu itself. I am not sure what type of tofu they used for this because I don’t have any prior experience with different types of tofus. But, if I will have to put my guess on something, I’ll guess that they used silken tofu (WILD GUESS). It definitely tasted like that soy they use in taho, which made it feel weird when I first bit on it. It was a little sweet with distinguishable hints of that soy taste and is very much unlike the regular tofus I normally get from local markets. I also love the fact that the breading wasn’t overwhelming at all. It was still very light and the breading was enough to add a good texture to it. It pairs well with the lightness of their donburi sauce as well. I would have definitely finished the entire serving of it if I didn’t order their Yakisoba with it…

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Mazesoba (Uma Uma Ramen)

I have, for the longest time, shared articles about dishes that are rated by other food enthusiasts. But, I never actually put an effort to visit the places or try the foods they wrote about. Uma Uma was an exception. I guess I read the article about their Mazesoba at the best possible time. I was near the place, I didn’t have anything to blog about yet and I was hungry. So I literally hunted it down!

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On the article I read, they wrote about 7 of the best ramens there is in Singapore and there it was, in all its glory, Uma Uma’s Mazesoba. I read about it and saw that it didn’t have actual meat on it. My only concern was, their broth might be meat-based like how it normally is for ramens, which would be a total deal breaker. Luckily, they didn’t serve it with broth. It was a dry ramen (or whatever that’s called, educate me please) that takes most of its sauce from the runny yolk of the onsen egg. No, I haven’t tried many kinds of ramen yet. Neither have I tried a legit bowl of ramen straight from Japan (BUT HOPEFULLY SOON) but their Mazesoba is by far the one of the best ramens I have tried. The ingredients they served it with worked well together. By paper, it seemed a little too simple but eating everything together was a complete surprise. I particularly love the kick their chili oil adds. It was a good hit.

Anyone would definitely not miss the depth ramen broths’ provide because of how well everything works. Maybe next time I’ll pay for additional soba and onsen eggs…

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Truffle Mac and Cheese (Mama Lou’s Italian Kitchen)

I liked it so much that I could still literally taste it in my head. And I know, I know that it’s probably because truffle’s becoming mainstream lately so I’m probably just too overwhelmed but the thing is… truffle (oil) is one of those ingredients that you need to know how much to put because it could make or break your dish. They finished their mac and cheese with the right amount of truffle oil that did not sacrifice the taste of the pasta on its own at all. I honestly believe that even without the addition of truffle oil, I’d still consider it one of the better mac and cheese plates I have tried.

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Nope, I haven’t tried many mac and cheese in my life yet so there isn’t much to compare it with but I am very bias with dishes that I couldn’t cook myself. I know it’s just basic béchamel sauce with a mix of different cheeses and sometimes finished off with some ground nutmeg so why can’t I cook it myself, right?! See… cheeses are hella expensive here in the Philippines so there’s no way I’ll get to cook my own mac and cheese on a regular day basis (I’ll probably kill more than a thousand pesos worth of cheese to cook a serving alone). So if I were to crave for one, I’d definitely go back to Mama Lou’s and have an order of it again! Let me know if you tried better ones, I’ll make sure to try them when I can!

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It’s been nothing but pure fun. Again, it’s been difficult and I am still struggling until now (it doesn’t help to watch samgyeopsal or mukbang videos late at night). But, I am determined to keep going. I have mentioned over and over again that I am planning to take a break with my diet when I leave the country over the holidays but for now I’m still really motivated to keep going! Hope ya’ll stick with me through this!

Note: Commentaries are written as a food enthusiast and as a self-taught cook. GIFs are from giphy.com and photos are all taken by yours truly. Also, make sure to ask the restaurants’ crews if your food is actually meat free!

If you wish to contact me, feel free to check my contact details on the Contact tab.

 

Day 30 – A LITTLE TOO MUCH!

After a very long time, I got to eat breakfast and fix my eating habit (for today at least). I had some croquettes remaining that are ready to be fried so I had that for breakfast. I cannot even remember the last time I had breakfast before leaving for work! I had it with Sriracha which is always a good thing. Two pieces should’ve been enough but I couldn’t resist so I ate the other two pieces I prepared.

 

Having eaten something good for breakfast, you’d think I’d eat any less for lunch… I didn’t. Initially, I just wanted to get something from Starbucks because I was craving for some coffee but then there was a nearby place with different food places so we decided to get something to eat first. We ate at Café France where I had Creamy Truffle Pasta (because anything with truffle seems good). I had the bacon separated which my office mate enjoyed on my behalf. The pasta was good but truffle is a lot like sesame oil. A little of it makes everything so much better. A little more and it just ruins everything. That’s exactly the case earlier (although, I won’t lie, I finished my plate clean). They may have added a little too much truffle oil when the finished my pasta because that’s all I tasted. Good thing they served it with some garlic bread which managed to cut down the overwhelming taste of truffle that was on my pasta! After eating, we passed by Starbucks and I decided to get their Toffee Nut Latte. I super regret saying yes when asked if I’d get venti instead of grande. I struggled finishing it. It was just too much for me. The rest of the day was fine and I got to go home a little earlier than usual (THANK GOD)! I had a bit more croquettes for dinner and some balut. Good way to wrap this night up!

 

I’m happy that today I got to eat way better but when I wanted to eat better I didn’t mean to say eat more. I ate so much today that it’s probably more than everything I ate for the last five days combined. I’m happy I got to fix my eating habits but I definitely need to watch out what I eat. I’ll try to cook something up tomorrow!

 

And by the way, tomorrow I’m celebrating my first month of being on vegetarian diet. Watch out for a special post tomorrow night. Planning to create a new category for a new set of posts too starting tomorrow. Exciting stuff ahead!

Day 29 – TODAY, I CHEATED!

Running on nothing but sheer will, I managed to go through this day. It’s been one hell of a struggle because of how weird the weather has been. Just yesterday, it was raining so hard that it seemed like it will flood the greater parts of Manila. And then today, the sun was up and shining brighter than it did over the last few days. With that, the temperature wasn’t tolerable at all which explains my mood for the rest of the days (AND GAAAHD FREAKING HEADACHE JUSKO).

 

I left our office to do some errands around Manila just a few minutes after 12 and I totally didn’t expect the traffic to be very bad in Las Piñas until Manila. So by the time I got down the public bus, it was already past 3. IMAGINE BEING INSIDE THE BUS FOR 3 HOURS! AND THEIR COOLER ISN’T EVEN WORKING WELL (WHICH IS COMPLETELY UNDERSTANDABLE BECAUSE THE HEAT TODAY WAS UNBEARABLE). As soon as I got down, I made sure to rush everything so I could go home as soon as I can. On the way which was past 4 already, I was already thinking about what I would want to eat. It was my first meal of the day so I really wanted to get something good. I decided to just get some broccolis and other stuff before actually going home.

 

As soon as I got home, I boiled water and salt so I could blanch the broccolis I bought. I toasted the three-cheese sandwich I got from 7 Eleven and then went back to slice the broccolis. After blanching it, I boiled some water again to get some makeshift double-boiler going. I added cream and then added some cheese until it’s melted all the way. Put in the blanched broccolis after seasoning the cream sauce. Cooked it for a bit then served it with the three-cheese toast I got AND I CANNOT EVEN DESCRIBE HOW THAT WENT FOR ME. IT’S PROBABLY THE BEST MEAL I HAD IN A LONG TIME (YES, EVEN COMPARED TO THE MEALS I HAD FROM FOOD PLACES). I was so satisfied that all I wanted to do was lay in bed and enjoy the rest of the night. (I cannot workout tonight because I’m trying to feel if my body can hold up well and I don’t think I can. I’m pretty beaten up from a rather intense one I did last Monday… maybe because I have not lifted for a long time.) After a couple of minutes, I remembered I had a couple of potatoes in our stock so I decided to make some croquettes with it. Had it for dinner and saved some for tomorrow.

 

The last few hours has been great. Good food and I got to lay in bed for a couple of hours. I don’t know wy but I’m just very unmotivated lately (well, actually, I know why but lol). In two days it’ll be a month of being vegetarian already, really cool huh? Although I’m really considering eating meat when we leave the country over the holidays but let’s see how things would go. Definitely gonna try my hardest to make the rest of this week better. Gotta load up, have some intense weeks ahead!

 

*ALSO, watch out for something call in the next few days. Super stoked. Hihi.

Day 28 – FOURTH WEEK?

CAN YOU BELIEVE IT? FOUR WEEKS ALREADY! Again, it has not been the easiest but it’s probably one of the most exciting weeks of my life. If I’d be asked if I’ll do this again in my second life, I’d absolutely do. *tears cos drama*

 

You know the drill, I didn’t have my breakfast but it’s much more of a struggle now because I don’t remember having dinner last night as well. It was raining when I woke up so it was even harder to get up but I had to. I had a lot of errands today so I needed to get my shit going early. I didn’t have my lunch until late afternoon already. I had to pass by UST (YEY! GO USTe!) to watch my old volleyball team play their last game of the eliminations and daaamn they played well. The played until the third set and the hiccups didn’t cause them to lose. I couldn’t be prouder of the team because they’re evolving a lot. I really wish I got to play with them but I’m done so all I can do now is support them with my best efforts. After the game, I wasn’t feeling hungry anymore but I did get some bowls of fries, onions rings, cheese sticks and potato chips. I know, I know it’s not much but it was good enough to make me feel better. There isn’t much to blog about today because there wasn’t any special food I had aside from the Lemon Berry Iced Tea I got from Dormina Espresia. It’s a little too sweet for my enjoyment but it’s good enough. I may have had to endure sitting with my former team mates eating pork belly, chicken paninis and more meat but I hung on pretty well.

 

Today was a good way to kill all the stress from the last few days. I hope I’ll be able to adjust better soon with my eating (I NEED TO, LIKE REALLY). I’m just tolerating bits of body pains from lifting last night but I’m good! Pretty good day it has been, thank God.