New York Edition : Halal Chicken Rice on 53rd & 6th

After more than a year (actually it's been 13 months to be exact), I am back in the City again! We arrived a little over 9 pm and guess where we went before going home to New Jersey? One of our all-time NY fave eats...the Halal Cart at 53rd and 6th! It's the legendary food cart which stands out amongst all the other numerous carts scattered around the city. People are known to line up to get a taste of this casual fare even at the height of winter. 

We meet again my friend. Oh how we missed you.
Halal Chicken Rice $ 6.00

 This halal meal consists of grilled shredded chicken (white meat) with, cut up lettuce and warm pita, long grain saffron rice and ofcourse the white sauce which makes all the difference. It's ( the magic white sauce) is suuuper addicting to the point that people think they put crack on it. I'm not making this up but I've read it in a couple of online reviews. Anyways, whatever "secret" ingredient it, it's absolutely amazing. We are hooked! 


My Big 3-0 Brunch Celebation

I finally got the pictures of this momentous event from my cousin last night...after almost 10 months! Yes, this post is 10 months delayed. I was still pregnant with my daughter Sofia when this happened :) Anyway, better late than never, right? So here it goes...

Last January, I celebrated my 30th birthday by hosting an All-White Brunch celebration here at home. I "catered" my own party so it was extra special. My preparations (like the dough for my quiche lorraine) started the day before and the rest we did early that morning. I had to wake up at 5 am and start cooking already :)  It was truly a labor of love. I wanted the people close to me to enjoy my home-cooked food!

My carefully handpicked menu which included my favorite brunch staples

 Cheese and Honey Plates

 The set-up

 Good Morning! :)

Drinks Station - with Olives on Sticks

Mini Celery Sticks for the Virgin (instead of Bloody) Mary Shots  - I was preggy this time so no alcohol allowed! haha!
Grilled Cheese and Tuna Melt Station

Choose your own fruit topping

 Smoked Salmon

 Condiments for the Salmon

Crustless Ham and Egg  Tart

 Brunch is served :)

 Homemade Lemon Ice Tea with Mint Leaves

My Quiche Lorraine - FCI recipe ofcourse :)

 French Toast

 Bagel and Crossaints

Chilled Milk - Fresh Milk and Chocolate Milk 

Buffet Style

 Fruit Kabobs

Focused on torching the brulees
Voila! Finished Product ready to be served!

 Breakfast cupcakes (from Layers and Layers)

Thank you for everyone who woke up extra early that weekend to make it! Love you all! Mwah!

Note : I got a lot of positive feedback about this party so I told myself that maybe I should make it a birthday tradition. Whatcha think? :)


Lechon (Roasted Pig) in 7 Ways : Beat that!

My cousin Rupert or Pipo as we fondly call him celebrated his big 3-0 with a very special luncheon in Cintai Corito's Garden where he prepared a real PORKY feast (which is actually ironic because he happens to be a vegetarian!). Together with his sister who is also a chef, they experimented with our national celebratory/feast dish Roasted Pork or Lechon and served it in 7 (Seven) different ways:

1.  Peking Lechon/Pritchon - Similar to the chinese peking duck, this is deep fried skin and shredded meat that you wrap inside a tortilla together with your choice of vegetables (tomatoes, onions, green onions, cucumber, cilantro) and a special hoisin concoction.

2. Sinigang na Lechon

Rupert explaining the different lechon stations.

Fresh and crunchy vegetables - my favorites are the gabi (taro) and okra

This was really WOW! The broth was rich and thick. The lechon meat complimented it perfectly...the lemongrass and sampaloc/tamarind leaves really accentuated the soup! I had seconds of this!

3. Lechon Stirfry

4. Sisig Lechon

5. Ginataang Gulay with Lechon

6. Kangkong with Lechon Flakes

7. Inasal na Lechon Ribs

This is really my favorite part of the pig because it absorbs the most flavor and so I took a picture of it while they were still chopping it! I love the inasal marinade so I think it was a real tasty treat!

Aside from the pork feast, he also served other amazing creations:

Aligue Sushi topped with thinkly sliced kamias 

Fried Mini Lumpiang Ubod 

 Ensaladang Mustasa - Mustard Leaves Salad with Salted Egg

 Ensaladang Talong topped with tomatoes and alamang/bagoong

And to take out the "umay/suya" (unfortunately I cannot think of the direct translation of this tagalog word), they offered these sweet delights;

 Buko Pandan Salad

 Minatamis na Saging with Sago/Tapioca Balls

Fried Banana sprinkled with sugar

Happy Birthday Pip! Cheers to an innovative and superb feast!

Oink away!!! :) hahaha!