Recipe: Clam in Orange, Lemon and Ginger

On February 17, 2014, in Recipe, by mylifejoys

Clams in Lemon, Orange, and Ginger

Clams referred in this article are not those evening purses designed with bivalve-like shells nor clamshell type of mobile phones in this smartphone age. These are bivalve mollusks of marine nature that are popularly seen in a vongole pasta dish. It gets tiring at times to see a marine resource fit in just a one-dish-hit-wonder and so here I am sharing a simple and easy to prepare recipe.



1 lb or 1/2 kg clams
1 pc of Orange fruit
1 pc of Lemon fruit
1 onion, chopped
2-3 cloves of garlic, minced
thumb size ginger
some parsely
salt and pepper, to taste
1 tbsp olive oil or vegetable oil


Pour a tablespoon (or less) of oil in a pan. Saute onion, garlic, and ginger until onion becomes transparent. Make sure not to burn garlic by lowering the source of heat when needed. Add in clean and washed clams. Put salt and pepper to taste. Cover the pan for around 3 mins for the clams to cook and you’ll notice the shells opening up a bit. The heat will also release juices from the clams which enhances the flavor of this dish.

Pour in squeezed juice of a whole orange and lemon. Depending on your taste preference the amount of lemon may be adjusted to just half of a fruit or even less. For this recipe, I squeezed a whole lemon for a very sour dish. Add in some chopped parsley for color and a bit aroma. Serve and enjoy.

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Lego 3818 Spongebob Bikini Bottom Undersea Party

On February 13, 2014, in Collections, Lego, by mylifejoys

In anticipation of the upcoming summer (yeah starts this March in the Philippines), let us celebrate tropical heat by envisioning a beach party. And when it comes to beach party, what else comes into mind??? The Bikini Bottom gang of Spongebob Squarepants!

Lego has captured the undersea party in its design 3818 based from a popular cartoon show in Nickelodeon. The minifigures featuring Spongebob (the yellow sponge of course), Patrick (the star fish), Mrs. Huff, and Squidward. There is also Gary (Spongebob’s pet snail) to complete the gang.

The undersea party has in it’s backdrop the orange houses of Spongebob and its neighbor Squidward in Conch Street. A party won’t be complete without music and food, hence the turntable, juice bar, and dessert oven. Other features are playground items such as see-saw and spinner.

The tricky part in building the Lego Spongebob Bikini Bottom Undersea Party is Spongebob’s pineapple house. Lego has again upped the game through its dynamic design combining realistic and movable pieces adorned with stickers to create the cartoon-like dimension of the show.


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The Grill by Antonio’s

On February 9, 2014, in Categories, by mylifejoys

A chilly afternoon in Tagaytay in the province of Cavite is a weekend to enjoy before the summer rays start to kick in. A short drive from Metro Manila via the Eton exit in South Luzon expressway, a weekend day or overnight vacation is worth one’s consideration to be away from the hustle and bustle of city life.

Pinakbet Rice, a chef’s recommendation, was inspired by a local vegetable dish of the same name, Pinakbet or some would call Pakbet



Aside from the chilly temperature (uhm… chilly on the standards of a tropical country), which ranges from 18-24 degrees Celsius, the vantage points from the highlands of Cavite attract tourists to capture the scenic view of an active volcano in a lake– the Taal volcano.

There is no better way to spend a vacation than dining out on local culinary delights and here is where The Grill comes in. It is one of the popular restaurants of Antonio’s, which in itself is an attraction to most foodies who are willing to travel 50 kilometers to the south from Manila.

The Grill showcases local Filipino dishes. In it’s website, it was mentioned that the culinary inspiration came from the Negrense origin, which is a province in the Visayas region. Themed with white decors and large tables encouraging large group of diners, mostly families, one would wonder why people line up and wait an hour or more just to get seats. Once you’ve experienced the gastronomical fusion of their dishes, there is that obvious answer of why the patrons, both the loyal and new ones, would bother to wait. There is no question, the food and service are just beyond normal. In every bite you’d think of home, comfort, and happiness.

Green Mango Salad

Green Mango Salad


Daing na Bangus

Daing na Bangus (Fried Milk Fish)

Beef Bulalo

Beef Bulalo

For reservations click here – Reservations

Address: One Destination, Aguinaldo Highway, Tagaytay City, Batangas, Philippines

For inquiries, please call +63 (46) 483.4847

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Recipe: Chicken Adobo with Pineapple

On October 1, 2013, in Categories, Recipe, by mylifejoys

Chicken Adobo

I believe that Filipino Adobo is the best food ever.

Adobo is typically chicken, pork, or both, vinegar, peppercorns, soy sauce, garlic, onion, bay leaf. Other variation would have pineapple chunks or hard boiled egg. In any part of the world, Filipinos associate adobo to a taste that reminds them of home, family

My Life Joys 2012

The Black Eyed Peas song Bebot also mentioned adobo depicting this food’s strong association to the Pinoy culture and its importance in our daily lives.

“Yung kanin, chicken adobo

Yung balut, binibenta sa kanto

Tagay mo na nga ang baso

Pare ko, inuman na tayo”


Adobo is also a favorite for packed lunch or “baon”, picnics, or events where there is little or no available chilled storage because the vinegar prolongs the shelf life of the dish even if left at room temperature for one day. I know people who would not consume adobo immediately and wait for the next day to reheat and serve. This is called “day-old adobo.” There are a lot of variations of this famous local dish.


1/2 kilo     chicken, cut into small pieces

1/2 cup     vinegar (white or cane)

1/4 cup     soy sauce

1/4 cup    water or syrup of canned pineapple tidbit

1 tsp       peppercorn

salt to taste

pineapple tidbits, depending on preferrence

bay leaf, optional

onions, chopped

garlic, chopped


Except for the pineapple tidbits, put all ingredients in a casserole or large pot. Bring the base adobo ingredients to a boil then lower the heat to medium to keep down to a simmer until the chicken is tender and almost falling off the bones. Sometimes, additional water is needed to reach this level of done-ness so as not to fully dry up the sauce and burn the chicken. This usually takes about an 30 – 45 mins of simmering. Half an hour into preferred sauce consistency i.e. saucy, still a bit soupy, almost dried with some oil from chicken left as the sauce — add the  pineapple tidbits and stir to seep in the sauce into the pineapple. Best served with steamed rice.


Other variations:

Adding shelled boiled egg (chicken or quail) towards the last 2 minutes of cooking time

Mixing with pork, hence this becomes CPA or chicken-pork adobo

Adding sugar, about a teaspoon to soften a bit the sour taste of vinegar

Adobo sa puti or White adobo is when there is no soy sauce or sometimes, just about 2 tbsp to get some color. in this case, more salt is needed.

Adobo sa dilaw or Yellow adobo is when turmeric or yellow ginger is added instead of soy sauce

Some also add chicken gizzard and/or liver which gives out a more distinct sauce flavor

Day-old adobo can be re-heated in a pan, allowing the sauce to dry up until the oil from meat is all that’s left. The meat can then be flaked and fried in this oil. Once flaked, this can either be eaten with steamed rice or mixed with left over rice to make adobo fried rice.


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Corazon Filipino Hispano Cuisine

On September 29, 2013, in Categories, by mylifejoys

Look at those chairs, they looked like candy from afar. So it piqued my curiosity and went in to take a closer look at what is Corazon’s dining furniture.


By the time I was browsing through the menu, it dawned on me that this Corazon is one of the restaurants by Chef Florabel — Chef of the Stars. From merienda to main dishes, this restaurant has a lot to offer that will bring you back to the taste of what probably most our grandmothers have in their super secret family recipe books.


Mais con Hielo

This Mais con hielo will not be rated as a second best to another famous Pinoy merienda, the Halo-halo. It has it’s own unique taste as the caramelized saging na saba (a variety of banana), milk, sago, and caramel fuse into a much loved dessert.

Suman sa Lihiya with Tsokolate

Admittedly, the cute presentation made me order this… but it was such a good choice.

Ube Sorbetes

Who can ever go wrong with an Ube flavored ice cream?

Suman at Mangga with Spanish Tsokolate


Paella Valenciana

Not much a Paella fan, I prefer my rice plain and steaming hot. But This visit made me like it that I’m willing to order it again.

Kare Kare

The sauce was perfect. It is one of the best Kare-kare I have ever eaten in a resto. The ox mean was just falling off the bones. There was a balance of ingredients unlike in some restos where there were just too much of the sauce or the veggies and just a flavor of the meat. In Corazon, a generous serving of the meat, veggies, and superb sauce is worth every peso.


This Bicolano dish of dried taro leaves cooked in coco milk is my mom’s fave that she orders this in any resto. She asked me, “Is it really this good because it’s kinda expensive for a laing or because it’s a Florabel restaurant?” Suffice to say, she ordered it numerous times after.

The restaurant is in the 4th Level, East Wing, Shangri-La Plaza Mall, Mandaluyong City.

Check out their website for Coranzon’s MENU

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Rebisco Halloween Packages for 2013 Trick or Treat

On September 29, 2013, in Product Launches, by mylifejoys

I’m not so sure how or when Trick or Treat celebrations started to become famous in the Philippines. But surely, it can be traced to the fusion of western culture into the modern Pinoy society; particularly the huge influence rooting from being colonized by US in the early days of our history plus the fact that a lot of companies employing the Filipinos are owned by the Americans.

In the mail today, a brochure of Rebisco Halloween Packages caught my attention. I am in no way related to the company aside from being a customer of some of their products. I thought of sharing this information for those who take their preparations for trick or treat a notch higher that the last year.

Every year, aisle and shelves of candies, sweets, chocolates, and what have yous become more scarce of inventories leading to the end of October. Aside from subdivisions and schools, corporate people tend to join the celebrations by wearing costumes and staging inter-department costume and decor competitions.

Order your candies, gums, lollipops, snacks early. Here are the options from the Rebisco brochure –


Call Abby of Rebisco at (02) 706 1010 local 285 or email


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Pinoy Snack: Ginataang Halo Halo

On September 3, 2013, in Categories, by mylifejoys

First of all, this is not a how to cook ginataan post.

This is more of a realization as I cooked the native snack and how it relates to our heritage.


In the Philippines, we are a diverse and colorful country. We take pride in the #ProudPinoy tag that seems annoying to most like when there is just a bit of Pinoy linkage to anything or anyone. Why? Probably because of how diverse we really are.

We are a mix of races, religions, and influences. Put together, that is what makes us unique and special in a way.

The same with Halo-Halo. This sweet desert is prepared in various ways and the most popular ones are the Ginataan Halo-Halo and Special Halo-Halo. Halo (ha-lo) is a Filipino word for mix.

Ginataang Halo-halo is a snack (meryenda or merienda in Filipino) where various ingredients are cooked in coconut milk and sugar. In most places, there is also an ingredient called Bilo-bilo which is glutinous rice balls. It is not available in the pictures below though. There are times when I won’t put in bilo-bilo if it isn’t available.

Here’s a parade of the main ingredients:










Coconut Milk

Purple Yam




If you are interested to know how to cook it, I liked this post in Kawaling Pinoy.


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Choi Palace: Chinese Restaurant in Eastwood

On March 22, 2013, in Categories, Family, by mylifejoys


Celebrations, family time, or a dining out moment, Choi Palace restaurant in the 3rd floor of Eastwood Mall, Libis, Quezon City fits any occasion.

What I love about this place is the superb service and of course the food. The service team are very alert and honest. Whenever I’m here with my family they would suggest serving portions enough for the number of people and what they seem to just be right if there are kids, adults, etc. They wouldn’t suggest only to ensure that I order more specially that they don’t have service charge.

For whatever reason, I haven’t really thought of taking a lot of pictures of the food when I’m in Choi Palace because the minute the food is served, it’s time to dig in and roll that lazy susan… Or else my family would easily sweep away the bountiful meal.

Among my favorites are chicken feet, taho, yang chow, siao long bao, siomai, lechon macau, pork humba, ramen, asado, beef broccoli, duck, a lot more actually :)




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Travel: Bled Castle, Slovenia

On March 18, 2013, in Travel, by mylifejoys

Bled Castle

Sharing in this post is my visit to the Bled Castle or Blejski grad in Slovenia. I’ve never been to a castle and it was surreal to be in the oldest Slovenian Castle. I’ve shared before my trip to Ljubljana, Slovenia (click this to read more on that) and this is one of the highlights of my visit there. I have hundreds of pictures but I’ve chosen a few (had a hard time choosing among them) to walk you through my journey in Bled Castle.

I was with some friends from work on a rainy Sunday and we decided to walk up instead of parking beside the castle, which is on a mountain. Yeah, I know, some adventure… Which, by the way, led to me losing oxygen and about to pass out when it was mere 20 steps to the gates of Bled Castle. I had to stop ans it by a tree and some cobbles even when it was raining… Funny how I look back to the experience now though it was not so funny when the world started to turn black and it hit me the fear of dying in a Slovenian castle miles away from my dear country, the Philippines. Okay, that was exaggerated :)

Continue reading »

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Yaku Japanese Grill: Sashimi and Grilled

On February 9, 2013, in Categories, by mylifejoys


Craving for some fresh food, literally fresh here, the first that came into mind is sashimi. Raw fish or seafood meat served with soy and wasabi, there’s no other way to taste the natural flavors of food than this.





Yaku Japanese Grill is located at The Podium mall in Mandaluyong City.


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