Peanut butter is not just for kare-kare.

Let it be said that I enjoy food.

I’m not really fussy as to where, or whether or not the food is made from gourmet ingredients.  Hello, I grew up on street food sold around the UST area; my stomach isn’t really sensitive to things like, say, cholera. (I KID.) Be it plain ol’ isaw from the kanto vendors to unpronounceable French dishes, as long as they agree with my uncomplicated taste buds and budget, you can call me a happy foodie.

I’m not a cook nor a culinary specialist either so don’t expect very detailed comments from me. BUT I did grow up to my mother’s cooking, which is quite excellent. I think I know good food when I taste it.

Enter Peanut Butter Co., a small-ish restaurant along the Ground Floor of Mall of Asia’s North Parking building. From the outside, you can see the minimalist white-and-brown interior, past a display case of various “flavored” peanut butter jars.

Photo credit: dessertcomesfirst.com

Despite its placement in a traffic-heavy location (right outside SM Hypermarket!), I’ve never seen it full. Perhaps it has something to do with the fact that the notion of eating actual ulam seasoned with peanut butter (that isn’t kare-kare) IS pretty sketchy. However, being the peanut butter fan that I am, things like “chili peanut butter” and “green tea peanut butter” piqued my interest further instead of dampening it.

I’ve been meaning to try the place out since September, but time and budget constraints hindered me from doing so. I was finally able to try it out after a particularly bad day at work, to give myself a bit of comfort.

Majority of their menu consisted of a variety of sandwiches, from the familiar Peanut Butter & Jelly to the more adventurous choices like Crunchy Sardine Jelly Sandwich. If you want something heavier (though I hear their sandwiches are rather generous in size), you can always choose from their pasta or rice dishes, and a few side dishes like wings and potato chips (mojos).

Starving as we were, my good friend and I opted to go for a pasta dish and the chicken wings.

Le Appetizer: BBQ Chicken Wings (PHP 125 for 3 pcs)

Their chicken wings are cooked in classic sweet-smoky barbecue sauce, drizzled with chili peanut butter to give it that zing. Maybe I’m biased towards peanut butter, but I honestly think that the chicken and barbecue sauce went well with the nutty taste. I can see myself getting a box (or five) for movie night.

If you’re into sweat-inducing Buffalo style wings, this may not be the best choice for you since it isn’t really all that spicy. For someone like me, whose tolerance for spicy things is quite meager, this is actually perfect.

Le Main Course: Chicken Curry Spaghetti (PHP 150)

Curry would be a pretty safe choice to start with if it’s your first time trying Peanut Butter Co., since nutty tastes blend in well with curry and wouldn’t be too weird.

Their noodles were cooked just right, surprisingly firm even, and not overcooked the way some establishments are guilty of doing. The peanut butter added a rich, creamy sort of texture to the curry sauce, making it a hearty entree. It would’ve tasted better with a stronger curry taste and more sili in my opinion though.

Presentation: Presentation-wise, their entrees are pretty much fuss-free. They’re all served in ready-to-go cartons (similar to Yellow Cab’s takeout boxes), which I found convenient and environment friendly.

Price Range: PHP 100-200 per person. Pwede nuts!

Serving Size: Err. Well, my friend and I shared both the pasta and wings, and left the place with no more room for dessert. I suppose the serving size is good enough for two persons of average appetites!

I am annoyed at the limited capacity of my stomach that made me feel too full to try out their sweets but overall, I’m pretty happy with my experience here so far. I’m definitely going back to try out their other stuff.

Holler if you wanna come with!

Cake2Go Served Me Lies

Anyone who knows me well knows that I like my sweets. Dessert is sacred to me. I don’t mind spending a little extra money for quality dessert, as long as it’s worth it.

That being said, I’ve always been intrigued by Cake 2 Go. I mean just look at this flyer:

Look at all that promised yumminess and tell me you’re not tempted either. The prices seem pretty friendly too, at around 400-600 a cake. Seemed like a good deal, yeah?

Since it was rainy and petiks all of Sunday, we just decided to stay at home for Mother’s Day. I’ve had this mad craving for cake since Friday so I thought of just getting a cake delivered as a Mother’s Day present for my mom and Tita Ging. It was a chance to finally try Cake 2 Go.

The consensus was that everyone wanted the Oreo Cheesecake. So I called up the nearest branch, which was in Banawe, to have it delivered.

They refused to deliver ’cause 1) they said that the minimum required for them to deliver was PHP 600 (Oreo cheesecake was about 400+) and 2) they said Oreo Cheesecake is one of the cakes that they do not deliver because it melts easily. (That should’ve tipped me off right there.)

I was a little ticked-off also that they refuse to deliver because we didn’t meet the minimum. One of Cake 2 Go’s selling points is that they deliver, so it’s less of a hassle to get good cake. My house isn’t that far from the branch, it’s just that it’s a little rainy and it’s a hassle to get out of the house. At least they should’ve put a disclaimer on the site or their flyers. But okay, I let that slide. Even fast food joints have minimums that we have to meet, right?

So I just sent my brother out to buy the cake instead (an extra PHP 60 for the trike ride). I was already positively wiggling with excitement when he got home. I will be eating cake! YAY!

Expectation

But instead I got this:

Reality

Not sure if you can tell by the photo, but that is not cheesecake. It’s not even cake at all. It’s vanilla ice cream with a thin Oreo crust, pretending to be cheesecake. WHAT IS THIS SORCERY

Maybe it’s my fault also for not asking what the cake is made of. But HELLO. It is called Oreo Cheesecake. It doesn’t really take a genius to figure out what it should be made of.

I didn’t finish eating my slice. Seriously. I felt betrayed. Sure 400 pesos isn’t that big, and it may not be a big deal to some people, but to me dessert is SRZBZNZ. I could’ve spent the money getting something more worth it, like maybe a cake from Dezaato Pan (about a block away from Cake2Go, Banawe). Or Reese’s Ice Cream.

I IZ NAT PLEASED

Maybe it was just ill luck and timing. Maybe I just ordered the wrong thing. Honestly though, I am not too keen on giving Cake2Go another chance. Not if I’m paying for it.

My Twenty-Second, Take One

***REALLY Late Post***

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It’s my twenty-second birthday!

It has been tradition in our family to go out and celebrate birthdays with a movie and a fancy dinner (by “fancy”, I mean “not fast food”). The film lineups in cinemas aren’t particularly appetizing, but off we went to TriNoma anyway to see Red Cliff, an epic war movie set in 3rd century China. The plot is a little reminiscent of 300, in the sense that the protagonists were massively outnumbered but they used clever strategies to make up for their lack in numbers. I am not a big fan of war movies, but I found myself watching in rapt attention, squinting to read the subtitles (Aren’t I brilliant for forgetting to wear my contact lenses?), just so I wouldn’t miss anything. If you haven’t seen it, maybe you should.

Anyhoot after the movie we grabbed dinner at Holy Cow Steakhouse. I loved the interior of the place, all leather and warm, earthy tones. I especially loved the big leather armchairs. They remind me of Mafias and The Godfather for some reason. I just couldn’t resist camwhoring a little with them.

I'm no smoker, but the chair feels incomplete without a cigarette. Haha

The food wasn’t as spectacular as I thought it would be, however. All our entrees seemed rather bland and a little too greasy for my taste. My mom’s steaks are so much better than theirs. Here’s some deceptive food porn for you.

Mozarella and Parmesan Grilled Chicken

Country Fried Chicken

Roast beef? I forgot.

Kudos to the service crew though. They were very attentive and they responded to our requests quickly. AND I they gave me free cake because it’s my birthday! I free stuff! And cake! Yay!

At least the cake was good. Dark Chocolate Fudge Pie ala Mode

Happy birthday to me!

Happiness is Free. No, seriously.

A REALLY late post.
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Jobhunting and the post-breakup phase of going out every day is taking its toll on the moolah I’ve saved up from my pizza girl stint in Canada. At this point, I’m trying the complicated task of tightening my fist on my funds and still be able to go out with friends and…new friends. Heh heh.

It’s funny, how I and a friend of mine in a similar financial state,  tried to spend as little as we possibly can during one of our ladies’ days out. The weather was stiflingly hot that day, we could’ve just hailed a cab and get to Glorietta quickly, hassle-free AND sweat-free but no. We braved the heat, and took a jeepney (not even the FX!) and the train. At Starbucks, the two of us shared a drink (so it won’t be embarrassing to stay there while we waited for others) and I refrained from getting dessert like I usually do. We chose to catch a movie in Glorietta rather than Greenbelt to save a few extra pesos.

We were going to catch the 8pm screening of Fame, so we had a few hours to kill. Keeping our budgets in mind, we set out to find something to eat. I personally would’ve been happy with Php 40 Hong Kong noodles, but then we saw this:

Like bees to honey

Like bees to honey

I always thought the lines at World Chicken at lunch hour were ridiculously long, but this particular line was even longer. A waitress stood near the end of the queue, herding more people toward the stall.

Ma’am, try niyo po Go Greek. Free po,” she said.

Wait. Did she say free? Oh yes she did. My friends and I kept exchanging skeptical looks, asking among ourselves what the catch was. Yes we’re that optimistic.

“Pagkakain natin, may seminar pagkatapos…five hours long.”

“Marketing to. Mamaya may uupo sa tabi natin, mangrerecruit na.”

“Feel ko maanghang yan, sobra. Tapos bawal magtubig. Pag nagtubig ka babayaran mo, twice yung price.”

But lo and behold, there was no catch. Apparently, the franchise was newly opened and they were doing a dry run, to see how well they would do. FREE FOOD HELL YEAH!

We get to choose one entree each which came with a side serving of Greek salad and rice. I told the waitress behind the counter that I wanted the chicken. She gave me this.

Why hello there.

I’m not sure if it’s just because they were on a trial run and they’re trying to please the people, but the serving they gave me was HUGE. That’s half a chicken and what seemed to be one gigantic cup of rice. That is WAY more than what my appetite is used to.

I forgot the name of the dish that I got, but it was chicken cooked in ginger and herbs that I’m not familiar with. It was moist and well done, and whatever herbs they used seeped into the meat and blended well with the taste of chicken. It came served with this magical red sauce that I think was made of fire-roasted tomatoes, black pepper and chili. I drool at the memory of it.

The price range is I think around Php.200, which isn’t bad for a serving that big. Believe me when I say that that meal was satisfying, in quantity and in quality.

Random strokes of luck like this don’t happen very often, but don’t you just love it when they do?

Your satisfied (freeloading) customers.

Your satisfied (freeloading) customers.