eating sushi 101

I have long learned to eat Japanese cuisine especially sushi. Actually I owe it to my GF back in 2006 that started in a little resto in QC. Little did I knew that there are things that I still need to learn about this dish before walloping it.


Most Pinoys do this for mere pleasure and I, myself, am also one of those that does this act everytime I hold on to my chopsticks. If you can't stop this manner (hehe), just whittle the chopsticks under or away from the table just so you would not get splinters on your or someone else's kani salad.


It is meant as a palate refresher so take it in small amounts in between dishes. Lucky me I am not into ginger.


It's a no-no in any resto for the rice to fall into the sauce or fall apart and land on your lap. So to avert this, just dip the fish side of the roll and spare the rice.


What? Hehe. Don't worry, you're not alone, sometimes I also just can't eat one roll in one swallow. But since we're learning the Jap etiquette of eating sushi, they say we should always eat it whole. In the Philippines though, sushis are a little bit larger unlike in Japan which sushi is served in bite-size pieces.


They started using wasabi in the 19th century as a parasite killer in sushi fish. Hmmm....sounds uninviting right? But the Japanese and the rest of the world kinda loved that flavor that blends with the rolls and to the other Jap dishes. Some say that wasabi is Jap horseradish but it's not. In some resto, they dye horseradish green to imitate the wasabi. The result? Still freaking hot so use it sparingly.


Yeah sushi is finger food. Of course, you should wash your hands foremost before finger lickin' that roll. But you should use chopsticks once sashimis are served!


Nigiri sushi is fish over balls of rice; maki sushi are rolls of sushi and sashimi is raw fish with no rice. Some restos offer a variety of sushi (tuna, crabmeat, salmon, egg, shrimp or ebi, etc). It is always helpful to read the English subtitles on the menu or asking the waiters what the Japanese titles meant. Take it from the one who almost didn't eat because of unusual terms!


There's a reason Jap restos normally don't have smoking areas - strong scents like smoke, perfume or aftershave can alter the subtle sushi flavors. If you really want to enjoy sushi, do so with a clean palate.

So those are but some of the tips that you may wanna use when you want to eat sushi or any other Jap dish. And another thing, if you are planning to eat in a Jap resto, better have a good, clean pair of socks. You don't want to be embarrassed if that pseudo-geisha asked you to take off your shoes as you enter their dining areas. It's better to be ready than turning red in front of your date. TABEMASHO! (Let's eat!)


habhab fanatic

I was back in Lucban , Quezon last August 19 to celebrate Lil Bro's b-day in my aunt's house. Coincidentally, it is also the town's fiesta. Most of the gigs will happen at night thus we opted to sleepover at her house and then leave the next day. For a long time, I havent tasted the delicacies that only Lucbanins can offer - kalderetang carabeef, longganisang lucban, tamales, pancit habhab, hardinera, and all sorts of food that sizzles one's palate. Since I am a pasta fanatic, I crave for the pancit habhab. This pasta always saves my day when I only have PhP 10.00 left in my wallet. That's enough for a scoop of the habhab and a cup of cold sago on the side. I remember savoring this same pasta everytime I had to take an exam for that hideous El Fili subject.

To give you an idea of how it's cooked, I got this from one of the online cookbooks. Hopefully with this, you'll crave for the habhab as much as I did when I first tasted it in 1993.

Ingredients :

half of a 500 g. pack of Lucban pancit miki (available in supermarkets), 300 g. of pork liempo (belly), cut into 3/4 x 3/4 x 2″ strips or 150 g. of pork liempo plus 150 g. of pork liver, 100 g. of sitsaro (snow peas), 1-2 carrots, 3 celery stalks, 1 whole garlic, 2-3 shallots, a handful of onion leaves, 7-8 c. of broth (chicken, pork or beef), patis, ground pepper, 4 tbsps. of vegetable cooking oil,

Cooking procedure : If using pork liver, slice thinly before cutting into strips.

Finely mince the garlic. Thinly slice the shallots. Cut the carrots into matchsticks. Cut the celery on the diagonal into 1-inch pieces. Trim the sitsaro.

Heat half of the cooking oil in a large shallow pan (a wok is ideal). Add the pork and cook over hight heat, stirring, until the edges start to brown. Add half of the garlic and sliced shallots. Pour in half of the broth and season lightly with patis. Simmer until the pork is tender.

When the pork is almost done, heat the remaining cooking oil in a saute pan. Saute the remaining garlic and shallots. Add the carrots and stir fry for a few seconds. Add the celery and sitsaro and cook until tender crisp. If using pork liver, add the liver strips before the vegetables.

When the pork is done, pour in the remaining broth. Adjust the seasoning, adding more patis if necessary. Season with pepper. Add the uncooked noodles, pressing them lightly into the broth. Cover and simmer until the noodles are soft and the broth has been absorbed. Add the stir fried vegetables. Toss to distribute the pork and vegetables evenly.

Serve hot with kalamansi juice and soy sauce on the side.


long weekend!!!!

Itinerary for the week. @ the University of Santo Tomas on Thursday, August 16, 2007, 1800H for Father Suarez's healing mass, @ Mediatrix Hospital to confirm operation of sis, August 15, Wednesday, @ De La Salle Lipa on Friday, August 17, to talk to the Nursing Dean, @ Lucban, Quezon, Southern Philippines on August 20, Monday, to celebrate lil bro's birthday, @ Mt Nagcarlan 629 meters above sea level on August 25, Saturday


father fernando suarez, cc

you probably don't know him or do not even care who he really is. he was a chemical engineer but pursued the calling of priesthood when he went to Canada in 1995...

now, people are flocking to see him to be healed and receive divine guidance...

i came to know him from a collegue and only once was I able to attend a mass that he leads...

sayang, he was here today yet i wasnt able to even go to the church he visited...

still i'm hopeful i could attend his mass someday...

fortunately i heard he's planning to build a healing shrine in batangas, aptly named montemaria....and it's somewhere going to pinamucan which might be very near my area...

one of these days, i will finally meet him...


another day of just leaving it all up to Him...

8 days in room 116....175,000.00

1 shot of med......................4,443.90

a daily dose of pain killer. ....1,106.90

getting out of the hospital bed.....priceless.

of commuting and being Pinoy; of bills and inner peace

for three straight days, i've been punting my butt off from the refinery in the evening to lipa mediatrix hospital then back to the plant the next morning. that's the drawback of losing a car that was supposedly given the gentlest, human care but lo and behold, was not provided with insurance, unfortunately got smashed by lil bro on to an innocent lamp post, and is now stacked in my aunt's vacant lot ready for a total engine revamp. obviously it would take time before i could possibly use my ill-fated car, thus I'm back to the usual, slower, yet exhilarating bus and jeepney rides.

the first day was really a treat. i asked the plant's call-in car to bring me to the nearest bus station. apparently, all the buses that are bound to lipa have already left, thus i had no choice but to take the much slower jeepney. while counting my coins and waiting for the best sarao to pass by, a jeepney suddenly came across, honking as if he owns the whole of the road. fortunately the front passenger seat was vacant. i remember during the 90s, this was the only seat i ever wanted to settle my butt on - perfect cushion, one-seater, no one messing with my love handles - just perfect. as i unreservedly boarded, i gave the driver a twenty-peso bill. surprised, the driver's face registered a very peculiar look not familiar to a returning commuter. murphy's law i thought. i knew there's something wrong. "my friend, its thirty pesos", he said in an accented english. man, some years of not commuting and now jeepney drivers are english speakers? embarrassed and wanting to regain the confidence of being a certified commuter, i handed him another fifty peso bill eventhough i've got tons of 10 peso coins in my purse. then the not-so-expected-reply from the driver that almost send me laughing, "You a Filipino?". whatda???? I dont know what has got into my head but I didnt answer him with a firm yes or a mere no. I just stared at him then took my forty-peso change. i was wondering what nationality was i mistaken for now. in college, i was mistaken for an indonesian, my GF's family first thought i was Korean and the last one in Singapore, they thought I represent Shell Showa, a Jap refinery. 45 minutes after that incident, i arrived in lipa. crap, i have to tell him that i needed to ride off. silly that i was, i just shrug his right shoulder without saying anything, signaling that i wanted him to stop so i can board off the jeepney. fortunately he understood.

i was more challenged on the second day. due to a telecon with some colleagues from abroad, i was able to get out of the office at around 7 pm. since it is late (hospital limits visitors starting 9pm), it took me only 7 minutes to have a shower, change clothes and call the service van. 15 minutes later, the van arrived and off we went to the bus station. buses in downtown are either air-conditioned or not. fresh from the jeepney trip yesterday, i imagined the fare would be more expensive than that of the jeepney's. but it only cost me P24.00. well probably because i took the non-aircon bus but still i wondered why the heck it's cheaper. i arrived at the hospital 30 minutes past 8 pm. i went straight to my sis' room to check if she had already taken her dinner. fortunately, she did. after some small talks with her, she said that of the 18 possible antibiotics that the docs tested on her, only 3 are non-resistant. and all are intravenous - these will have to pass thru her veins. wondring how much the current bill was, i asked a printout from the hospital. i was dumbfounded when the cashier handed me the bill - one antibiotic costs Php 4,300 (USD 94), another at PhP 1,300.00 (USD 29). And my sister has to be treated with these meds 3 times everyday in 7 days!?! that's an easy Php120,000++(USD 2800) bill not including professional fees and room charges. i sat by the lobby for another hour, looking at the bill on my hand, speechless.

the next morning, i went to the office with the same shirt i used in the hospital. i had no time to change clothes for i have another telecon with a Singaporean colleague set minutes after i arrived in batangas. it was a bleak day. problems at work, personal challenges loom. though it's tough working inside the plant, it's weird that i find some peace within my work area. peace from the conundrums of life that is. it is here that i can evitably stress myself and tentatively forget the glitches of sometimes, cruel world. i remember one line saying "inner peace comes not in a tranquil circumstance but from an untroubled heart". hopefully, i can still find my inner peace.

crazed on sudoku

have been solving sudoku puzzles lately...not an expert though, that's why these're all messed up

smiling ~ 17 muscles; frowning ~ 43 muscles


lotcha savings from discount cards

discount cards, anyone??? hehe...

for high blood pressure, for backaches I think & for cholesterol


growing pains

those who suffer knows the agony of pain, yet when they yield it all to HIM, they find in it great gain.


worth changing...

pseudo-teletubbies hehehe... no brainer logo....

words matter

A WHOLESOME TONGUE IS A TREE OF LIFE a careless word may kindle strife, a cruel word may wreck a life, a timely word may lessen stress, a loving word may heal and bless.