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Gambas al Ajillo with bleach???

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After El Rastro shopping, light brunch at Martina Cocina

During the visit of my friends, the Cobi sisters Lilliane and Girlie, I brought them to one of Madrid’s most fun Sunday activities- shopping (or window-shopping as the case may be) at the El Rastro flea market in La Latina.
After a morning of going through the stalls and buying little knickknacks, we were ready for some nourishment. The problem with looking for a place near El Rastro is that everything is packed, as eating and having a beer or two after shopping is the usual thing to do on Sundays as well.
Lilliane, ever the savvy traveler, used Foursquare to find a place near us where we could have some brunch. I didn’t even know you could use Foursquare for that purpose. I thought it was just an app for checking into a place to let people know where you’ve been. Apparently it’s now a city guide that helps you look for places to go. Always good to know about useful apps for finding places to eat.
Foursquare led us to Martina Cocina, a charming, homey place that was perfect for a m…

Disappointing experience with UberEats

I enjoy staying at home (too much at times), and once in a while, more often than I care to admit, I am too lazy to cook for myself or even to go out to eat. So, I've become rather a fan of food delivery. And in Madrid, there are many services to choose from.

Usually, I use the Deliveroo app on my phone for instant gratification for my cravings. But I saw that Uber had launched one too, called UberEats, so I downloaded it and after a few days, I decided to use it.

The app was easy enough to use, with a lot of options to choose from, so I placed an order for some pasta from an Italian restaurant. The app said that it would take around 35 minutes to deliver my order, so I eagerly awaited my lunch.

When the estimated time was almost up, I checked the app to track my food. It said that the driver was on the way, and that my order was about to arrive. Then the app said that my food had arrived. Well, not to my knowledge it hadn't.

I tried to call the driver, but the call wouldn…

Cheap, tasty Asian food at 9.Teishoku Restaurant, Madrid

It hasn’t been that easy to look for good Asian restaurants in Madrid. Some good ones I’ve come across are pretty pricey, probably because the ingredients are not all that easily available. I’m always on the lookout for good Japanese, Chinese, Thai, or Vietnamese restaurants, or even Singaporean, Indonesian, or Malaysian ones, none of which I’ve seen so far.
Brooks and I were close to Plaza de Espana and as there is usually the smell of Chinese food wafting from the basement somewhere there I was suddenly in the mood for Asian fare. We were looking for a place to have lunch and as it was getting close to 4:00pm, we were trying to find one fast. Restaurants are usually eager to close after the lunch hours (that word is almost always plural in Spain).
We stumbled across this place called 9Teishoku, a little off the main thoroughfare (we were very close to Gran Via). We checked out the menu outside and the selections looked interesting, the prices very reasonable, so we made a quick dec…

Rushing though lunch in Prague, Czech Republic

I am a slow eater. All my friends know this, so they are very patient when I take more time than they do during meals. I hate being rushed to eat. In fact if I am told I am only given 15 minutes to eat (for example, during a break for a tour, a meeting, or anything similar), I prefer not to eat at all. I would rather suffer in hunger than rush through any kind of meal.
This afternoon though, I was left with no choice. Because I only had a few days in Prague, and for the most part I was busy with the conference I was there for, I had to make time for a meal that wasn’t part of the summit.
On my last day, before heading off to the airport, I went with Maribel (from ABS-CBN Middle East), to see some sights in Prague before our afternoon flights. Our sightseeing and souvenir-shopping took longer than we thought so we had little time left for lunch, which we both wanted to have before flying to our respective destinations.
Under time pressure, we chose whatever was already open for lunch …

PH food takes the spotlight at Madrid food congress

(I'm copying and pasting here the story that I wrote for abs-cbnnews.com, and here is the link to the actual story.)

MADRID, Spain -- Food experts from various parts of the world are predicting that Philippine cuisine will be the next big food trend and is set to conquer the world in 2017. It’s still too early in the year to see if this will come to fruition, but Filipino food certainly got some international exposure and appreciation at the Madrid Fusion food congress held recently in Madrid, Spain.

Madrid Fusion is one of the most important gastronomic events in the world, held every year in Madrid since 2003. It brings together top chefs from all over Spain and the rest of the world. Representatives of different countries and companies set up booths for people to sample their wares. This is the third year that the Philippines has sent a team to participate in the congress. The Department of Tourism, in cooperation with Philippine chefs, set up a booth where participants could sam…

A dinner to remember by chefs Mario Sandoval and Tatung Sarthou

One highlight of covering Madrid Fusion for me was that I got invited to a meal to be jointly prepared by Spanish chef Mario Sandoval, who runs two-Michelin-starred restaurant Coque and who earned his first Michelin star at the tender age of 26, and the Philippines’ very own Chef Tatung.
This special dinner was part of Gastrofestival, which was another set of events that is associated with Madrid Fusion. Gastrofestival is organized by the government of Madrid to invite people to enjoy different aspects of Madrid gastronomy.
Because of Chef Tatung’s role as presenter for the Philippines in Madrid Fusion, he was invited to prepare the special “four-hands dinner” with Chef Mario Sandoval. Some Filipinos were invited to be part of the meal as guests of Madrid Fusion Manila, and I was lucky enough to be one of them
The dinner was held at Hotel Orfila. There were 60 guests in total, and one table was reserved for our group.
They gave us the menu for the meal, and after I told them that I…