Nadai Fujisoba

Hello there! I said I would try to post more book reviews and yet here I am posting about food again. Haha! Well, well, but who wouldn’t love a good soba noodle soup right? So we gave out Nadai Fujisoba (SM Megamall branch) a try. Just to give you a heads up, my brother was not much of a big fan of Japanese food and I would prefer sushis and sashimis over ramen bowls. But somehow, Nadai Fujisoba truly was a savory treat for our family.

Before we jump into the food pictures and drool once again, let us look into the story of Nadai Fujisoba which I copied at the site (fujisoba.ph):

Nadai Fujisoba is the oldest 24/7 soba restaurant in Japan. In 1966, we built our first soba noodle store in Shibuya, which also serves as our flagship store.

During Japan’s economic boom, we built our stores to cater to on-the-run businessmen, and the community has continued to support us ever since. We serve more than 58,000 meals per day by opening our stores 24-hours.

You can find Nadai Fujisoba when you come to the bustling areas in Tokyo, like Asakusa, Ueno Akihabara, Roppongi, Shinjuku, and Ikebukuro.

In 2014, we also started our first store in Taiwan, and it has went on to become a great success for our brand.

We believe that customers in Philippines will like our signature Japanese buckwheat noodle. It is our pleasure to bring to you the best soba noodle Japan has to offer!

There you have it, authentic Japanese soba noodle bowls at it’s finest! So here we go with the pictures that both you and I love to stare.

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Felt like we entered into Japan.

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One of their best sellers. 

My dad and brother chose this same meal and dad had the extra plain soba noodles.

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Potato Croquette

It had tiny meat pieces in it, it was okay but better if you dip it in the sauce.

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The extra plain soba noodles
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Chicken, Egg and Rice donburi

My brother never gets full without rice.

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Mixed vegetables. Yum!

My mom and I had this meal. We both were full and satisfied.

Overall, it was certainly a heavy meal for our family and we quite enjoyed it. The broth was really tasty and complements every ingredient in it. I specifically love the egg, that is half cooked and makes the soup taste a bit creamier when I popped its yolk. We truly had an enjoyable meal and not bad for Japanese food.

Merci beaucoup et á bientôt!

NICA’S READING NOOK: HARRY POTTER & THE CURSED CHILD

This post is long overdue as I have seemingly forgotten about it. The section of the blog, seemed to be forgotten too. Haha. I have noticed that most of my posts are related to food, which probably explains my widening waistline (of which I am trying to combat). Ugh. 😩 So, let’s get off food for a while and stick to books (hopefully, I can do that).

When J.K. Rowling released the latest of the Harry Potter series, every Potterhead in all corners of the world went cray cray. That includes me! Although, I am quite the poor definition of Potterhead. As I have not read any single HP book, which I promise to amend. 🖖 (Speaking of which, I am on the 6th Book)

Though my clumsy excuse was that I watch and rewatched all the movies. 🤓🤓🤓 I enjoyed every last bit of it and even dreamt of Voldemort at times (in a frightening way, of course). 😱😱😱

Allow me to share you some bits of  J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter and The Cursed Child. ⚡️⚡️⚡️

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*Disclaimer: To do those who haven’t read the book and wouldn’t want to get any spoilers. I suggest you stop right here and start reading the book. If however, you wish to continue, do so at your own risk.*

First off, this isn’t the typical book like the previous HP books you probably have read. This book is actually a script, a playwright of the theatrical act that was performed a year or so ago in London. It acquired lots of criticisms from some HP fans regarding the casting and how they didn’t look like the movie actors who played them on film.

Nevertheless, it is a big hit in the UK and all over the globe of Potterheads. 🎉🎉🎉 I find it actually interesting which really made me delve into the first seven books to get a more clearer picture of who, where, what, why and how did all of this happened.

The main characters are of course, Harry’s son Albus Severus Weasley Potter. We all saw him in the end of the movie when his dad, gave him a tiny bit of advice regarding his fear of being placed in the House of Slytherin. Apparently, he did end up there much to the chagrin of his siblings and cousins.

He, however in such a weird circumstance became close to Scorpius Greengrass Malfoy. Not just close, but best of friends. Though, Scorpius had his father, Draco’s looks, he had his mother’s kind heart and tolerance with Muggles and non-wizard folk. Also, he wasn’t the bullying type like his forefathers were in Hogwarts. He and Albus where the subject of ridicule. Stemming from the rumor that Scorpius might be the son of Voldemort.

It was funny to read how the tables have turned for the Malfoy folk. I would presume that if Draco’s old self would see his son falling head over heels for Albus’ cousin, Rose Granger Weasley, he would’ve preferred to die. But, all is well.

Draco was more tolerable and understanding having gone through so much shame and pain from the ideology of pureblood supremacy. Harry on the other hand, was a very known wizard and his fame was rubbing onto his son Albus who happened to inherit his father’s appearance. Which caused a great deal of strain to both.

Most of the original characters where in the Cursed Child as well. From Neville being teacher, to Diggory’s dad, to some surviving Death Eaters. But the main story involved a magical artifact that at the height of that period was being  destroyed. The time-turner. Harry was, if I remembered correctly, one of those tasked to do so. He, however had one left and confiscated by Hermione.

Aside from the time-turner was Mr. Amos Diggory badgering Harry to use it to save his son Cedric during that dreadful event at the Triwizard Tournament. Then we also meet a new character, Delphini Diggory (who really was Delphini Riddle). Daughter of the Voldemort and Bellatrix Lestrange. I really wondered, how in the world would Voldemort even thought of it when he really didn’t know what love is like.

I mean, he wanted all power to himself. Though he did regard Bellatrix as his most faithful servant, and I am pretty sure that Bellatrix would be fangirling over that fact that she and her Master had a tryst. Haha!

I also kept wondering of her husband, Rodolphus. Well, maybe they never really cared for each other and are only bonded for the sake of pure blood marriage and their dark desire to serve Voldemort. But, let us not dwell on that.

Delphini had that desire to go back and save her father from the very beginning. Before Voldemort’s first fall, when he tried to kill Potter as a baby. She wanted to stop her father to prevent it all from happening and retain his power. But like all, her plan failed, by the two most unlikely heroes named Scorpius and Albus.

Through the book, we see the disastrous effects of one meddling with time. There were different timelines with the most disastrous effects, one resulting to the death of a Hogwarts’ student. Eventually all was restored with Delphini captured and thrown in Azkaban. While Harry and his son finally settling their issues. It was nice to read of Draco helping out Potter and fighting together for their children’s lives.

Overall, it was a good read, which reminds me to continue with the 6th book now as I don’t want to miss a day.

Merci beaucoup et á bientôt!

Bingeing at Shinsen

Salut! It’s April and the summer heat is finally here in Manila. In a way to beat the heat here, most Filipinos go swimming at the beach or at pools. I set Wednesdays for my swimming days where I exercise and beat the heat as well together with my swimming buddy/boyfriend Sunny. But this particular Wednesday evening was a bit cold and we both were shivering at the pool and even after our swim. Good thing, there was a near Japanese restaurant called Shinsen at the Hampton Garden’s Arcade and to heat ourselves, we decided to get some hot soup for dinner!

It was a quaint and cozy place, plus the servers are so polite and assistive. We chose to seat on the sushi bar so we can seat beside each other. #cheesy Hahaha! We ordered California Maki, a bowl of Spicy Miso Soup and a bowl of Seafood Udon Soup. I forget to jot down the prices, really sorry about that. But here are the photos!

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All time fave! But I have to cut off the rice. 
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It wasn’t as spicy as I expected but it was good!
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Sunny had this and he sure did enjoyed it.
 

Overall:

We enjoyed our dinner that night. I loved the Spicy Miso it had a mild spice which is suitable for those who don’t really like spicy foods. Although, I wish they really lived up to the name of the meal. Nevertheless, it was a yummy meal. Sunny’s seafood udon soup was a bit sweet to taste but is balanced. He enjoyed his meal and finished it all up. It was well packed with seafood goodies too! The California Maki is pure joy for me, or is it I just love all California Maki. Hahaha. I hope you guys get to try Shinsen and enjoy yummy Japanese meals.

 

Merci beaucoup et á bientôt!

 

Fitness Update

* Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post by the apps that I will mention in this post.*

Hello there! Salut! I am back to update you all with my health and fitness quest for a more healthier me. If you have read my previous post, Challenging Myself, I stated there my quest to take off sweets and rice. In addition to that I am also striving to jog, walk and swim (at least once) every week. My jogging partner is none other than my dad who is such a good driving force to push myself to jog even if my legs seem falling apart. Haha! He also happens to be my impromptu photographer.

Go run. 🏃🏻‍♀️

A post shared by Nica Gerona (@nicagerona) on

Taken last week.

When my legs' sweat flow like a stream. #satisfaction #jogging

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Taken today, I promise to post everyday of my jogging adventures. For my swimming, I only swim once a week to help with the toning and another exercise to enjoy. My swimming partner is none other than my boyfriend. Heehee.

Water and I. 🏊🏻‍♀️

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We go swimming every Wednesday afternoon. Then we walk home afterwards. I am also doing progress with the no rice meals but still on the process of lessening the sweets.

🍫+ 🌶#ProudlyPinoy

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🍫+☕️ #ProudlyPinoy

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I am really struggling on the thought of completely removing sweets. I so love cakes, frappes and chocolates. So, I am looking for alternatives and some “cheat” days to ease the process. Here is where Lifesum and the Apple Health app is such a big help. I learned of Lifesum from a Youtuber named, Olivia from LivsHealthyLife. She is a vegan who featured how she uses the app to balance her carbohydrates, protein and fat intake. I thought it was really helpful to use this app to monitor my intake and whether I can splurge a bit of chocolate for a snack as long as it is in within my caloric intake.

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My caloric intake and how many I burned from exercise and walking.

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Check out Liv’s channel on Youtube and here is where she featured the Lifesum app.

 

Another helpful app is the Apple’s Health app.

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I use this to monitor my steps and running distance. It synchronizes with the Lifesum app so it shows how many I burned from jogging and walking alone.

For now, I currently weigh 52kgs and have a waistline of 30 inches. Ugh! I plan to reach the 48 kgs goal and a waist of 26-25 inches. I hope I can make this!

Merci beaucoup et á bientôt!

First Taste: Taco Bell

Hello there! This is a two days late post from last Sunday’s family lunch. Usually, when we don’t have any viand left at home, we eat out and this time we wanted to try out the new mall near SM Megamall called the Ayala Malls the 30th.

It was quite a huge place as compared to how it looks on the outside. Oh well, at least we have a new place to gallivant in case we get bored at Megamall. But this post is definitely not about the mall rather about a well known fast food chain in the US that I saw for the first time in the PH! 😍  TACO BELL *drools*

I was really ecstatic that we should try it out. Haha! Apparently on their site they have 4 stores already. Guess, I was a bit late. Nevertheless, that shouldn’t stop me since I saw their burrito menu and that sold me out to give it a try!

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You wait for the number on the receipt to flash on the mini screen at the counter. Also clean your own table. 

We tried out their burrito with rice, hard tacos and quesadillas.

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The tacos were a bit bland for my taste
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Quesadillas are two thumbs up!

I love love love the burritos. ❤️

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Yup, a bitten burrito. 

Overall: It wasn’t a bad experience. In fact we had a take out burrito and got a free one because we did the survey online. Haha. I’ll definitely go back for those burritos. 🤤

Merci beaucoup et á bientôt!

Challenging Myself

Hello there! Quick question, who here has read my blogpost last 2016? The Fitness Goals??? Hahaha. I know, I know I haven’t been faithful on that year and just after a week or so I lapsed. Anyhoots, it is always good to have a partner in your fitness journey to be inspired and motivated to push your limits. I guess, I have my cousin and a dear friend who joined me with challenge to thank for. Hehehe.

So, I am writing my first weekly challenge to take off sweets and rice on my diet. I would substitute my rice to some sweet potatoes or “saba bananas” or cardava bananas. But if there is no available substitute for rice, then eating the viand will do good. Tomorrow is the start of the first week and I will post weekly photos my meals as a proof that I didn’t cheat.

A side note: I will not starve myself on this challenge but will still enjoy a little bit of this and that. This is up until I get used to the situation. You should know that in a Filipino diet, rice is a staple. So this is truly a challenge for me, my cousin and my friend. I hope to make it this week and see you next Saturday!

Merci beaucoup et á bientôt!

Garlic Aglio Olio Pasta

It seems that all of my posts this week are about food. Huehue. Well, who wouldn’t love food? It is the way to almost everyone’s hearts. Heehee. Though, I am no chef or culinary student, if there is one thing consistent that I know is that practice makes it perfect. I am truly thankful for the recipes posted online and they are truly helpful for people like me. Haha.

I followed this recipe from Youtube when I was just really hungry and craving for easy to make pasta recipes. I chanced on this video, looked for the ingredients on our kitchen, tweaked some of the ingredients not available to my own. Ta da! My own aglio olio recipe:

Garlic Aglio Olio Pasta

1 pound dry spaghetti
salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
6 cloves garlic, sliced thin
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes, or to taste
1 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese (but I don’t have that so I used cheddar instead)
Spices of basil, thyme, marjoram, sage and rosemary

 

Infuse your garlic with the olive oil and set aside. Cook your pasta lightly salted on boiling water according to the instructions on the label. Save at least a cup of the boiled pasta water and drain. Set aside.

On a separate cool pan, pour your garlic and infused oil and cook on low medium heat for 10 minutes. You will want to slowly brown your garlic, so keep a watchful eye. When the olive oil bubbles, lower the heat until your garlic becomes golden brown. Turn off the heat and add the pasta water so the garlic won’t burn.

On your pasta add the spices, salt, pepper and chili flakes. Mix well then add the garlic olive oil. Toss until well coated then add half of the grated cheese. Serve with additional spices on top and more cheese.

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I used extra virgin olive oil
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Spices! This is not sponsored by McCormick btw.

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Cheddar Cheese
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This is what I meant when infusing the garlic with olive oil
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I really tried to thinly slice them though.
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Ta da!!

And there you go peeps! I am glad my dad loved it. For other variations you may add spanish style sardines and olives. Here below is the video where I got the recipe.

 

Merci beaucoup et á bientôt!

Avocado + Chocolate

Hello loves! Sorry for such a long overdue post of the Avocado preview I posted on my Instagram account. It has been a crazy, hectic, stressful week in church/school. The Theology classes were assigned with the Malaysia Booth to showcase during the World Missions Conference. We started early but I tell you, there was a lot to do and only a few were willing to help. Still all by His grace and mercies, we finished on time and we even won first place! All the hard work and tiredness faded with cheers and resounding shouts of joy. But, before I blabber nonstop about that let me focus on the recipe I learned.

Avocado Love 🥑 soon on nicacanwrite.wordpress.com

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I forgot exactly where I got this recipe, but it is a simple one to make.

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Avocado Chocolate

One whole avocado mashed
1 1/2 tbsp of honey`
Pinch of salt
1 1/2 tsp of cocoa powder (use more if you prefer a bitter taste) or half a bar of dark chocolate melted (use the bain-marie method or double boiler)

 

Simply mix all ingredients. Let it chill on the refrigerator for 15 minutes then serve with a drizzle of condensed milk.

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There you have it! A less than guilty pleasure to satisfy your sweet tooth. Huehue. I hope you give it a try and lemme know how you like it!

Merci beaucoup et á bientôt!

 

One Pot Chicken Fajita Pasta

Hello everyone! I’m back for another recipe I remade from  Buzzfeed’s Tasty videos. I was encouraged to cook once again after my cousin posted her cooking. I am not quite a cook, if you all have noticed. Haha. But I do try my best. Thankfully at this age, you can simply search, click and look on the internet of the various recipes to follow from both simple to complicated ones. Of course, like any beginning cook, I start with the simple ones.

I chose the One Pot Chicken Fajita. All because I love chicken, I love fajitas, I love pasta and I love easy one pot recipes! Haha, it’s like 4 birds in one stone! Now I made that up. But anyway here is the recipe and some alterations I made. I will also post at the end the original video from Buzzfeed.

One Pot Chicken Fajita Pasta

3-5 tbsp of olive oil
3 Chicken breast sliced
3 bell peppers (any color of choice) diced
1 whole white onion diced
500g Penne Pasta or any pasta of choice
5-6 cups of whole fresh milk
1 1/2 cup of grated cheddar cheese
1-2 tbsp of chopped parsley (optional)
1-2 tsp of paprika
1-2 tsp of cayenne pepper
1-2 tsp of cumin
1-2 tbsp of all purpose cream (for creaminess but this is optional)
Dash of salt and pepper for seasoning

In a deep non stick casserole, heat your oil and cook chicken until there is no pink seen. Then remove chicken and set aside. Cook bell peppers and onions until translucent. Put back the chicken and add the salt, pepper, paprika, cumin and cayenne pepper. Stir well until all is coated.

Pour the whole milk and the penne pasta. Stir so the pasta noodles won’t stick. Cover for about 8-10 minutes to cook the pasta and until the sauce is reduced and thickened. Add the all purpose cream for extra creaminess, then add the cup of grated cheese until melted. Serve and garnish with the remaining half cup of grated cheese and parsley.

Here is my IG Post of it:

Now, since it was my first to cook pasta in one pot. I did have some mishaps and ended with the pasta half-cooked but still edible. I didn’t cover it in the first place  which made it that way. However, I am glad that my family and boyfriend enjoyed my cooking. Though they did mention it was a bit spicy. Well, we love spicy still and I am pretty sure this won’t be my last cooking. I do hope y’all give this a try!

Merci beaucoup et á bientôt!