Family steak lunch at Beeffalo by Hotrocks, Marikina

There’s something about biting into a juicy and flavorful piece of steak that makes one feel all good inside, right?

Each bite releases flavor, tenderness and juiciness, a powerful combination that simply makes you look forward to the next delicious bite.

However, steaks don’t come cheap.

Back in the late 2000s, my fam had a go-to place for delicious cuts of beef grilled to juicy and flavorful perfections: Hotrocks. It was a no-frills steak place located along C5 in Libis in Quezon City where we can enjoy steaks without having to break the bank.

Well, it disappeared when the area went through some renovations, much to our dismay, but we were gladdened to discover that it found a new home in the Marikina suburbs.

Beeffalo, Marikina
Beeffalo, Marikina
Beeffalo, Marikina
Beeffalo, Marikina

It even took on a new moniker: Beefalo by Hotrocks. Plus, it adopted a look as well: it transitioned from the down-home, cafeteria-style steakhouse (complete with wall decors of plates autographed by celebrity diners) to a more Western ranch-style roadside house with a spacious garden-style al fresco dining area and interior punctuated by brick walls and decorated with vintage appliances and bric-a-bracs.

During my visits there with my family since I discovered its re-emergence in Marikina, I welcomed its change in aesthetics (as well as the improvement in creature comforts that titas like me look for) but I was also glad to see our favorites still on the menu, such as:

Caesar Salad (Php 175 solo | Php345 for sharing). A bowl of crisp romaine lettuce tossed with bacon bits and croutons in Caesar salad dressing, then sprinkled with grated parmesan cheese is just the ticket for starting a great meal, wouldn’t you agree?

Beeffalo, Marikina
Beeffalo, Marikina
Beeffalo, Marikina
Beeffalo, Marikina

Porterhouse Steak (Php520 for 250g | Php795 for 450g). This is the steak that started it all: hefty cuts of porterhouse steak with spartan seasoning and served with mashed potato made from scratch, buttered veggies and the tangy housemate sauce. No-frills but still quite an indulgence.

Beeffalo, Marikina
Beeffalo, Marikina
Beeffalo, Marikina
Beeffalo, Marikina

Dulce de Leche Cheesecake (Php195). If memory serves, Hotrocks served me my first taste of this rich confection more than a decade ago. A cheesecake crust at the bottom is covered with a layer of milk-infused cake, which is then covered with a thick milky cream frosting. What’s not to love?

Beeffalo, Marikina
Beeffalo, Marikina
Beeffalo, Marikina
Beeffalo, Marikina

A family meal at Beefalo by Hotrocks is always a welcome foodie adventure for our family of steak lovers.

Beeffalo, Marikina
Beeffalo, Marikina
Beeffalo, Marikina
Beeffalo, Marikina

Beefalo by Hotrocks is located at Lot 6, Block 3, Gil Fernando Avenue, Santo Niño, Marikina City, open weekdays from 12 noon to 10pm and weekdays from 11am to 10pm for dine-in, takeout and delivery. For inquiries and orders, call +63 2 89676008 or +63 939 1130772.

Stay updated on its latest promos and offers by following it on Facebook and Instagram.

Fresh and grown-up takes on childhood faves from Pufft Doughnuts

Who can possibly not love doughnuts? I mean, what’s not to love?

Those puffy tufts of sweetness are sure to appeal to any sweet tooth, regardless of age, right?

Well, there’s a specialty shop for doughnut lovers who’re all grown up: Pufft Doughnuts!

I first knew about this doughnut brand as an online shop when I got a taste of its swetly explosive Snickers Bomb last year, but I was delighted to recently discover its popup store in Powerplant Mall.

Pufft, Powerplant Mall
Pufft, Powerplant Mall
Pufft, Powerplant Mall
Pufft, Powerplant Mall

Pufft Doughnuts prides itself on soft and fluffy doughnut creations, all made fresh from scratch using premium ingredients and stuffed to capacity with homemade filling or generously topped with frosting.

Well, I lost no time in getting a box of these goodies to bring home to the fam!

Inside this Stronut Box (Php775) is a winning combo of irresistible and decadent doughnut flavors such as:

2 Pcs of Strawberry Monst. Puffy doughnuts glazed and loaded with fresh strawberries and homemade strawberry jelly.

Pufft, Powerplant Mall
Pufft, Powerplant Mall
Pufft, Powerplant Mall
Pufft, Powerplant Mall

3 Pcs Filled Doughnuts. Decadent desserts such as Cinco Leches (made with five types of milk and topped with a dollop of dulce de leche), Tiramisu (stuffed with coffee and cream cheese) and Yema y Pastillas (stuffed with milky fave snacks).

Pufft, Powerplant Mall
Pufft, Powerplant Mall
Pufft, Powerplant Mall
Pufft, Powerplant Mall

The best part is that I can easily give in to my adult-level craving for donuts by simply ordering online. Pufft accepts pre-orders for or same-day delivery on Wednesdays and Saturdays.

Pufft, Powerplant Mall
Pufft, Powerplant Mall
Pufft, Powerplant Mall
Pufft, Powerplant Mall

So level up to adulting when it comes to your doughnut indulgences, why don’t you?

To stay updated on Pufft’s ever-growing gallery of doughnut flavors, follow it on Facebook or Instagram.

Elevate your holiday treats with the latest in world-class cooking technology

La Germania shares 3 easy and irresistible dessert ideas to satisfy your sweet tooth and gift your loved ones this Christmas season

The most wonderful time of the year is right around the corner! It’s no secret the Philippines celebrates the earliest and longest Christmas season in the world, especially when this holiday commemorates the 3 things Pinoy families value the most: faith, family and food.

Approaching the holidays, the kitchen comes alive with the hustle and bustle of delicious meals sizzling on the stove and warming up in the oven, filling the house with mouth watering aromas that beg the curious question: “What are we having?”

However, although this is the most beloved holiday, it can also be the busiest and most stressful season for home cooks. Planning and preparing your Noche Buena meals and ordering gifts can not only be time-consuming, but costly as well.

This holiday season, consider going through the personalized route by baking up a storm and serving up some homemade treats that are handmade with love. These dessert recipes are sure to be the perfect gift for your loved ones, or satisfy their sweet tooths during your holiday feasts.

Christmas Cookies

La Germania Christmas Photos

Take a break from your usual chocolate-chip by making special Christmas cookies.

With your La Germania Table Oven, you can prepare these cute and quirky treats that celebrate the festive spirit! With its thermostat control and 60-minute timer, you can whip up the perfect batch to wow the crowd and experiment with a variety of different recipes even if you have a small kitchen space. Don’t forget to leave some for Santa Claus!

Ingredients:

FOR THE COOKIE DOUGH

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for surface
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp. pure vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp. milk

FOR THE BUTTERCREAM FROSTING

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
  • 5 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 tsp. pure almond extract
  • 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
  • Food coloring

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt. Set the mixture aside after.
  2. In another large bowl, beat butter and sugar until fluffy and pale in color. Add egg, milk, and vanilla and beat until combined, then add flour mixture gradually until totally combined.
  3. Shape into a disk and wrap in plastic. Refrigerate for an hour.
  4. When ready to roll, preheat the oven to 350º and line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Lightly flour a clean work surface and roll out the dough until 1/8” thick. 
  5. Cut out shapes and transfer to prepared baking sheets. You can use cookie cutters for fun shapes. You can also make your own if you’re feeling creative. Freeze it for 10 minutes (so your shapes hold while baking).
  6. Meanwhile, make the frosting: In a large bowl using a hand mixer, beat butter until smooth, then add powdered sugar and beat until no lumps remain. Add cream, almond extract, and salt and beat until combined.
  7. Bake cookies until the edges are lightly golden, 8 to 10 minutes. 
  8. Let cool, then frost and decorate as desired.

Dulce de Leche

La Germania Christmas Photos

You can step up the sweetness this season by making your own Dulce de Leche.

Aside from enjoying it on its own, you can drizzle Dulce de leche on ice cream, add it to your usual brownies, or layer them in smores. There are so many ways to enjoy this versatile dessert, and it will be so easy to make at home with the help of an induction cooker! 

A staple in smaller homes, an induction cooker can do a lot of wonders. This heat-tempered glass worktop has a timer and child-lock, meaning you can cook dishes safely and precisely while you bond with your kids in the kitchen.

Ingredients:

  • 8 cups of whole milk
  • 2 to 2 ½ cups sugar (adjust based on your preference)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • ¼ tsp baking soda

Directions:

  1. Combine all the ingredients in a large pot over medium-low heat, stir until the sugar or panela is well dissolved. Reduce the heat to low.
  2. Continue cooking until the mixture is significantly reduced and starts to thicken while the color changes from a creamy beige to a caramel tone. It will take between 2 ½ hours to 3 hours for the dulce de leche to be done.
  3. During the first 1 ½ hours you will need to stir occasionally to prevent it from boiling over and sticking. During the last hour, it needs to be stirred more frequently and has to be watched very closely to keep it from burning – you can also decrease the heat to low. 
  4. Cook it until it has a dark amber or caramel tone and has a creamy consistency. Keep in mind that it will thicken more when it cools down.
  5. The final product can be served warm or cold and must be kept refrigerated.

Classic Bibingka

La Germania Christmas Photos

A Noche Buena spread is incomplete without the classic Filipino rice cake known as Bibingka.

With your 90cm oven, you can prepare this holiday favorite at home. With its five cooking functions, including a fan-assisted electric oven, you can cook up a storm. Plus, its enamel cavity finish is easy to clean, making the whole cooking process so much easier. Preparing this particular dish may look like a daunting task, but it’s actually pretty easy to make. 

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup rice flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1/4 cup fresh milk
  • 1 piece salted duck egg sliced
  • 1/2 cup grated cheese
  • 3 pieces raw eggs
  • Pre-cut banana leaf

Directions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Meanwhile, combine rice flour, baking powder, and salt then mix well. Set aside.
  2. Cream the butter then gradually put-in sugar while whisking. Then, add the eggs then whisk until every ingredient is well incorporated.
  3. Gradually add the rice flour, salt, and baking powder mixture then continue mixing.
  4. Pour in coconut milk and fresh milk then whisk some more for 1 to 2 minutes.
  5. Arrange the pre-cut banana leaf on a cake pan or baking pan.
  6. Pour the mixture on the pan, then bake for 15 minutes.
  7. Remove from the oven then top with sliced salted egg and grated cheese (do not turn the oven off).
  8. Put back in the oven and bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until the color of the top turns medium brown.
  9. Remove from the oven and let cool. Brush the dish with butter and sprinkle some sugar on top once it cools. You can also top this with grated coconut.

These are only some of the mouthwatering holiday treats you can prepare with your La Germania kitchen appliances. Built according to the highest European standards in terms of construction and design, La Germania appliances allow you to prepare your Noche Buena extravaganza in an efficient and easy way. 

What’s more, as a special holiday treat, enjoy FREE aprons and cookware for a minimum spend of Php 5,000 when you shop on La Germania’s website during their 11.11 sale this November 11-30, 2021. With guaranteed durability and superior quality, they’re a good investment for you to channel your inner chef, and unleash your kitchen genius for all seasons to come!

La Germania 11.11 2
La Germania 11.11 1

La Germania products are available online through La Germania’s official e-commerce website www.lagermaniaph.com and e-commerce platforms on Shopee and Lazada. For more information on La Germania and its products, you may follow the official Facebook and Instagram accounts of the trusted kitchen and appliance brand.

About La Germania

Italian-heritage brand La Germania has been the preferred kitchen companion of Filipino homemakers for 53 years and counting. Its wide array of ovens, cooktops, and stoves is made of high-grade materials and designed to stand the test of time and extensive use. La Germania’s current line of products continues to serve the cooking needs and lifestyle of this generation and the next.

Recipes and food images provided by La Germania in a recent press release.

Header photo Freepik.

Latin Foodgasm at Tittos, Kapitolyo

Another recent addition to the establishments in the foodie-friendly Kapitolyo neighborhood is Tittos Latin BBQ and Brew. The family and I were treated here by the in-laws for SIL’s birthday.

Tittos’ imposing exteriors lead into bright and airy interiors, complete with festive and colorful artwork and decor that give the place a vibrant South American feel.

Latin American cuisine is an amalgamation of food from South American countries wherein common items include maize-based dishes (such as tortillas, tamales and tacos), various salsas and other condiments such as guacamole, chili and chimichurri.  This cuisine is also heavily influenced by other cultures, particularly Native American (from which Latin cuisine got its predilection for corn), African (from which the use of less desired cuts of meat are perfected into distinct dishes), and European (resulting from colonization of several Latin American countries during the Age of Exploration).

Our food orders certainly embodied Tittos’ myriad of influences.

Our starters:

Churrasco Beef Salpicao (Php345).  Grilled beef cubes sauteed in herb butter with mushrooms and onion crisps.

Salted Egg Shrimp Taco (Php145). The crispy shrimp morsels, curry leaves and salted egg sauce give this dish an Asian flavor.

Verduras Taco (Php125).  Another Asian-inspired dish with steamed cauliflower and tofu flavored with sweet and spicy soy glaze, pico de gallo and melted cheese.

Our main dishes:

Arroz Negra Paella (Php495 for Medio, good for 2-3 people). The squid-ink flavored rice served as the backdrop for the chorizos, oysters, prawns and squid rings.

Titto’s Chicharon (Php650). Our favorite crispy pata served with spiced vinegar and chimichurri.

Pollo Asado (Php695 for Todo or Whole Chicken). Roast chicken served with chimichurri, mango relish and side vegetables.

Our desserts:

Dulce de Leche Cheesecake (Php195). The delectable caramel-based cheesecake with a new twist – a chocolate sauce with oodles of caramelized cornflakes.

Frozen Brazo de Mercedes (Php195). The favorite and familiar brazo de mercedes modified intona cheesecake.

Ube Churros (Php225). Sizeable ube churros served with white chocolate frosting, caramel and drizzled with chocolate syrup.

All in all, it was a happy celebration made even more so by Tittos’ festive food offerings.

Tittos Latin BBQ and Brew is located at 16 East Capitol Drive, Kapitolyo, Pasig City.  For reservations, call +63 2 5323414 or +63 917 8122243.

Tittos Latin BBQ & Brew Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Check out my reviews of similar restaurants:

Learn more about Latin American cuisine with these books on Amazon.com!

Want to try some recipes today? There’s no need to leave home to shop for ingredients.  With Honestbee, just order your groceries online and you’ll get them delivered right at your doorstep at your preferred time. Use this referral link and get Php500 off for a minimum spend of Php2,500.  You can download the Honestbee app on iTunes or Google Play.

(By the way, Tittos also deliver via Honestbee.)

If you’re in the US and an Amazon Prime member, sign up for a free trial of Amazon Fresh to get your groceries delivered to you.