La Germania shares how to recreate your favorite dishes from Cibo, Yabu and other beloved restaurants

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to cook like your favorite chefs? Participants had the opportunity to learn how to cook like the pro’s themselves during the Cooking with La Germania: Masterclass Series, a five-part installment of virtual cooking classes held in partnership with celebrities and chefs from renown restaurants all over Metro Manila. 

In the webinar series, expert instructors guided viewers through the step-by-step process of how to cook their signature dishes, disclosing their tips and tricks along the way. Attendees also had the opportunity to interact with the chefs, who assisted them throughout the process. 

Among the impressive lineup were award-winning restaurateur Chef Margarita Forés, celebrity chef Rolando Laudico of Chef Guevarra’s and OK Cafe, and Chef Lee Jose from the Standard Hospitality Group which manages Yabu and Ippudo. In case you missed out on the unforgettable series, worry not! La Germania is here today to share some of the recipes behind your favorite restaurants’ signature dishes, and advice from our top chefs.

Not your typical pancake

Chef Lee Jose
Okonomiyaki

There’s more to Japanese cuisine than ramen and sushi. Chef Lee Jose, Executive Chef of popular Japanese restaurant chains Yabu and Ippudo, demonstrated how to make the savory version of Japanese pancake, Okonomiyaki. Not only is it an easy and filling recipe, but it’s sure to wow your friends and family! It’s best if you shop at a Japanese grocery store before you try this recipe, as a lot of ingredients won’t be found in your usual supermarket. 

Ingredients:

Okonomiyaki Batter

  • ¾ cups of water
  • 1 tsp Honodashi powder
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • ⅛ tsp iodized salt
  • ¼ tsp sugar
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 4 large eggs
  • 4 cups of cabbage
  • ½ cup of tenkasu (tempura flakes)
  • 1 tbsp Benishoga (pickled ginger)
  • Regular sliced bacon
  • 4 tbsp spring onions
  • 4 tbsp canola oil

Okonomiyaki Sauce

  • 1 ½ tbsp white sugar 
  • ⅛ tsp salt 
  • 3 ½ tbsp Worcestershire sauce 
  • 4 tbsp tomato ketchup 
  • 2 tbsp Oyster sauce 

Assembly

  • 1 tbsp cooking oil 
  • 1 cup Okonomiyaki batter 
  • 3 slices regular sliced bacon
  • 2 tbsp Onomiyaki sauce 
  • 1 tsp Aonori powder
  • 2 tbsp Japanese mayonnaise
  • Bonito flakes
  • 1 tsp Spring onions

Procedure:

  1. Prepare the Okonomiyaki batter by chopping the cabbage into 1/2″ chunks. Do not use the hard core. In a mixing bowl, add water and hondashi powder and whisk to dissolve the hondashi powder. Add the rest of the dry ingredients (flour, salt, sugar and baking powder). Whisk until the batter is smooth, then add the eggs and whisk until fully incorporated in the batter. Add the chopped Cabbage, Tempura flakes, Pickled Ginger and Spring onions. You can also add whatever fillings you desire (mushrooms, ham, pre cooked seafood, etc.) Using a rubber spatula, fold the batter until every ingredient is coated. Cover and keep chilled until ready to cook. This recipe yields 4 portions. 
  2. For the Okonomiyaki sauce, put all ingredients in a bowl and mix until all the sugar has dissolved. Keep in an airtight container and set aside. Keep chilled. 
  3. Heat up a non-stick pan and add 1 tbsp of oil on medium heat. When the pan is hot, scoop 1 cup of batter and add to the middle of the pan. Using your rubber spatula, gently level out the batter, then cover and let the batter cook a bit for 2 minutes. 
  4. Remove the cover and lay down 3 slices of bacon on top of the pancake. Cover and cook for 1 minute more, then gently flip the pancake and turn the heat to low. Cover and cook for another 3 minutes, then test for doneness by sticking a knife or chopsticks in the middle of the pancake to test if it’s fully cooked. If the stick or knife comes out clean, it’s cooked.
  5. Spread 1-2 tbsp of okonomiyaki sauce on top of the pancake and spread out evenly. Sprinkle the aonori (seaweed powder) and drizzle the Japanese mayonnaise. Top the pancake with bonito flakes & spring onions. Serve right away.

Elevate your breakfast favorites

Chef Lau
Longrilog

You may be an expert in making meatballs, but have you tried Longanisa meatballs? Chef Rolando Laudico of Chef Laudico Guevarra’s and OK Cafe taught the audience his secret to making his elevated version of Filipino breakfast classic Longsilog, better known as “Long-Ri-Long”, which is Longanisa meatball on creamy garlic salted egg risotto, poached eggs and oven dried tomatoes. 

Ingredients:

Longanisa Meatballs

  • 500g longanisa ground meat
  • Half cup small white onion, diced
  • 2 tbsps fresh basil, chopped 
  • 2 tbsps fresh Italian parsley
  • Half cup grated parmesan cheese
  • 1 whole egg, beaten
  • 1 cup bread crumbs
  • Half cup milk 
  • 4 tbsps extra virgin olive oil 

Creamy garlic salted egg risotto

  • 1 cup risotto rice (arborio or any short grain rice)
  • 2 tbsps butter
  • 1 head of garlic, minced
  • 1L chicken stock
  • 1 cup of cream
  • 2 salter eggs, chopped fine
  • Sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste 

Oven dried tomatoes

  • 6 whole tomatoes, halved
  • Sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • Extra virgin olive oil, to drizzle

Poached eggs

  • 4 eggs
  • Sea salt
  • 4 cups of water 

Procedure:

  1. To make the longganisa meat balls, begin by mixing bread crumbs and milk together in a cup and let milk absorb for 5 minutes. In a big bowl, take out fresh longganisa meat from the casing (discard casing) and mix all other ingredients together. Refrigerate for 30 minutes to an hour. Form into meatballs and fry using a non-stick pan with 4 tablespoons of olive oil until brown. Place in a sheet pan and bake in the oven at 175C for 10-15 minutes or until meatballs are fully cooked. 
  2. To make the risotto, heat butter in a saucepan on medium high heat and add minced garlic. Saute for 2 minutes or until garlic is golden in color, then add risotto rice or sticky rice and cook for 2 minutes. Add chicken stock 1 cup at a time and gently stir until liquid has been totally absorbed. Repeat the process until the rice is cooked. Rice should be a bit al dente. Add more stock if needed depending on the type of rice used. Finally, add cream and finely chopped salted egg then cook for another 2-3 minutes. Garnish with fresh herbs like Italian parsley.
  3. For the tomatoes, slice them in half then season with sea salt and pepper. Bake in a 175C oven for 15 to 20 minutes or until tomatoes have dried a bit. 
  4. For the poached eggs, add water in a small cup then add a pinch or two of sea salt. Break the whole egg and add to the cup being careful not to break the yolks. Place the cup in a microwave for 45 seconds to a minute depending on the power of the microwave. Spoon out poached egg on a paper towel to absorb excess liquid. Repeat the process to the other 4 eggs. 
  5. For assembly, on a platter or plate, spread salted egg garlic risotto then top with longanisa meatballs, oven dried tomatoes, poached eggs and garnish with fresh herbs.

Satisfying your Italian craving

Chef Margarita Fores
Penne al Telefono

While the recipe behind Cibo’s famous Penne al Telefono will remain a secret (revealed exclusively to the attendees of the Masterclass series), here are some of Chef Margarita Forés biggest do’s and don’ts when it comes to cooking the perfect pasta. 

For one, the quality of your ingredients and the way they were manufactured makes a world of a difference when it comes to the richness and flavor of your meal! This is why you need to choose your ingredients carefully, and understand the science behind how they were made and how they react to other ingredients. For instance, Cibo recommends using pasta from the brand “De Cecco”, which uses a bronze pasta shaper that creates more porous noodles, allowing sauces to cling to the pasta better. 

For Margarita’s biggest don’ts, do not check for doneness by throwing your pasta against a wall and expecting it to stick. This means that your pasta is overcooked! Furthermore, do not run your freshly cooked pasta under cold water, as this removes all the flavor. Remember that pasta water is your best friend, and is a vital ingredient to the flavor of your pasta. 

When preparing these mouthwatering dishes, it’s important to choose the best ingredients and to use good quality kitchen equipment like La Germania. Built according to the highest European standards in terms of construction and design, La Germania appliances allow you to prepare restaurant-worthy dishes in an efficient and easy way. With guaranteed durability and superior quality, they’re a good investment for you to channel your inner chef, and unleash your kitchen genius.

Check out my La Germania Wish List on Lazada!

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. To know more about La Germania and its products, visit www.lagermaniaph.com. The trusted kitchen partner of Filipinos also has its official stores on Shopee and Lazada.

Photos of the chefs and dishes provided by La Germania in a recent press release.

Photo by Yente Van Eynde from Pexels

Yokohama’s Sigekiya Ramen now at Estancia Mall

My #RamenPhase has already spanned years.

From the first time I had a taste of what real Japanese ramen could be (as opposed to the instant noodles the defined the term during my childhood) I was hooked.

Since then, I’ve always been on the lookout for places to enjoy those firm, freshly made noodles in hot flavorful broth. I’ve tried a number of ramen restaurants in the metro already but this is the first time I’ve tried Sigekiya Ramen.

Sigekiya Ramen, Estancia Mall

A franchise of the famous ramen chain in Yokohama, Japan, this shop opened in Estancia Mall’s East Wing in November last year. The place has a down-home izakaya feel to it, with colorful banners and lanterns hanging from the ceiling and a peek from the ramen bar into the hustlin’ and bustlin’ scene in the kitchen where the ramen orders are freshly made.

Sigekiya Ramen, Estancia Mall

Sigekiya Ramen, Estancia Mall

Sigekiya Ramen, Estancia Mall

Sigekiya Ramen, Estancia Mall

Last Sunday, together with my fellow East-based foodies, I had a taste of Sigekiya’s celebrated offerings, which included:

Sigekiya Ramen (Php325 small | Php375 regular | Php420 large). The store’s unique take on the shoyu ramen with pork meat broth taking the place of the pork bone broth resulting to a rich umami flavor. It comes with generous slices of char siu (seasoned and torched pork belly) which gives the ramen some added heft. Just imagine slurping this during these balmy January days. Yummy!

Sigekiya Ramen, Estancia Mall

Sigekiya Ramen, Estancia Mall

Sigekiya Ramen, Estancia Mall

Tsukemen (Php375 small | Php420 regular | Php500 large). The so-called “dipping ramen.” Instead of being immersed in the pork broth, the ramen noodles are eaten after being dipped in the soup which is more intense in flavor than the normal ramen broth. A version called Tsukemen Gyokai (Php385 small | Php430 regular | Php510 large) is also available wherein the pork broth is supplemented by fish powder, giving the ramen another dimension in flavor.

Sigekiya Ramen, Estancia Mall

Sigekiya Ramen, Estancia Mall

Sigekiya Ramen, Estancia Mall

Sigekiya Ramen, Estancia Mall

Tantanmen Ramen (Php325 small | Php375 regular | Php420 large). Sigekiya’s take on the spicy Dandanmian noodle dish which originated in China. With a hearty peanut-based broth, ground meat and chopped veggies, this is a filling meal for the ramen lover.

Gojira (Php380). The name sounds so similar to what the Japanese call the monster Godzilla, hehehe! (I wonder if that’s intentional, hmm…) Well, this ramen bowl is such a monster in terms of serving size. With all those noodles, meat, loads of garlic and veggies, you’ll really get your fill.

Sigekiya Ramen, Estancia Mall

Sigekiya Ramen, Estancia Mall

Shirunashi (Php380). Another ramen that has very little soup, just a bit of rich-tasting sauce that together with a freshly cracked egg, veggies and loads of garlic to bring flavor and texture to the noodles.

Sigekiya Ramen, Estancia Mall

Sigekiya Ramen, Estancia Mall

Gyoza (Php110 for three pieces | Php160 for five pieces). Pan-fried dumplings filled with seasoned ground pork flavored with aromatics. The gyoza here are larger than the usual gyoza and are among the most delish my friends and I have tasted.

Sigekiya Ramen, Estancia Mall

Sigekiya Ramen, Estancia Mall

Sigekiya Ramen, Estancia Mall

Okonomiyaki (Php160). Sigekiya’s version of the savory Japanese pancake is served on hot plates and topped with Japanese mayo and smoky bonito flakes.

Sigekiya Ramen, Estancia Mall

Sigekiya Ramen, Estancia Mall

Chicken Karaage (Php215). This version of the Japanese fried chicken is served with a sweet chili sauce but, trust me, request for some Japanese mayo and dip the karaage there instead. Add a bit of wasabi for a bit of spice.

Sigekiya Ramen, Estancia Mall

Sigekiya Ramen, Estancia Mall

With its delicious and affordable offerings and large portions, Sigekiya Ramen makes Yokohama’s celebrated dishes more accessible to hungry Pinoys.

Many thanks to Miguel Illescas and the crew of Sigekiya Ramen for the warm welcome and the delicious food!

Sigekiya Ramen, Estancia Mall

Sigekiya Ramen, Estancia Mall

Sigekiya Ramen, Estancia Mall

This Sigekiya Ramen branch is located at Lower Ground, East Wing, Estancia Mall, Oranbo, Pasig City.

Another branch is located at Ground Floor, Commercenter, 1780 Commerce Corner Filinvest Avenue, Filinvest City, Muntinlupa City.

Sigekiya Ramen Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Disclosure: Together with other food bloggers, I was invited to attend a food tasting held in this restaurant. Food items mentioned here were served to allow us to sample the fare and were not paid for by the attendees, including myself.

Check out my reviews of other Japanese restaurants:

 

Sake-tasting at Dohtonbori, Greenhills

Sake, an alcoholic beverage made of fermented rice, is a long standing tradition in Japanese cuisine. It can be served chilled, at room temperature or heated, depending on the drinker’s preferences, the quality of the sake and the season.

Sake Masterclass, Dohtonbori

During a recent Sake Masterclass held in Dohtonbori’s first-ever store in Greenhills, my fellow foodies and I were treated to different kinds of sake produced by Japan’s premier sake brewer Kubota, paired with the resto’s okonomiyaki and other dishes. With the help Kubota’s Sake Master Keichi Nagatsuka, our group traced the history and traditions surrounding the production of sake.

Sake Masterclass, Dohtonbori

Sake Masterclass, Dohtonbori

Sake Masterclass, Dohtonbori

Kubota Sake are produced in the Niigata prefecture, one of Japan’s quality rice producing areas, where various factors come into play to bring about Japan’s celebrated sake. From the premium Gohyakumangoku rice grown in the area, the water from melted snow to the cold snowy climate that limits bacteria growth during the brewing process, Niigata is home to many sake breweries.

Kubota is also guided by the principle of Jizake – the brewing of sake with the natural resources of the region. This ensures that the production of sake also protects the land, the natural environment and the local community. Even washi, the paper used to label the sake bottles, are handmade by a local artisan.

The sake we sampled during the event include:

Kubota Senjyu. Characterized by its moderate aroma, a delicate palate and clean and crisp finish, it can be served chilled or slightly warmed. Paired with Butatama (Pork) Okonomiyaki and Chicken Karaage.

Sake Masterclass, Dohtonbori

Kubota Junmai Daiginjo. With a hint of pear and melon, its elegant aroma, and the blend of acidic and fruity flavors, it can be served chilled for diners to enjoy the clean and crisp aftertaste or at room temperature to savor its unique aroma. Paired with Veggie Supreme Okonomiyaki and Chicken Shio.

Sake Masterclass, Dohtonbori

Kubota Manjyu. Kubota’s flagship premium sake with a complex yet pleasant flavor, floral aroma and smooth texture, it can be served served slightly chilled or warmed. Paired with Kalbi (Beef) Yakiniku and Four Cheese (Mozarella, Cheddar, Parmesan and Gouda) Okonomiyaki.

Sake Masterclass, Dohtonbori

Sake Masterclass, Dohtonbori

Sake Masterclass, Dohtonbori

The pairings of Kubota sake with Dohtonbori’s okonomiyaki and other signature dishes helped to bring out their complementing flavors, with sake supporting the tastes and textures of the viands.

Sake Masterclass, Dohtonbori

Sake Masterclass, Dohtonbori

Dontonbori is named after one of Osaka’s principal tourist destinations known for its myriad of food choice and vibrant nightlife. The restaurant is driven by “Teppan Communication,” the philosophy that seeks to make the environment surrounding the teppan enjoyable and fun, where diners experience a sense of connection to each other as they share a meal. (Teppan is the iron plate on which the restaurant’s signature dishes are cooked in front of the diner.).

Sake Masterclass, Dohtonbori

The resto’s signature dish is the okomiyaki, the Japanese savory pancake comprised of various ingredients. Its name is derived from “okonomi,” which means “how you like” and “yaki,” which means “cooked.” Dohtonbori’s okonomiyaki is made with okonomiyaki flour imported from Japan, eggs, cabbage, green onions, tempura bits, and other ingredients.

This Dohtonbori branch is located at Cullinan Prime Building, 8 Missouri Street, Greenhills, San Juan City open daily from 11am to 10pm). For reservations and inquiries, call +63 2 5702765.

Other branches are located at:

  • Third Floor, Mega Fashion Hall, SM Megamall, Ortigas, Mandaluyong City (open daily from 11am to 10pm)
  • Second Floor, UP Town Center, Katipunan Avenue, Diliman, Quezon City (open Sundays to Thursdays from 10am to 9pm and Fridays to Saturdays from 10am to 10pm)
  • Upper Ground Floor, Main Building, SM City North EDSA, Bago Bantay, Quezon City (open daily from 10am to 10pm)
  • Second Floor, Entertainment Mall, SM Mall of Asia, Mall of Asia Complex (MOA), Pasay City (open daily from 10am to 9pm)
  • Upper Ground Floor, SM City Fairview, Novaliches, Quezon City (open Sundays to Thursdays from 10am to 9pm and Fridays to Saturdays from 10am to 10pm)
  • Pacific Star Building, Buendia Corner Makati Avenue, Salcedo Village, Makati City (open daily from 10am to 10pm)

DOHTONBORI Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Disclosure: Together with other foodies, I was invited to join a Sake Masterclass held at this restaurant. Food items mentioned here were served to allow us to sample the fare and were not paid for by the attendees, including myself.

Check out my reviews of other Japanese restaurants:

New Japanese Food Haunt: Dohtonbori, SM Megamall

After a bout of running errands in SM Megamall, Hubby and I decided to have lunch at the Dohtonbori located in foodie haven Mega Fashion Hall.  I found it funny that despite the restaurant being around for the past three years, I’ve only just gotten around to it recently.

Named after one of Osaka, Japan’s principal tourist destinations known for its rich and varied gastronomic options as well as its vibrant nightlife, Dohtonbori is driven by its philosophy of “Teppan Communication.”  This philosophy strives to make the environment surrounding the teppan – the iron plate on which the restaurant’s signature dishes are cooked – enjoyable and fun, where diners can experience a sense of being connected with each other as they share a meal.

Dohtunburi, SM Megamall

Dohtunburi, SM Megamall

The restaurant’s premises is reminiscent of the streets of Osaka, with light-colored pine wood walls, brightly-colored streamers and even a vintage bike on display!

Dohtunburi, SM Megamall

For our midday repast, we opted not to avail ourselves of Dohtonbori’s claim to fame: the okonomiyaki. These are savory pancakes popular in Japan but unfortunately unfamiliar to Hubby and myself. (Well, we’ll probably try them on our next visit.)

Instead, we decided on ordering dishes that are more familiar to us, which include:

Endamame (Php90). Served freshly steamed and lightly salted, this is Hubby’s go-to appetizer whenever we’re at a Japanese resto.

Ajitama Ramen (Php350). Firm ramen noodles in a steaming soup base (I opted for the rich Tonkotsu broth), served with a melt-in-your-mouth piece of chashu pork, aonori seaweed and the tasty soft-boiled egg tamago.

Dohtunburi, SM Megamall

Dohtunburi, SM Megamall

Tempura Zaru Soba (Php350). Cold Japanese soba noodles served with dipping tsuyu sauce, wasabi, spring onion, shredded nori, and sesame seeds.

Dohtunburi, SM Megamall

Dohtunburi, SM Megamall

USDA Angus Striploin Yakiniku (Php750). A 200-gram well-marbled piece of striploin expertly cooked by a wait staff on the teppan right on our table.

Dohtunburi, SM Megamall

Dohtunburi, SM Megamall

Dohtunburi, SM Megamall

Our lunchtime foray into this piece of Osaka gave us a tasty and filling meal that fueled us up for the rest of our mall errands.

Did you know that Dohtonbori works with the Autism Society of the Philippines on its Autism at Work Program? This means that staff are trained and well-equipped to assist persons with autism who visit the restaurant. Furthermore, persons on the autism spectrum are trained, employed and accepted as part of the restaurant’s staff and the whole Dohtobori family. Being a mom of a child on the autism spectrum, I’m happy to support establishments like this that help to get differently abled people such as my son be more integrated into the mainstream and more productive members of society.

This Dohtonbori branch is located at Third Floor, Mega Fashion Hall, SM Megamall, Ortigas, Mandaluyong City (open daily from 11am to 10pm). For reservations and inquiries, call +63 2 4772066.

Other branches are located at:

  • Cullinan Prime Building, 8 Missouri Street, Greenhills, San Juan City
  • Second Floor, UP Town Center, Katipunan Avenue, Diliman, Quezon City
  • Upper Ground Floor, Main Building, SM City North EDSA, Bago Bantay, Quezon City
  • Second Floor, Entertainment Mall, SM Mall of Asia, Mall of Asia Complex (MOA), Pasay City
  • Upper Ground Floor, SM City Fairview, Novaliches, Quezon City

DOHTONBORI Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Check out my reviews of other Japanese restaurants: