Bread Story-Philippines

Bread Story, SM San Lazaro , Manila -Philippines

Bread Story -SM San Lazaro branch

Bread Story is one of the latest food bakery which opened their store in SM San Lazaro , Their first store was located in SM South mall and their clientele is growing .

freshly baked breads

The manager said that the store got their franchise from Malaysia  and  outside the country their branches can be found in  Singapore, Indonesia, Dubai, Kuwait  and Australia. I like their tag line – A beautiful loaf story. The ambiance of their place  and the color of their store ( mint green ) caught my eye.

Walnut Apple Cinnamon

Aside from smelling the aroma of freshly baked bread, you can also view their kitchen and see the bakers working.   The aroma and texture of baked goods as they come out of the oven is strongly appealing but it is a quality that is quickly lost.

Since the flavor and appeal largely depend on this freshness  which the bakeshop had captured . Cakes and pastries are also available at the counter in reasonable prices.

poster of the best sellers

Since its initial operations in February 12, 2012 , the store had now 4 branches all located in various parts of Metro Manila- They have SM Fairview, SM South Mall- Las Piñas City, Robinson Galleria and SM San Lazaro- Manila .

Blueberry  Cinnamon

Bread Pitt

This bread was had a catchy name and richly textured

The store mission : Making a beautiful loaf story in Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Dubai, Australia, Kuwait  and now, the Philippines.

Website: http://breadstoryph.com/

Facebook : http://www.facebook.com/breadstoryph

Emailbreadstoryph@yahoo.com

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Lego Around The World Christmas Exhibit at SM North EDSA

SM North EDSA, Quezon City

Lego Christmas advertisement 

tarpaulin poster of the event

   The author went to  the exhibit  last November 12, 2011 , Unfortunately  that day  I  was not able to bring my everyday companion which is a digital camera (my primary reason in going to the mall  is  Christmas shopping  )  without thinking of an exhibit being held at the place.

Petronas Twin Tower  of Malaysia

I had to come a week later , in order to take pictures of the wonderful exhibit. With many curious on-lookers and two nosy security guards watching carefully on  every moves of every individual taking pictures and passers-by.

Merlion  of Singapore along side with Bank of Asia building of Thailand and Petronas Twin Tower of Malaysia

They would constantly be reminding everyone not to take pictures inside the plastic covered  exhibit . Baka masira ang exhibit ” The exhibit might get ruin.

Saint James Church , Kadayawan Festival of Davao and Nativity Scene 

Some passers-by would make a snide  comment ” Ang sungit naman ng mga guards na iyan, akalain naman nila sisirain ang mga exhibit na iyan” .   The guards are  sulky  , They thought that we will destroy the exhibit.

Philippine jeepney, Statute of Rizal and Saint James Church 

I politely told them that the lego bricks on display are just temporarily fixed they might get topped by just a mere blow of the wind ” .

 Great Wall of China , Forbidden Palace Gate, Tiananmen Square and Dragon Dance 

  I saw a lot of children and children at heart viewing the lego exhibit.  Someone from the organizers told me that there are a lot of lego collectors around the world and even in the Philippines.

Snowman

 LEGO Group  a privately held company based in Billund , Denmark . In 1934, his company came to be called “LEGO”, from the Danish phrase leg godt, which means “play-well”. By 1947 the company began its expansion by making plastic toys. Two years later in 1949 , Lego began producing the now famous interlocking bricks, calling them “Automatic Binding Bricks”. These bricks were based largely on the patent of Kiddicraft Self-Locking Bricks, which were released in the United Kingdom in 1947.

Farm lands complete with planted vegetables,  tractors, livestock and farm houses

The company’s flagship product, Lego, consists of colorful interlocking plastic bricks and an accompanying array of gears, mini figurines  and various other parts. Lego bricks can be assembled and connected in many ways, to construct such objects as vehicles, buildings, and even working robots. Anything constructed can then be taken apart again, and the pieces used to make other objects.

 capitol building of Camarines Norte

The toys were originally designed in the 1940’s in Denmark and have achieved an international appeal, with an extensive subculture that supports Lego movies, games, video games, competitions, and  at least about half a dozen  Lego theme amusement parks .

Grand Carousel 

A big portion of  the exhibit was executed by a Filipino lego collector  named Mr. Jigs  Manaloto . He started to collects the building blocks since he was 6 years-old! Together with four other enthusiasts they are responsible for building this project in the Philippines.

Star wars in battle  

Lego exhibits are on the tour in several Asian countries  like Indonesia in 2009, 2010 in Malaysia, 2011 in the Philippines and next year in Thailand (2012 ).

Poster of the event held at SM Mall Of Asia – Main Atrium

 I was able to catch their public exhibition last August 12 to 27, 2011 at the SM Mall of Asia  with the theme ” Lego Pilipinas Tara Na at SM Mall of Asia ! ” featuring various Philippine tourist spots  and  last September in Greenbelt-5   Makati  which is very successful.

Relief  Map of the Philippines depicting various tourist spots  photo taken last August, 2011

According to one of the staff  ” the reception of the public is very warm , from young children who barely can speak , teenagers  and even senior citizens “. We are planning to have several more public events next year in the country.

                                                                    

Eiffel Tower of  Paris, France with a curious passers-by

This is not just ordinary tour,  ( you learn geography , famous landmarks, architecture , culture )   People who buys lego sets can also extend a helping hands to the children across the region.

poster 

In partnership with World Vision -Philippines , an  international advocacy organization ( with local chapter) which focused on and assisting the needs, rights and responsibilities of children through sustainable development and education.

 There are 2 ways to help the cause, One is the  Php 100 pesos and Php 200 pesos donation by making a Lego Santa and a Lego Christmas Tree .  Another highlight  during the opening of the event was the lightning of the Christmas Tree by World Vision ambassador Mr. Sam Concepcion . 

winter village accompanied by santa clause 

The exhibit is divided into 4 categories

 Lego Lego Asiafamous Asian landmarks including the Philippines are featured.

Lego Europe– famous landmarks of Europe are featured.

Lego North Pole –  white Christmas and snow theme park are featured .

Lego -Universe –futuristic , science fiction movie characters  are featured.

Taipei 101 Building and Tokyo Tower standing side by side – two of Asia’s most important landmarks

 Snow man and a snow resort

Warriors in a fight scene

Clone Turbo Tank

Lord Garmadon

At the center of the exhibit rise a Christmas Tree Lego bricks made from over 750,000 pieces ! with a Length of 5 meters, Wight  of 5 meters and a Height of 7 meters or almost 21 feet  ! This is a landmark on its own.

Christmas Tree made from Lego bricks at night time 

Lego Christmas tree taken on a different angle during late afternoon

Aside from the exhibit, there is also a contest where kids from 4 years old to 14 years old are invited to join  the lego making contest.

Children busy making their own lego set

Participants will have the chance to win LEGO products worth 5,000 pesos  . Age categories are 4-6 yrs. old, 7-10 yrs. old and 11-14 yrs. old.

Letting your kids play bricks is also a way of interaction with other kids, it improves hand-and-eye coordination and  challenges their imagination to build structures they want as it boosts their self-esteem.

The children are encourage to built their own lego set using their creativity and imagination, there is no right or wrong .

pictures of different kids  with their lego toy creation posted in a wall 

Then their works are taken pictures and are posted on the Lego Picture wall or their facebook account were everyone can view what these children had created.

LEGO AROUND THE WORLD EXHIBIT

SM City North EDSA The Block

2nd Floor, The Block Bldg. North Ave. cor. EDSA, Quezon City

Telephone # 929.6686

Exhibit runs from November 12, 2011 to January 12, 2012

References:

Clague, Kevin, Miguel Agullo, and Lars C. Hassing. LEGO Software Power Tools, With LDraw, MLCad, and LPub. 2003. ISBN 1-931836-76-0

Willicense, Fransisco. “The LEGO Incorporation: How LEGO Started” ISBN 0-18361-46372

 WWW.Lego.com : http://www.lego.com/en-us/Default.aspx

Lucky Yu Sheng

“Toss for Good Fortune!”

old pictures of Singapore circa 1940’s to 1950’s

Makansutra Asian Food Village is located within the Manila Ocean Park complex with several street scene reminiscent of old Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand  or Canton in China. There are several hundreds of mouth watering dishes being served in several food stalls in the Asian themed food village.

For local and international tourist a visit to the place is considered as a chance to sample great Asian dishes presented in an unique manner.

The group was treated in an afternoon of delight last February 9, 2010 by the courteous and friendly staffs and managers of the Makansutra Asian Food Village were  a special dish only for the Chinese New Year, comprising several symbolic delicacies which we know as Yushang. When Yushang is eaten, the ritual is for all to energetically  toss the mixed ingredients high in the air with  shouts of “Loh Hei” which literally means to ‘scaling up in life’, and other traditional meaningful phrases like “xing nian kwai le” (happy new year), “nian nian yu yue” (yearly fortune), “sen di jian kang” (good health), prosperity  etc…

Ms. Tina Santos ( green shirt) together with Mr. Christopher Legaspi briefing the invited guests and media

Each ingredient in this dish has a definitive and symbolic meaning to it, all in relation of prosperity, good luck and well blessings for this New Year. It is the most auspicious and popular dish for the festive season. Almost every Chinese in Singapore and their friends (non Chinese included) must have this dish together and confer blessings to each other to ring in a great year ahead.

Noodles – one of the auspicious foods served during celebrations

Most Malaysians , Singaporeans and the Peranakans ( Chinese born in Malaysia and Singapore) it seems, are somewhat indifferent to this dish that is so integral to Chinese New Year in Malaysia , Singapore and parts of China. Yes, it’s lucky and yes, it should be a part of any New Year banquet, but the consensus seemed to be that it rarely inspires cravings.

In the Philippines , this  dish is not commonly served in restaurants and some Filipino- Chinese families do not observed this ritual of tossing the salad.

Yu Sheng Salad ingredients

And I know why. Most versions of yu sheng are, to my palate at least, gloppy, overly sweet piles of unidentifiable ingredients with little discernible flavor, a dish of vegetables and fish (yu sheng means raw or fresh fish) that tastes nothing like either.

The yu sheng is assembled at a lucky red-clothed, triple-tiered prep area at the front of the restaurant. Every ingredient is made or prepared in-house, making the dish an incredibly labor-intensive endeavor. Many restaurants have simplified the process by outsourcing some ingredients and leaving others out altogether.

Before the yu sheng comes together the staff marinates fish slices (jellyfish is another option) and ginger matchsticks in sesame oil. Then pickled ginger (two kinds – white and red), pomelo sacs, pickled green papaya, shredded green onion, pickled shallots, carrot and picama strings, chopped peanuts, sesame seeds, julienned lime leaves, and chopped cilantro are heaped onto a platter and anointed with a drizzle of plum sauce. The lot is showered with strips of deep-fried won ton skins, garnished with lime wedges and green and red packets of white pepper and cinnamon, and served with the marinated fish.

It’s up to diners to empty their packets of pepper and cinnamon onto the fish and give it a good mix before adding it to the other ingredients. Then, a squeeze of lime and much tossing with chopsticks, preferably while chanting a few lucky phrases to auspiciously usher in the New Year.

Filipino chef  trained in Singapore -Chinese style cooking tossing the salad

yu sheng is a textural marvel – the combination of six fresh and pickled ingredients, cut to almost exactly the same shape and size, culminates in one big, satisfying crunch. It’s sweet from the plum sauce, but also boasts varying shades of tartness from pickles, lime juice, and fragrant lime leaves. The overwhelming flavors are of fish and vegetables, spiced up with ginger two ways (pickled and fresh) and white pepper. The cinnamon adds a subtle warm note. Won ton crisps (most other versions use colored crunchies of unidentifiable origin) – sturdy, grease-less, and wheaty – are delicious enough to eat on their own. Kudos to the restaurant for its light hand with the dressing and for its use of sesame oil; I’ve had more than my share of yu sheng drenched in plain old cooking oil – blech!

Balance, balance, balance. Wondering at the magic worked in that kitchen. The combined knowledge of the restaurant’s chefs and prep cooks gives rise to dishes that are nuanced, complex, and always balanced. The yu sheng is no different.

The best illustration of the care taken at Makansutra  ,  those are red and green envelopes. They’re wrapped by hand and their jagged, uneven edges suggest one-by-one, scissor-cut origins. Each year,  staff cuts thousands of pieces of paper into rough squares, lays them flat on a table, spoons ground white pepper and cinnamon in their centers, and folds in the four corners. All this even though pre-filled packets can be easily sourced from a supplier.

For us,  Chinese New Year has always meant extra vacation days and a travel adventure. From now on,this popular dish called ” Yu Sheng ”  is also served at the  Makansutra Asian Food Village  .

mixed Yu Sheng

Winning Toss

Besides being full of flavors and textures, yu sheng is loaded with symbolic meaning. The raw ingredients signify the renewal of life, and the sound of the word for fish in Cantonese sounds like the word for prosperity. The most important (and fun) part of eating yu sheng is the mixing together of the ingredients.

Ms. Gloria B.Jane Baylon – DFA & Philippine News Agency press enjoying the tossing of salad

To ensure good luck for the coming year, everyone calls out “Lo Hei!”-which means “to mix it up” but also sounds like “to prosper more and more”-while they use their chopsticks to toss the ingredients as high in the air as they can. Now that’s what I call a well-tossed salad!

Makansutra Asian Food Village

Contact : Ms. Tina Santos

Location: Manila Ocean Park
Behind Quirino Grandstand , Luneta Park, Manila
Telephone: +63 2 567 3512
Fax: +63 2  567 3512 loc. 105

Business Hours : 11am – 9pm daily