On Muslim Mindanao Food – celebrating Eid-il-fitr

The holiest month for the Muslims is Ramadan. The Muslims believe that it was during this time that Angel Gabriel appeared to Mohammed and revealed to him the teachings of God “Allah” as written in their holy book the Koran. Ramadan is a month long fast which shifts yearly based on the Muslim lunar calendar. During Ramadan nothing can be eaten during sunrise to sunset. Fasting reminds them that there is more to life than earthy things. Breakfast should be eaten before dawn and dinner must be taken after sundown.  Eid-il-fitr is a feast to celebrate the end of Ramadan.

In Metro Manila there is a shopping center called Greenhills where a lot of our Muslim countrymen trade, have set-up shops and live in harmony with all other sectors of society.  Their children now go to the nearby main stream schools and peacefully co-exist with the city folks.  So yes “peace” it can be done.

It broke my heart to hear about the fighting in Magindanao right next to Iligan city. Magindanao is the second largest of the Muslim cultural-linguistic groups of the Philippines and has now become a war torn area.In the summer  of 2007 the school sent Chef Jenny Redito and myself to Iligan to do a series of cooking classes.   At that time both Brothers Dennis Magbanua and Ken Martinez were assigned in La Salle Acedemy. (Today Bro. Dennis is president of La Salle Zobel and Bro. Ken is now president of La Salle Canlubang).   They were gracious hosts together with Bro. Rey, Chef Tom Fresnido and Beverly Widmeir.  We spent 10 days touring Mindanao during this road trip…. I just fell in love with the

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Stir Crazy’s second anniversary

A favorite watering hole in the Ortigas area is Stir Crazy Bar and Restaurant.  It is located along Amethyst St. (the one way road) behind Linden Suites. Fresh out of school this group of friends took the risk of opening their own place….they have had their birth pains but despite everything the place is now successfully two years old.  Stir Crazy is more known as a bar with friendly and familiar faces…they have bands playing Saturday and Friday evenings with no cover charge. It is a fun place that allows daring guests to jam with the band.  During the day they serve comfort food at very affordable prices to accommodate the UAP crowd.  What is admirable about this group is the strong friendships that have prevailed and have stood the test of time since their college days. Congratulations and more power to you guys!

The Stir Crazy team : Nino Romero, Ino Bernardo, Angelo Castaneda, Stephanie Co, Julian  Domino (ID ‘102, Solomon Batch 6)

The Peninsula Tea Party

A feature about our graduates at the Peninsula has been long over due. Chef Peachy invited us to an afternoon tea party at the Conservatory for the launch of the Martha Stewart Weddings Philippines magazine. Kristine, Joanne, and myself came to support Peachy whose cake was featured, she happens to be one of the country’s top wedding cake decorators.

Pen is Benilde country and every time I am there I am always glad to see familiar faces….It was nice to see Francis Magbanua at the concierge. I am also very proud of Vince (Mike) Reyes now FO Duty Manager, Marlon Guevarra and my good friend Gino de Guia for becoming front desk supervisors at their young age. In the kitchen are Janet Sy, Dante Abalos in pastry and Kevin Agcaoili at the Old Manila. Dennis Ting as sales manager and in the sales team are Duchess Carlos and Mae Banares among others. Heard Hazel Weebol is now executive assistant to the GM. My apologies to those I failed to mention beacuse I am probably not updated on where you are now. Thank you girls for coming out of your offices to say hello to us. We are so proud of you. Keep up the good work!

In the picture are Chef Kristine Pascua-Perez, Chef Peachy, and our alumni in sales and marketing Grace Ignacio, Bea, Angel Baraquiel and Dutchess Carlos ( all from different batches)

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A toast to Wine Depot

Many thanks to Ms. Anne Tibayan of Wine Depot for inviting us to their food and wine festival at the NBC tent “Toast 2008: a Toast to Taste!”…The event had over 30 exhibitors… Participants were international wine producers together with five star hotels and restaurants. Upon registration we were each given our own wine glass (also as a souvenir) to use for sampling as we did our rounds. We were also given a little booklet that had the wine list, prices, and little coupons to present to the different exhibitors. The booklet is similar to the the wine passports given in Napa and the California wine region for tours…Good of the organizer to include a section in the booklet for tasting notes.

During the festival I bumped into several of our graduates…In picture are chef Jester Arellano (#103) manning the Renaissance Hotel booth and Pinky Tse(#103) who is now chef de partie of M’ Cafe.

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