Friday, April 17, 2015

Mini Shabu-Shabu - SM Baguio

Mini Shabu-Shabu
2nd Floor, SM City Baguio
Baguio City, Benguet
(074) 446-6853 to 54

Last March, my mother and I travelled to La Union to light a candle on daddy's grave on his 8th death anniversary, and because two days out of town wasn't enough, we decided to take a side trip to Baguio City, where we met sister. She wasn't able to come with us to La Union because of work, but she was able to take a weekend off, much to our delight.

Upon checking in at our chosen hotel, we went to SM Baguio to eat lunch - just a quick eat out at KFC - then we spent the afternoon roaming around Session Road, which was closed at the time to make way for different shops from all over the country.

The weather that time was very good - sunny in the afternoon, but the air still gave a much needed chill. However, my body cannot really cope up with chilly weather, so for dinner, the only request I had was to eat something soupy. Sister only had one thing in mind -- Mini Shabu-Shabu.

My early memories of eating shabu-shabu was way back when my father was still alive, us eating at a Chinese restaurant. I wasn't so impressed with that particular shabu-shabu, so it never became a "favorite." Years after, we were able to eat at a buffet allowing guests to cook their own shabu-shabu, which was okay, but maybe because my lack of shabu-shabu cooking skills had me eating a not-so-good pot of comfort goodness.

If I can compare the buffet set-up to this, I would say I was impressed because each seating guest has their own pot to cook their shabu-shabu. The items on their menu are good for one person, but because it was already about 8pm, we decided to just order two sets, which us three would share.

This set included beef strips and prawns. The other set we ordered was the simplest set - one with only the veggies, noodles, and balls. All sets have this basic plate, the others will just depend on the add-ons they prefer. Though we ordered two different sets, we decided to cut the beef and prawns in two, which gave us two pots of the same set.

My sister worked at a shabu-shabu restaurant before, so she knew how to prepare a pot of good shabu-shabu. First, she poured the egg whites into the simmering broth and placed the egg yolk in the bowl of dip. Then, she added the ingredients in the broth according to their size and cooking time. The secret, she said is proper timing.

After a few minutes, our hot pot is cooked!

I can now say that shabu-shabu is indeed a pot of comfort, but I realized one thing - I pretty much preferred the basic set, I wasn't so crazy about the beef and prawns, even if prawns is one of my favorite food. The next time we eat shabu-shabu, I will just go for the balls.

Although each set is good for one person, it is actually good for sharing. The basic set (if I remember correctly) was 390 pesos, while the set with beef and prawns is about 600 pesos. We didn't feel the need to buy drinks anymore (they offer drinking water, by the way), so the 900 pesos total bill was actually good for us, since we do spend something like that whenever we eat out.

If the Baguio weather is getting colder for you, do know that there is Mini Shabu-Shabu at SM City Baguio to warm and comfort you.

*** Jenn ***

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Krispy Kreme Launches New App

Summer is now in full swing, and I am sure people who weren't able to take the time off to unwind last Holy Week are now planning for their summer escapades. Us here in the family, we still don't have any concrete plans, but we have listed places we wanted to go to.

When one speaks of summer getaway, or an out of town trip, we don't just plan where to go, we also take the time to think about the food we want to pack and eat while traveling. For us, we usually pack for chips and crisps, candies, and bread, as well as rice and fried chicken for lunch. Not once did we ever take a box of doughnuts with us because we usually pack heavy bags filled with clothes. We do want to (seeing people at the airport carrying boxes of doughnuts always make us feel jealous), but it wasn't feasible for us to do...yet.

I was invited to the launch of the Krispy Kreme App late last month, and we were among the first ones to try the app. Powered by Mobext, the app is available on both IOS and Android, so whatever smartphone or tablet you are using, you can easily download it and order your favorite KK treats.

Upon installing the app, tap on the three lines on the upper right corner to see the menu. For first time users, tap on "Sign-Up" and supply the needed details.

Once you created an account, you can then order the treats you want. Aside from the doughnuts, you can also order coffee as well as a combination of doughnuts and coffee. If you wanted to go for the assorted doughnuts, you then have to choose the doughnuts you want.

When your order is complete, simply tap on "Proceed to Checkout" and review the details. You can always go back if there is an error. You then choose whether you want your orders to be delivered "now" or at a later date, or to be picked up.

Things to know:
  • Upon checkout, there is a box at the bottom of the order slip where you can place your notes. Use this to indicate who will receive the order (for delivery) or who will pick up the order at the store.
  • For delivery orders, it is quite sad that there are only 8 key locations at the moment - Ortigas Center, Makati Central Business District, Bonifacio Global City, Malate / Macapagal Blvd., Gateway, Greenhills, Alabang, and Eastwood. If your delivery address is within the scope of these eight places, you may go for the delivery service.
  • Delivery time is from 8am - 8pm.
  • For pick-up orders, please specify the branch, the date and time when you will pick up the order.
  • The time of pick up depends on the store's operation hours.
  • Minimum order is 500 pesos.
  • Payment is via Credit Card or Cash on Delivery/Pick-Up.
Our home address is out of the delivery area, but I wanted to try their delivery service, so I had it delivered to my sister's work address. I was very happy to say that my order was delivered right on time, and that the doughnuts were intact inside their boxes. Call me paranoid, but one of my worries for opting for the delivery service was mishandling of the goods - I seriously don't want ruined doughnuts because the top part and side parts of the box stuck to the doughnuts. Also, they gave me a voucher for free 3 Original Glaze Doughnuts on my next order (good for delivery). Sweet!

By the way, once your order is successful, you will receive a call from a customer service representative to confirm your order and to ask a few more necessary details - like landmarks near the delivery address and the likes. A soft copy of the receipt will be sent to your e-mail address, so you can also document it or use it as reference if you are going to pay using your credit card of GCash.

You can also use the app to locate Krispy Kreme branches nationwide, as well as a tracker for the stamps you have accumulated because every order using the app will earn you stamps, which can be used to gain rewards.

KK Doughnuts + a road trip book
This app is very useful and I loved that it is flexible enough for us to use. You can order for yourself or order Krispy Kreme treats for your friends and loved ones from different locations in the country without having to travel yourself or sending them the money. This means, children who are studying in Manila can now order KK treats for their parents living in the province and because the app is available worldwide, OFWs can also use the app to send the Joy in a Box cheer to their loved ones here in the Philippines.

The only sad note I can say about this app is that my sister and I planned to order doughnuts for our brother and his wife in Cagayan de Oro, and even if there is a Krispy Kreme branch near them, the Cagayan de Oro branch is not listed, so we still couldn't use the app to send brother KK doughnuts. :(

The app is still at its early stages, so I understand the limitations. I am sure changes will happen as the days go by. We are now interested to try it out on our next adventure.

*** Jenn ***

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Jenn, the Foodie

I come from a family who loves cooking and eating. I never had any formal training in cooking and that I taught myself how to cook based on the handed down recipes, but I could say that I can cook good food. In 2008, I started documenting my food trips for my travel blog, and since I have quite enough to start a food blog, might as well put all those food trips in one location. Thus, a food blog is born - thanks to the new Friendster Blogs. However, due to several problems, I was left with no choice but to pack bags again and move here instead. Here's the permanent address, promise! Enough talk, let the food trippin' begin! {Know More About Me}