Filipino Style Oatmeal Porridge

I know that it is still summer here in Germany but we are currently experiencing cold wind and rain showers. Instead of going outside, all I want to do is stay at home and enjoy a warm meal. In the Philippines, we usually eat champorado, arrozcaldo or lugaw (plain congee) especially during rainy season. We also love side dishes and condiments! Champorado is usually eaten with dried fish, while arrozcaldo and lugaw are incomplete without tokwa’t baboy (beancurd and pork). Soy sauce, fish sauce, vinegar, or Lemon juice are also used as condiments to make it more flavorful.

Now, I’ve cooked a healthy meal which taste like lugaw with a twist.

Filipino Style Oatmeal Porridge

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  • 1 liter  water
  • 1 cup oatmeal
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1 piece onion
  • 1 piece (1 inch) ginger
  • 1 pack tofu
  • salt and pepper to taste

Pour water in the pot. You can also include the chopped garlic, onion, and ginger for more flavor.

When it boils, put the oats and continue cooking for 15 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.

It depends on your preference, if you want to put more water so that the consistency of the porridge can be thinner.

For garnishing, put fried garlic and tofu on top.

Serve hot!

 

Plan in Milan

I always love traveling but this place is different because it is really close to my heart. When I was young, I promised myself that I will go to Milan someday.

Now, let me share to you a dream which has become a reality.

I can consider Milan as a romantic, religious, and quite affordable city. Their famous landmarks and delectable dishes exemplify their rich cultural tradition. To better understand my claim, here are some of the places, dishes, and some other things  that you should not miss when you are in the city.

Navigli

From Milan, you need to travel by train to Porta Genova. Upon your arrival, you also need to walk to reach Navigli.  What will you find there? Aside from its romantic environment, there are a lot of bars or restaurants that offer an all-you-can-eat buffet dinner from Thursdays to Saturdays for an affordable price. You can  also get your first drink for free!

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Piazza del Duomo

When you just want to have a quiet day, and pray, going to the Milan Cathedral is the best thing to do. There, I attended the Sunday holy mass and the guards are strict in terms of churchgoers’ noise, punctuality, and dress code. I think this is to maintain the solemnity of the  mass.

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Sforzesco Castle

Do you want to experience how it is like to be in a castle? Then, go to Sforzesco Castle. This is just a short train ride from the cathedral. What I like about this place is the park inside. You can have a good walk there or you can  just simply take a sit and enjoy what nature has to offer.

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Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II

Of course, shopping will always be in your list. When you are near the cathedral for sure you would not miss Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II. This is considered to be one of the oldest shopping malls and just by merely going inside, especially at night, you will definitely fall in love with this place.

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Chinatown

Since I was craving for Asian dishes, I look for Milan’s Chinatown. It reminds me of Divisoria, a place in Manila, Philippines where we can buy low-cost products. From electronic gadgets to RTWs, this is the right place to buy those things. However, just check about the quality of what you are buying.

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Transportation

I don’t have  a hard time going from one place to another because they have an efficient train system. If in case you need help, Italians are kind to answer your question and there are also a lot of Filipinos in the area. When I went there, I just felt that I was just in Manila. I was not really afraid to get lost.  Here’s a peek of Milan’s central station.

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Must Eats!

I would not end this blog article without showing you how sumptuous their dishes are. From their salads, pastas, and pizzas, you can never deny that Italians are good cooks! Take a bite of their mouthwatering specialties!

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That’s it! If you have any specific questions about my trip in Milan, don’t hesitate to contact me 🙂

Paano Ba ‘To?!: How to Survive Growing Up

I’m living in Europe alone and it takes time to get real friends. Most of my friends and family are also busy in the Philippines ,aside from the fact that we are also dealing with different timezones, so I ask myself how can I cope with all the challenges and difficulties that I encounter here?

I really need help!

Last semester, we discussed about self-help or guide books. These are categorized as a form of literature that tells us what to do and empower us to rise among the difficulties, problems, or norms that we need to face.

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I ask a friend to bring Bianca Gonzalez-Intal’s book, Paano Ba ‘To?!, from the Philippines because I believe that this is the closest self-help book that will address our current Filipino generation.

At first, I was really bothered by all the doodles in the book because it’s not really typical to have that in a new “normal” book. On the contrary when I was at the middle, I have this sudden realization that this book is so personal.

The doodles make it more realistic, open, and relatable. It’s like Bianca’s invitation for us to take part and discuss some issues because we want to, need to or because it has been a long time that we’ve tried to forget or deny to face them. I appreciate how she opens and shares her life in the book because in our society today, where in everyone has something to say, being that open is indeed commendable. I really also like how she gets various perspectives about a certain issue: there are a lot of people who also share their experiences and experts who share their professional knowledge for more “objectivity”.

I’m a “quote-collector” and I really like the idea that she incorporates a quote after each chapter. Maybe it’s better if it is perforated so we can just simply tear and post it on our bedroom’s wall. In terms of style, it’s easy to read and resembles like a magazine. However, I prefer the content to be succinct because there are some recurring statements that I feel should belong and should be already settled from the previous chapter.

Nonetheless, reading this book gives a lot of refreshing insights to reflect upon.

“Living abroad is a conscious decision. So if you move abroad and continue to ‘live in Manila’ in your mind, you will always get homesick.”

“If you, for example, keep thinking about the things or friends you don’t have in your new city, you’ll never see what it can offer you.”

“You can’t exactly plan how your life will pan out. You can focus on a direction, but sometimes, doors you never expected will open for you and it is up to you to take the risk.”

“You cannot please everyone. And you shouldn’t want to please anyone, or else you will drive yourself crazy. Listen, take what might be constructive criticism, then let it go. Don’t let it get the best of you. And most of all, learn to laugh at yourself!”

“Count your blessings, not your problems.”

“And the most important lesson, is that as long as you keep working for it, what is truly for you will not pass you by.”

“Try staying present in each day.”

“If you hinder yourself, if you are the one stopping yourself, if you are the one judging yourself, then what is left for you? How can you expect others to believe in you if you don’t believe in yourself?”