354 – On Birthday Treats: Triptych 63

I’m publishing this one on Christmas Day as we often do nothing on the day itself. The weather here in Manila is rather weird as I type, a mix of sunshine punctuated by occasional cold breezes. Then again, that kind of weather is a trademark of Philippine Christmases.

Also, before I begin – I’d like to thank everyone who commented in my previous entry. I’m in a better state now since that post, thanks to your kind words – and I appreciate you guys stopping by. Even the owner of the cafe reached out to me to give me words of assurance, and I’m very much thankful for that.

Compared to the previous year’s birthday, my 32nd birthday this year went according to plan with me calling the shots. Before I celebrated it on November 3, I decided to treat Dad and younger brother in advance. Today’s triptych features those meals and what I had on the day itself.

October 28

Younger brother and I went to the mall near us for some errands. I picked up two long-sleeved shirts from the clothes alteration shop, while he had a check-up with a dermatologist. Before I went home, I bought two orders of Lechon Sisig and a large serving of Garlic Mushrooms from local chicken and rib joint Gringo. We enjoyed the meal, with Dad remarking that this version didn’t have much fat. Traditionally, sisig is made from fatty pork parts such as the jowl.

October 30

Instead of having dinner at home, Dad proposed that we eat out at a local joint near us – to which we agreed. Tapsi Ni Vivian at Bulaluhan (Vivian’s Tapsi and Bulalo) was a frequent joint we visited, even when Mom was still around. For this meal, we ordered three plates of the tapsilog (beef jerky with garlic fried rice and egg). We also ordered several side dishes including fried crablets, fried shrimps, and eggplant omelette, the latter being named as the best-tasting egg dish in the world as per renowned travel guide TasteAtlas.

November 3

My actual birthday celebration was rather simple. I bought an 18-inch Spinach and Shrimp / Spinach and Mushroom Americana Pizza from Shakey’s, plus a Blueberry Cheesecake from Conti’s. Meanwhile, Dad bought the Miki Bihon from Classic Savory as Filipino birthdays are incomplete without noodle dishes. He also bought the Pineapple Cake – a Taiwanese specialty – from Filipino-Chinese bakery Eng Bee Tin. Fortunately, a kiosk of the famed purveyor was present at the mall we frequent.

That’s it for today’s triptych; until the next post! Wishing everyone a Merry Christmas and happy holidays! 🎄


30 thoughts on “354 – On Birthday Treats: Triptych 63

    • Thank you, Doc Wil! Wishing you and your family Happy Holidays, likewise! 🎄

      Well, medyo bago lang kasi yung flavor na iyan 🙂 May version sila niyan with scallops, though I selected this one because it combines two favorites into one — yung Garlic Shrimp Pizza ng S&R and yung Spinach and Cheese Pizza ng Angel’s Pizza.

  1. Happy Holidays to you and your family 🙏 Cool to see somebody who likes Spinach Pizza, too 😁 My husband and I often ate it back in Europe, but it seems we somehow were the only ones loving it. 😁

    • Thank you Livia, and wishing your family the same! 😊

      Interesting! I didn’t know that spinach pizza was a thing over there in Europe. 😅 Here in the Philippines, spinach is often deemed a luxury pizza topping alongside seafood. Putting that aside, I’m glad I found a kindred soul that also enjoys spinach pizza! 🍕

      • Thank you for the kind wishes 🙏
        Actually, spinach is quite inexpensive in Europe. When it’s in season, you can buy it almost everywhere, and since it can be frozen easily, you can have it almost all year round, if you plan well. 😊

  2. Happiest of Birthdays to you!!! I am super jealous of the amazing food you got to eat. My best friends are Filipino and reading your post and looking at your post makes me miss them so much. I used to love going to their house and eating all the yummy treats their moms would make and next time I visit them I will for sure be getting my fill 🙂

    • Thank you very much! 😄 I do hope they invite you for New Year’s Eve dinner (we call it media noche here in the Philippines). Food is always the centerpice of most Filipino celebrations!

      • They totally would if I were in Chicago with them. When I lived there we would all bring a home cooked dish to ring in the new year then go out the following morning to get dim sum on New Year’s Day. They still keep the tradition and I miss them so much but I have my new friends here in Minnesota that sadly don’t make the delicious ethnic foods I grew up on but still a lot of fun. Either way, I think food should always be the centerpiece for every occasion lol

  3. I suddenly remembered my days back in the university when I dreamed of living in QC (particularly in Cubao-Anonas area) because of Tapsi ni Vivian. Now that I have my own place in QC, I still haven’t paid the ol’ TnV a visit. Their tapsilog and chicharon bituka with spiced vinegar and rice are to die for!

    Happy Holidays, Monch!!

    • Happy Holidays likewise, Doc RA! 🎄Methinks TnV is also available on GrabFood — apparently, a lot of food delivery riders frequent the Fairview joint.

      If you’re near the Project 8 area (Road 20 or Shorthorn), there are some pares shops there which have opened up since 2020. 🙂

  4. I love your love of food! We’re getting into Mardi Gras here, the time before lent when we gorge ourselves on King Cake and enjoy all of our special cajun and creole cuisines before having to settle for Crawfish boils and shrimp and fried fish on fridays. Oh who am I kidding, we’re probably the only place that lives for lent! LOL You should come visit and do some food traveling here!

    • Thank you! Oh, right — Carnival season over there at the bayou, which culminates on Fat Tuesday. The Feast of the Three Kings here in the Philippines marks the end of the Christmas season. But yeah, lucky you as fish fry Fridays are a thing over there!

      Well, I just hope the US Embassy here in Manila approves my B-2 visa application — if I have enough money to apply haha!

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