If you’re single, live alone, have a small family or pull all-nighters, the Bear Multi Cooker and Breakfast Station is for you. These two are the cutest, most compact of small kitchen appliances I have ever come across.
Bear specializes in modern home appliances that are easy to use. The Multi Cooker is very portable. It can boil, steam and fry. It comes with a small pot, steamer and frying pan. It is safe to use, as the heat plate automatically shuts off once the pot or pan is removed.
The Breakfast Station is a toaster and a ministove in one. It comes with a mini frying pan and steamer, so you can fry bacon and eggs while toasting bread.
Also highly recommended is the Bear Electric Lunchbox; it is pretty and impressive, as it enables you to enjoy freshly cooked rice, anywhere, anytime. Simply put washed rice grains on the lower food pan and add water. Make use of the measuring cup that comes with the lunchbox. Fill the water chamber below with water, as well. Plug in and in 30-45 minutes, your rice is ready and your viands warmed by the steam. Tel. 0917-5848158; follow @bearphilippines on Instagram
Steak at home
The Nanka steak box contains your steak of choice: Black Onyx Tomahawk, WX Striploin or A5 Wagyu from Japan.
Included are four steak sauces (chimichuri, house demi- glace, chipotle miso and yakiniku) as well as seasoning and finishing salts (togarashi and wasabi). There are even sides of Parmesan fries, creamy mashed potatoes and sautéed wild mushrooms.
Chef Mike Santos brilliantly bundled the Nanka experience to savor within the comforts of patrons’ home.
Like all DIY kits, this comes with cooking instructions plus an added attraction: a link to a tutorial video by Mike, who makes cooking look very easy. I am including chef Mike’s Mac and Cheese recipe, best served with Nanka’s Steak at home.
Tel. 0995-0574056, 0977-6218472
Mike’s Mac and Cheese
Preheat oven to 180°C. In a big pot of water add 2 Tbsp olive oil, 1 Tbsp salt. Add 500 g macaroni when water is on rolling boil and cook pasta till al dente.
Grate 100 g cream cheese, 100 g cheddar or Eden cheese and 100 g mozzarella.
In a large pot, place 2 Tbsp butter, 2 Tbsp olive oil, pinch of salt and pepper. Add 2 c milk and 2½ c cream. Bring to a boil.
Add ½ of cheese mixture. Stir constantly until thick. Season with salt and pepper. When mixture coats the spoon, add cooked pasta. Mix well.
Transfer to a baking dish. Top with remaining cheese. Bake uncovered for 15 minutes then broil for 5 more minutes on the highest oven setting until desired brownness is achieved. Serve.
Mama Lola’s Suman is a Duran family enterprise in Cavite. The brood turned to an old family recipe of suman sa latik, a staple during the Durans’ younger days in Samar.
Third Duran recounted how this kakanin was served only during special occasions by most, but was common fare in their household. Their lola, Teodora Araza, would make it for merienda. Her daughter, Third’s mother, Bernadith Duran, is now the recipe’s keeper.
Through the prodding of her children, Bernadith cooked the family’s specialty and Mama Lola’s Suman came to be.
This is all that a good suman should be: pure sticky rice that is evenly cooked and tender all over. It is lightly salted, with just a faint whisper of lye. Though very soft, the rice grains remain visibly whole. It is divine with the latik. The sauce is creamy, thick, sweetened just right, silky and with a nice caramel-like sheen. Tel. 0917-8866488; follow @paboritonimamalola on Facebook and Instagram
A meal in a bouquet is how Eventique describes its edible arrangements.
Inspired by the Pahiyas Festival, where fresh produce are used to decorate houses in celebration of a good harvest, Eventiques offerings are a mix of fruits and vegetables. It is meant to bring a smile on your face, with the added benefit of nourishing you.
The nutrient-packed bouquets are themed. Choose from vegetarian, Filipino, Greek, Korean and Mediterranean combinations. These tokens make purposeful and practical gifts, appropriate for the times.
Tel. 0917-7092327; follow @eventiquemanila on Facebook and Instagram
Follow @iamreggieaspiras on Facebook and Instagram; visit www.reggieaspiras.com