Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Tinubong: Iloco Rice cake

Ilocanos are known for their very laid-back and traditinal lifestyles, most especially food. Up to this day, although they now enjoy hamburgers and pizza, they continue eating and cooking custom foods like dinengdeng (vegetable with fish-sauce broth), Spanish-influenced meat dishes of adobo, caldereta, igado, but most especially, their rice cakes like bibingka, patupat, sinambong, and many others. These foods, when encountered, would always point to this Philippine ethnic group of lowland and upland northerners.

Today, I have a photo documentary of how to make tinubong, one of their rice cakes enclosed in bamboos!
While some have made tinubong as their source of income specifically residents of Magsingal, Ilocos Sur, some only cook tinubong during holiday seasons, like Christmas. First thing one does is to dig a rectangular pit of about 2-3 feet deep.
 Then, prepare 3 mature coconut fruits, grated and the milk squeezed, then cooked to make an oil.
 Coconut oil is then mixed with the glutinous rice flour, sugar, butter, and young coconut fruit, also grated. Some add milk, others, egg and milk, and cheese. It is then put inside a bamboo internode which one side is open.
The filled bamboo is sealed with banana leaves then cooked on top of the pit with fire. But as they expand, the banana contraption is spewed out.

This is the finished product. It has a shelf-life of about 3-5 days. Simply re-heat as is before opening. There's a bit of action in opening Tinubong. First, smash the end-node with a hammer or a rock against a rock. Be careful not to break anything else!
Split the cracked bamboo open.
Enjoy the cake!

Sunday, September 4, 2016

Unlimited Herbal Leaves for Your Morning Tisane

Tisane is another word for herbal drink. It technically differs from tea for the fact that there is a specific tea plant called Camellia sinensis.

In a small community in northern Philippines, a little ride north of Vigan City, the UN Heritage site, there is a small emerging permaculture farm. In this farm, is the patriarch who was once an elected council member and a retired official. He was discharged from St.James Hospital in the month of June bedridden, requiring assistance to sit up, cannot eat on his own. He was diagnosed diabetic, with high blood pressure, and having tuberculosis for chain-smoking Marlboro.

After taking in several of the leaves in his farm as food including soursop leaves, moringa as addition in his food, and mulberry leaves as herbal drink, he stopped using insulin by August. Many who knew him personally said his recovery had been amazing.

The small farm now wants to share what has been good to their patriarch by inviting guests to try staying at one of their simple rooms for unlimited tisane drinks every morning.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Event Venue with Distinction

Conduct your events in a venue that is far from the ordinary. This is not your typical garden, or outdoors venue that can be seen anywhere...
While it boasts to be a few minutes from UN Heritage Village of Vigan, or the beach, it has its own merits that cannot be ignored:
- spacious,
- real outdoors
- natural garden
- natural pool
- activity-friendly!

Choose from the various mini-cottages or the open space to frolic and eat, dance or play, swim or kayak!

Call 63-2-9941372 for details!

Simple Luxe and Nature Trip near Vigan

You won't believe this kind of simple luxury still exists:
- a swimmable river
- beside a private property
- near Vigan - UN Heritage Village
- that you can now enjoy!
Call 63-2-9941372 now for details.

Sunday, December 13, 2015

More Options to Visit Vigan - Pagudpud

Vigan is the second most-visited and second highest in tourism traffic in the Philippines next only to Boracay.  The high cost of hotels and hostels, and transient homes, however, keep many (as usual) from traveling, in general. Many today will enjoy travel in a group or with family members, and even relatives, to enjoy their experience.

So, now, we are providing more options to enjoy Vigan, and Pagudpud, with low-cost rentals!

Rent a house that accommodates up to 12 persons so you can bring food and other day-to-night necessities -laundry soap for instance - for a more comfy in-between tourist spot stay (we accept for free up to 2 kids) (check photos below)!

The 2nd floor room is air-conditioned with 2 double beds!

Or choose the other affordable accommodation rooms below:

This above dorm-type room accommodates up to 12 for only P500 each right at the heart of Vigan!

Contact us at 63-2-9941372 now for group discounts!

Friday, July 24, 2015

How To Use AirBnb

While there seems to be a lot of Filipinos who cherish and are excited by the choices they can have online, especially at Airbnb, their excitement is dashed when reality checks in (Credit Card Companies Rule the E-World! - kinda). The problem for most is that credit card is not really popularly used by Filipinos as much as remittance systems like banks, Western Union, MLhullier, and other pawnshop-turned-remittance centers that dot most towns in the country.

So, here's a little guide and help about Airbnb (and basically for most online service providers & retailers):
1. Airbnb message system censors phone numbers, email addresses, and ubiquitous website names or companies. It censors "Google" just so you have an idea.
2. You can reserve & book only through confirmed payment.
3. Airbnb payment systems includes credit card, Paypal, and other online payment systems.
4. If you have an ATM card for savings, especially for BPI, you can apply for online express payment system at your bank.
5. Smart money card is accepted by Paypal, and by far, the cheapest for regular Pinoy folks, like me, to access online shopping. It can be availed at any Smart Wireless Center or at BDO.
6. You cannot book via Western Union, or remittance centers, sorry. Unless of course you can beat around the system of the e-shop, then, way to go!

I hope this helps. As for our Airbnb listing, check it out here.

Guide Map to our QC Listing

Friday, April 17, 2015

At ToyKalapawMi

Expect a simple hut made of bamboo and local wood at ToyKalapawMi.
Forage in-season fruit like caramay...

 Back-to-basics bamboo room...

Socialize al-fresco...
Trek to the nearby Cordillera hills... or head to the beach (just a few minutes ride!)