About Certified Foodies

Our family of 3Thank you for visiting our food blog. We are siblings who have been in this unconditional love affair with food since we were kids, learning how to cook at a very early age because of the influence of our dearest nanay.

Most people would think that we share the same preferences in food because we are siblings and we share a blog. Though we do have a lot more similarities, you’d be surprised with the littlest to major differences in opinions we have about food.

Through this blog, we want to continuously challenge ourselves and learn more about food and cooking, not just Filipino dishes, but flavors from around the world.

If you really want to get to know more about us, here’s a quick look at who we are as food lovers and more FAQs since we started this blog. 🙂

Mhel Ignacio

Mhel Ignacio v2

Food is not to be treated as mere nourishment. Nothing beats a meal with people you love and care about. 🙂

  • Favorite cuisines: Filipino and American
  • Favorite restaurants: Ozen (hole-in-the-wall that serves the best takoyaki), Detalle (chill ambience), and Main Street (their house-smoked bacon is to die for! Wait for our review!).
  • Favorite dish: Our nanay’s Kare-Kare
  • Most memorable dish or dining experience: Our 4D3N stay at Bohol Bee Farm still tops my list. Organic, healthy, done right… and delicious too! A complete surprise. 🙂
  • Specialty dish: Roasted chicken with my own special, secret rub (chos!)
  • Favorite kitchen tool: Tupperware Speedy Chopper – saves a lot of time talaga.
  • Favorite ingredient: Bacon and Sriracha
  • Your ultimate guilty pleasure: Dark chocolate
  • Food that you can’t live without: Chocolates! 🙂
  • Food pet peeve: Same with Ken – using a spoon and a fork that don’t match. Ugh. 😀
  • Favorite movie about food: Chef and The Hundred Foot Journey
  • Favorite book for food lovers (cookbook or not): The Omnivore’s Dilemma by Michael Pollan. I love reading about the history of food, where they come from, etc. (That’s why I love watching Food Unwrapped too)
  • Favorite chef (local or international): Eric Ripert and Chef Tatung (local)
  • Favorite blog posts: I love sharing our own recipes on the blog, but I’ll have to say my fishball sauce recipe is my favorite ’cause I was surprised that it became such a hit. 😀
  • Most memorable experience since Certified Foodies started:
    When we were invited as guest judges in Kapuso Mo, Jessica Soho’s Battle of the Best Pancit Malabon back in July 2014.
  • Favorite travel spot: Pagudpud and Bohol
  • Tip for foodies (when dining out):
    Be nice to the wait staff. You don’t know what they can do to your food. 😀
    Kidding aside, I say be adventurous and try something new – new restaurant, a different dish other than your usual order. It helps develop your palate. 🙂
  • #1 Cooking Tip:
    Always taste your food while you’re cooking. This is a common mistake that even professional chefs sometimes make.
    It’s better to serve something lacking in flavor than end up with a salty dish. It’s easier to adjust.
  • Message for up and coming food bloggers:
    Learn how to cook so you can appreciate all the hard work and love put in every dish by chefs. I recommend you dine out with fellow food lovers para mas masaya. Lastly, don’t just start a food blog for the sake of getting free meals. You need to have passion for eating and food in general. 🙂

Non-food related:

  • What do you do for work?
    I’m a Senior Community Manager in one of the top ad agencies in the country.
  • Hobbies outside of eating and blogging:
    Playing Diablo 3, watching my favorite TV series, writing in my journal/s, stalking people (on Facebook) and reading. Ang dami lang! 😀

Ken Ignacio

Ken Ignacio v2

The food scene is always changing, and it seems that there’s always something new to learn, taste and experience every day.

  • Favorite cuisines: Italian, Filipino, Japanese
  • Favorite restaurant: Yabu and Uncle Cheffy (our go-to when it comes to comfort food. Our review here soon!)
  • Favorite dish: Tocinooo
  • Most memorable dish or dining experience:
    We were at Teriyaki Boy in Rob Galle and J was walking towards our table, carrying my tray of food. I dropped the tray and I cursed at the top of my lungs. Everyone was looking at me. 😀
  • Specialty dish:
    Buffalo wings (click for recipe!), Chicken Crepe Lasagna
  • Favorite kitchen tool: Rubber spatula – it’s a very versatile tool.
  • Favorite ingredient: Butter! Everything is better with butter. 🙂
  • Your ultimate guilty pleasure: Tocino
  • Food that you can’t live without:
    Sorry, but Tocino’s still my answer. 😀
  • Food pet peeve:
    I can’t eat if I don’t have matching spoons and forks.
  • Favorite movie about food: Chef (2014) – if you haven’t seen this yet, don’t watch with an empty stomach. 😀
  • Favorite book for food lovers (cookbook or not): My Life in France by Julia Child
  • Favorite chef (local or international): Gordon Ramsay
  • Favorite blog posts:
    It’s got to be my buffalo wings recipe (you have to try it!), and our dining experience at Finestra‘s Chef’s table (I love Italian food!)
  • Most memorable experience since Certified Foodies started:
    Getting invited to judge in the Battle of the Best Pancit Malabon segment for Kapuso Mo, Jessica Soho. It was the first time we agreed to be seen on TV. 😀
  • Favorite travel spot: Pagudpud, Ilocos Norte
  • Tip for foodies (when dining out):
    Avoid eating out during big holidays (Valentine’s, Christmas, New Year). It’s when proper food handling becomes merely a suggestion and not a standard. True story. 😀
  • #1 Cooking Tip:
    For baking, always follow the recipe. Baking is a science.
    For general cooking, don’t forget to taste the food before serving.
  • Message for up and coming food bloggers:
    You should be in love with food and eating, plus cooking too. Your readers can tell.
    Take quick pictures. Don’t take it too seriously. Blogging about food should be fun. What’s most important is to enjoy what you’re eating with the people you’re with. 🙂

Non-food related:

  • What do you do for work?
    I’m currently a Social Media Manager for a NY-based company. Ahhh… the perks of working from home… at night. 😀
  • Hobbies outside of eating and blogging:
    Boxing and badminton

The Blog

These are just some of the questions that we’ve been asked most frequently. 🙂

When did this blog start and what drove you to write about food?

We started this blog back in 2010 mainly as a place for us to share our own recipes. Since 99% of the time when we dine out, we go for places we haven’t been to before, we decided to share our own restaurant reviews on the blog too.

Truth be told, it was only a few years ago when our palates started to crave for new dining experiences. We started venturing out to discover flavors we have not savored before. We have become more adventurous when it comes to food, enjoying dining experiences we usually wouldn’t regard as appetizing or satisfying for us. Through this blog, we aim to continuously challenge ourselves and learn more about food and cooking; not just Filipino dishes, but flavors from around the world. 🙂

Why did you name the blog Certified Foodies?

It actually started with the concept for the design of our logo (stamped look). We have this insatiable curiosity when it comes to food and cooking, so we thought the blog name suits us. We also had The Burp Society in mind at that time. We’re thinking that, eventually, we’ll share this blog with fellow foodies. 🙂

What is a foodie in your opinion?

Some people hate the word ‘foodie’ or being called one, but for us, it’s simply someone who loves food, and has this unending desire to learn all about it, to experience different dining pleasures, and to discover new flavors. Basically, a foodie is someone who’s always on the lookout for good food.

Who takes care of what on your blog?

Mhel: Who writes what on the blog depends on who we feel has more passion for what the post is about. For instance, Ken loves Italian cuisine, so he’s almost always the one reviewing Italian restaurants. I’m into comfort food, so expect me to mostly write about that.

Since Ken is a chef, 90% of the recipes on the blog are prepared by him. The rest are from me and our nanay. 🙂

We both take photos for the blog, and I post-process them. I also take care of the technical side (maintenance and design) of the blog.

What camera/s are you using for your photos?

We have a Nikon D3100 and a Nikon D3200 that we usually take photos with. However, we don’t like lugging them around, and we also have many unplanned food trips, so we use our phones (S3 and iPhone 5s) instead.

Do you edit or post-process your photos?

Yes, we do! The main reason behind this is we’re not into spending too much time and equipment on taking food photos, except when we’re cooking at home. Photoshop and Lightroom have been quite helpful. 🙂 Watch out for our tips on taking food photos soon!

Do you do meet-ups?

YES! You should check out The Burp Society! We even had this super fun baking class. 🙂

What are your future plans for the blog?

Since The Burp Society has been successful in getting us together with fellow foodies (and we’ve got more meet-ups planned!), we’re now inviting those who are interested in writing about food to join us here on the blog. We’ll post more details about this soon! 🙂