Kenny Rogers Roasters Hainanese Chicken & Frozen Yoghurt – Healthy Choices for Healthy Lives

Last week, April 19th, I was invited to join Kenny Rogers Roasters’ Bloggers Night at their Katipunan branch. They were launching their new products and introducing us to their brand ambassadors.

Kenny Rogers slogan for their healthy line of new dishes for us -

I’ve been an avid Kenny Rogers Roasters diner for years. In fact, one of our homemade recipes here on our food blog is our own version of their Cheese and Garlic Potato side dish which I love, love, love! I also super enjoy the flavors of their roasted chicken and recently, their Burger Steak, which I still have to blog about.

Since my bro and I are starting to eat healthier, it was just the right timing for us to be invited to this event. The slogan of Kenny Rogers Roasters campaign to healthier eating is so timely. I agree with them. If you want to live a healthy life, it’s all about healthy CHOICES.

They also want to change the perception that if you want to be healthy, you need to sacrifice a lot when it comes to food. Kenny Rogers Roasters wants us to know that there are healthy options that are delicious, too.

Kenny Rogers new Hainanese Chicken -

In line with this campaign, we were introduced that night to their latest offering, Hainanese Chicken. It’s a very popular dish in Singapore where the chicken is poached, paired with Hainanese rice and complemented with 3 different sauces. Kenny Rogers changed it up a bit with their own twist, adding some Pinoy flavor to it by topping the rice with garlic chips, which I know a lot of us Filipinos love.

Kenny Rogers' Hainanese Chicken with ginger, chili, and dark sweet soy sauces -

That’s my plate of Hainanese Chicken. For  Php 185.00, you get a quarter (1/4) chicken, Hainanese rice, chicken broth/soup, and the 3 sauces. I enjoyed this dish, especially with the combination of the chili and sweet soy sauces mixed with the very tender chicken.

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Vosges Chocolates – New Chocolatey Sensations

It was back in December last year when I won a set of Vosges chocolates from Trip or Treats. I had Ken pick them up for me a few days after the announcement.

I know, I should’ve posted about it earlier. But, don’t worry. I can still remember exactly how each of them tasted. And pardon if I don’t have any photos of the actual chocolate bars while we were enjoying it. I accidentally deleted the whole album on our camera’s memory when we were in Pagudpud. Silly me. 😀

The set of Vosges Chocolate Bars that I won from Trip or Treats -

I was pretty excited to try them out. Too bad though that when my bro came home, he already devoured that small box of Vosges Barcelona Bar. Lucky him ‘cause I was in a slightly good mood that night. Otherwise, he would need ankle braces after I’m done with him after not letting me taste that chocolate bar. 😀 Of course, I’m just kidding. Hahaha.

Trip or Treats (ToT) actually included a box with instructions on how you can savor each chocolate flavor. And I followed them to a tee… well, for my first 2 bites. 😀

See… first, there should be a glossy shine to the chocolate bar, this shows a good temper; rather, a tight bond between the cocoa butter and the cocoa mass.
Smell… rub your thumb on the chocolate to help release the aromas. Inhale the chocolate and ingredient notes deeply through your nose. Can you feel it?
Snap… quality chocolate should always be dry to the touch. Break the bar into two pieces. Hear a crisp, ringing snap, which indicates a well-tempered bar of chocolate.
Taste… place the chocolate on your tongue and press it to the roof of your mouth. Within thirty seconds, the chocolate should slowly begin to melt around your tongue. The taste should not be evanescent; it should have a long, lingering finish.
Feel… recognize the life in your body as you… benefit from the anti-oxidants in chocolate, ride the natural high of chillies, boost your immune system with some of the natural ingredients. Each bar brings its own sensations and benefits. Notice how spicy bars don’t hit you until after you have swallowed.

(quoted from ToT’s blog)

There were actually 4 small boxes of Vosges chocolates, but I can’t remember where I placed the Oaxaca Bar.

Anyway, let me tell you about the Oaxaca Bar. The description on the box says it’s made of Oaxaca Guajillo, Pasilla Chillies, Tanzanian bittersweet chocolate at 75% cacao. Yes, there are chillies mixed in the chocolates.

Vosges Oaxaca Chocolate bar - Photo from Trip or Treats -
Photo from Trip or Treats

The first time I took a bite, I didn’t immediately taste the chili in there. But, when I let that bit linger in my mouth and the bittersweet chocolate started melting, I began feeling something weird in my mouth. It was my first time to get a taste of chocolate with chillies so I was surprised… delightfully so that I wanted everyone at home to get a taste of it. Definitely something memorable.

The only one that I didn’t get to try from the set I won was the Barcelona Bar. As the description says, it’s made of Hickory Smoked Almonds, Grey Sea Salt and deep milk chocolate, with 45% cacao. My bro said it was salty and sweet, which is a combination I would’ve loved from a chocolate flavor that’s new to me, if only my bro didn’t gobble up the whole bar all by himself. Argh! 😀

Vosges Barcelona Bar with Hickory smoked almonds, grey sea salt, and deep milk chocolate -

Next, my second favorite is Mo’s Dark Bacon Bar. It has Applewood Smoked Bacon, Alderwood Smoked Salt, and Dark Chocolate. This had me at bacon. 😀

Vosges Mo's Dark Bacon Bar with Applewood smoked bacon, Alderwood smoked salt, and dark chocolate -

At 62% cacao, the saltiness the bacon and the salt bring in with the bitterness of the dark chocolate is just so addicting! I also enjoyed the crispiness of the bacon bits mixed into the choco bar. Something every chocolate lover should definitely try!

Lastly, my favorite of all four (okay, technically, I only got to taste 3 so… :D), the Matcha Bar. Why? I super loved the combination of the Japanese Matcha Green Tea and creaminess of the milk chocolate. I loved this so much that my bro was the only other person who tried it and I only gave him a very small bit to taste. Hahaha! 😀

Vosges Matcha Bar with Japanese green tea and deep milk chocolate -

As soon as I got the taste of these chocolate bars, I went to Vosges Chocolate’s website to find out more about their products. I wanted to see what other flavors they have available. Too bad though ‘cause I don’t think we have them available here in the Philippines.

Delightful new tastes of chocolate flavors -

I’d like to thank Trip or Treats again for this new experience. My apologies for the late posting. But, every bite of these Vosges chocolates was truly memorable.

To you, my dear foodie friends, what unique chocolate flavors have you already enjoyed in this lifetime? Kindly share them at the comments section. 🙂


For the Love of Chocolates…

Written by blankpixels

The Cookie Jar Pastries

My bro Ken and I are both pastry lovers. He particularly loves cakes and baking them. I love different kinds of pastries, most especially cookies and have been planning on learning how to bake myself. That’s why when Rae of The Cookie Jar sent us these goodies, we were both excited to try them.

Goodies from The Cookie Jar -

By the way, my bro and I love their packaging. The box, jar and tin can can be easily recycled. Kudos for that! They also used earthy tones of colors, which makes the packing more elegant. Perfect for gifts!

You might be wondering what makes The Cookie Jar different from other cookie or pastry shops. They are aiming to make baking cookies easy for newbie bakers with their jars of ingredients mix.

Ready to be gifted jar of cookie ingredients mix from The Cookie Jar -

We got this jar of ingredients for Oatmeal Chocolate Chip cookies. You can see the stack of flour, sugar, oats, and semi-sweet chocolate chips from this clear jar. No need to worry about measurements.

Layers of ingredients for The Cookie Jar's Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies Recipe -

At the back of the gift tag that comes with each jar, you’d see baking instructions. All you need to add with the mix of ingredients are butter, vanilla and 2 eggs.

Baking instructions at the back of the gift tag -

We haven’t baked the cookies yet, but will write a separate post for that. We’re saving it for a pick-me-up get-together with a friend next week. 🙂

Now, if you don’t have an oven, you’re not that confident with you baking or you simply prefer already baked cookies, you can also buy these cans of cookies.

The Cookie Jar's can of Homemade Triple Chocolate Cookies - I love the tin can, too! -

We received a can of The Cookie Jar’s Homemade Triple Chocolate Cookies. Each can contains 10 cookies, by the way.

Homemade Triple Chocolate Cookies from The Cookie Jar - Yummy! -

As soon as I took a bite of the cookie, I was delighted with the chunky bits of white and semi-sweet chocolates. The cookies were also chewy, which I love, love, love.

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Our Banchetto-Emerald Food Trip!

Update: 07/10/2011 – Banchetto now operates from Tuesdays to Saturdays in 3 different locations. Please check the bottom of this post for the schedules.

After attending Magnolia’s Summer Bloggers party, we (my friend Badeth and her photo booth guys, my bro and I) headed over to Banchetto in Emerald Ave. in Ortigas.

Banchetto started out as a very popular late night food strip in Ortigas. They recently opened 2 more venues in Libis, Quezon City and at Pioneer in Mandaluyong City (more info at the bottom of the post).

The Burp Society member Badeth and Kenneth at Banchetto in Ortigas - CertifiedFoodies.comBadeth and Kenneth at Banchetto

I’ve been reading a lot of raves about Banchetto and so I was pretty excited to check out all the food I can enjoy there. Oh, trust me, Banchetto is definitely any foodie’s heaven. You’ve got a lot of food choices. You can enjoy a full meal or something lighter if you’re on a diet. We even saw a stall selling food for vegetarians.

Okay, let the photos speak for me. Wipe off the drool after. Everything’s really mouth-watering! 😀

Oooohhh seafood pasta and pancit! - CertifiedFoodies.comIsaw, betamax, and other popular street food at Banchetto -

I wanted to try the isaw since I haven’t had them for a very long time. But, I was a bit full after the buffet at the event we came from. Next time, I’ll make sure to not skip this.

Good Farm's booth at Banchetto -

My bro and I are coffee and pastry lovers. So, when we saw Good Farm’s booth in Banchetto-Emerald, we were so eager to try their products. We ordered their Coffee Brownies with Vanilla ice cream, priced at Php 35.00. The lady in black was the one who baked the brownies.

Good Farm's Affogato with Vanilla Ice Cream - Php 35 -

The brownies were really moist and chewy, just the way I like it. We were disappointed though ‘cause we were expecting a li’l more kick of coffee flavor. I guess we should’ve tried their Arabica Coffee brownies (Php 25).

More food at Banchetto -

If you work in Ortigas, Banchetto-Emerald is definitely a place you’d be frequenting a lot. You can save on your meal expenses because there are many food choices at very affordable prices. There are even packed meals you can buy, as pictured below.

Packed meals, perfect for office junkies -

What I also would love to come back for are all these grilled food at Banchetto. When I saw these huge squids being grilled, I felt my tummy grumble even when I know I’m still full. These are perfect for a quick late night drink with friends. 🙂

Grilled gigantic squids - yummy!! -

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Magnolia Ice Cream’s Frozen Delights & Summer Bloggers Party

Magnolia's Frozen Delights -

Last week, we were invited to Magnolia’s Summer Bloggers Party for the launching of their new ice cream products, their Frozen Delights. I came with fellow foodies and bloggers who participated in their Facebook promo. It was definitely a night to remember. I’ll post more of my coverage of the event on my personal blog Just Another Pixel so stay tuned for that.

Magnolia Ice Cream's Summer Bloggers Party -

Going back to the launching of Magnolia’s Frozen Delights, I was genuinely glad that they were re-launching or re-introducing Magnolia as an ice cream brand. Most of us may be a little more familiar with the flavors of other popular ice cream brands, but from all the ice cream I’ve tasted during the bloggers party, you sure would love to get a taste of these delicious new ice cream from Magnolia.

There are a total of 5 Magnolia’s Frozen Delights that were featured at the launch, one of them were introduced for the very first time so I was pretty excited to try it. It’s Magnolia’s Spinner, their very own ice cream cone. It comes in two flavors: Vanilla and Chocolate (Php 20 only).

Magnolia's Spinner, Vanilla flavor -

I only got to try the Vanilla flavor. There was an ice cream-eating contest that my bro Ken and I joined and I got to try the Chocolate flavor. I loved them both, though I got brain freeze during the contest so I didn’t completely get to enjoy it. 😀

I also got to try one of Magnolia’s Fun Bar Surprise ice cream, the Cool Bubblegum flavor. I didn’t know my lips turned blue ‘til my blogger friends started laughing at me. 😀 Hahaha. Magnolia's Fun Bar Surprise and Sweetie Bites -

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