Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Foodicles has moved!

You can find me at the new and improved Foodicles!

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Foodicles x Alvin's Penthouse Kitchen Collaboration

From the yearbook room of our high school days to the kitchen of our present lives, it's a Foodicles x Alvin's Penthouse Kitchen Collaboration!

We're almost halfway through the year and we have yet to take our annual BFF vacation.  So while we plan and wait for an open time for that, I traveled to Hong Kong for a long weekend's staycation.  Our staycation involved homemade cocktails, neighborhood eats, and a nice night out (more on this soon).  And, my best friend is naturally my best friend because we share a love for food, both eating and cooking.  So cooking a dish at home became priority number one.

His day job as a flight attendant allows him to bring back fresh, seasonal produce from all over the world.  On the morning of my arrival, he also flew in from Switzerland.  He surprised me with a bundle of goodies - white asparagus from Germany!  White asparagus is unique to spring and for only a short time in the later weeks of the season.

White asparagus has a delicate sweetness, and so it should be treated with a delicate simplicity.  Honoring the vegetable and the lightness of spring, we simply roasted the asparagus and balanced it with a complementing sauce.

The penthouse floor gives Alvin access to a rooftop garden for his freshly grown herbs.  Fresh herbs make all the difference in cooking.  It brightens and livens any dish.  With an abundance of parsley, we decided to make a parsley dressing with a creamy touch.  And with health in mind, yogurt gave that creamy texture, while lemon and olive oil with a touch of seasoning brought it all together.

After cooking, prepping, and food styling the gorgeous plate, we spent an equal amount of time photographing all angles.  Our time was truly rewarded with the succulently sweet bites of asparagus paired with sips of sparkling wine, European and American craft beers, and cocktails.  Much can be said for staycations especially when they are this fun and indulgent.

For more about white asparagus and the details of our recipe, check out Alvin's Penthouse Kitchen!

Food styling and photoshooting

The final product

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Can't stop eating in Tokyo

Like all trips to Tokyo, the eating is non-stop.  Well, it stops when you are so full that you walk it off and then you're ready to eat again.  There's so much to eat and not enough time.

With all our favorite cities, we go back to our favorite restaurants.  Ramen Street in Tokyo Station is a must for every trip.  Some ramen shops change while our favorites remain filled with lines.  The station always has new restaurants and food stalls, plus many food attractions for the kids from burgers to snacks both sweet and savory.

Convenience store eats are another fun place to stock up for breakfast.  I've been pretty obsessed with ikura (salmon roe) lately, so I really enjoyed the 7-11's ikura onigiris (rice balls) every morning.  On the other end of the eating and price range, our hotel Japanese restaurant at the Palace Hotel has such a great ambiance for tradition Japanese dining.

And just when you think you can stop eating, Haneda airport has such a quality selection of eats before getting on the plane.  You have a last chance for tsukemen and ramen; but my favorite is the Japanese curry in the ANA lounge.  It's better than a lot of restaurants.

I got full and hungry again from writing about these eats.  I can't wait to go back to Tokyo!

Shoyu Ramen with Handmade Noodles at Menya Shichisai

Monday, May 18, 2015

Serafina of NYC in Tokyo

Aside from the hotel restaurants, the Palace Hotel Tokyo also offers restaurants in their basement arcade.  They vary from Japanese specialties, like soba or shrimp tempura, to Korean cuisine and Italian American cuisines.  Something for everyone.  The restaurants cater partly to the hotel guests and mostly to the office workers in the nearby buildings.

Serafina is a standard meal each time we check into the hotel.  At least once a visit, and this time we ate there 3 times.  It's satisfying and comforting, while have vibrant taste.  The original location hails from New York City with several branches around the city and continues to grow internationally.

Italian is a cuisine the Japanese have perfected, and here at Serafina Tokyo it's really perfection.  We came for the pizzas, but I fell in love with the pastas.  Perfectly al dente and sauced so well.  After hours of walking around Tokyo and carrying shopping bags and nephews across Tokyo Station, a hot plate of carbs taste so deliciously good.

Margherita Pizza

Rigatoni Bolognese

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Izakaya at Teppen

The fun of staying at The Palace Hotel Tokyo is the constant discovery of Marunouchi's restaurants.  Up in the buildings, the ground floors, and countless establishments in the basements - you can't stop eating in this financial hub.

Most of Marunouchi's eats are casual, but casual among the suits from work.  After work restaurants are filled with drinking, smoking, and eating the day's stresses away.  It's a fun environment, and the more crowded the restaurant, the tastier the food.

In one of the many buildings, !iiyo! or the Eiraku building holds countless eats in a matter of meters.  In an attempt to find a smokefree environment for my nephews, we saw an table made of milk crates.  It seemed like decoration, but still function.  And the menu was filled with grilled and fried Japanese izakaya dishes.  Thankfully, the decorative table was indeed function.  So sitting on cushioned milk crates made for a fun night of eating at Teppen.

There are so many great eats in Tokyo.  I love that these restaurants are understated and low key, while shining with overwhelming plates and tastes.

Vegetables to start the meal.  Look at these beautiful colors!