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After eating some real bad katsu, I made it up to my tastebuds by eating at Yabu. I didn’t pass up the opportunity when my highschool bff Cindy asked if I wanted to eat there for brunchienda. That’s of course, breakfast/lunch/merienda because we’re odd (pauso haha) like that. YABUdabadoo! Hahaha!
The service was noticeably fast and friendly. Thanks to Jeff who was the waitstaff assigned to our table. He first gave us sesame seeds to crush as we waited for our chosen katsu dishes. I took a picture of it because it seems like everyone who eats here MUST have this ritual Instagrammed. Aminin mo! Noong nag-Yabu ka, may picture ka rin nung sesame seeds! :p
Their menu promises they prepare everything meticulously: from using Koshihikari, the finest japanese rice, to knowing the exact second of lifting the pork from the bubbling oil. Yabu obviously takes katsu seriously that they have managed to popularize this sesame-crushing ritual. Well, they wouldn’t be called the House of Katsu for nothing.
Next to arrive were the appetizers (195php for two bowls). We had the Superior Potato and Egg Salad and Lidako Salad. The former is chunks of potato and egg with Japanese mayo-mustard dressing. The latter is baby octopus in sweet-savory sauce with cucumber. I wish I also ordered some Layu sauce (chili garlic) to spice up the octopus some more.
Cindy had Salmon Katsu (475php) – chunks of salmon, coated in panko and deep-fried to medium well. I had the Rosu Katsu (315php) – 3/4 inch-thick (porkloin), with a trimming of fat. Both were served with unlimited Japanese rice, miso soup, Japanese pickles, unlimited cabbage, and a bowl of fruit (pineapple and watermelon).
I didn’t take advantage of the unli-rice (trying to de-puff my chipmunk cheeks) but had lots of cabbage. Among their 3 dressings- Goma, Shoyu, and Wasabi, Goma is my fave. Their tonkatsu sauce was the perfect sweet-savory made more terrific with the crushed sesame seeds.
And what about the katsu itself? I LOVED IT. I absolutely loved it! I finished it down to the last morsel of panko-breadcrumb. My Rosu was crunchy on the outside and tender on the inside. It wasn’t greasy at all too like other cheap versions. And just like that, Yabu’s katsu is now my favorite katsu. <3
Cindy also liked her Salmon Katsu. She finished her set quicker than I did mine. Ang takaw, grabe. :p I’m probably trying the salmon next. Other katsu kinds they offer are chicken, black tiger prawn, oyster, menchi (minced meat of beef and pork), and they even have veggie katsu of silken tofu, onion rings, eggplant, bell peppers, potatoes and carrots.
We didn’t get to try their Mochi Ice Cream because we went for UCC’s Oreo Coffee Cake instead. Still, my Yabu experience was excellent from start to finish. I ticked WOWs and VERY GOODs in the comment card they gave us. I really wish they’ll have a branch in Harbor Point as well so I can have my Dad try this too. My father lived in Japan for several years and I think he’d like Yabu as much I did.
Yabu: House of Katsu
2/F SM Mall of Asia, Main Mall Atrium, South Arcade, Pacific Dr
Manila Bay Reclamation Area, Pasay
Other branches: SM Megamall, Southmall, North Edsa, Aura, Robinsons Magnolia and ATC.
// listening to Sum 41 – Into Deep
This was the first thing I saw upon entering the relatively new resto in Salcedo Village.
Parang alam nila na darating ako ha. :p And come on, the mere name CHOPSTOP already suggests diet isn’t really welcome here.
Chopstop and Army Navy most prob have the same owners because of the very similar looks and they’re right beside each other. Hindi naman siguro coincidence lang ‘yon noh? :p
I got the “bestseller”, Tonkatsu Pork Chop, 149php. I don’t know how it became the bestseller. It sure didn’t taste like anything I’d wanna have again. The meat was too dry and tough. The breading was blah. The sauce had no character.
I was able to faintly appreciate their Spicy Chops. This isn’t for those who want it really hot though. Tamang anghang lang ito kaya pwede sa akin. Pero the meat was still hard to chew. Lumalaban. :(
The pork chops failed miserably but I liked their Fish and Chips (139php). Large servings of well seasoned fish and fat fried potatoes. I even appreciated it sans the sauce.
Suprisingly, the only thing I’d like to recommend from Chopstop is their Red Velvet Brownie in a Cup (89php). Served warm, soft and moist and not so sweet. Oh, did you know beet makes it red? Kaya daw pala Red Velbeet. Haha! Joke courtesy of Carmen. :p
I am not moved to stop for shops again but I can give it another chance. Hopefully, I’ll get to order the good items next time. Well… they have beers and margaritas…
GF Centrum II Building,
150 Valero St., Salcedo Village,
+63 9175121212, 02 8800525
// listening to Def Leppard feat Taylor Swift – When Love and Hate Collide
Have been unexpectedly and exceptionally busy since mid-November that I failed to welcome my favorite month with a BANG! Of course December is my fave not only because Christmas is coming but my birthday is coming as well! Argh! Not in a festive mood yet. Been always tired because of work lately. :(
Sometimes I’d come home and go straight to sleep, wake up in the middle of the night and realize I haven’t even washed my face or brushed my teeth. Then I’d drowsily drag my ass to the bathroom to do so and then sleep for several hours until another morning when I’d be forced to wake up earlier than I should because I have dreamt of work again.
But hey, I am still grateful for my job. I love being a recruiter. It’s just stressful that we’re still having so many activations this last quarter. I guess I was used to not having so much workload by December. I’m just really hoping that those that qualified would be able to start their training asap!
I am also grateful that I still get to see my family and friends even if I only have one free day in a week. I got to attend my nephew Chael’s first birthday party McDonald’s Alabang. I got to meet Grimace!!! I saw some college bestbuds in ATC. I was able to go on a #medyobadgirls night out with Jan and Colleen.
I saw Grease on stage and despite not being able to say it’s awesome, I still enjoyed the show because I have always loved the songs. And I was also able to have coffee with my 2 friends fro church, Yanee and Saul.
December is here and the stress doesn’t show any signs of slowing down. It’s my 32nd birthday in two weeks and I can’t wait to spend more time with my loved ones. That’s all I really wish for this year.
Oh well. Here’s to wishful thinking.
// listening to Alan Parsons Project – Eye in The Sky
I like my kare-kare sweet para swak with bagoong and I hate it with tuwalya or buntot or pata.
My recipe is quite easy to follow and here it is! :p
Boil 1/2 kilo of pork (sinigang cut) in 4 cups water until meat is tender.
Steps 2- 4
While waiting for the pork to cook, prepare the rest of the ingredients:
1 packet of Mama Sita’s Kare-Kare Mix
4-5 tablespoons of Dalupan Peanut Butter (creamy)
5 cloves of garlic, minced
1 red onion, chopped finely
5 sitaw, sliced into 2-inch pieces, blanched
1 head pechay, blanched
2 eggplants, sliced lengthwise and fried
1 banana heart, sliced into 2 inch pieces
Sauté garlic and onions. Add boiled pork when garlic is almost golden brown and onions are a bit wilted. Very lightly brown the pork.
Mix the Mama Sita’s Kare-kare mix with half a cup of water. Mix well. Make sure there are no lumps. Combine mixture with the pork broth and add the banana heart, pork with garlic and onions. Simmer to a boil.
Add the special ingredient… Dalupan Peanut Butter. It’s, without a doubt, the best homemade peanut butter I have ever tasted. In fact, it is the best local peanut butter I’ve ever had! Dalupan Peanut Butter is Bulacan-made. They have the creamy and the crunchy kind. Use creamy for this recipe. Mix well.
Plate it. This is the good thing about not tossing all the vegetables in the sauce to cook. Blanching the veggies (pechay and sitaw) makes them pretty and green. Just a tip: put a pinch of sugar in the water when you blanch the veggies to make it really green.
Serve the kare-kare with bagoong alamang. Needless to say, this should be eaten with rice.
Ice cold Coke on the side, optional.
// listening to the traffic in 24th St., BGC
Bistek is derived from beef steak. Some people subsitute pork for beef and that should be called porkstek NOT pork bistek. (Ugh. Some people.) Make it fish and it’s fishtek. You know the drill.
This has got to be one of the simplest beef dishes to prepare. It’s one of the yummiest too! All you need are a few ingredients and for my version, I used…
1/4 kilo of beef sirloin, sliced thinly
5 red onions, sliced
1 head garlic, smashed then minced
1 cup soysauce
juice of 20 calamansi
salt and pepper to taste
1. Marinate the beef in soysauce and calamansi juice for at least 2 hours. Best if overnight.
2. Fry the beef in oil (add some butter if you want) until almost well done. Set aside.
3. Sauté garlic until light brown and onions until halfcooked.
4. Put the beef and the marinade and simmer for 5 minutes or until meat gets thoroughly cooked and onions are transluscent.
5. Put some salt and pepper according to desired taste. For me, the more pepper, the better!
Serve this with rice or fries. Yes. Fries. I learned that bistek goes well with fries from my Tita Cay (owner nung tambayan namin dati nung college) and I suggest you try this combo. :)
Garnish with freshly chopped onions. Taaaa-daaaaah!!! Bistek Walastik!
Btw, my dad is fond of saying Walastik! when he finds something excellent. Like this bistek, so there. Hehe.
// listening to Anthem Lights – Can’t Get Over You