November 26, 2015

Pik-Nik at The Westin Dubai Mina Seyahi

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I woke up this morning with the sun peeking at my windows sill.

I jumped out of the bed to take a look outside and it already stopped raining. It was raining for a couple of days but today is bright and sunny. 

We usually have an unlimited perfectly painted blue sky like this every single day here in Dubai and since we are already in November, there's a hint of winter in the air.

I hope the weekend will be as bright, clear and sunny like today so we can all have a wonderful time outdoors, go to the beach or the park or go on a picnic...

Pik Nik - British style at the grounds of The Westin Mina Seyah would be nice, just like what we did a couple of weeks ago.
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November 22, 2015

Super Mom Forum: The Advantages and Disadvantages of Technology in Children

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Super Mom Forum

Technology has become a part of our daily lives. Everybody uses technology one way or the other including small children. Technology is not limited to just TV and smart phones or tablets. There are also the gaming consoles, handheld gaming devices, radio, music consoles, navigators in our cars and many many more. All these made our lives so much easier and communication so much faster

In a recent forum I attended called Super Mom Forum, organized by Little Explorers Dubai and Key Nursery in coordination with Dubai Tourism and Majid Al Futtaim, the speaker and psychologist Celine Chahine gave an insightful talk about technology, its advantages and disadvantages to our children and I'm glad I attended it. Knowing the harm it can bring to my children, it only strengthen my desire to keep guiding my kids in the use of technology.

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November 1, 2015

Yum Cha Night at the China Club

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Dim Sums are amazing. Those small pockets of dough wrapped around a delicious filling is something I can't say no to. The most common dumpling I know and grew up with are sui mai (siomai) and siew bao (siopao) but there are so many kinds of dim sums and I'm crazy about them.

When my sister came to Dubai for another training, we seize the opportunity to catch up over dinner at the charming The China Club in Radisson Blu Deira Creek.

Each corner of The China Club is balanced and relaxed, something so distinctive to every Chinese restaurant.

Yum Cha is an eat all you can dim sum experience which got our dumpling cravings covered. It's not just all about dim sums though, there's a lot more and for just 99 dirhams per person with free flowing iced tea infused with fresh fruit juices.

We started off with some hearty hot and sour soup for me and chicken and corn soup for the rest of the family and some individual serving of cold noodles for starters.

I like noodles but I like them hot. I still tried it and it wasn't bad at all. The heat of the spice gives a kick on that appetite required for all the dim sums we planned to devour later.

And as I was thinking about it, platters of fried dim sums arrived.

All are delicious but somehow one will still stand out from the crowd. We love the deep fried banana/custard milk, it is sweet inside and crunchy on the outside perfectly paired with the other savory dim sums on the platter.

Nothing can beat a mix of sweet and savoury fried dim sum. We just keep on reaching for each pocket of goodness one after the other.

It's comfort food overload for us.

I tell you the steamed counterparts were equally delectable. When we're done with the fried ones, the staff wheeled the red dim sum trolley and we ordered different types for our table

One by one, different dim sums still steaming hot inside its bamboo steamer was placed on our table. honey chicken char siew bao, chicken mushroom and ginger, chicken in black bean sauce, har gau and siew mai with crab roe etc...

Prince's favorites were the steamed honey chicken char siew bao, and steamed chicken in black bean sauce.

Each dim sum has its own distinct flavor and we liked them all including the exotic diced octopus in satay sauce.

When everybody agreed that they had enough, we ordered dessert. We all had a serving of chilled coconut cream and sago pearls. It was sweet, creamy and satisfying, perfect ending for one heavy meal.

I know dim sum is suppose to be a light meal but with all that dim sum we had, it gets quite heavy so some hot tea was in order.

We linger some more in the restaurant loading up with more stories of our lives in Dubai and in Qatar. A couple of hours is sure not enough but at least we had chances like these to bond.

After we finished our tea, we say our thank yous to our host and bid farewell.

Have you tried Yum Cha nights at The China Club Radisson Blu Deira Creek? How was your experience? Please feel free to share it in the comment box below.

If not yet, I recommend you to take the whole gang to try it, it will be fun!!!

Radisson Blu Deira Creek
Tel: +971 4 205 7033/7034
12:30 - 15:00 (Daily)
19:30 - 23:00 (Daily)
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October 26, 2015

Dubai Creek Dinner Cruise Aboard Al Mansour Dhow

One thing I have recently crossed out from my long list of things to try in Dubai was to go on a Dhow Cruise Dinner along the Deira Creek.

I didn't know why it took me so long to do this but a decade of procrastination has paid off when we all boarded the newly refurbished Al Mansour Dhow owned and managed by the five star Raddisson Blu Hotel, Deira Creek Dubai.

My family and I along with friends and other media personalities cruised the quiet waters of the Dubai Creek one fine evening a couple of months ago.

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October 18, 2015

Our First Dubai Tram Ride

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We never had the chance to use the Dubai tram since it started its operation last November 11, 2014. We live far away from this side of the city and chances of using the tram is almost close to none. Most of the people benefiting from this newest public transport system are tourists and those who live and work in parts of Jumeirah, Dubai Marina and Media City.

Last August, during the school vacation, we had a mini staycation at Arjaan by Rotana in Dubai Media City and the tram station was less than five minutes away from the hotel.

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September 30, 2015

Giveaway l Dinner for 2 at The Gallery

photo credit

My Yellow Bells is giving away a Dinner for 2 at The Gallery restaurant once again.

No, I am not celebrating anything this time...

Alright, alright!!! It happened to be my mom, my sister and my wedding anniversary this September. We didn't plan it. It was just a coincidence that all the women in my family got married in the same month, I know cool stuff huh.

This giveaway is not because we're celebrating (we can both think of it that way yeah? No? okay it's just me. :)) 

Let's just say my very generous sponsor happen to be so kind to help me pay it forward to my readers and MYB followers, so one of you, a very lucky winner with a loved one can enjoy sumptuous dinner at BurJuman Arjaan's all-day dining restaurant. It's got a relaxed atmosphere and good food, offering the finest international cuisine. You can check out our dining experience here.

All you have to do is follow the instructions on the box below to enter this giveaway. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway
The Gallery
BurJuman Arjaan by Rotana
Open Sunday to Thursday Breakfast from 6:30 am - 10:30 am
Lunch from 12:30 noon - 3:30 pm
Dinner from 6:30 pm - 11 pm (last order 10:30 pm)
Friday to Saturday from 6:30 am - 1 pm
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September 16, 2015

Prawn in Aligue Sauce ala Max's Restaurant

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After tasting this prawn in crab roe sauce dish or as we simply call it prawn in aligue sauce at Max's Restaurant in Dubai, I said to myself I have to recreate it at home.

It is dead simple to cook, very quick, less than ten minutes, twenty five with prep time but it is hundred percent super delicious. I promise!

This is how I made it.

Put a medium pan on the stove and apply heat.

Add two tablespoon of butter or two of olive oil for a healthier option like I did.

Add four cloves of minced garlic sauteed until fragrant.

Add the prawns (peeled with tails intact, I forgot to deveined mine but you should do it in yours-it is a must)

Add two tablespoon of crab paste or more as you like (you will find it in Asian stores).

Saute it until the prawns flesh changed its color from opalescence to opaque. Prawns cook easily and overcooking it makes it tough. For succulent prawns, two to three minutes is enough.

Add salt and pepper just to taste but easy on the salt, the crab roe has salt in it already

Lastly, squeeze some lemon juice into it to lift all the flavors.

Garnish with more lemon wedges, chili on top or chopped chives. Serve with hot steaming rice and enjoy!

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Can't Stop Dippin'

I will make any alibi just for Ferald to take me back to Arabian Center Uptown Mirdif again.

First reason being is I haven't explored the huge shopping mall yet and secondly, I'm craving for some smooth, silky and warm melted Belgian chocolate generously drizzled  in soft waffles, crepes filled with fruits, gooey brownies and most importantly I want to get my hands on again in that chocolate fondue.

Just take a look at that then tell me if you can resist.

It's called Dip n Dip Mania. It came with three dipping options that we asked for. My two favorites were strawberries and creme puffs, the kids like their marshmallows.

A favorite among locals in Uptown Mirdif with almost ninety percent patronage, Dip n Dip needed to open a bigger place to accommodate all their customers.

Red and brown is the motif of the store with leather chairs in the same tone and white tables. On the counter were small, medium and large chocolate fountains with milk chocolate, chocolate and white chocolate all of Belgian origin gushing down from it protected by clear glass covers.

We were ushered to our table and was handed each a menu. Looking at it, a flush of excitement crept in my daughter's face, my kids can't wait to order.

The menu has a wide selection of mouth watering desserts and it was hard to chose. Dip n Dip was keen to this so they add something on the menu to help out if you can't make up your mind.

It's called The Choice Helper Page

So basically, you close your eyes, move your index finger randomly around the page, stop your finger somewhere in the page, open your eyes and read the item under your finger. ORDER IT! As simple as that.

In our case, we played over and over again just for fun but we still ordered according to our preferences and recommendation of the staff.

I ordered the house best seller as recommended by one of the staff - it is this gorgeous looking Brownies Crepe with all three types of chocolate hugging the brownies and crepe inside.

and I paired with a warm cuppa tea

Moving on, Ferald ordered Banana Wrap Crepe. It's a crepe rolled like a log filled with bananas inside and covered with milk chocolate and white chocolate. He went bananas with his choice and...

 it did made him smile!

My daughter had a hard time choosing. In the end she asked for the chocolate waffle. She liked it as it was crunchy on the outside, soft on the inside and very chocolaty.

Prince had an interesting order, he asked for the Fettuccine Crepe and it was quite a show when it was served.

When the staff arrived on our table she was holding a jar of milk chocolate, raise it up high then started pouring the chocolate into to the still warm fettuccine crepe on the plate below without any spills.

The truth is he is after the vanilla ice cream more :)

We had a little confusion with our orders so Prince had an extra waffle on stick with more vanilla ice cream on the side.

I know you will tell me, that's chocolate overdose and I know, I know NOW! We will take it easy next time. All I want to have on my next visit is the Dip n Dip Mania, I love it!

The portions are big and good for sharing and surprisingly, it is very affordable with price ranging from just AED 25 to AED 45 only. As for the chocolate fondue, each dipping option is AED 25.

I told my sister that there's a Dip n Dip in Doha and that she should take the family. They went to try it last week and by the looks in their photo, they seemed to enjoyed their dining experience as well.

It's highly recommended folks!
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September 13, 2015

Okoy {Crispy Prawn and Grated Pumpkin Fritter}

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It's time to share another Filipino dish recipe here on the blog.

Our today's recipe is considered a street food in the Philippines if not a homemade appetizer and it's one of my favorite.

"Okoy" or "Ukoy'' is made using grated pumpkin mixed with prawns and then deep-fried until crispy and golden brown. In some other provinces, they use grated tapioca in this dish.

I shy away cooking okoy because I'm afraid that it will turn out soggy and not as crispy as what my dad used to cook for us and it will just go to waste but when you're craving for some authentic food while your far away from home, there is no way you shouldn't try to recreate it at home yourself.

So I did and it turned out just the way I liked it.

I grated some pumpkin, squeezed the juice out of it using my hand, put the grated pumpkin in a bowl, threw in some peeled prawns tails intact, cracked one large egg, added two table spoon cornstarch and sprinkled with some salt and pepper. Mixed it until all ingredients are incorporated.

Spoon one tablespoon into a small saucer plate, flatten it then transfer to a hot skillet to fry until brown and crisp.

The dipping sauce is a simple garlic vinaigrette. Crushed 2 cloves of garlic, add 1/3 cup of white vinegar, sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Best eaten when it is still warm and crispy.

Sarap! happy tummy and cravings satisfied.

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August 12, 2015

Centerpoint Back to School Preview and Shopping Experience

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When my first child started school in 2007, we rely mostly in stationery shops, some children shops and big supermarkets for her back to school supplies.

Pretty school bags, lunch boxes and water bottles are hard to find, almost the same sets everywhere. It was challenging and it made me miss my country for abundance of stylish school supplies that one can get their hands on in Divisoria or at SM shopping malls.

Fast forward to 2015, you will see banners of Back To School hang in every store possible all gearing up for the beginning of school in September and parents are spoiled with choices. Everybody has their own take on how to give customers the pleasure of choosing what's best for their children and what their pockets can afford.

One of our favorite places to shop for school essentials is Centerpoint, actually for many things and not just school stuff.

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