Nutella S’more Waffles

Every November 19, our family celebrates our fire anniversary. We have this special occasion because eleven years ago, our whole house burned down at 1:30 in the morning. But, by God’s grace, He saved us from the fire and allowed our family and helper to get out of the house just in time. You can read more about the experience HERE.

s'more waffles
s’more waffles

Whenever we celebrate our “fireniversary”, we usually eat out at a restaurant with grilled food (since it reminds us of the fire) or we sometimes have a special meal together at home and remember God’s faithfulness. However, last Thursday (Nov. 19), we couldn’t meet up and have dinner as a family since we had prior commitments that we couldn’t postpone. We also tried to have breakfast or dinner together last Saturday, but some of us needed to attend other important activities too.

waffles cooking in the Krups waffle machine
waffles cooking in the Krups waffle machine
s'more waffles
s’more waffles

Hopefully, within the week, our plan to have dinner as a family will push through. (Hello, family! If you’re reading this, you know what to do. Haha!) In the meantime, I’ll be sharing one of my favorite snacks when we were still living at our old house in Kapitolyo. The lovely, gooey, and yummy S’MORES! But, this time, I made a little twist. Instead of using whole graham crackers as the base, I added crushed graham crackers to my waffle recipe and used the waffles to complement the toasted marshmallows and nutella spread. I hope you can try this one soon! It’s really a simple snack that can be prepared in 20 minutes or less. Enjoy!

Special thanks to my Dad and Mom for lending a helping hand (literally. hehehe.)

crushed graham crackers
crushed graham crackers
Nutella
Nutella

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NUTELLA S’MORE WAFFLES

Recipe makes 10 square waffles

 

Dry Ingredients:

2 cups of all-purpose flour

4 tsps. of baking powder

½ tsp. of salt

½ tsp. of cinnamon powder

1 tbsp. of white sugar

1/3 cup of crushed graham crackers

 

Wet Ingredients:

½ tsp of vanilla extract

1 ½ cups of whole milk

2 eggs

½ cup of vegetable oil

 

S’more ingredients:

Nutella (or other chocolate spread)

Big, white marshmallows (4-5 marshmallows per pair of waffles)

 

Steps:

  1. Mix the dry ingredients in one bowl.
  2. Whisk the wet ingredients in another bowl.
  3. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and combine well.
  4. Cook the batter in the waffle machine.
  5. Once the waffles are done, you can spread the nutella chocolate on each piece and top them with toasted marshmallows.
  6. In case your waffles cool completely, you can heat them up in the toaster for 3 minutes. Make sure to spread the chocolate on the waffles and add the marshmallows before toasting them.

Note: Waffles can be stored in a sealed container in the freezer for a week. When ready to eat, you can bring them out from the freezer, store at room temperature for 5 minutes, and toast for 3-5 minutes.

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s'more waffles
s’more waffles
s'more waffles
s’more waffles
s'more waffles
s’more waffles
s'more waffles
s’more waffles
nutella
nutella
s'more waffles
s’more waffles
s'more waffles
s’more waffles
s'more waffles
s’more waffles
s'more waffles
s’more waffles
s'more waffles
s’more waffles
s'more waffles
s’more waffles
s'more waffles
s’more waffles

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How to Grow Carrots at Home

“Don’t give up in doubt what you planted in faith.”- Elisabeth Elliot

I read this statement while I was browsing through some photos online. It reminded me so much of my experience with planting and harvesting carrots at home. It was my first time to plant a type of vegetable that grows underneath the soil, which made harvesting more faith-stretching for me. As usual, I bought the carrot seeds from “Seeds of Hope” which can be found at any SM Supermarket. They also sell the seeds at Ace hardware or at the gardening stores at the entrance of SM Megamall (building A).

carrots
carrots

After months of waiting, by God’s grace, I finally had the privilege of harvesting my own carrots at home. Woohoo! Even though they didn’t reach their maximum size, they were still a sweet surprise (literally too). Hopefully, I can grow a second batch early next year. Personally, I think that growing carrots is easier than growing TOMATOES and CORN at home. I can’t wait to grow more soon! As always, gardening at home helps me appreciate the crops and our Creator more. It really is an amazing experience to see fruits and vegetables grow from tiny seeds. Tasting our homegrown crops still is quite mind-blowing. I really am grateful for the experience, which is why I want to encourage you to try it too! If you’re already growing carrots or other fruits/vegetables, let me know! Leave a comment below and share your gardening experience!

carrots
carrots

 

Tips on Growing Carrots at Home:

1.Use loose potting soil. It will help produce straight carrots since they won’t have to struggle growing through thick, hard, and rocky soil.

carrots
carrots

2. Plant the carrot seeds directly on the permanent container pot/bed. They don’t like growing in small plastic cups or nursery beds. They also don’t like being transplanted.

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3. Plant them in rows. The stems of the carrot plants are very fragile. So, planting several seeds beside each other will help in giving support to the batch of plants. This will also help you differentiate the carrot plants from weeds growing in the same pot/bed.

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4. Spray water lightly on the soil until water comes out of the pot’s holes or until the whole soil area is moist.

carrots
carrots

5. Use fertilizer every two to three weeks. I use Jobe’s organic fertilizer spikes for my vegetables.

carrots
carrots

6. When the seedlings grow 2-3 inches tall, start trimming the weaker plants in the rows. Unfortunately, we need to let go of some of the plants because we don’t want to overcrowd the soil with too many roots. Overcrowding will lead to producing smaller and intertwined carrots. (Although having intertwined carrots or carrots with legs can be cool, sometimes.)

carrots
carrots

7. You can help the stems and leaves grow upright by carefully and lightly tying them together. You can use plastic straws (strings).

carrots
carrots

8. When you see carrot tops peeking out of the soil, cover them with more loose potting soil. When the carrots are exposed to too much sunlight, their tops may turn to green.

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9. It usually takes three months before the carrots can be harvested. A good indication is when the stems are already 12 inches high.

carrots
carrots

10. Harvest the carrots when you’re ready to eat or cook them. Crops harvested lose their natural sweetness as the days go by.

carrots
carrots
carrots
carrots

 

I hope you can join me in growing something green! ‘Til my next carrot experience. :)

Dinner at 22 Prime Discovery Suites

“Roses are red, violets are blue. We’ll treat you to dinner tonight at Prime 22.”

Toblerone cheesecake from Coffee Bean + calligraphy (c/o my sister, Camille)
Toblerone cheesecake from Coffee Bean + calligraphy (c/o my sister, Camille)

Two weeks ago, our parents celebrated their 30th anniversary. Because it was a very special occasion for the family, my siblings and I prepared two surprises for them that day. The first one was an invitation for our parents to have dinner with us at 22 Prime (Discovery Suites), one of the best steak restaurants in Manila. While, the second surprise was an email account filled with greetings and messages from more than 100 people, including family and friends. Yay!

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By God’s grace, our parents enjoyed the surprise celebration! We spent the whole night talking about their marriage, what they have been learning from their experiences, and how God has been so gracious to them and to our family for the past 30 years. (You can read more about it here: http://encouragingtreats.com/secret-30-years-marriage/)

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We usually don’t eat at hotels because of our budget. But, every now and then, it’s fun to try something new with the family. When we arrived at Prime 22, the staff warmly welcomed us and guided us to our table. They even offered to pull and push our chairs as we sat down. Love it! The place had dim and soft lights all over the place which helped create a cozy and relaxing atmosphere. Throughout the whole night, the waiters also stood nearby and attended to our requests. Even without us asking, they re-filled our glasses with cold water – a simple and thoughtful act that I truly appreciate as a customer whenever I dine out.  Moreover, while waiting for our main dishes, we were given two, refillable baskets of complimentary bread with spreads. The spreads offered were: Herbed butter, Feta Cheese in Olive Oil, and Sun Dried Tomatoes.

For our main dishes, we had the ff.:

LOBSTER BISQUE (Php 395) – Fresh lobster, micro greens, and tomato herb croutons. Although this soup was a bit salty for me, it still had a rich seafood taste and was very smooth and creamy.

Lobster Bisque at 22 Prime
Lobster Bisque at 22 Prime

PRIME CEASAR SALAD (Php 360) – Fresh bacon, six minute egg, and shaved parmesean cheese. A simple and refreshing salad. It helped balance the strong flavors of the soup and steaks.

Prime Ceasar Salad at 22 Prime
Prime Ceasar Salad at 22 Prime

SURF N TURF (Php 1,450) – Grilled Angus ribeye steak, jumbo prawns, twice baked potato, and grilled asparagus, zucchini, and cherry tomatoes. The 200-gram Angus steak was perfectly tender and juicy. It had a tangy gravy on the side, but even without it, it was already full of flavor. I just hoped that the steak and prawns were bigger though. But overall, it was a delicious dish. You can never go wrong with ordering steak and seafood. Well, for me, at least. It’s one of my favorite combinations!

Surf n Turf at 22 Prime
Surf n Turf at 22 Prime

WAGYU HANGER STEAK (Php 950) – 200-gram grilled hanger steak, baked tomato, and herb mashed potatoes. I like how the steak was perfectly grilled without having any hint of bitterness. Even if it had charred marks, it was delicious, juicy, tender, and flavorful. How did they do it? Haha! The mashed potatoes also complemented the steak well. It had the right amount of salt, butter, cream, and herbs.

Wagyu Hanger Steak at 22 Prime
Wagyu Hanger Steak at 22 Prime

OYSTERS PLATEAU (Php 1,200) – A tower of oysters served with a cocktail sauce, mignonette, and horseradish cream. THIS DISH WAS THE HIGHLIGHT OF THE NIGHT. We made sure to order oysters because we were celebrating the pearl anniversary of our parents. :) Aside from its lovely presentation, this tower had 3 kinds of oysters (broiled, baked, and Rockefeller) which was perfect for our family since we have different taste preferences. My personal favorite is the classic oysters Rockefeller (with lemon juice squeezed over them). My other siblings liked the cheesy baked and broiled oysters more.

Oysters Plateau at 22 Prime
Oysters Plateau at 22 Prime
Oysters Plateau at 22 Prime
Oysters Plateau at 22 Prime
Oysters Plateau at 22 Prime
Oysters Plateau at 22 Prime

CHOCOLATE GODDESS (Php 360) – Double chocolate mousse, melted dark chocolate, topped with candied pistachios. This dessert was amazing. Even after two weeks, I still remember how rich the chocolate flavor was. It also had a smooth texture which was very delectable. When I go back to Prime 22, I wouldn’t mind ordering this dessert again.

Chocolate Goddess at 22 Prime
Chocolate Goddess at 22 Prime

Before we left the place, the staff and waiters of Prime 22 were gracious enough to help us surprise our parents one last time that evening. Just before serving our dessert, they brought in a complimentary slice of chocolate cake with a dedication (made out of chocolate ganache) written on the plate. They also brought out the bouquet of flowers that we bought for mom earlier that day. Yay! Thank you, Prime 22, for the special treat!

22 Prime
22 Prime

As we were on our way out, our dad shared that his heart was so full and overwhelmed because of the love and grace they experienced that day through the surprise gifts and greetings. It was also a very encouraging experience for the whole family and we can only thank God for this privilege and for His grace.

This is the day which the LORD has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it. –Psalm 118:24

 

Until our next special night out! :)

 

PRIME 22

22nd floor, Discovery Suites, 25 ADB Avenue, Ortigas Center Pasig City.

For reservations, call  7196822  or 7198888.

www.discoverysuites.com

Family Mart: Twirl-All-You-Can Ice Cream

We don’t need to go out of town or spend a huge amount of money to have a good time with the family. Sometimes, all it takes is Php 30 and a quick stopover at a convenience store nearby. Our family spent the whole Saturday with each other and one of our random activities during the day was to try the twirl-all-you-can at Family Mart, Ayala Triangle. My eldest sister knew about the fun experience I had when I first tried it last year, so she recommended to do it with the family.

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Upon entering the store, we sat down on the comfortable chairs and waited for dad who bought a cone for himself. He bought just one cone because we were all full and we didn’t feel like eating ice cream after having our heavy breakfast. Dad knew that I enjoy twirling (which is also similar to piping frosting on cupcakes), so he gave me the opportunity to twirl the ice cream for him. Woohoo! It really is something that I can do all day. After six twirls, the ice cream almost fell, but I immediately used my two fingers to catch it just in time. Oops. Hahaha!

Family Mart's Twirl-All-You-Can Ice Cream
Family Mart’s Twirl-All-You-Can Ice Cream
Family Mart's Twirl-All-You-Can Ice Cream
Family Mart’s Twirl-All-You-Can Ice Cream

Both my brothers suddenly had the urge to give the twirling a try even though they didn’t feel like eating ice cream that morning. Haha. Our younger brother bought a cone and started twirling the ice cream. He started with beautiful twirls at first, and then, the funny part happened. Because the machine was releasing the ice cream fast, his hand panicked and lost control of the cone. It resulted to producing a funny twirl. Nonetheless, it did have a generous amount of ice cream, so, good job, Gabo! Hehehe.

Family Mart's Twirl-All-You-Can Ice Cream
Family Mart’s Twirl-All-You-Can Ice Cream

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At this point, my older brother was already coming up with a strategy to produce the best twirl – one that would have the most ice cream on the cone. He came up with an interesting and crazy idea to tilt the cone sideways until it is positioned horizontally while allowing the ice cream to twirl awkwardly on top of it. We didn’t expect him to do it, but he did. Hahahaha! Just like Gabo, he started out with neat twirls, and then, chaos took over! Instead of twirling the ice cream, he started to twirl his hand and body. It was the funniest thing! Hahaha. By this time, we were all laughing because of the masterpiece that he was creating. After a number of twirls, he finally took out the cone with the best twirl that morning! Woohoo!

Family Mart's Twirl-All-You-Can Ice Cream
Family Mart’s Twirl-All-You-Can Ice Cream

Thanks, Gabo, for the video! :)

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Twirling the ice cream seemed like it was a very easy thing to do. But, when panic creeps in while you’re in the middle of twirling, it makes you come up with interesting shapes of ice cream. Kudos to all the expert twirlers at the convenience stores! How do you do it?? Haha. This is only the beginning of our family’s twirling experience. Someday, in the near future, I know that we will be back! Thank you, Family Mart, for providing a fun experience for family and friends. Thank you to my family for also making yourselves available last Saturday and for being competitive. :))

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FAMILY MART

http://familymart.com.ph/

Phone: 6255701

 

Encourage yourself one treat at a time.