RiCo Corn Rice, a rice-lover’s dream come true?

We all know about carbs being the bane of every dieter’s existence. Here in the Philippines, that carb is rice– a staple that in many cases you will find on the dining table from breakfast to dinner. Some people even eat it for merienda or snack-time. Filipinos can’t help it. It’s programmed into them. And I say “them” because it has been years since I cut out rice from my regular meals.

I used to eat a lot of rice but now the only times I do is when I eat sushi or Japanese rolls, or bibimbap and stuff like that. Special occasions. Maybe I’m a strange one but I know for a fact that about 90% of the people I’m acquainted with think I’m crazy for abandoning rice. It’s just too much a part of the Filipino lifestyle! But most of them also have a rice-overdosing problem that leads to weight gain, and with the shifting of the tides towards the recognition of living a healthier lifestyle, they are constantly on the lookout for healthier alternatives that will satisfy them the same way rice does.

Frankly speaking, I think they may no longer need to look further.

RiCo Corn Rice has been on my radar a while, but like I said, since I don’t eat rice on a regular basis it’s not a priority must-try for me. I was however curious because of the corn aspect of it. I love corn a lot, my friends. I wondered whether this corn rice was going to actually taste like corn and give the same nutritional values as corn. Being one of the lucky people to receive this package from La Filipina Uy Gongco Corp, makers of the RiCo Corn Rice, I was about to get my answer.

RiCo Corn Rice is made from 100% Philippine-grown corn. And as most of you know corn has low glycemic index which is ideal for diabetics and dieters alike because it helps slow down and stabilise absorption of blood sugar in the body. Corn is naturally rich in beta-carotene too, which helps prevent certain types of cancer. Then there’s lutein for the eyesight; fiber to help better digestive disorders, keep you feel full longer, and lower blood cholesterol levels… Basically, RiCo Corn Rice supplies the same filling satisfaction as regular rice with all the health benefits of corn. RiCo has no cholesterol so it is good for the heart as well.

And if all that’s not enough, it might be good for you to know that RiCo is fortified with B-vitamins that boost the immune system; calcium that strengthens bones; and iron that improves blood circulation. That’s an impressive list of health benefits, I have to say.

All the stuff I mentioned above are written on the packaging alongside the cooking instructions to make things easier. You don’t need to wash the grains like you would typical rice and just need to dump it straight into the water. All you need is to BPS – Boil, Pour, and Simmer! Pretty convenient, I must say.

On its own it does not really have any flavor, which is to say, it tastes like regular old white rice. However that color is extremely attractive, and maybe I’m just saying it because it’s my favorite color but it is a lovely yellow. The rice is nice and puffy after being cooked. Now I don’t know about all the other claims but I must admit I thought it was more filling than regular rice. It didn’t take a lot to render me full. In fact, I stayed full until 7PM, which is unheard of for me since I typically get hungry around 4 and tend to gravitate towards a snack.

Now I know what you’re thinking: I probably stayed full because I’m not used to eating heavy stuff like rice. That’s what I was thinking too actually, until I shared my observation with the rest of my rice-eating family. That’s when they realized that they too indeed stayed full until dinner-time, which again is not the normal scenario for a house full of food-loving still-growing boys. My brothers would normally get a hankering for some afternoon snacks by 3 or 3:30, yet on the days we ate RiCo Corn Rice they managed to stay full up until the evening. That’s something!

I think this is a pretty brilliant solution for those who want to eat less rice without giving it up completely. Right now RiCo Corn Rice comes in 3 sizes: 1 Kg is Php 70 (SRP), 2 Kg is Php 125 (SRP), and 5 Kg is Php 300 (SRP).

Here are a couple of recipe suggestions for you, but you can cook RiCo Corn Rice in any way you would regular rice. In the photo up at the top we mixed the RiCo Corn Rice with some crabmeat and onions and garlic to create a crab fried rice type of dish, then ate it with ulam. Try it out and tell me what you think! :)

Full disclosure: I received a free pack of RiCo Corn Rice for trial purposes, but all opinions stated above are my own.

I love lemony things, that’s a fact

Today I feel like doing something different with my post. Since I’ve never done this before, I thought it would be fun to share some things about myself. Nothing too personal, you know? Just a bunch of trivia-like tidbits about me. So, here goes 10 random facts about moi:

10. I am one in the gazillion people who love making lists of just about anything. I always have a notebook and a pen in my bag.

9. I have pretty decent drawing skills, if I do say so myself. In fact it is the first “talent” I discovered when I was a kid, but I didn’t get to nurture it as much as I would’ve liked.

8. I like keeping active, but my favourite sport is volleyball. Actually I constantly wish I could turn back time to change my decision about quitting my college team’s training pool. It’s a simple story but one that haunts me until this day. See I got recruited in the middle of the term so my schedule was a mess that really burnt me out, but I made the mistake of quitting altogether instead of fixing my schedule for the next term. This whole thing remains to be one of my biggest regrets in life. :'(

7. I am painfully terrible at small talk. I can do a speech and a Q&A in front of a big crowd with ease, but the small talk afterwards is what kills me. Truthfully, one of the reason why I love to blog is because I am an introvert but I have too many things to say and express. Writing allows me to talk at length without inhibitions. And with more confidence I suppose.

6. My current favourite way to unwind is watching Korean dramas, especially since the Monday-Tuesday shows airing right now are pretty daebak. Anybody who has seen Liar Game (starring Lee Sang Yoon & Kim So Eun) and Pride & Prejudice (starring Choi Jin Hyuk & Baek Jin Hee) would probably agree. And while we’re on the subject, watching the Kim So Eun-Song Jae Rim tandem on Korean variety showWe Got Married gives me the best happy feels!

5. I am super attached to my three younger brothers. It’s a fairly recent realization. I mean, I loved them since the beginning but now I know that I love them to bits.

4. I think after all the time I’ve spent blogging, I’m now forming a dream (goal?) of becoming a legitimate food stylist/photographer. Would be such fun to get to shoot beautiful food for a living. Got a long way to go though!

3. Despite loving to bake them, I do not actually like eating sweets. I do however immensely enjoy things that are spicy, savory, and sour, which is probably why…

2. I love any dessert with tangy lemon flavour. Take note, it can’t just be any lemon dessert. For me to loooove it, it has to taste like an actual lemon complete with that lip-smacking tang and hint of sourness.

1. This loaf, my friends, is probably one of my favourite lemon treats to date. It hits all my requirements for a great lemony experience, and I love it! LOVE IT. 
Get the recipe! >>

Unboxing the McDonald’s 2014 Coca-Cola Glass Collection

Something awesome landed on my doorstep the other day. At first I didn’t know what it was because all I saw was a huge black box, but as I got a closer look the excitement was pretty immediate. It was a collector’s edition box of McDonald’s 2014 Coca-Cola glasses! The box is a smooth, simply-designed lightweight black box with embossed silver text. Even the box is a beauty.

It has become quite the yearly tradition (7 years running!) for McDonald’s to release these gorgeous glasses in collaboration with Coca-Cola. A lot of people look forward to collecting them every year, but I think this year they came up with the best ones yet.

The set this year is called the Coca-Cola Modern Glass Collection– the perfect name to describe the look for this year’s collection indeed. The design screams contemporary, and each of the six glasses in the collection have distinctive patterns: diamond, linear, mosaic, pixel, ripple, and steel. The glasses are all a light grayish colour as opposed to the previous years’ more colourful offerings. They’re both classy and a little rugged at the same time, and I love that they all have very different surface-feels when you hold them depending on the pattern.

The best part? Just by adding Php 25 to any McDonald’s Extra Value Meal, you can get one of the six Coca-Cola glasses already! This also applies to the BFF Burger or Chicken Bundle, and the breakfast Extra Value Meals. That’s a great deal, methinks.

See all the designs up close! >>

The attack of the Soda Float nostalgia bears Coke Float Cupcakes

It’s been about five years since I’ve had any soda floats. (No joke!) I’ve got a painful stomach condition that flares up anytime I have carbonated drinks, so I just decided one day to stop drinking them and that was that. But sometimes I do see someone enjoying an especially good-looking classic rootbeer float and I feel a little nostalgic. Rootbeer floats are the best kind of soda floats in my opinion.

What makes soda floats interesting is I guess the mixture of sweet bubbly drink with cool creamy ice cream. It reaffirms my theory that just like chocolate, ice cream pretty much goes with everything. (Have you guys tried dipping your fries in vanilla ice cream? That works for me too.) Through the years I have seen a bunch of different types of soda floats. There have been ones in white and pink and electric blue or green, but regardless of the soda used it seems to work thanks to the ice cream, which just kind of pulls the drink together.

The most sought after soda float here is still arguably the Coke Float, for the simple reason that Coke is amazingly popular here in the Philippines. They have this local gimmick where you can have your name printed on the bottle label for fun. The more adventurous souls tend to scour supermarket shelves for their names. It was a good move, and I mention this because as someone who graduated with an advertising degree I’ve learned to appreciate how Coke does its marketing. But I digress.

Since it has been such a while since I’ve gotten so much as a glimpse of any Coke around here I thought it would be nice to use it for something other than drinking– say, a cupcake. Today I wanted to share this recipe I found of a Cherry Coke Float Cupcake, which frankly would’ve been awesome had I not forgotten to place a cherry on top of my frosted cuppycakes. My initial photography session involved no cherry topping, but the next day I did remember and decided to snap some pictures for the heck of it. Ain’t it so much prettier with that round ruby of a maraschino on top?

Lesson for the day: Lack of sleep makes one a scatterbrain.
Get the recipe! >>