Make Celebrations At Home Amazing With These Top Food Picks
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Make Celebrations At Home Amazing With These Top Food Picks

Make Celebrations At Home Amazing With These Top Food Picks

Youth | May 26, 2021
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From party trays to cakes and more, Janeena Chan shares her top food picks and everything you need for fun celebrations… even at home!

Celebrating special occasions at home has now become a part of our new normal. And with food businesses pivoting to cater to this new reality, we now have more options to enjoy our lockdown birthdays and celebrations in the comfort and safety of our own homes.

The birthdays of my late father, my sister, myself, and my mom are actually consecutive months apart—from February to May—so we’d always have to think of fresh new ideas to celebrate each one. The same applies now, although things look and operate differently. But hey, as long as we’re healthy, safe, and together, that’s the best “birthday gift” we can have right?

Janeena Chan with food and flowers

So I thought of sharing some of our favorite birthday lockdown food finds. And I’m sure you’ll enjoy for your home celebrations, too whatever they may be—an anniversary, a special career milestone, at-home date nights, or even for Father’s Day next month!

Comfort Food for the Soul

Chinese comfort food from The Empress Dining Palace is one of my favorites ever! Back when dining in was much safer, I’ve always felt extra satisfied whenever we had our gatherings or even simple dinners there.

What to order:

  • Dim Sum Platter
  • Peking Duck
  • Lemon Chicken
  • Stuffed Taro Puffs
  • Salted Egg Prawns
  • Braised Homemade Beancurd with Scallops: my absolute favorite! It’s so soft—it almost feels like you’re eating a delicious steamed egg! Really a must-try!

No Fail Party Trays Made Simple and Extra Satisfactory

Home catering for celebrations has become popular these days, especially for big families. But with the new normal, having servers on-site is something most are opting out from. The answer? Party trays made simple! Try Carlito’s Catering for a wide array of hearty dishes that will surely be crowd favorites!

What to order:

  • Crabs with Sotanghon
  • Prawns Thermidore
  • Baked Salmon with Spinach Cream
  • Braised Pork with Steamed Chinese Buns or Cua Pao set: so, so good—from the soft buns to the stuffings, add-ons, and the pork!
  • Fresh Lumpia Rolls: one of their classics!

Savory Cakes for the Win

After celebrating many birthdays throughout the years, it’s about time we push the possibilities of how a cake should look and taste. And as much as I love pretty desserts and cakes, the thought of a savory cake excited me! And here are some that we’ve tried!

First off, we got a specially dedicated Lasagna from The OC Chef! It was done in such a neat way—using a stencil and some nori flakes to form the words! I mean, how cool is it to have a personalized lasagna right? The serving tray was huge too, and the quality is superb! Plus, I even requested for them to use pork instead of beef since we’re avoiding the latter as of the moment.

Soon after, my sister surprised our Mom with another savory cake—this time made of Pancit and Shanghai rolls! How ingenious right? They even sent a cute golden cake topper! You can order this at Kaye’s Table.

Foodie favorite: Lumpia Shanghai and Pancit Cake

An Interactive Pièce de Résistance

Yes, interactive! Aside from the fundamentals of basic dining, enjoying meals with some extra pizzaz adds a little more magic to celebrations at home.

And by pizzaz, I mean, using your plate to cut through the crunchy skin of a classic Cochinillo—the traditional and proper way it’s served. It’s a feast for all the senses—from the smell to the sound, touch, sight, and of course, taste! To experience it yourselves, try Cochi by Marvin. It really lives up to its hype!

Foodie Janeena Chan in orange dress
Foodie favorites: Cochinillo

Interestingly enough, I was also targeted by Instagram ads around a week before Mother’s Day. There, I saw such a beautiful cream puff tower that I couldn’t ignore from the Croquembouche Factory. And so, we ordered one for Mom on her birthday—the same week as Mother’s Day, too! 

It was so fun to use our clean hands to pinch through each decadent ball! The crunch of the candied caramel coating perfectly paired with the softness of the cream and pastry altogether. Since we liked it so much, we’ll definitely order this again—maybe for Christmas this time since it also resembles a tree!

Food: Croquembouche tower

On a side note, you can even pay cashless or remotely via Lyka Gems for some of these brands. I used them for Empress and Cochi since they’re official Lyka Merchants! Do tag me in your posts or stories in case you end up trying any of these recommendations! Would love to see you enjoy them much as we did!

That’s it for now! Do listen in on my new Rise Up with Janeena podcast episodes too for more uplifting conversations that aim to empower and inspire! They’re packed with lots of laughter and learnings too—the kind that remind us how life is always worth celebrating!

Until the next!

Janeena Chan in formal dress with flowers

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Janeena is best known as a professional multi-platform host, most remembered from Upfront at the UAAP which aired on ABS-CBN S+A, and Chinoy TV on ANC (ABS-CBN News Channel). Her shows and new media content continue to inspire the youth as she pursues her passions in a smart and playful way — with style, substance and heart. Catch her podcast, Rise Up with Janeena Chan on Spotify and Apple Podcast, and follow her online via @janeenachan.
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