Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Gloria Maris Restaurant (Araneta branch)

I’m not a fan of Chinese food. But since my husband loves it, an encounter with it is inevitable. Besides, the Chinese cuisine is part of our culture... and there are some Chinese food that I like…the lemon chicken… um…and what else? Spring rolls I think… anyway, this is good food whatever my preference would be, so now, I’ll tell you an encounter with this cuisine, yet again.

After strolling along Gateway, it was merienda time and my husband had a hankering for his beloved mami. I swear he could be Chinese in his past life, or maybe Japanese or Korean… he just loves anything with noodles or anything oriental. And since it’s my turn to give in to the restaurant of choice, we entered Gloria Maris.

When one mentions Gloria Maris, a fancy Chinese restaurant usually comes to mind. Well, it seems that I’m not totally off-course. When I entered the restaurant, I immediately noticed the lighted and elaborate chandeliers illuminating the apple green palette walls. Lighted chandeliers at four’o clock in the afternoon, I thought, it sure is not a hole-in-the wall restaurant.

And as my husband excitedly pointed his beloved mami to the waiter from the menu, I stiffly mentioned my dimsum selection order to him. Hey, I can eat siomai. This wouldn’t be so bad. Then as I was aimlessly looking at the other food choices, something caught my eye. Taro puff! I love taro puff like a long lost love. Okay, so now I can add another one in my miniscule list of favorite Chinese food. And this one tops the list.

When the order arrived, it was like four people ordered. Aside from my husband’s big bowl of mami , the dimsum selection comprised of ten pieces of dimsum, two pieces for each type. The photograph above had nine pieces, I already have eaten one before I took the picture, sorry.
Anyway, the selection had two pieces of the following: steamed shrimp dumpling, steamed pork dumpling, fried pork dumpling, fried pork dumpling wrapped in nori sheet and topped with fish roe and fried spring roll of ubod. I liked the steamed shrimp dumpling the best with its delicate flavor and texture. The fried dumpling in nori sheet was also something different, an unexpected combination of two different ingredients from two different cuisines, the Chinese dumpling and the Japanese nori.

Then it arrived. My beloved taro puff. I tasted the taro puff in one Chinese restaurant before, Luk Yuen. I’m not sure what it really is but from what I can derive from its name, it is made of fried taro or gabi. And when I first laid eyes on it, I was hesitant because it looked weird. Outside it looked like a crunchy coconut husk. But since I was willing to try anything different, I tasted it.
And I was hooked. Like the taro puff I tasted before, the Gloria Maris taro puff looked almost the same. And after biting into its crunchy surface, you can taste the buttery filling oozing from the inside. The rough-like exterior may look formidable but it’s actually very fine and breaks easily. What I love about the taro puff is how different it is from what you originally perceive it to be, hard and weird. And if you’re willing to get to know it, how soft and delicious it really is. It is so misunderstood.

Even if I’m not a fan of Chinese food, I can say that there are some Chinese dishes I would be willing to come back for in any good Chinese restaurant like Gloria Maris. Besides, I’m sure one way or another, my husband will troop to one again and I will have to smile and choose from my list again. Who knows, I might add more.

1 comment:

  1. I miss Gloria Maris... :) Reading this makes me feel like I'm still there...Yum!