Last Saturday morning, I woke up early to catch Dr. Efren “Boy” Vazquez demo Cafe Juanita‘s traditional Christmas spreads at The Maya Kitchen. The delightfully gregarious Doc was wearing scrubs during the demo. Doc used to be a gynecologist at Makati Med but retired to focus on Cafe Juanita which celebrated its 23rd year. His restaurant is famous to foodies in Metro Manila and he added a new baby, a Japanese restaurant called Haru right beside Cafe Juanita in Kapitolyo, Pasig. I’ve tried Haru recently but decided not to write about it since it’s still in its soft opening phase.
There were food icons among the guests like Nora Daza, Norma Chikiamco, and Nancy Reyes-Lumen but the center of attention was Doc Vazquez and his engaging stories about his medical practice, his growing up years, and philosophies in life, woven throughout his cooking demo.
I will write Doc Vazquez’s recipes in a series of posts but for now I’ll just share with you what I learned from him.
- Always cook with love
- Don’t be afraid use your hands when mixing ingredients
- Always ask your inner child what he/she wants
- When plating, do not make it perfect because it will make people hesitant to eat the food you prepared
- It is okay to use betsin, chicken and pork cubes
- To know if beef and pork is done, stick a fork in the meat. The meat will fall without resistance if it’s done.
- He stays away from turbo broilers
Thanks to The Maya Kitchen for inviting me. I had a great and educational time!