Healthy Monsters

I’m not much of a cook, mainly because I’m lazy, so I’m always looking for prepared meals. It broke my heart when Almost Gourmet stopped offering individual meal packs for pickup or delivery because it meant I was out of an option for healthful ready-to-eat meals.

But just recently, I stumbled upon Healthy Monsters (@healthymonstersph) on Instagram. They deliver fresh salads with homemade dressing in jars, and you have to order a minimum of six 720 ml jars at P190 each. Right now, four salads are available: Asian, Fiesta, Walnut, and Chia. They deliver only to Mandaluyong, Makati, Ortigas, San Juan, Pasig, and the Fort. Being from Quezon City, I naturally wondered how I could have some of these salads and was able to make an appointment to pick up them up in Greenhills.

And here are two of the salads!

Healthy Monsters salads

Healthy Monsters salads

I’ve only had the Walnut Salad so far, and I have to say that it’s pretty darn delicious–nice rich dressing, plenty of greens, a hearty amount of nuts, and a sprinkling of cheese. Given that first taste, I’m already confident that the others are great, too. I’ll definitely be ordering again. The distance is a bit of a drive, so next time I order, I’ll make sure to pick the salads up on a day when I’ll be in the area.

Last night’s dinner: pasta salad and sort-of French onion toast

I will be the first to say that there’s really nothing special about the pasta salad I made. It just contained a load of lettuce, arugula, a mixture of farfalle and whole wheat penne, tomatoes, olive oil, cheese, and blue cheese dressing. Pretty good stuff, and I look forward to trying out different pasta salad recipes soon.

Pasta salad

The toast that accompanied the salad was inspired by the French Onion Grilled Cheese Sandwich by Portuguese Girl Cooks.

French onion toast

I sliced up a few pieces of whole wheat baguette and dabbed on some butter. I then cut up a small red onion, heated butter in a pan, tossed the onion in, then liberally doused it with red wine and beef broth. After cooking, I spooned the onion onto the bread and topped it with gruyere. The whole thing was toasted in the oven toaster for a few minutes, and out came some really pretty tasty toast.

A quick trip to Pancake House

I think I was in fifth grade when I first started eating in Pancake House along Quezon Avenue. That was in the early 90s. Since I was young, I always made it a habit to sample the spaghetti served by various restaurants, and I particularly liked Pancake House’s. It was nice and meaty and the garlic bread wasn’t bad either.

Today, Pancake House remains to be one of the restaurants I go to regularly, even if they’ve gone completely corporate and are part of the Pancake House Group. Miraculously, the taste of my old favorites have stayed the same. Their menu’s much more varied nowadays, and while I still love their spaghetti, it’s their grilled cheese sandwich that I order when I don’t feel like having anything fancy.

Grilled Cheese sandwich from Pancake House

Yep, this has that same familiar taste, and always with the lump of potato salad (which as you can see, I’ve sprinkled a lot of pepper on), three pineapple tidbits, and three small pickle slices. I tend to order this sandwich on wheat bread and without mayonnaise. This was lunch for today, along with one of the restaurant’s newer offerings, Mediterranean Pasta Salad, which consists of rotini pasta with a special dressing, bacon bits, olives, waffle croutons, lettuce, and topped with alfalfa. I was too hungry to take a photo of that, so I’ll just add the pic here the next time I have it, which is most likely soon. The salad is a nice meal in itself, hardly a starter, and the flavor’s pretty mild, without an overwhelming amount of dressing.

To my surprise, I wasn’t able to finish my meal, but hey, the leftovers made for a nice afternoon snack anyway.