24 Jan2009

An Office Lunch…

by Marketman


There isn’t a month of the year that goes by that we don’t have an excuse to do a nice lunch at the office. Someone’s birthday, celebrating the closing of a tough deal, managing a lunch for 50 people in the backyard, playing host to a celebrity chef, etc. While I used to take the office crew to lunch at local restaurants every so often, lately, we have opted to prepare the lunch ourselves. Everyone’s confidence has risen dramatically since we figured out a decent lechon recipe, and with a huge grill at our disposal, we have experimented further… usually resulting in hearty lunches, that frankly, cost a lot less than a mediocre restaurant meal. These events are also good opportunities to experiment, and to teach interested crew members how to cook a new dish…


At this crew lunch, we decided to try and grill three native chickens over hot coals. We bought the native chickens at the market, where they often sell them still alive, and had them cleaned and de-feathered. Native chickens generally have tougher meat, but possess a more flavor than commercially raised chickens. Perhaps they are best showcased in soup or slow cooked stews, but we were curious to try them roasted. We just stuffed the cavities of the chickens with lemongrass from the garden, salt, pepper, lemon juice, a touch of hot pepper and slathered the outside of the birds with olive oil and a touch of soy sauce. Once they were cooked, visions of their flying through the jet engines of a 747 flashed through my mind, but the taste and flavor were excellent. These were not your supermarket rotisserie chickens.


The crew also managed to score some small alimango at the market and they asked me if I would teach them how to make my chili crab recipe, featured several times before on this blog. We made a large kawali’s worth of chili crabs over a hot charcoal flame and the combination of roasted chicken and chili crabs was a huge hit. We paired this with an eggplant and tomato salad and had a terrific lunch at the office…



  1. corrine says:

    I’m sure your crew are always eagerly awaiting the next bday celeb or any occasion to celebrate. What a lucky bunch! I’ve tried your chili crab recipe and it’s super delicious!

    Jan 24, 2009 | 3:56 pm


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  3. marissewalangkaparis says:

    Wow!! Wish I was part of your office crew!! Yummy looking chili crabs…looks so delish…my fave…crabs!!

    Jan 24, 2009 | 3:56 pm

  4. chek says:

    Talk about office lunch! And all we have here are potlucks brought in cold in the morning and reheated in the microwave! Do you have an opening for a nurse? I am a good cook too!

    Jan 24, 2009 | 6:59 pm

  5. maria says:

    mm, i wanna apply in your company. I love the food feast for the crew.

    Jan 24, 2009 | 7:46 pm

  6. greasemonkey says:

    i’m glad you treat your staff so well. too many employers forget the basics of interpersonal relations in the hustle and bustle of the daily grind. =)

    Jan 24, 2009 | 9:44 pm

  7. chinachix says:

    this is an office party i’d look forward to attend for sure :)

    Jan 24, 2009 | 11:00 pm

  8. Jun says:

    Hi MM, What a great lunch indeed!!!! You may want to deep fried a plain pao or may be a pandesal to dip into those lovely sauce of your chili crab. I’m sure your crew will enjoy it.

    Jan 24, 2009 | 11:11 pm

  9. Gina says:

    MM, there’s a bahay kubo style restaurant near SM Cebu that serves primarily roasted native chicken. I love native chicken’s taste and leanness. The skin is so thin it’s almost translucent. They have an outlet in Manila somewhere in Quezon Avenue.

    Jan 24, 2009 | 11:35 pm

  10. chris says:

    wow mr.mm, you make a simple meal a feast!

    Jan 25, 2009 | 12:09 am

  11. Christina says:

    What a brilliant idea.

    At my job we used to do “Salad Days”, where everyone would bring in an item to toss into a salad. Then we’d set it up on a table, everyone would go around and take what they wanted in a salad.

    It was fun until the boss nixed it.

    Jan 25, 2009 | 12:11 am

  12. miss igorota says:

    i’m sure everyone in your office is a happy camper with power lunches like this!

    Jan 25, 2009 | 12:26 am

  13. millet says:

    seeing that grill made me think of lechon sisig again!

    Jan 25, 2009 | 8:55 am

  14. zena says:

    Yummy! Camaraderie among workmates is an important ingredient in success. What a flavorful way to develop it. Instead of the usual team-building activities, cooking together sounds good and tastes even better.

    Jan 25, 2009 | 9:42 am

  15. Jaja says:

    Wow sarap! Makes me want to eat crabs for dinner.

    Jan 25, 2009 | 12:52 pm

  16. betty q. says:

    Hey, MM…ako rin…sali ako!! Do you have any job opening in your company, MM?

    Jan 25, 2009 | 3:52 pm

  17. Divine G says:

    Having lunch with your people is a very good way of communication. You get all sort of news and information that you don’t normally get when you are in your office itself. I wish more employers are like you.

    Jan 25, 2009 | 10:28 pm

  18. ariel says:

    Where do I apply as the Information Technology director in your company. Thats a nice company lunch. Sarap.

    Jan 26, 2009 | 5:08 am

  19. navyGolf says:

    Fellowship through a hearty meal is the best way to celebrate big wins in the office. As what I normally tell my managers , which I picked up from my dad, ‘closest to the heart is the stomach’. Food is the best motivator.

    Jan 26, 2009 | 6:32 am

  20. smiles4angels says:

    Its a nice way to keep the morale of your company high. Listening to the news a while ago, how I wish there are more employers like you. :)

    Jan 26, 2009 | 7:16 pm

  21. mikel says:

    am in freezing france and am now hungry…pics look good enough to eat! am going out to get me some roast chicken before the boucherie runs out!

    Jan 26, 2009 | 10:55 pm

  22. Maki says:

    The alimangos looks nice.. really nice

    Jan 27, 2009 | 2:27 am

  23. Maria Clara says:

    Very good incentives to your employees and give them the feeling they are well appreciated. That’s a very good collective effort lunch!

    Jan 27, 2009 | 4:38 am

  24. Blaise says:

    Ay ang sarap… I want to dig into to that large kawali of chili alimango… Yum.

    Jan 27, 2009 | 3:37 pm

  25. mayums says:

    i miss eating alimango and all forms of shellfish after i was diagnosed with a thyroid problem. but the sauce of the chili alimango would do well with a steaming bowl of rice.

    and after reading the leche flan entries back-to-back-to-back, i want something savory now. i’m hungry!

    Jan 27, 2009 | 5:08 pm

  26. dhayL says:

    MM, can I work for you? :) I’m not a picky eater and definitely know how to eat “cowboy style”, hehehehe

    Jan 27, 2009 | 11:58 pm

  27. Good Life says:

    MM, can I also work for you,I can volunteer, just feed me.I am also a good cook.Dependable, honest and comes to work on time( American time )

    Jan 28, 2009 | 6:32 am

  28. auee says:

    wow… was googling for “cold office lunch” and found this “Manila” post… But this just made me salivate and rue the day the building manager here declared microwaves a no-no.

    Your lunch cookout sounds like a fantastic opportunity not just to fill-up but also get to know each other and chill.

    Mar 4, 2009 | 9:42 pm

  29. kittel says:

    I’d leave my job and become part of your crew in a heartbeat MM…

    Jun 5, 2010 | 10:57 pm


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