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Filipino Food


A Traditional Pinoy Noche Buena

Savor these wonderful dishes of the past, cooked and served the old-fashioned way. They may take some time, but they're well worth the wait. Fresh Kangkong Salad with Caramelized Walnuts and Walnut Vinaigrette, Tita Moning's Paella Valenciana, Bread and Butter Pudding, Caramelized Bananas with Vermouth, Roast Pork, Candied Kamote, Chicken Relleno, and Creamed Spinach.


Malagkit is the Tagalog word for glutinous rice. It is boiled, steamed, pounded, ground, puffed and roasted to produce a thousand and one sticky and sweet delicacies the Orient is known for.

In the Philippines, glutinous rice is grown mostly in Central Luzon and Southern Tagalog. In public markets, one can find two varieties of malagkit. The first class or "sweet" variety, which has a rounded and ivory white grain and the regular or cheaper one with a longish and almost translucent grain. moreĀ»


The coconut after all plays such an important role in out third world islands. We Filipinos love to maximize. The coconut tree (buko in Filipino) is one of those we exploit to the fullest. All parts of the noble coconut tree is used one way or another. Let's dissect our coconut tree and find out how Filipinos creatively use this plant. moreĀ»

The coconut after all plays such an important role in out third world islands. We Filipinos love to maximize. The coconut tree (buko in Filipino) is one of those we exploit to the fullest. All parts of the noble coconut tree is used one way or another. Let's dissect our coconut tree and find out how Filipinos creatively use this plant.

The Leaves

Sawali or dried coconut palms make up for fine walling material in the construction of the famed bahay kubo. This special, watertight makeshift of coconut fronds can shield you from direct sunlight as well as protect you from the buffeting rainshowers. Banig Interwoven coconut leaves are sometimes dyed into various colors and deftly handwoven to produce a sleeping mat. Walis tingting the rib of each coconut leaf which keeps it upright can be removed one by one and bundled into a broomstick. The native walis tingting is a common household cleaning implement. Baskets dried coco leaves can also be woven into fine baskets. There are many types of baskets made of coco leaves, which are products of Pinoy ingenuity.

The Fruit

Fresh Coco Juice Drink - Nothing beats the Filipino experience of sipping coco juice directly from the young nut. Any buko vendor can give you this exotic treat. This is done by slicing off the musky part of the coconut until the soft white kernel appears. A hole is then bored through the kernel just enough for a straw to be inserted.

Commercial Buko Juice Drink - Some enterprising Pinoys have learned about the technology of packing the coco juice into commercial plastic cups. The only trouble is, some additives, like food preservatives are added, which end to dilute the original taste of this native Pinoy delicacy

The Buko Cream (Gata) - The buko cream is produced by splitting the nut open, grating the coco meat off the nut by the use of a native coco grater (kudkuran) and the white strips are gathered into a bowl and saturated with a cup of boiling water. The moist coco is then squeezed through a drainer and the resulting white cream (gata) is produced. The gata is a fine flavoring agent for fish, meat, vegetables and fruits which, when boiled with coco cream eventually produces a favorite Pinoy culinary variable called ginataan. Chicken when simmered in coco cream and dashed with curry powder produces "chicken curry".

Coco Oil (Langis ng Niyog) - The coco oil, which is produced from coconut meat, can also serve as cooking oil in any contingency. In rural areas, the coco oil is commonly relied upon for all their frying needs. The Coco Oil is also an efficacious healing aid for the native "hilot" who uses it when treating body sprains or dislocated bones.

Coconut Husks (Bunot) - You are probably familiar with the native coconut husk, the Pinoy version of a floor polisher. The coconut this time, is split into two, right through the core. And after the meat is removed and the split nut is dried, a coconut husk is then produced.

Vinegar (Suka) - Vinegar is produced by fermenting the sap of the coco palm flower in a jug container. This process is called natural fermentation. After 2-3 weeks, the fermentation is filtered to remove unwanted sediments. Next, it is pasteurized to remove microorganism. Finally it is bottled and packed.

Coco Jam (Matamis na Bao) - The process of making coco jam is quite simple, it is a mixture of coco cream (gata) and native brown sugar. The mixture is continuously stirred in a frying pan until it turns sticky to produce coco jam. This is one spread Filipino children love to fingerlick. The coco jam is also good for sandwich snacks.

Macapuno - To produce the macapuno, the soft kernel of a young coconut is first grated into strips. It is then mixed with white sugar and a small amount of water. The concoction is allowed to simmer in a pan until it turns into syrup and tasted for quality. When sufficiently cooled, it is then bottled into a delicious, and syrupy sweet-tasting macapuno.

Bukayo - An after-dinner sugarfix Filipino children love. It is made by simmering coco meat strips in water and then mixed with white or brown sugar (which explains the white or brown color) resulting into a sweet tasting diabetes-triggering delight.

Tuba / Lambanog - The tuba or lambanog is a potent, locally made brew produced from the sap of the coconut palm flower. When pricked at the base, the dripping sauce is siphoned off into a container and allowed to drip overnight. The accumulated sap is then gathered the following morning. The resulting liquid is then boiled in an aluminum pot and the resulting steam becomes the lethal lambanog.

The Pith (Ubod)

When a coconut tree is cut, the base of the upper growth is harvested. At its core lies the pith or ubod (the heart of the coconut tree). The ubod is about the size of a child's head with an elongated part (actually, a leaf about to grow), which is relatively soft and whitish in color. The ubod is sliced into short strips and stewed in a pan with salt and seasoning. When soft and edible, you can roll it up in regular amounts using rice flour and eggroll wrapper to produce the native lumpiang ubod.

The Trunk

The coconut trunk is a good source for a type of building material called coco lumber. Coco lumber is obtained by sawing off the bark of the trunk using a power saw. Usually, the manner of sawing off the bark should produce a rectangular timber output. This is then sawed into various sizes much like lumber in any hardware.

The Roots

Filipinos will not just dispense with the roots either. When the roots of a recently cut tree appear to have decomposed, Pinoys would dig them up and utilize then as firewood. Thus, the uncanny ability of the Pinoy to maximize the native coconut tree, clearly demonstrates his unique resourcefulness and incomparable ingenuity about things, which are available and abundant. Compared with our Asian neighbors similarly endowed with this plant, the Filipino can certainly hold his own or even surpass, the many ways our neighbors could go about, utilizing this ubiquitous tropical plant, which is God-given resource.

Credit: www.filipinoheritage.com


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