What Is Filipino Food?

It is a question not easy to answer. Is it pork adobo, brown and rich, eaten with hot white rice? Is it siomai and siopao in the neighborhood merendero? Is it chicken relleno on a fiesta table, stuffed with olives and sausages? Is it sinigang na kanduli in a broth misty with miso? Is it a buko pie or a chicken salad? Is it all of the above?


Excerpted from LASA: A Guide to Dining in the Provinces (1990) by Doreen Fernandez and Edilberto Alegre.

What is Filipino Food?

It is a question not easy to answer. Is it pork adobo, brown and rich, eaten with hot white rice? Is it siomai and siopao in the neighborhood merendero? Is it chicken relleno on a fiesta table, stuffed with olives and sausages? Is it sinigang na kanduli in a broth misty with miso? Is it a buko pie or a chicken salad? Is it all of the above?

Continue reading “What Is Filipino Food?”


Popular Filipino Dishes

To help familiarize our website’s visitors with Filipino food in an easy way, we’ve drawn up a simple list of a few Philippine dishes and foodstuff commonly eaten in the Philippines. We’re still working on adding more pronunciation audio and photos. Remember to check back soon! 🙂

Chicken Adobo - Filipino Food

Adobo: pork or chicken marinated in soy sauce and vinegar

 
BALUT: Filipino duck egg

Balut: duck egg with a developed embryo

Continue reading “Popular Filipino Dishes”

The Best Filipino Cookbooks?

When pressed to define Filipino food in one word, we’re apt to say “fusion.” Philippine cuisine bears the influence of our neighbors in Asia and the Pacific, as well as our colonial rulers from far-off lands throughout history. Our dishes and snacks incorporate recipes, ingredients and cooking styles with roots in Malay, Chinese, and Iberian (Spanish & Portuguese) cultures, among many others. These rich layers of influence make our food somewhat unique.

But our cuisine doesn’t merely reflect foreign influence — it of course showcases our local values as well. The enduring appeal of Filipino dishes like adobo, sinigang, and kare-kare is proof that our meals are focused on the ulam being traditionally served at the center of a table in sizes to share. This social, family- oriented approach to meals is truly Filipino.

Explore and discover the true Filipino goodness of the cuisine we call our own. Recreate classic recipes at home and find ingredients to bring your meals to life. 🙂


Filipino cookbooks with recipes from the Philippine islands

Each region of the Philippines has its own distinct food culture, just like the regional differences so common in the United States. The Filipino Cookbook is a collection of 85 tried-and-tested recipes, including from Pampanga, the Visayas, and Mindanao — pinakbet (sauteed vegetables with shrimp paste), paella (rice and seafood medley), morcon (stuffed beef roll), pininyahang manok (pineappled chicken)…

Continue reading “The Best Filipino Cookbooks?”

Ingredients in Mang Tomas Sauce

Mang Tomas is the brand of an all-purpose sauce that Filipinos love to use with lechon. The original variant comes in a yellow-labeled bottle that contains 11.64 fluid ounces.

Many eaters often wonder what it’s made from. The crucial ingredient is liver!

Ingredients in Mang Tomas Sauce

Water, Sugar, Bread Crumbs, Vinegar, Salt, Liver, Spices, Pepper and Sodium Benzoate as a Preservative

Update: As of 2017, the ingredients list of the commercial Mang Tomas sauce being sold internationally no longer includes liver on the label. It is now as follows: Water, Sugar, Breadcrumbs, Iodized Salt, Modified Starch, Onion, Vinegar, Garlic, Palm Olein, Black Pepper, Chili, Sodium Benzoate, BHA and TBHQ Continue reading “Ingredients in Mang Tomas Sauce”

PULBURON

pulburon

 
Fondly known as “Filipino crack” to young FilAms, polvoron is a sweet molded treat whose basic ingredients are toasted flour, margarine or butter, sugar and powdered milk. Continue reading “PULBURON”

Filipino Food Bloggers

We have made every effort to remove from this list those bloggers who have received sponsorship from Ramar Foods, the American company that unethically appropriated the Magnolia brand from the Philippine corporation San Miguel. If we have overlooked a name, please let us know.

Filipino American food bloggers have received funding from Ramar Foods to create a “non-profit” movement, ostensibly to promote Filipino food… It is essentially a PR tactic to deflect attention from Ramar’s unethical piracy of prominent Philippine trademarks such as Magnolia and Pampanga’s Best.

Click here to check out the list of Filipino food bloggers!

Filipino Candy

The Filipino word for “candy” is kendi, from the English, but this usually refers to Western-style hard, semi-hard, and soft candies.

Branded candies that can be considered vintage or classic Filipino: Bobot Candy-Coated Peanuts, Candyman Kendimint, Jack n Jill X.O. Coffee Candies, Viva Caramel, Nuts Caramel, Lipps Strawberry, Starr Eucalyptus Menthol (the candy formerly known as Storck), Orange Swits, Peter’s Butter Ball, Mikmik, King’s Chocnut, Hany, Ricoa’s Curly Tops, Ricoa’s Flat Tops, Stay Fresh, Maxx Honey-mansi Menthol Candy, Potchi Strawberry Cream Gummies, Nips Candy-Coated Chocolate

Tropical or Southeast Asian flavors used for Filipino candy: ube (purple yam), langka (jackfruit), mangga (mango), kundol (wintermelon)

Candied Kundol
Candied Kundol

Aside from sugar-glazed pili nuts, here are examples of local Philippine sweets and their notable ingredients in parentheses: Yema (egg yolks), Bukayo (coconut), Pakumbo (coconut), Sampalok (tamarind)

The native Tagalog word minatamis refers to “sweetened” fruits, such as bananas or jackfruit stewed in sugar syrup.

Filipino Candy
Peanut Kisses & Peanut Fingers: Filipino Candy from Bohol

A few regions of the country are known for their particular confectioneries. Foremost among these is Bohol province. As soon as you mention Bohol to a Filipino, the first thing that pops to mind are the Chocolate Hills geographical formation, and not far behind are Peanut Kisses and perhaps their slightly lesser cousins, the Peanut Fingers.

Durian Candy of Davao
Lola Abon’s Original Durian Candy

The great Davao area on the large island of Mindanao in southern Philippines is famous for the wide variety of fruits that are mostly found only there. Among these fruits is the odoriferous durian.

Lola Abon’s is a brand that has national recognition. Her family and company have been making durian candies since the year 1950.

Lola Abon's Durian Candy Bar
Lola Abon’s Durian Candy Bar, a Davao Specialty

Continue reading “Filipino Candy”

TANGLAD

sometimes spelled tanlad

Tanglad (Tanlad)

tanglad
“Filipino lemongrass”

The scientific name of the plant called tanglad in the Philippies is Andropogon citratus.

It is called lemon grass or ginger grass in English.

Tanglad imparts flavor to Filipino dishes.