With both Hispanic and Chinese influences, the beautiful Philippines offer as many delicious dishes as it does islands. Sweet, sour and salty: all these flavours are boldly infused together in Filipino cuisine, creating some of the most powerful and unforgettable tastes in Asia.
Counterpoint, the unity of sweet and salty tastes, is the perfect approach towards a fulfilling Filipino experience. After meandering through glorious eighteenth-century churches inspired by the Spanish, and stunning, Malay-and-Indonesian inspired mosques, enjoy today’s amazing array of dishes borne out of these contrasting outside influences. Infusions of old and new can even be seen in the Filipino eating style: while many Filipino city dwellers use the standard fork and knife, a venture out of the main cities and you may witness farmers and villagers eating with their hands, kamayan style.
However you choose to eat it, the Philippines’ national dish, the fantastic adobo (pork and/or chicken stewed in a vinegar/herb-infused sauce), is best enjoyed with a glass of tuba, or coconut wine: a memorable meal for every traveller. Seafood lovers will be in seventh heaven when they visit this country, with irresistible dishes such as palasang pinoy (sweet and spicy crab) or seafood kare-kare (crabs, mussels and shrimps in thick peanut gravy). If you prefer something sweeter, do not fear: the light and crunchy puto seco (Filipino cookie) may just become your new favourite treat. Where best to enjoy these delicacies, along with some pulutan (finger food), than relaxing along the gorgeous Seven Lakes of San Paolo?
Be inspired by the Filipino attitude to cooking, and to life in general: be brave, be bold, and be unique. Visit the Philippines with an open mind, and leave with both a full stomach, and a full heart.