On today’s show
Why am I so keen to learn about the history, traditions and culture that surround the food from my homeland? This episode, I share how I fell in love with Filipino food in four stages – and what drives my desire to explore the country’s foodways.
What prompted this episode?
For a really long time, I wondered about how to best convey the feelings I had toward food from the Philippines. Why did it matter so much that I felt an intense disconnect between how the world and I perceived the food traditions I grew up with? Why did I want to visit someplace where my parents worried for my safety, to visit farms where chocolate and cacao trees grew? Why did I spend my hard-earned money working overnights at a hotel, on books about food history and culture?
In the end – it’s because I needed to write and speak in my own voice, in a way that felt truly my own. It took some getting used to.
If you think a little deeper about Filipino food, emerge with a desire to read books by Doreen Fernandez, or just crave a sliver of lechon with golden skin that crackles after listening – your own journey into exploring Filipino kitchens is well on its way.
01:10 Step 1: Uncover the romance
03:30 Excerpt from “Kinilaw Artistry In Old Sagay” by Doreen Fernandez
08:50 Step 2: Give into jealousy (the good kind)
12:40 Step 3: Putting yourself out there
13:50 Eating durian
15:40 Eating pako (fiddlehead ferns)
16:30 A visit to a monastery
17:45 A bevvy of bagoong (fermented shrimp/fish) at a market in Davao
18:40 Eating lato (“sea grapes”)
19:50 Climbing a mountain
20:20 Step 4: Indulge in your desires
22:20 “Philippine cuisine began as other cuisines do”