Kamayan, or eating with your hands while food is spread on banana leaves, has become increasingly popular in Filipino restaurants around the Greater Vancouver area.
Ask a Filipino what food on a stick means to him. Surely not kebabs but rather pork barbecue, banana-cue, kamote-cue, almost anything grilled like pusit (dried squid), hotdogs and even corn on the cob. Whether sweet like karyoka (sticky rice balls) or savoury like kwekwek (quail eggs in batter), the list of Filipino street food on a stick is endless.
2016 was an exciting year for the Philippine culinary scene on the Canadian stage when two Canadian Filipinos ended up in the final three of that year’s MasterChef Canada. One of them, Matthew Astorga, charmed audiences and judges alike with not only his culinary skills but also with his disarming smile and signature fedora hat.
Sisig is everything that Winnipeg chef Allan Pineda is – innovative, rebellious and totally unapologetic. And, of course, both are as Filipino as pulutan, a term for which there’s hardly any direct English translation(pulutan is an appetizer or snack that go well with alcoholic drinks, one example of which is the sisig).
Luming was known as the “Pride of Pampanga” among Filipinos in Ottawa in the 1970s. She was well known for her extraordinary and uniquely creative Pampanga cuisine. The province itself is famous for its sophisticated and richly sauced meat fares and stuffed dishes like rellenong manok or bangus or pata (stuffed deboned whole chicken, milkfish or pork hocks), morcon (stuffed rolled beef) and embutido (pork sausage stuffed with hardboiled eggs and pepperoni).