Unlike other Asian culture who have a specific taste associated with their culture, it is hard to pinpoint the cuisine of Philippine. This is because their food culture is pretty unique in the world as they have a very specific taste, particular ritual and behavior surrounding dining experience, and food habits. They usually eat rice, vegetables, and meat – they tend to eat meat all the time as they love it. Let us have a look at 7 food habits of Filipinos based on a research done by Savingmart.ph.
1. Rice Every Time, Any Time
Rice is a staple for every meal of the Filipinos. They eat rice in seven different forms and maybe more: cooked rice – usually called kanin, palay – the unmilled rice, sinangag – fried rice that can be topped with your choice of meat and veggies, tutong – a special type of burned rice, bigas – milled rice, lugaw – rice porridge mostly consumed during breakfast and snacks, and bahaw –left-over rice. Rice is also used in the preparation of wines and desserts. Not that they do not enjoy eating burgers, pizzas, and sandwiches, but without rice, their meal is just incomplete.
2. More the Number of Meals, Better It Is
Filipinos are foodies – they love food. They are naturally sociable and hospitable, and food is the main affair of their social life. They usually wake up early, and tend to eat three meals a day. Rice gets digested easily, so they feel hungry soon which is why they have 2 snacks in between the 3-meal routine. Some of the Filipinos, especially the country fellows, will eat a second breakfast at around 10 o’clock, which is known as Segundo almuerzo and also a mid-afternoon snack called merienda.
3. Pair It Up
Filipinos love to pair their main course with something extra and different to counteract favors, such as cured beef with pickled fruit, the salty tapa with fried egg, etc. They usually prepare multiple dishes during breakfast or lunch or dinner. Even when they go out to eat in a restaurant, they order a number of dishes, which may surprise you. But according to them, serving or ordering one dish is considered as too frugal.
4. Forks and Spoons over Knives
While the rural folks eat their food using hands, the city folks have a habit of eating food using a fork paired with a spoon. They do not need knives, unlike the western table manner. The westerners prefer giant slabs of meat where they need knives, but south-east Asian cuisine use bite-sized meat, which are minced, chopped, or ground, so they generally do not need knives. Moreover, their food is slightly overcooked, boiled, making the meat tender and the main dish soupy, which is easily eaten by a spoon and a fork.
5. Sawsawan Is a Must
Just like the Italians have their white and red sauce, Thais have their chili paste, Indians have their mustard sauce, Filipinos have their sawsawan. Sawsawan is a paste of soybean sauce called as toyo, fish sauce regionally known as patis, and fish or shrimp paste called bagoong, and vinegar called as suka. Sawsawan brings a little sour taste, which can also be enhanced by adding onion and garlic to the sauce.
6. Must Pray Before Eating
Filipinos have a habit of praying before they eat their meals. This is how they show respect for the food and this is their particular way of being thankful to the blessings received by God. This is not a hard and fast rule, but most of them either pray or make a sign of cross with their hands bowing their heads down before they start eating.
7. Do Not Wait on Food
When the food is ready on the table, you should never wait to start. Filipinos being real food lovers do not like to wait when the food is served. They like to eat it hot. Even if you start getting busy with your phones on the food table, it is considered unacceptable. They love to gorge on the food without any disturbances.
8. Order Food Online:
Many people like to order food online when in hurry. They tend to look for food discount vouchers to get best deal. Rice and fish items are always among their favorite here also. Foodpanda is the most used service for ordering food online in Philippines.
Gorge on Some Filipino Cuisines Now!
As now you are well aware of the food habits of Philippines, you can easily be a part of a Filipino family or friendly dinner. Inviting to food is a common gesture among the Filipinos, even there is no intention of offering food. It is wise to say that you are full unless you are asked twice, then you can give in, and enjoy the popular dishes of Philippines, such as pinakbet, sinigang, adobo, and halo-halo.