Last week, I took a pause with my #weeklyblogchallenge to write about my sidetrip to Northern Blossoms Flower Farm in Benguet. Now, I’m back to start the challenge again. My topic for this blog post? Filipino exotic food! 😊 Game.
So, let’s talk about food. Filipinos love to eat. In every occasion, there will always be food. And there’s always an occasion to celebrate. But what about the weirdest, scariest and less-appetizing food? Would you dare to try?
Foodtrip? Yes, it’s more fun in the Philippines.
I’m sure in every country, there is a unique or exotic food/cuisine that is ultimately their own. Philippines is sure to have something to offer to you, making your tastebuds wild, and your appetite to go crazy — either you’ll want to eat it or you won’t. So I dare you. Try these food on the list when you travel the Philippines. It is worth the experience. But prepare your stomach and brace for impact.
Let’s start with the basic, most common streetfood, Isaw-isaw. If you’re fond of BBQ, then try this one for sure. It is made from barbequed pig or chicken’s intestines. Yes, revolting, but don’t worry, it is cleaned inside-out. 😁
Together with Isaw-isaw, you will see a bunch of black square-shaped grilled something — that is Betamax! Chicken’s blood.
And because we always think that no part of a chicken goes to waste, we also love to eat Adidas, or chiken’s feet. You might guess now why they call it Adidas. It may sound gross but of course, we clean our food well. 😄 Adobong Adidas (adobo is meat or vegetables cooked with soy sauce, vinegar, and garlic) is a must try.
Now this famous streetfood is always an ultimate scare for foreigners when they visit the Philippines. It looked just like a simple duck egg, but many are shocked, some might even fainted when they realized they’re eating an 18-day old fertilized duck egg. Poor thing yes. Not every Filipino love this as well, but I must tell you, it is worth a try. I love Balut personally. So for ultimate scare, try eating this in broad daylight. Haha!
Then, there is this another hall famer, Tamilok (woodworm/shipworm). This is a delicacy in Palawan and on top of the ‘must-try-when-in-Palawan’. It is best served ‘kinilaw’ or raw, deep in vinegar with peppers and onions.
Still with me? Now, we’re getting a little bit ickier. Next on the list, Uok. This beetle larvae is commonly eaten in Angono, Rizal, served in local restaurants. This comes from dead coconut logs and is cooked in adobo style. And yes, we loved everything in Adobo.
7. Sea Urchin
I don’t know if this is quite unusual to eat but I included it in the list anyway. When I went to Camiguin, we ate this sea urchin raw and freshly pulled out from the sea! Our boatman gave us one each, cracked them open, put some vinegar and salt water and tada! It’s not bad, actually, it tastes like oysters.
8. Soup No. 5
Now this is something I cannot imagine either. I haven’t tried yet this one but I will once I have the chance — Soup No. 5! Intrigued as to what it is? You’ll be shocked. It is a soup made with cow’s testes or penis. Oops, sorry for the word but that’s what it really is. They, especially the men, believe this food have aphrodisiac properties. As to how it got its name? Some says, they randomly pick Soup Number Five to list it after the four known soup on the menu — chicken, pork, beef and seafood. Well, maybe they just want to keep it mysterious.
Now, let’s go to Cebu to eat this exotic dish loved by Cebuanos/Cebuanas. Tuslob-buwa literally means ‘dipping into bubbles’ and the main ingredient is a pig’s brain sautéed with onion, garlic and some flavors. This is a perfect dip for puso (rice wrapped in weaved palm leaves) and is a common streetfood in Cebu.
Last on my list, Kamaru or rice field crickets! A delicacy in Pampanga where tourists visit just to taste this bizarre exotic food. It is often cooked in Adobo (I told you we love Adobo) or sautéed, served in local restaurants in the province.
You Want More? Read on.
I hope that you handle that pretty well. Let me just give you some bonus. Apart from the food mentioned above, it’s common also to eat in the Philippines the following:
Well this is something sweet, not gross or anything. Every morning, a taho vendor would wake us, shouting “Tahooooo! Tahooooo!” We would then run fast to get our own cups and greet the taho vendor with a smile, waiting in line to get our turn served. Taho is a sweet snack/breakfast made with soft tofu, arnibal (caramelized brown sugar) and sago (something like tapioca but is not tapioca 😁). In Baguio, you can have it strawberry flavored. This is often served hot and is very common all over the country.
I never thought crocodile tastes like chicken. In Puerto Prinsesa, Palawan, this sizzling dish is popular. This can go hand in hand with tamilok and is known to be a natural form of viagra!
When I was young, my cousins would hunt frogs in the field, looking for that palakang-bukid (field frogs). I remembered having doubts tasting it the first time because I’m so afraid of frogs. Now, they should be afraid of me because I’m not afraid to eat them anymore. Lol. Adobo or fried, it doesn’t matter, I’m going to eat them!
And last on my revolting list, I also tried eating snake! That was when I was younger, whenever our neighbor would catch a snake, he would cook it. They taste like chicken as well, but you can feel a hot sensation after you chew them down. Well I guess, reptiles are hot. 😄 When I got older, I got fond of snakes, I’m the only one in the family who’s not afraid to touch and stroke a python we just caught in our backyard (there is a stream and bamboos in our backyard, so many snakes live there many years ago 😊). I haven’t eaten snakes since then.
So that ends my list for unique and unusual food in the country, some I tried and even loved. This is my official entry for my #weeklyblogchallenge, week 2. Excited for the next weeks ahead. 😊
She’s a traveler, a frustrated accountant. An artist and a writer at heart. Unpredictable and spontaneous. A little weird and a little mysterious. So chase her and run with her. You’ll never get bored and you’ll never regret it.