15 All-time Popular Filipino Treats During the Holidays
The Christmas holidays brings out the gift-giving spirit in everyone. Philippine Christmas is know as the longest celebration in the world. it actually starts in September and only ends in the first week of January.
Filipinos eagerly await another excuse to lay out the best Christmas dishes and treats during celebrations. Even Filipinos abroad long for the taste of these popular food fares that often hog the centerpiece in noche buena feasts everywhere.
Since it is the season to be jolly again, what better way to celebrate the spirit of the season with the family than sharing these popular Filipino dishes in any party.
1. Fried chicken
Filipinos love their chicken either fried, grilled or as the popular dish called 'adobo'. Fried chicken wins overall as the perennial favorite from ages 1 and up. Children and those child at heart love it.
Fried chicken becomes a great addition to the Christmas or New Year's eve dinner for a lot of reasons. One, it is widely available and easy to prepare. If one is too rushed to prepare it, one can find it everywhere in the Philippines from the fastfood restos to the side streets. Second, one can consume it simply with the hands so less dishes to wash.
For those who opt to stay clear of cholesterol-filled pork dishes, this Filipino-style Fried chicken is a great alternative.
2. Grilled tuna jaw
For the health-conscious and want to steer clear of fatty treats during the holidays, fish is always a good choice. The grilled tuna jaw is one alternative dish that would be a great addition to a dinner during the holiday festivities. Celebrate the holidays with a Tuna jaw grilled to perfection. Tuna jaw is great with rice and as 'pulutan' to beer beverage. It is also best served hot off-the-grill.
3. Kare kare
Kare-kare is known to originate from the Pampanga province, which is located in the central part of the Philippines. It is a a meat with vegetable dish made creamy by using peanut butter to give it a very distinct and sweet flavor. It is best consumed with steaming rice.
4. Crispy pata
As the name obviously suggests, Crispy Pata is a dish consisting of it is deeply-fried pork meat. The ‘pata’ is one of the choicest or meatiest part of the animal. Most Filipinos love this dish and consider it a treat. The Crispy Pata is best consumed with rice and dipped in a savory sauce. It also goes well with alcoholic beverages.
It might not be the healthiest choice due to its high caloric content and animal fat but if taken once a year, then it will be okay.This is not for those prone to hypertension or those having heart problems as this dish is sinfully cholesterol-laden.
Pork bbq is not only perfect for beach outings, Filipinos also serve these during the holidays feast. Pork bbq is skewered pork meat marinated with a special bbq sauce. Best served off the grill with vinegar mix.
6. Pancit Malabon
Pancit Malabon is a complete dish made of special white noodles topped with a mix of boiled egg, shrimp, bits of chicharon (pork skin bits) and a yellow-colored special sauce. This dish is consumed on its own and is perfect for get-together and parties.
7. Grilled chicken
Lechon manok is another name for roasted or grilled chicken. It is also very popular dish during the Christmas festivities in the Philippines. It is an all-time favorite because it is very handy and easily available in many street sellers.
8. Lechon Kawali
Lechon Kawali is another pork dish popular among Filipinos especially during the Christmas season. It is mainly deep-fried and best served on its own or with rice.
This complete main dish is originally from the Spain but Filipinos gave it a twist of their own to adapt to local tastes. There are a number of variations on this dish but mainly it consist of long-grained rice, shrimps, peas, oyster, and many other ingredients. Best consumed on its own.
10. Leche flan
The leche flan is an all-time favorite Christmas fare. It is actually like a steamed custard cake made from egg yolks, milk, and sugar. Leche flan is best enjoyed as a snack on its own or as toppings to other desserts like the halo-halo or ice cream.
Bibingka is a native Filipino dessert also referred to locally as 'kakanin'. It is made from ground glutinous rice, coconut milk, sugar ans sometimes with cheese, salted egg and butter topping. It goes perfectly well with coffee or tea.
Sapin-sapin is another popular Christmas fare for the holiday festivities. It is a glutinous rice-based dessert mixed with coco milk, sugar and other ingredients. The colorful wheel of the Sapin-sapin is in itself a sight to behold.
Ensaymada is soft bread topped with margarine, cheese and sugar sprinkles. It is perfect to consume on its own or with your favorite coffee.
14. Halo halo
Halo-halo is a cool treat that can be perfect for summer but is also served all year round in local restos. Halo-halo is alsop perfect as a snack during the holiday season. It is a snack consisting of sweetened beans, ube halea, sweet peas, milk and shaved ice. It is best consumed after mixing all the ingredients together.
15. Buko Pandan
Buko pandan is another cool dessert which is very popular next to the halo-halo. It is a mix of 'buko' (young coconut) strips, milk, sugar, ‘pinipig’ rice, jelly and pandan essence. There are many variations to this treat.
© 2010 Shan Moore