Words by Frances Leones
Photos by Frances Leones and Nadine Bufi
Pandesal — the quintessential Pinoy bread. It’s perfect for when you’re in a rush to get to school or work and can’t sit down long enough to eat a full breakfast meal, as an inexpensive snack, or, in the case of N.V.M. Gonzalez’s short story, The Bread of Salt, as a literary symbol or plot device. However you look at it, pandesal is a Filipino staple that we love to make sandwiches with in place of the typical sliced white bread.
So I asked members of our WIM Facebook community what fillings they like to put in their pandesal and what they like to pair it with, and some of their answers range from traditional to creative to crazy. But one thing’s for sure—they’re all pretty delicious.
12. Pandesal + Condensed Milk
So simple yet so sinfully sweet.
11. Pandesal + Chocolate Drink Powder
Chocolatey and will give you a boost of energy—ideal if you don’t feel like drinking your chocolate.
10. Pandesal + Nutella + Banana
My personal combo for when I want something indulgent but also healthy…but mostly indulgent because, well, Nutella.
9. Pandesal + Butter + Sugar. Toasted!
Spread butter and sugar on the pandesal before toasting it. Perfection! You can even add cheese, and you’ll have your own version of an ensaymada.
8. Pandesal + Peanut Butter + Cheese
A surprising combo that marries sweet and smooth peanut butter and savory cheese.
7. Pandesal + Ice Cream
The classic. An ice cream sandwich! 😀
6. Pandesal + Pancit Canton
An oldie but a goodie.
5. Pandesal + Fried Rice
Because carbs are life.
4. Pandesal Dunked in Soda
Move over, coffee and hot choco. The pandesal has found a new drink partner to be dunked in.
3. Pandesal + Spanish Sardines
Great for merienda. Add an egg if you’re craving a breakfast sandwich.
2. Pandesal + Liver Spread + Ketchup
It’s like eating a lighter version of a hamburger. The liver spread gives you the meaty taste of a burger patty without the greasiness, and the ketchup gives you the tomato tang that you get in a hamburger.
1. Pandesal + Cheese Spread + Ketchup
It’s like a homemade version of your favorite fast food cheeseburger!
And there’s so much more that you can fill and pair with your pandesal. It’s such a versatile bread that’s distinctly Pinoy and that you can turn into something amazing with just a few ingredients you can find around in your kitchen. Some combos might be way out there, but what matters is that it’s your combo and you like the flavors it brings.
How about you? How do you like your pandesal?