“Kumain ka pa, maraming pagkain diyan!” If you’re a person who gets full easily, you can’t survive the Filipino kainan. Eating here in the Philippines gets more fun if you’re invited to a Filipino party. A Filipino kainan survival tip: come to the party hungry. As a foreigner who’s been living here for years, I’ve seen a lot of these Filipino food habits and traditions. Here are some:
5. Eating food with your hands (kamayan style)
No spoon and fork at a Filipino party? No problem! Use your hands instead! Filipinos believe that using hands when eating makes the food more delicious. Not all Filipino parties use their hands in eating, but it’s more fun and very Pinoy. Master the art of eating kamayan style and you’ll find yourself doing it more! Admit it, there’s no better way to eat that delicious crab meat than with using both hands!
4. Sawsawan for everyone
If you find your ulam to be a bit bland or you just want more spice, or a more salty or sweet flavor in your food, sawsawan is here to save you. You get to customize your meal with the use of Filipino dipping sauces because of the mixture of flavors in there. Some Filipino dishes are even incomplete without its appropriate sawsawan. It’s just not right if it’s not there, right? Can you imagine Kare-Kare without bagoong? How about Nilaga and Bulalo without patis and kalamansi? Shout out to all the dipping sauces. You’re our hero.
3. Food combinations
Are you one of those who dip green mangoes in bagoong? Or maybe you’ve tried eating champurado with tuyo (Filipino dried fish)? These are just few examples of Filipino weird food combinations. If you find yourself eating sweet food and salty food together, or combining food that have different tastes, that’s it. You don’t know how, you don’t know why, but just like chemistry, when you mix them together, an explosion of flavors happen right in your mouth. Try this one and you’ll definitely enjoy it.
2. Buffet style
Keep in mind these two things when you go to a Filipino party: First, You are
allowed required to eat a lot. Food is usually served buffet style. There are different dishes, desserts, and drinks all placed on the table. You just need to grab a plate, and get whatever food you want all in one plate. All those sauces combining are no problem at all. If it still fits in your plate, put more food! You can even eat your dessert first; promise no one’s going to judge you! Because the first rule of Filipino dining is: THERE ARE NO RULES!
1. Boodle Fight!
This is the best Filipino dining experience. Boodle fight is a food sharing experience where a banana leaf is used as a plate. And what food goes on top of it? RICE. Lots and lots of rice! You can also put different ulam in there like red eggs or itlog na maalat, fried food, grilled food, sawsawan, seafood dish, or even seaweeds! This dining experience represents equality among people because they’re eating from the same plate. This is one of the things that you’ll enjoy here in the Philippines.
If you can’t get enough of this, watch the full video of my Top 5 Quirky Filipino Food Habits and Traditions:
Watch more of my Filipino food experiences. Follow the links below: