Friday, July 28, 2006

The 10 Weirdest Food

Caught this show on Discovery Travel and Living called World's Best. Last night's show was about the 10 weirdest food in the world. I saw a flash of our balut at the beginning, so I decided to watch just to see how high it ranked. The final list:

10. Pan-fried dung beetle (and we all know what they feast on...)*
9. Rattlesnake steak (deep-fried)
8. Chocolate-covered scorpion (from England, would you believe?)*
7. Frog's leg porridge (even plain fried frog's legs I can't eat--sidebar: When I was little, we were served frog's legs and my bros told me that if I ate them, I'd feel them jumping in my stomach! I've never been able to touch them since.)
6. Rotten shark (there's supposedly an overwhelming smell of urine)
5. Grasshoppers (they even come in spring rolls!)*
4. Rocky Mountain Oysters (a.k.a. bull's testicles)
3. Deer Penis Soup (some people eat this instead of taking the magic blue pill...)
2. Red and white worms (the kind you see in your tequila bottle)
1. Balut!

*There were experts (e.g., nutritionists) on the show who just praised all the insects because of their high protein, low fat content.

Yes, the mighty balut made it to number one. I've actually witnessed a foreigner cry as she tried to eat one. Maybe balut was just part of my experience growing up (used to eat it a lot when I was a kid, blissfully unaware of what it was), but I don't get what all the fuss is about--people eat fully grown ducks after all. Personally, deer penis soup would've been at the top of my list!

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Bohol Food Trip

On our trip to Bohol, H and I decided that money was going to be no object when it came to food. Well, not really, but it was a far cry from our chori-burger and Andok's diet in Boracay! So we checked our fitness conscience at the airport and rubbed our hands at the prospect of rubbing our round bellies after each meal.

The first night, H was drawn to Cafe Vida (am I inventing?) along Alona Beach because of a sign that said "TUNA SASHIMI." The magic words. Even on the beach, the boy craves for Japanese food. One order was P250,but it was worth it considering we got about 20 pieces. We also ordered chicken barbecue and pork barbecue (whose marinade surely had some ketchup mixed in). Nothing extraordinary, but they hit the spot.

Next morning, we decided to stay "home," and dined at the Bohol Divers Resort resto. Outside, the painted sign on the wall says "European Cuisine." The menu had all of two Euro offerings: pork cordon bleu and schnitzel* (as in "Cream-colored ponies and crisp apple strudels, doorbells and sleigh bells and schnitzel and noodles..." Sing with me now, "Wild geese that fly with the moon on their wings/These are a few of my favorite things!").

*It's a traditional Austrian dish. The resort's version was basically pork dipped in bread crumbs.

It was breakfast after all, so I went for the Filipino breakfast (chicken tocino, danggit, fried egg, and garlic rice), and Hamil ordered the Pinoy breakfast (longganisa, fish, egg, and rice). That chicken tocino was pretty good. I normally try to have something different every day, but I couldn't resist having it again the following morning.

The sunny-side-up egg was runny, just the way I like it!
The chicken tocino reminds me of a lechon head.

After seeing the Chocolate Hills, the tarsiers, the Loboc River, and the Sandugo monument, we headed to the Bohol Bee Farm for lunch. Their menu was quite extensive (they have a whole bunch of organic salads), but we decided to go for stuff on their posted menu (below). The organic salad comes with flowers (!). On our farm tour, we learned that as long as bees can gather nectar from a flower, it can be eaten. Of course, there's a difference between can be eaten and should be eaten...

The food was OK, but I loved their honey products! We sampled a bunch of spreads: honey and cheese, honey and pesto, honey and mango, honey and chocolate. The chocolate one looks good on paper, but let's just say it isn't one of their bestsellers. It's interesting though. I got addicted to the honey and cheese spread and bought a small container (P70) for home. I'm regretting not stocking up on it.

A sampling of stuff from their menu.

A few of the products in their little store. They also sell camote bread, corn muffins,
chocolate the store smells like a bakeshop. Yum.

We got free camote bread served with three of their spreads: honey-pesto,
honey-cheese (a winner!), and honey-mango. They're all quite good.

The organic salad comes with your regular greens and some not-so-regular flowers!
Yes, I ate that yellow one in the middle, and the bougainvillea too! It experience.
It's served with--what else--honey-mustard dressing.

H got the curried pasta with chicken.

I had the honey-glazed chicken, served with brown rice and more of those flowers.

Another thing I fell in love with was their homemade mango ice cream. It was a huge serving, and I thought I wouldn't be able to finish it. Yeah, right! Even if I had been told to stop eating, I wouldn't have been able to. Ice cream is one of my weaknesses and this one had loads of these delightful little mango chunks. Though the ice cream had some ice crystals in it, it was still very creamy and tasted like it had a bit of queso mixed in. The other available flavor when we were there was jackfruit, but I'm not big on the langka. If I were to go back to Bohol, it wouldn't be for the beach or anything--it'd be for that honey-cheese spread and the ice cream!

Two of my favorite things: H and ice cream!:) H is drinking
corn-flavored coffee. Yeah, apparently there is such a thing.

Happy girl enjoying her drool-worthy homemade ice cream.

That night, we had dinner at one of the ihawans along the beach. We feasted on grilled red snapper, a thick juicy barbecued pork chop, and some fried rice. Later, with our drinks (had me my first pinacolada. Not for me) we had us a couple of sticks of pork barbecue.

I realized that one reason people still get stressed when they're on vacation (budget, itinerary, etc.) is maybe because they don't eat well. I think part of the reason I really enjoyed this trip, in spite of the weather and all, is because I was well fed. I may have gone back to Manila a couple of pounds heavier, but I truly felt like I had just gone on vacation.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Pizza and Pasta in One

Has it been nearly a month? It's partly 'coz I've been taking a Doreen Fernandez School of Writing approach--if you ain't got anything nice to say, then don't say anything at all. Not that I've tried horrible restos in the past month, but nothing spectacular. I did come across an interesting concoction at Pizza Hut Bistro--carbonara pizza! It's not on the usual Pizza Hut menu, you can only get it at the Bistro. It's got bechamel sauce,* ham, bacon, and cheese. Like I often say, everything is better with cheeeeeese.

*Bechamel sauce, in a nutshell, is white sauce. For more info, click here.