The Philippine cuisine can be described as eclectic, what with the many different regions offering various flavors and specialties that reflect the country’s history and its people. One cuisine that stands out is that of Central Luzon. Called the “Rice Granary of the Philippines” as it produces most of the country’s rice supply, this region is also home to diverse and unique dishes that are already embedded in the consciousness of Filipinos and visitors to the Philippines.
This September, partake in the delectable flavors of Central Luzon as Belmont Hotel Manila presents its Central Luzon Fiesta at Cafe Belmont. Every Friday and Saturday of the month, you can indulge in a sumptuous and scrumptious buffet of dishes from the region’s provinces like Pampanga, Bulacan, Nueva Ecija, and Tarlac.
Among the Central Luzon specialties you must try are:
This is a popular pork dish that originated from Pampanga, touted as the “Culinary Capital of the Philippines”. Pig ears and jowls are boiled, chopped, and grilled, then seasoned with chopped onions, vinegar, and soy sauce before being served on a sizzling plate.
Beef Kare Kare
Said to have also originated in Pampanga, this stew is traditionally made with boiled beef and oxtail, combined with ground roasted peanuts and vegetables like pechay (Chinese cabbage), eggplant, string beans, and puso ng saging (banana heart). It is usually served with shrimp paste or bagoong.
This is believed to be a specialty of the Tagalogs because of the word kawali, which means a wok or deep-frying pan. The deep-frying method is also a trademark of the province of Bulacan, where some of the best chicharon (pork skin) in the country can be found. Cooking lechon kawali entails boiling the pork belly in salted water, draining it and letting it cool, and then deep-frying it in oil. The result is a flavorful pork dish that’s crispy outside and tender inside.
The local version of arroz valenciana or the Spanish paella, usually served by the Kapampangans (the people of Pampanga) during special occasions. It is made with glutinous rice cooked in coconut milk and turmeric powder, and garnished with chicken, chorizo, bell peppers, and raisins.
Have a taste of these dishes and more at the Central Luzon Fiesta by visiting Belmont Hotel Manila in Resorts World Manila, Newport City, Pasay City, Philippines. For more information, visit www.belmonthotelmanila.com or its Facebook Page.