Aling Lucy Payawal Art of Atchara Making

Aling Lucila “Lucy”Payawal who is in her mid-70’s is known for her famous achara/atsara/atchara and kalamay sa latik native recipes.

lucy-payawal2

Aling or Tita Lucila ” Lucy” Paywal

Heirloom Recipes

Aling Lucila ” Lucy” Payawal brother is the father of Mr. Edward Payawal who is the proprietor of Thumbs Up restaurant, while the mother of Ms. Kat Garcia( wife of Sir Ervin Garcia) is the sister of Aling Lucy who hails from the Payawal clan.

According to Sir Lebon Ong and some local food historian, local atchara/achara / atsara was originally an Indian pickle dish with an alternate spelling called “achaar”. These are from pickled vegetables or fruits. Similar pickled vegetable are also found in neighboring southeast Asian countries like Indonesia, Malaysia, Brunei, Singapore, Also called ” Acar” or ” Atjar, in Dutch.

Vegetables or fruits are finely chopped and marinated in brine or edible oils along with different Indian spices and food coloring.

achara-san-miguel

atsara/ atchara/ achara

But the Philippine version is a hybrid of both Indian and Southeast Asian, minus the spiciness but with stronger vinegar and adding achuete/atsuete/ annatto as coloring.

dsc_0161

atsara/ achara/ atchara

Since the late Spanish and American administration, San Miguel town is already popular for her achara/ atsara/ atchara, preserve minamis na santol and dayap, kalamay, pastillas de leche. These are normally serve on special occasions like fiesta, birthdays or visiting tourists.

atsara-maker

Ms. Cristina Gonzales – a local atsara/ achara/ atchara, kakanin maker and seller from San Miguel, Bulacan together with Architect Ervin Garcia

I would remember that my dad would always bring locally made achara / atsara from San Miguel. The atsara / achara from the town taste milder and the papaya is grated finely compared to the ones being sold within Metro Manila.

In some parts of the country the ingredients may vary depending on the availability, some may use jicama,picama/singkamas , cucumber (pipino ), slices of ginger, onions or shallots ( sibuyas tagalog).

grater

Aling Lucila Payawal

She also does her pickled papaya and creates Kalamay sa latik (sweet glutinous sticky rice) with latik.

This start with choosing the right ingredients since not all varieties of papaya can be use for making achara/ atsara. Sir Lebon Ong shared that the preferred ones are called ” susong matanda” papaya, These papayas are elongated shaped like breast of an old woman, hence the local common name.

cheese-cloth2

Aling Lucy Pawayal folding the cheese cloth with grated green papaya

She also uses cheese cloth/ katsa, grater, sweet green syrup, carrots, raisins, onions, red bell pepper.

She is also careful in handling the young papaya. She would soak them in water with salt to minimize the papaya getting brown and make her hands itchy.

She also uses a small amount of alum power (tawas) just before squeezing the water content. She does heirloom recipes that is worth sharing and publishing in recipe books.

papaya-achara

bottled atchara/ atsara/ achara made by Aling Lucy Payawal

Aling Lucy Payawal special heirloom atsara/ atchara/ achara is available at Arki’s Grill and Thumbs Up restaurant and upon reservation.

Phone no: 09158653540

Contact Person: Mr. Edward Payawal

Contact Persons: Sir Ervin or Mrs. Kat Garcia

  Phone no. 0935 889 1003

References:

Personal interview with Aling Lucilla ” Lucy ” Pawayal, Ms. Cristina Gonzales, Sir Lebon Ong.

Arsana, Lother (2013). “Authentic Recipes from Indonesia”. Tuttle Publishing. pp. 31–32. ISBN 9781462905355. Retrieved 9 February 2015.

Filipino and Asian Home Style Dishes at Fely J’s Kitchen in Uptown Mall

 The group were hungry after an event at the Grand Hyatt hotel.  It was past 12:30 pm when we went to the Uptown mall within Bonifacio Global City or simply called (BCG) in Taguig.
Fely J’s Kitchen restaurant

We were craving for something Filipino and home cooked dishes. Fely J’s Kitchen is just located near the escalator of the mall. We decided to eat at the restaurant without thinking of other restaurants within the mall.

Fely J’s Kitchen menu board ( set meals for group )

Some of the bloggers/ vloggers are in such a hurry covering another event that they wanted to eat. Mommy Lariza lost no time in ordering set meals ( Set C) which we saw at the menu board.

Fely J’s Kitchen

Fely J’s Kitchen menu board

Fely J’s Kitchen is dedicated to the memory of Mrs. Felicidad de Jesus-Cruz, mother of LJC Group founder Larry J. Cruz, features Fely J’s treasured recipes. This is the second restaurant which opened within Metro Manila, the first one was in Greenbelt 5, Makati.

interiors

The restaurant had quite a big sitting capacity ( indoor had about 100 ) while outdoor patio area had another ( 50  patio area) with total sitting capacity of about 150 at any given time.

figurines on display

The place had a homey ambiance with several old photographs of old Manila like Binondo church, treasured family photos, books and figurines are found within the restaurant.

Our group only waited for just few minutes, the first to be serve was the ice tea followed by tokwa at baboy ( fried tofu with pork, chop onions, chop banana chilies with soy sauce and vinegar).

tokwa at baboy

Tokwa at Baboy is just like the same as those cooked in other popular Filipino restaurants. They should have added bits of fresh cilantro leaves, Nothing fancy.

seafood kare-kare

crispy pata with fried garlic as toppings , atchara and soy sauce

grilled chicken inasal with soy sauce, calamansi, fresh chilies and radish

pork sinigang

One of the first dishes to be serve is the Crispy pata with atchara and dipping sauce. This is followed with white rice, pancit canton, pork and bangus sinigang, grilled chicken inasal , seafood kare-kare with bagoong and gising gising.

sinigang na bangus

gising gising

I liked all of their dishes particularly the gising-gising which had a balance of spice, sweetness ,nicely chopped kangkong stems and bits of pork meat.  However the coconut milk ( gata ) is a bit watered down for my taste.
turon with langka and ube

We also ordered fried turon with langka and ube for dessert.group photo

40th Anniversary

LJC group  of companies which also included Abe’s Farm in Pampanga, Lorenzo’s Way, Bistro Remedios, Cafe Adriatico, Cafe Havana, and Polka Dot Bakeshop to name a few celebrates their 40th anniversary.

set meal C

The staff were quite attentive, friendly,courteous when some of us, ask them for a quick group shots from our cameras.

I will surely come back to eat their other specialties, One of my friend told me that their temple crab, braised short ribs, lumpiang sariwa, lechon kawali, binagoongang baboy are worth ordering.

Address: 2nd Floor, Uptown Mall, 9th Avenue corner 36th Street, Bonifacio Global City , Taguig City

Contact Details : 802-53-54 / 946-3676 / 0995-6539039

Operational Hours: Everyday from 11:00 am to 11:00 pm,  During Friday, Saturday and Sunday-operation can be up to 12:00 midnight

Two Thumbs Up at Thumbs Up Restaurant

Two Thumbs Up for Thumbs Up grill and restaurant. This is our midway stopover at the San Miguel Culinary and Heritage Tour.

thumbs-up-restaurant

Thumbs Up restaurant frontage with several bonsai display

The restaurant started about 5 years ago and had since expanded to cater a bigger crowd. The place specializes on different grilled and sizzling plate dishes.

dsc_0148

Thumbs Up

The sitting capacity of the restaurant is between 80-90 people at any given time. The restaurant had a small are where collection of bonsai, native ferns and ixora or  (santan / tangpupo/ tangpopo/ jungle flame) are neatly arranged.

dsc_0167

Santan / Tangpupo/ Tangpopo bonsai

The place is ideal for hang-out place for friends, family and travelers. Among the specialties includes kilawin na tanigue, a type of Narrow-barred Spanish mackerel (Scomberomorus commerson).

dsc_0153

Kilawin na Tanigue

The art of marination uses raw tanigue neatly cubed into bite sized bits. The marination which uses the a combination of vinegar, calamansi and ground pepper. Then topped with freshly sliced onions, thinly sliced ginger, green chilies, bird’s eye chilies .  The dish is not too sour and the meat is very tender. A good starter dish.

dsc_0156-copy

Sizzling bulalo steak

Sizzling bulalo steak (P190) is another specialty of the place. The beef meat and bone marrow is tender while it is covered up with gravy.  Added with fried garlic, It infused  more flavors to the dish. The meat was very tender and any rice would greatly compliment the gravy ! MUST TRY.

dsc_0157

Pork sisig

Pork sisig is another in house specialty of the restaurant. They added fresh sunny side up egg on top. With lots of chopped onions, bird’s eye chilies and finger chilies. The best way to eat this is to mix it and scramble the egg together with the meat on the sizzling plate while it is still hot.

dsc_0159

Sizzling squid on plate (P120) had a lot of chopped onions, red bell peppers and tomatoes. The sweetness of the sauce and fresh tomatoes are an added treat .

dsc_0162

Pancit is generously topped with squid balls, liver, chicken meat, chicken innards carrots, cabbage topped with fried garlic.

dsc_0160

Bibingkang Malagkit or Biko

 Biko is known in San Miguel as Bibingkang Malagkit. Bibingkang Malagkit is made of glutinous rice, coconut milk, brown sugar is perfectly sweet, creamy and chewy. Topped with sweetened coconut spread seasoned with Citrus aurantifolia (dayap zest)  a local species of key lime, topped with grated cheese and latik. Another popular dessert.

dsc_0161

Atsara / Achara

This is the home-style family atchara / atsara is an heirloom family recipe that is  serve at the restaurant.  The green papaya was finely grated with lots of ingredients like carrots,bell peppers and raisins. It is not too sour and had a mild taste. The dish is normally eaten together with any grilled meat dishes and helps to clean the palate.

dsc_01631

Kalamay sa Latik

Kalamay sa Latik is everyone’s  favorite. It is sticky glutinous rice cakes soaked in pandan-like syrup topped with latik. This is not commonly prepared in Metro Manila. One reason is that the art of making the kalamay is a tedious process.

THUMBS UP

Address: Tecson Street, Barangay Poblacion, 3011 San Miguel Bulacan

Operational Hours: 10:00 am to 10:00 pm

Phone no: 09158653540

Contact Person: Mr. Edward Payawal

Email: edwardpayawl@yahoo.com

Visit their Facebook page: https://m.facebook.com/Thumbs-Up-552550208166779/

 

 

 

Gastronomic Treat in Norzagaray , Bulacan

Norzagaray , Bulacan province -Philippines

Lakad Pamana dabarkats whenever we had provincial tour would sample local dishes and restaurants . Norzagaray is particularly rich in local foods and had its share of well-known restaurants and culinary heritage.

lunch buffet

After the hearty lunch buffet which consists of cripsy pata and crispy fried chicken with special soy sauce and atchara from JL Jamie’s Crispy Pata and Restaurant , fried dalagang bukid , munggo , rice and soft drink.  , We proceeded at the San Pedro’s pavilion for another round of food trip.

Seated: Mrs. Maricar San Pedro -Pelayo , Mayor Alfredo ” Fred”  Germar , Mr. Pelayo together with Lakad Pamana and the group

We were invited to the birthday party  of the local tourism officer and community affairs officer III   Ms. Maricar San Pedro husband held at the San Pedro’s residence . The hosts graciously “welcomed” the group despite last minute advisory .

Torres & Joaquin Catering Services

We took some time to sample sample food that the caterer served . Their specialties included  Arroz de Valenciana ,  vegetable chopseuy , steamed prawns, lengua estofado ( ox tongue ) , lumpiang ubod with sauce , spaghetti carbonara , sinampalukan manok ( chicken soup cooked with young tamarind leaves)  , lechon .  Desserts like serbert made from lychee and buko , coconut and beans  and fresh slices of watermelon .

visitors

Torres and Joaquin Catering Service ( since 2002)

Address: Km 40 Pulong Buhangin, Santa Maria , Bulacan

Contact : (044) 328-0179 Cellphone : (0917) 857-4587 (0917)808-38-48

Facebook Page: Torres and Joaquin Catering Services

San Pedro’s Pavilion signage 

San Pedro’s Pavilion is a private function area with the property of the parents of Ms. Maricar San Pedro -Pelayo .

pavilion

The place is good for weddings, baptism or special event.  It can be rented for Php 6,000 during day time and Php 7,000 during nigh-time.

smaller gazebo

There are smaller gazebos within the property for smaller group – around 10 to 12 people. We finally took an opportunity to have our photo taken with the mayor together with the gracious host . Some  bloggers had an informal conversation with Ms. Maricar San Pedro-Pelayo about the role of tourism in their municipality .

small greenhouse with collection of Denrdobium orchid hybrids

We finally bid farewell to our gracious host and proceeded to the next destination for  food tasting .

JL Jamie’s Crispy Pata

JL Jamie’s Crispy Pata and Restaurant- This restaurant is one of the best places to dine whenever you are in Norzagaray , Bulacan. They also have a branch located in Santa Maria , Bulacan.  The restaurant is located  near the Norzagaray Municipal Hall grounds so almost every government employees had eaten at this place.

facade of the restaurant also have several succulents and cacti

The place is had an interesting nipa hut and tree house , The nipa hut is good for small group . We were met by the manager and daughter of the proprietor .

specialty foods

The Crispy Pata  price range Php 550 to Php 650. According to one of the staff, it take more than 4 hours to boil the crispy pata and deep fry  into perfection.

crispy pata

Other popular menus includes  Crispy Ulo Php 480 /Php 500 , Liempo ( Fried or Grilled)  Php 150  , Fried Chicken Php 300 , Chicharon Bituka Php 120 , Kambing Kaldereta Php 150 per order , Kambing Adobo Php 150 per order , Kilawin Php 150 per order , Papaitan Baka Php 130

They also have Sizzling Gambas Php 130 , Sizzling Mixed Seafood Php 150 , Sizzling Sisig Php 130 Kinilaw Tanigue at Php 150 and Kinilaw na Igat  at Php 130 ( prices quoted are based on our April 24 tour and is subject to change )

crispy bituka with vinegar

We also liked the crispy bituka with vinegar and chopped chillies and onions . There is no after taste or rancid smell coming from the pork intestines .

interior of the restaurant

The restaurant was featured in several television shows like Biyahe ni Drew Arellano which aired on September 2, 2013 , Day Off of QTV channel 11 which aired on June 28, 2014 and Ms. Doris Bigoria of ABS-CBN channel 2 visited the restaurant on December 30, 2015 .

palmera with native orchids like sanggumays

There are also a small pocket  garden are with native orchids and plants .are  several nipa huts and tree huts.

spiral staircase going up to the tree house

fish pond

Address : 0646 A. Payumo St. Municipal Access Road, Norzagaray

Bulacan

The restaurant opens daily from 7:00am until past 9:00pm

Telephone : (044) 815 8108

Facebook Page: JL Jamie’s Crispy Pata and Restaurant

There are a lot more local restaurants that we failed to visit during the tour ,  i am sure that there will still lot more restaurants to visit.

Note: all photos were taken by the author, any person who wish to grab the photos for personal use , please cite this blog as link .

The group would like to ” THANK” the local tourism officer Ms. Maricar San Pedro-Pelayo , Mayor Alfredo Germar , Mr. Roy Vincent Santigao and LJL Jamie’s Crispy Pata and restaurant for the invite .

A Taste OF Sorsogon Delicacies: Suman, Binut-Ong and Hinagom

Sorsogon City, Sorsogon province -Philippines

Whenever one travel to another town or place, one should try their food and desserts. It was rice harvest season, so we were able to sample local delicacies. Although these delicacies are available whole year round , the best quality desserts are made from fresh harvested rice produce .

hinagom/ hinagum
Hinagom or Hinagum  recipe is simple, it’s made from freshly harvested rice that’s pounded, roasted in a pan, then pounded again in a mortar mixed with coconut meat and sugar before wrapping in leaves. It tastes quite similar to Espasol of Laguna. In the capital city of Sorsogon – 1 pack of hinagom cost between Php 5.00 to Php 20.00 per pack .
There are several ways that a Hinagom is presented, We saw round shaped hinagom, elongated shape among others. The rice dessert is also popular in nearby Samar Island too..
This is best accompanied  with chocolate , coffee or salabat ( ginger tea) .

suman kalabasa
Suman and Suman Kalabasa – I prefer this type of combination. Sticky rice is grounded and grounded kalabasa ( squash ) is also added. boiled with coconut milk and wrapped in banana leaves.This delicacy cost Php 5.00 in Sorsogon City . We knew some distant relatives who are experts in making these delicacies .

Binut-Ong
Binut-Ong – This is another sticky rice dessert which is popular in Bicol region. Coconut milk ( gata ) is added unto the mixture . This is sold for Php 10 per piece in Bulan and Sorsogon City.

Binut-Ong
 Binut-Ong can easily fill your appetite and this is best accompanied with tea, coffee or chocolate , especially ideal for breakfast or afternoon snack.

 

Boiled Pili fruit
Boiled Pili Fruit is another favorite of Bicolanos , It cost Php 1.00 per piece in Sorsogon City . This was due to the tight supply . There was a big typhoon which hit the province last year and the pili trees had not recovered . The pulp is eaten and best dipped in condiments like fish sauce called ( guinamos) , vinegar , soy sauce with chopped chillies and onions. Otherwise it only cost 3 pieces for Php 1.00 or 50 centavos when it is pili season.
There is also a proper way to boil or blanched the pili , as demonstrated by Ms. Maita Liao -Amador of Sorsogon City . One must only put the pili fruit after the water had started to boil and then blanching or poaching the fruit for just less than 3 minutes and let them cool; the skins will rub off very easily .

The fruit is highly perishable, so one must cook it as soon as possible. While the pulp does not stay fresh for long , one must eat the pulp within a few hours.  Fruits placed in warm place will turn soft and brown fast for the same reason that pectinase is activated and renders the fruit inedible in a matter of few hours. the nut is a bit more practical to use.

While we ate a lot of pili fruit during our brief stay in Sorsogon. One must not try to over eat ,it can also be a purgative or laxative .

suntan or santan

Suntan or Santan is another must try when you are in Sorsogon province. Suntan is similar to Coconut Jam of Quezon province .  This is good alternative for sandwich spread  .  The slight twist is that some who makes this jam had included pili nuts or crush pili nuts .  This is a good pasalubong treat especially for those with sweet tooth.

The small suntan in plastic bottle will cost from Php 50.00 to Php 75.00 depending on the source. We got our suntan jam from a peddler who makes homemade atchara , kakanins ( native sweets) at the Bulan public market .