Culinary Treats in Cavite City Public Market

Culinary treats greeted our small group when we arrived in Cavite City. We visited the cityhall and rode a jeep going to the public market.

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chicken mami, tamales, pancit palabok and lumpiang sariwa at Aling Meling

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Cavite Cityhall

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Aling Meling Carinderia

It was past 7:30 am when we were able to reach the market and Aling Ika Carinderiawas still close due to the extended holiday season.

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ube leche flan and leche flan

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Aling Meling Carinderia

We decided to eat the Aling Meling Carinderia which offer home-cooked meals and other specialties like chicken mami, palabok, lumpiang sariwa. They even serve Pancit Puso ng Saguing during fridays.

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Chicken Mami cost Php 35 per order which combines two kinds of noodles, chicken, baguio pechay, chopped spring onions and topped with chicharon bits.

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Pancit Palabok– Their pancit palabok is slightly different from the ones sold in Metro Manila. They use two kinds of noodles and the palabok sauce is thick with boiled chicken egg and calamansi. (Php 35 per order).

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Lumpiang Sariwa – The spring roll had vegetables and topped with crushed chicharon or pork rinds.  ( Php 35 per order).

The group paid a little over Php 390 which includes soft drinks.

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Tamales

We also ate the tamales which cost Php 10.00 per order. It is nutty with savory taste and ideal companion for the soup or hot chocolate, coffee and tea.

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vendor selling kesong puti

There is also kesong puti or quesillo which cost Php 20.00. This is best paired with hot pandesal, bonete or salakot from nearby bakeries.

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kesong puti wrapped in banana leaves

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The market is alive with fresh produce and seafood is relatively a little cheaper compared to Metro Manila.

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suman

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Malagkit na Sampalok also called Kamalay na Sampalok is sold Php 20.00 per cup at the Cavite Public Market.

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Bibingkoy – This is another version with thick coconut creme at Php 24.00 per slice which also comes with thick ginataan.

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Bibingkoy

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Ginataan with bits of corn

There were a lot of fresh produce and native kakanins spotted within the Pamilihang Bayan ng Lunsod ng Cavite. Do not forget to be early when you come and visit the stalls selling these food.

Savoring the Heirloom Dishes of Aling Ika’s Carinderia

A trip to Cavite City is incomplete without a stopover at Aling Ika’s Carinderia sometimes called Aling Ica Carihan which is located within Pamilihang Bayan ng Lunsod ng Cavite ( Cavite City Public Market).

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left to right- lumpiang shanghai, tortang alimasag, pancit puso ng saging, lumpiang sariwa

They would start the day at around 6:00 am and would remain open until past 2:00 pm. Most of the well-loved dishes and desserts would run out by 10:00 am.

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Cavite City Public Market ( Pamilihang Bayan ng Lunsod ng Cavite) early dawn

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Pamilihang Bayan ng Lunsod ng Cavite

I took a chance to travel and waited for at least 10 minutes at the Plaza Lawton Ferry Terminal in order to take the first ferry ride to Cavite City but unfortunately DOTR schedule had changed few days ago, the security guard manning the terminal told me that the first ferry ride to the city would be past 6:45 am, instead of what was originally posted ( 5:15 am).

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Aling Vherna busy taking orders and preparing pancit puso

Then rode the Saint Anthony bus bound for Cavite city at around past 5:15 am. I happened to meet a fellow passenger Kagawad Rogelio Cruz of Barangay 471 zone 46 of Sampaloc. He paid Php 50.00 ( senior citizen) and i paid Php 63.00 regular fare which ply the Lawton -Cavite city route. Traffic was surprisingly light and the leisurely ride only took less than 1 hour.

After arriving at the intersection of P. Burgos corner Molina street. We took the Dalahican jeepney, took off near Dizon Bakery then walked a few meters towards the public market. We bid farewell and Kagawad Rogelio Cruz also told me that he had a relative who is also a kagawad of San Antonio.

Aling Ika’s Carinderia Dishes

Aling Teodorica Samson-Bautista more popularly known as Aling Ika was considered as a culinary icon of the city.  She was a pioneer woman during her days. Earn a living by selling lutong ulam/ bahay ( home cooked meal viand) during the early 1920’s. Unlike ordinary housewives who would rely on their husband earning, Aling Ika was a business minded person.

She was resourceful and use the local ingredients or what is available and abundant. The local workers or trabajador would knock at their house would buy the home cooked meals before going to work at the city or at the naval base.

She would wrapped the meals in banana leaves because banana was abundant within the province. The leaves would add additional flavors to the meal.

The family legacy was eventually passed to Mrs. Lolit Alejo, now 84 years-old who learned how to make Bibingkoy and other dishes that you can only find in Cavite City.

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Ms. Vherna B. Alejo a third generation descendant, would supervise the operation of the carinderia.

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Bibingkoy

Bibingkoy is like a combination of Japanese mochi, bibingka and ginataan sa sago. It is filled with sweetened boiled mung beans. The ingredient uses sticky rice.

Instead of being fried like the buchi, it is cooked pugon-style using the traditional charcoal which heat on top and at the bottom, much like a typical bibingka is cooked.

A thick coconut creme made with combination of coconut milk extract, langka/ nangka (jackfruit), and tapioca pearls (sago) is slowly simmered over low heat and is poured over the Bibingkoy before eating.

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Bibingkoy with gintaan

The best way to eat the Bibingkoy is hot with the sauce then best pair with tea, coffee or local chocolate. Php 50.00 per serving while a large bilao cost Php 550.00. 

I remembered that an uncle who used to live in Cavite City would bring Bibingkoy when he would come and visit our home before.

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Lumpiang Sariwa ala Aling Ika

Lumpiang Sariwa– Aling Ika’s version is wrapped with lumpia wrapper with fresh lettuce leaves, mung bean sprouts, carrots, pechay, cabbage,tofu, beans. However the vegetables were a little bit overcooked.

The annato or achuete adds flavor and color to the lumpiang sariwa. It is topped with crushed crushed peanuts, chicharon (crushed pork rinds) and minced garlic. It only cost Php 30.00 per order. Used to be lot cheaper few years back.

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Tortang Alimasag

Tortang Alimasag or Crab Omelette. They sell this at Php 50 per slice and this is best paired with tomato ketchup, vinegar or banana ketchup.

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Lumpiang Shanghai with special sauce

Lumpiang Shanghai – Deep fried spring rolls which is sold at Php 10.00, They also have Lumpiang Frito which spring roll filled in with vegetables then deep fried.

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Pancit Puso ng Saging

Pancit Puso ng Saging or Pancit Puso– This noodle dish combines two types of noodles; miki and bihon. It includes a generous mix of fishball, tofu, kikiam, shrimp, chicken meat, chopped carrots, chopped onion, beans, chorizo, chayote/ sayote, cabbage, coriander and pechay.

It is seasoned with shrimp stock, salt, black pepper and annatto / achuete. Aside from coloring, achuete would also add distinct flavor to the dish.

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miki, bihon and vegetables of lumpiang sariwa

The chopped banana blossom is prepared by boiling it in a combination of vinegar and salt. Banana blossom is cheaper compared to calamansi hence it was used by Aling Ica or Ika. It was used as a souring ingredient in the noodle dish.

The noodle is topped with crushed pork rinds, deep fried garlic and onions. It cost Php 30.00 per serving while a large one (bilao ) good for sharing between 30 to 35 people and cost Php 800.00.

Best way to eat the noodle dish is by mixing the noodles well before eating. It balances the flavors.

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Ube Kalamay

Ube Kalamay – This is another specialty of the carinderia and this is sold per slice. One can pre-order in advance for large orders.

The carinderia had more than two dozen dishes at any given time, worthwhile mention are adobong pusit, pancit pusit/ pancit choco en su tinta ( seasonal), pancit palabok, fried rice, beef kaldereta, pork barbecue among others.

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UNTV channel 37 staff and program producer

Met the staff and producer of UNTV channel 37 while they were filming at the carinderia / eatery. The station will be having a new travel and lifestyle program which will air on the early January of 2020.

Also met Professor Zarny Zarragoza of San Sebastian College -Recoletos de Cavite who hails from Cavite City, He bought some of the well-loved dishes before going to work.

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Those planning to order in bulk their Bibingkoy and other dishes, must order at least 1 to 2 days in advance and do not forget to bring plastic container. Cavite City Public Market had an ordinance of minimizing single use plastics.

Aling Ika’s Carinderia

Stall #9 Pamihilang Bayan ng Lunsod ng Cavite

Contact Person : Ms. Vherna B. Alejo (0916-679-5916)

Operations: Everyday from 6:00 am to 2:00 pm

Dining Experience at G&B Restaurant in Nueva Viscaya

G&B Restaurant and Pasalubong Center is located just about a kilometer away from the G&B Pasalubong Center where we bought our buko pie and other pasalubong items.

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The restaurant had a spacious parking area with a sitting capacity of between 100 to 120 people at any given time.

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G&B signage

The comfort room is also large and clean. G&B Restaurant interior is large with chairs and tables made from local wood. The tissue holder is from local material.

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G&B restaurant interior

According to Mr. Jhong the server, The restaurant is one of the few accredited restaurants by the Department of Tourism. There is also a bar area where one can order liquor.

G&B Restaurant

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G& B Menu board

The group ordered two specialties of the region and took a quick late breakfast around 10:00 am. We ordered Pancit Cabagan and Pancit Batil-Patung platter which is good to share between 6 to 8 people.

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instant chocolate

We think it is a little bit cheaper to order the platter size compared to ala carte which cost Php 85.00 per order. We also ordered instant coffee mix, powdered chocolate and buko juice.

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Pancit Cabagan

Pancit Cabagan-local miki noodles with generous mix of vegetables, hard boiled chicken eggs, chopped spring onions leaves, and topped with deep fried pork.  This also comes with chopped onions, calamansi and chili paste.

This originated from the town of Cabagan, Isabela province.  This version did not use pechay, kutchay, hibi ( dried shrimp) and quail eggs. But used hard-boiled chicken egg.

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Pancit Batil-Patung– local miki noodles with julienne carrots, cabbage, poach eggs, minced carabao meat and topped with chopped spring onion leaves.  This also comes with batil soup, chopped onions , calamansi and chili paste.

The G&B version had a slight twist from the recipe. This is a good stop over since they have some dishes which are combination of Filipino, Chinese and local favorites.

We are planning to come back and try their other specialties.

G&B Restaurant and Pasalubong Center

Address: Tuao south, Maharlika Highway, Bagabag, Nueva Vizcaya 3711

9 Foods and Places to Eat in Tuguegarao

Tuguegarao is such a fascinating place to stay and eat. In our short stay in the city. We were able to eat and dine at the famous delicacies of the city. Although we lack time exploring the city our group made a short list or guide.

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Cagayan peanut candy

9 Foods and Places to Eat in Tuguegarao

9.) Tuguegarao or Ybanag Longganisa – It is made with coarsely ground pork, black pepper, garlic, coarse salt. This is best paired with local cane vinegar or sukang iloko. some longganisa are dyed with achuete sold per dozen in market, hotels and pasalubong center.

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8.) Kakanins– Tuguegarao is also known for their different kakanins. Among their famous kakains are made from sticky rice, tinupig, corn.

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Alcala milk candy – Php 35 per small pack or 3 for Php 100

7.) Milk Candy– There are different kinds of milk candies made from carabao’s milk. One product that stands out is Alcala. It was hard for us to find a decent pasalubong center during our last night in the city. We have to visit a bus station where we bought some milk candies.

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chicharabao – chicharon from carabao skin

6.) Chicharabao– This is one of the most common peddled snack in the city. We were lucky to taste the chicharon in small packs which cost Php 25 with home made vinegar. We also bought a generic sopas chicharon which is also common snack item in Metro Manila.

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sopas chicharon

5.) Josh Papaitan and Laoya – When you are in Tuguegarao city, try to visit Josh Papitan and try to order their Laoya.

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Laoya is carabao meat and bones, innards which is slowly cooked with broth with spices. It is offered in many karinderia, eatery or even in some hotel establishments.  Some establishment would also offer unlimited rice meal along with Laoya.

Address : 152 Lecaros Street, Tuguegarao City

Contact: 0955 497 1238

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lugaw

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Jacob Mami House menu board

4.) Jacob Mami House – This is an affordable eatery which specializes on mami, lugao, pares, barbecue, lomi and tapsilog meals.

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Address: Stall #3 Joaquin Lim building, Diversion Road, Pengue Ruyu, Tuguegarao City

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Billy Jacks -Pancit Batil Patung ( special with chorizo, carabeef and longganisa)

3.) Billy Jacks Panciteria – Although their version of Pancit Batil-Patung caters to the eclectic taste . Try to visit this place for a sample of their pancit.

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chopped onions and calamansi

Address: Buntun, Santiago- Tuguegarao road, Tuguegarao City, Cagayan province

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supreme pizza

2.) Hotel Carmelita – Culinare restaurant is a fusion of Filipino and Italian cuisines. Their pizza was a fave among the locals. Becoming the number one pizza and pasta restaurant in Tuguegarao. Its unique brick oven-cooked chewy pizza is the pride of the town.

Address:  # 9 Diversion Road Balzain, Tuguegarao City, Cagayan 3500

Contact : 0917 572 2777 / (078) 844-1024

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1.) Boy Kanin (Tuguegarao) – All new 24/7 restaurant which offers well-loved meals like crispy pata, barbecue, silog among others.

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Boy Kanin – Tuguegarao restaurant was designed and build by Architect Cenon Cesar M. Lumor of Tier One Architects. The 6 red tubular pillars symbolize the number of years of Boy Kanin in the business.

One can also play the three types of board games such as Chess or Dama Board, Snake and Ladders, and Maze.

Address: # 9 Diversion Road Balzain, Tuguegarao City, Cagayan 3500

Dining Experience at Billy Jacks Panciteria in Tuguegarao

Billy Jacks Panciteria is famous for their Pancit Batil Patung. This is one of the must dine restaurant when you are in Tuguegarao City, Cagayan province. Is also favorite hang-out place for foreign tourists.

The panciteria is owned and managed by Mr. Billy Anchanzar Lim opened in 2014.

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Pancit Batil Patung ordinary Php 80

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Billy Jack’s Panciteria

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Billy Jacks Panciteria interior

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Billy Jacks Menu Board

Billy Jacks Panciteria sitting capacity is between 40 to 60 persons at any given time and it is always teeming with customers. We were lucky to visit this restaurant early mid-morning around past 10:00 am just before lunchtime.

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Billy Jacks Panciteria

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The vibe is mid -1970’s and 80’s with reggae/surfer atmosphere with poster of Bob Marley, surf, guitar with a lot of signatures from their customers and loyal clients.

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signature and autograph from customers

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Bob Marley photo collage

Pancit Batil-Patung

Pancit Batil-Patung (or patong) is the specialty of Tuguegarao city. Almost every carinderia, eatery or even in hotel serves this kind of noodle.

The name originated from Hookien and Ibanag languages- Pian e Sit- from Hookien-Chinese language “which means easy or convenient food”, “Batil “( to beat ) and “Patung” ( to put on top).iho

Before the 1970’s, Most of the pancit (noodles) serve in the province were miki, bihon guisado. It was in the early 1970’s when Theo’s Panciteria introduced this dish by adding carabao’s meat with poached egg. Triangle Panciteria offered this dish around 1972 and is one of the oldest known panciterias which still offers this well-loved noodle.

Out of the 160 or so panciterias in the province, Over 90 panciteria have sprung -up in the city. The city’s thus earn the nickname “Pancit Capital of Cagayan“.

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Pancit Batil Patung with chorizo for Php 100

The noodle was introduced by the Chinese immigrants and was localized by using ingredients which are available in the region.

This is an all in one noodle dish which is heavy, the original version had a hand pulled miki noodles topped with sautéed minced carabao meat (carabeef/ karahay) with poached egg on accompanied with a cup of soup made from carabao beef stock complemented with another egg cracked and stirred in the soup.

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It is also serve with chopped onions, chilies plus a dash of calamansi and vinegar to add taste.

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The group ordered two kinds of pancit batil patung, the ordinary one and the one with chorizo. This is the first panciteria to offer pancit batil patung with balut.

Other popular variations of the pancit-batil patung at Billy Jack’s Panciteria comes by simply adding on some of the available toppings such as: balut,Tuguegarao longganisa, tapa, chorizo, sisig, chicharon bulaklak among others.

Visitors from Metro Manila and other places, specially returning college students after the semester break and summer break flock to the panciteria for some bouts of the famed pancit with their own variations of choice.

The restaurant is just few kilometer away and within 1 ride away from Hotel Carmelita.

Address: Buntun, Santiago- Tuguegarao road, Tuguegarao City, Cagayan province

Operations: Mondays to Sunday from 9:00 am to 8:30 pm

Contact : (078) 304-1888/ 0975-363-5435