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

A Quick Food Trip at Lola Seseng : Lutong Kapampangan

A quick food trip was organized by the team , while we are covering the Missionaries of Charity event.

Out team arrived a little early at the site and we decided to eat a morning breakfast at the restaurant a few meters away.

The restaurant was formerly called Kainan Kay Tita Tess but was renamed Lola Seseng. The restaurant specialties includes kakanins and dishes from Pampanga province. The family hails from Minalin town.

The restaurant is about 20 years -old and that people within Tayuman , Tondo, Santa Cruz and nearby areas would come and eat .

It had a quaint rustic ambiance with some semi-vintage decor items . The restaurant also offers buro and other famous Kapampangan dishes.

ukelele hung on the wall of the restaurant serves as a decor and those items are also for sale.

Mr. Ramon Avorque -Vice President of Manila Times

menu and prices : palabok Php 35, fresh lumpia Php 35 and fried ubod Php 15

The quaint restaurant had about 40 to 50 sitting capacity, offering home cooked meals, party foods , packed meals and catering services.

menu board

lumpiang sariwa

different kinds of viands

fried rice and longganisa

I  bought 1 order fried rice and 1 longganisa worth Php 45 .00 

Lola Seseng

The group also got an opportunity to talk with Lola Seseng. She is the culinary icon and manages the restaurant.

There is also an active Lola Seseng Fb Page

Address: 842 Tayuman Street, Tondo , Manila 

Operation Hours: 7:00 am to 9:00 pm 

Contact Person : Ms. Maricel Maniego

Contact : 252-8850 or 255-0817

Food Crawl at SM Bicutan

Food crawl among foodies and bloggers was held within popular SM Bicutan Mall , the food crawl  was organized by Zomato Ph . Zomato is a food review site which specializes on restaurants , food stalls and food hub across the country.

SM Bicutan Food Court stalls

We first visit the Food Court area , where there are several food stalls .  It was just around past 2:00pm , so there are few people at the food court.

Chansel Pizza Haus – This is a typical neighborhood pizza with several favorite toppings .

Handaan is known for their Filipino regional cuisines like fried bangus , kare-kare, papaitan , garlic chicken , nilagang baka, fried squid , chopsuey among others.

Inihaw Express offers grilled dishes on their menus like barbecue , cripsy pata , kare-kare , pinakbet and stuffed squid

Chancel pizza haus , Inihaw Express, Handaan 

Goldilocks -SM Bicutan

Goldilocks is known for their cakes, pastries, sago’t- gulaman , lumpiang ubod ( sariwa) , cheese ensaymada, chicken pie,  palabok , puto and dinuguan .

sagot’ gumalan , 2 different kinds of puto , dinuguan , lumpiang sariwa (ubod ) 

The company just recently celebrated their 50th anniversary in food business. Other popular snacks treats were their polvorons , taisan , fluppy mamon and cakes.

taisan with grated cheese

One must try their caramel popcorn , chocolate chips , chocolate crinkles , macapuno candies and raisin oatmeal  . We normally buy taisan loaf which cost Php 140.00 , This loaf can easily run out of stock especially during holiday seasons such as Christmas or New Year .

One must try to visit these food stalls and restaurant when you visit SM Bicutan.

Different Lumpias ( Spring Rolls ) from the Philippines

Quezon City , Philippines

Chinese style -lumpia from Sincerity Restaurant, Binondo

Lumpia is a common term for any egg roll , spring roll , vegetable rolls that is Chinese in origin but through centuries of assimilation and adaptation to suit the local taste, preference, availability of the ingredients and due to health reasons  . There had been different  varieties of the lumpias in the country. It is more popularly called ” spring roll” since most of the vegetables used in the ingredients are grown in spring and it is normally eaten as a festival food during ” Spring Festival ” which coincide with Chinese New Year .

I have some relatives and friends who lives in Malabon / Navotas areas and some of them called  it ”  Sumpia” . I do not know where did they get the name but somehow the name eventually evolve .

Lumpiang Shanghai ala New Toho Restaurant ( This is one of the favorite meal of Dr. Jose Rizal) – The New Toho Restaurant  had more meat compared to the regular lumpia.

The recipes, both fried and fresh versions, were brought by Chinese immigrants from the Fujian province of China to Southeast Asia and became popular where they settled in Malaysia, Vietnam, Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines.

Lumpiang Shanghai ala Ilang-Ilang restaurant

Lumpiang Shanghai is one of the MUST Try menu at the Ilang-Ilang Restaurant in Binondo . It is bigger compared to the other Lumpiang Shanghai in Binondo area.

Lumpiang Shanghai is not a spring roll that came from Shanghai , China.  It was more of a marketing style to lure people asking for a more specific name to the spring roll. It is sometimes called Lumpiang Baboy because of the main ingredient , which is ground pork meat. But according to some Filipino-Chinese , people name these spring roll to Shanghai because of the many Fujian, Cantonese, Taiwan dishes in the country.

Shanghai is more cosmopolitan and urban in nature which makes this dish more international appeal. Hence it was called ever since.

Globe Lumpia located in 740 Raon St. ( Gonzalo Puyat street ), Quiapo, Manila.

Globe Lumpia or Lumpiang Sariwa is the most popular spring roll hole in a wall type of eatery near Quiapo church . I usually order 2 to 3 Globe lumpia . They are one of the cheapest in Manila. Their special ingredient includes julienne papaya , jicama  ( picama/ singkamas) , sayote/ chayote with generous topping of crush peanuts, finely chop fresh garlic and their special sauce. The most busy day is friday and on weekends. It is best to accompany the lumpia with softdrink like sarsi or sprite.

The store had been there since 1956 .  The price increased from 20 centavos in the 1950’s to Php 18.00 . The restaurant can only accommodate between 15 to 20 people. I would always frequent the place since i  just lived just a few blocks away, until a few years ago. Some television shows like Kris TV, Kapuso Mo Jessica Soho , Ceasar Montano and even Dolphy are some of the famous clientele of the place.

Lumpiang Bangus – Milk Fish Spring Roll

Milk Fish Spring Rolls or Lumpiang Bangus may have traced its origin to the milk fish producing provinces of Pangasinan, Sarangani, Davao area.  The main ingredient is from milk fish fillet . This is a healthy spring roll , But compared to the regular Lumpiang Shanghai or Lumpiang Frito – This is more expensive . In a recent food fair, I also have tasted Lumpiang Tahong ( made from mussles ) from Cavite province. There is also Lumpiang Kanduli or Creme Dory spring roll. These are some of the spring rolls that i have tasted .

There are mostly fried , wrapped fresh with the cooked ingredients which consists of vegetables and some meat. Most people refer Chinese -style lumpia because of the main filling is made of sauted chopped carrots, green beans, tofu, bean sprouts , mushrooms, sayote ,crush peanuts , fried and crush vermicelli noodles, hoti ( type of green seaweed ) , lettuce leaves ,wansoy ( chopped coriander leaves) , with sweet sauce or slightly spicy sauce. Some would like more more fresh chopped garlic included in the wrapper , some do not like fresh garlic and wansoy ( chopped coriander leaves ) . BUT i loved them.

Lumpia Puso ng Saging (  banana blossom spring rolls)

Lumpia Puso ng Saging or Banana Blossom Spring Roll is not popular in mainstream Philippine culinary palate , But once you tasted it , you will be a convert . It is one of the alternatives for meat and oily deep fried spring rolls. The ingredients is quite common especially when you come from a province where there are a lot of banana plants in bloom.

The common variety of banana blossom is  the saging na saba ( a type of plantain) .  I have tasted this lumpia in a gathering of some senior citizen which prefers this type of lumpia compared to lumpiang shanghai  . This is the same with Lumpiang Kabute ( Mushroom Spring roll) In mushroon growing areas , They used 2 to 3 types of mushroom , chop them finely combined with tofu , carrots and spices. They can be a good alternative to the usual fried lumpia.

The dipping sauce is very varied too, Some use ordinary vinegar with some finely chopped garlic, shallots , chilli peppers and ground peppers. Other favorite condiments includes, banana ketchup, soy sauce with vinegar with finely chopped onions, chilli peppers and calamansi .

The banana blossom lumpia is much cheaper to make compared to the mushroom lumpia .  One big banana blossom only cost between Php 15 to Php 30 in local wet market ( depending on season and availability )

Lumpiang Shanghai by Ambos Mundos

Ambos Mundos is one of the oldest restaurant in Santa Cruz, Manila area . The restaurant offers Filipino, Chinese and Spanish dishes . One of the fave is their Lumpiang Shanghai .

Lumpiang Ubod / Sariwa by Max’s restaurant

Lumpiang Ubod ng Niyog- This is one of the most popular spring rolls being offered by Goldilocks, Max’s restaurant , Kunina ni Kambal among several others. The main ingredients are the young coconut  heart are sauteed with shrimp and pork, rolled in crepe-like wrappers made with flour , egg and cornstarch. Special coconut farms specifically for the production of palms. If unavailable , Picama /Jicama  / Singkamas can be used to substitute .

home -style lumpia

The author have tasted at least around a dozen or so variation with different types of ingredients and preparation. I have an aunt who prepares Filipino- Chinese style of lumpia with 18 ingredients .  I tried to collectively write about the different types of lumpias that i have eaten , mostly in Metro Manila . But i think that there are more than a dozen  of spring roll variants.

This is our home-style version of lumpia- It is our way of combining different ingredients and cooking styles. The wrapper is home made .

Lumpiang Tagalog by Kusina ni Kambal

The cheapest and one of the most underrated ones are Lumpiang Frito / Lumpiang Toge or Lumpia Gulay ( normally fried )  – without the wrappers, The dish is called Lumpia Hubad or Lumpia Tagalog. 

lumpiang frito  is also called lumpiang gulay ,lumpiang toge

They are commonly sold as street foods all over the country and price range from Php 4.00 to about Php 40.00 in posh malls. Spring rolls or lumpia ingredients vary from one family to another . It may also due to the availability of the ingredients.

Mann Hann restaurant serve lumpia. Delis like Little Store, DEC, or sunday market bazaar regular Yen Ching , New Po Heng near Binondo church , GLOBE lumpia in Quiapo , Maki Place, New Eastern Restaurant along Ongpin street, Sincerity in Yuchengco street ( formerly called Nueva)  , Polland , Baliwag Lechon among others.