It’s summertime and we’re still in quarantine. Comfort food is even more comforting and we’re craving for something sweet or savory to bring us small joys. A lot of yummy treats aren’t available on delivery so people have been getting more creative in their kitchens. With limited food supplies and another month to spend indoors, we’re trying to be more mindful of our meals but the tendency to snack is getting stronger.
Whether the days feel longer or not, I catch myself wondering when the next snack o’clock is. Since dynamics are different with everyone inside the home the entire day, it’s good to do your part in cooking for the family. But like me, not everyone is equipped with culinary skills. Lucky for us, there are simple recipes that aren’t compromises to the palate. There are a lot of Filipino snacks that are easy to make and sure to hit your tastebuds with a bang.
Lucky Me! Instant Pancit Canton
For a lot of people, Lucky Me! Instant Pancit Canton tastes like childhood. The company’s patented flavor is different from that of the traditional stir-fried noodle dish that many have attributed to umami. We’ve all been warned against it at least once and shrugged those warnings off because it just tastes so good. The dish is hard to mess up since the only cooking it requires is boiling. It does take a bit of practice to know when to take them out so they’re not too soggy. There are five flavors you can choose from so your family can enjoy a little variety and get a kick from the spice. Give it an upgrade with an egg or bits of meat and veggies.
Before coffee jelly became the go-to big party dessert, there was buko pandan. Not that the refreshing treat has totally lost its place on the tables of Filipino salu-salos. Although cream and condensed milk could be a bit of a splurge if your budget’s really tight, a single can of each is enough for a big serving. Pandan flavored gelatin only needs to be boiled and left to cool. Even if you’re not able to add real buko bits, a simplified version of buko pandan still tastes like summer.
A lot of Filipino delicacies fall under the malagkit category and are tough to make. Maja blanca is different. The coconut pudding is made by boiling coconut water, cornstarch and sugar together. You can add in some corn kernels to make it even more filling. This sweet dish is often served during Christmas so people connect it to festive memories. But you don’t need an occasion to serve this and to bring a smile on someone’s face.
Who doesn’t go gaga for eggs? I’ve never had a bad egg dish in my life. If you coat a boiled egg in some orange batter and deep fry it, you have yourself a quintessential tusok-tusok. Kwek-kwek isn’t just merienda. It’s a treat that can remind you of afternoons spent outside and getting a pick-me-up with friends.
Often overshadowed by lumpiang shanghai, lumpiang togue is seen as a snack while the former is more of a viand. The basic ingredients for this spring roll variation are mung bean sprouts and spring roll wrapper. To make it more filling, you can add stuff like fried tofu to the mung bean sprouts before making the wraps with your family. What is it about fried treats that make them taste so good?
It’s okay to make the food that makes you happy right now. If the way to the heart is through the stomach, then let’s whip up the treats that we love for our loved ones while we’re staying at home together.