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Exploring Filipino Kitchens

Updated 7 days ago

Arts
Food
Books
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Every month, host Nastasha Alli chats with Filipino food lovers across the world to ask: what does your Filipino kitchen look like?

Read more

Every month, host Nastasha Alli chats with Filipino food lovers across the world to ask: what does your Filipino kitchen look like?

iTunes Ratings

13 Ratings
Average Ratings
11
1
1
0
0

Exploring Filipino Kitchens

By Betty Ann Quirino - Oct 15 2018
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Great podcast episodes on Philippine cooking, Filipino culture, stories & our people. The host, Nastasha is a wonderful storyteller and can bring out the best from those she interviewed. Worth subscribing!

Will there be a Season 2? Please do a Season 2!

By APTlynamed - Sep 28 2018
Read more
This is such a great podcast! I am going to re-listen to Season 1. I hope there will be more episodes.

iTunes Ratings

13 Ratings
Average Ratings
11
1
1
0
0

Exploring Filipino Kitchens

By Betty Ann Quirino - Oct 15 2018
Read more
Great podcast episodes on Philippine cooking, Filipino culture, stories & our people. The host, Nastasha is a wonderful storyteller and can bring out the best from those she interviewed. Worth subscribing!

Will there be a Season 2? Please do a Season 2!

By APTlynamed - Sep 28 2018
Read more
This is such a great podcast! I am going to re-listen to Season 1. I hope there will be more episodes.

The Best Episodes of:

Cover image of Exploring Filipino Kitchens

Exploring Filipino Kitchens

Updated 7 days ago

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Every month, host Nastasha Alli chats with Filipino food lovers across the world to ask: what does your Filipino kitchen look like?

Rank #1: EP 08: The Ancient Filipino Diet With Dr. Ame Garong

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What can we learn from our ancestors' diets? This month we’re talking with Dr. Ame Garong, researcher at the Archeology Division at the National Museum of the Philippines. In 2013 Dr. Garong published a book called "Ancient Filipino Diet". It's the first study of Filipino food in pre-history - before colonizers or any foreign influence arrived in the Philippines - written to explore and understand the prehistoric diet of our ancestors.

Dr. Garong shares her research with us, including stories about what it's like to literally dig for clues, how to thwart midnight thieves and the importance of getting locals involved with grassroots preservation efforts.

After this interview, I still had so many questions. How can this knowledge of what our ancestors ate, influence our food choices today? How much of this lines up with what we really eat and how our food culture develops globally?

Show notes

04:40 What it's like to be a Philippine archeologist
05:55 How her career started
07:30 Early fieldwork
08:00 "An accident happened..."
09:45 How do we find out what our ancestors ate?
11:20 What exactly was in their paleo diet?
14:00 Stuff they've found in archaeological sites
15:00 Batanes and ancient fish
18:10 A giant heap of shell trash in Cagayan Valley
21:30 "Tinapa" mummies in Benguet
22:55 Why Cebuanos love corn
24:40 Challenge #1: Time and thieves
28:10 Challenge #2: On rituals and religion
30:30 Challenge #3: A lack of knowledge and involvement
33:00 What's next?

FIND THE FULL EPISODE TRANSCRIPT HERE.

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Sep 18 2017

36mins

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Rank #2: EP 17: Community Supported Agriculture with Charlene Tan

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What does community supported agriculture look like in the Philippines today?

This episode we chat with Charlene Tan, who started the Good Food Community CSA (community supported agriculture) program with a small group of volunteers in 2010. Back then, the idea of fresh vegetables delivered weekly to your door - to city dwellers who lived in Manila - wasn’t such a common concept. After all, if you had your pick of produce available at grocery stores, why lock yourself into a limited supply of vegetables that you may not even know how to cook with?

But Char and her team were determined to make a difference - in the lives of the farmers they came to know well, and in what people thought about locally-grown, backyard “bahay kubo” vegetables.

It truly takes a village to succeed, and eight years on, the Good Food Community’s growing base of customers and advocates prove that sustainable agriculture and profitable farming can co-exist in the Philippines.

Show notes

02:05 Food sustainability in the media
04:00 About Good Food Community
05:35 Starting a community supported agriculture program
08:55 "It was something completely new"
11:30 Consumer challenges
12:10 The "bahay kubo" vegetables
15:45 Farmer challenges
19:25 Food accessibility in the Philippines
20:10 Building a cooperative
21:45 On rice and food security
24:10 Ate Lady - a young, model farmer
27:55 Weekly "bayong" deliveries
29:45 "There are many ways to talk about sustainability"
31:50 Hopefully, a movement
33:10 Choosing the riches we have
34:00 Working with agriculturists
35:45 Building relationships and presence
36:40 A sense of place

Links for this episode

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Nov 30 2018

40mins

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Rank #3: EP 14: Food Holidays In The Philippines With Clang Garcia

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"Food Holidays Philippines" is a culinary travel guidebook that won "Best In The World" at the 2017 Gourmand World Cookbook Awards. Like some of the world's most notable travel guides, it was made with a shoestring budget - and later paved the way for certain kinds of travellers to find exactly what they were looking for. We're talking with Clang Garcia about her travel company, Jeepney Tours, and what it was like to collect stories and recipes from around the country to feature in this incredible guide. This episode is about my two great loves!

Show notes

02:20 Food is inescapably a part of travel
05:40 About
08:00 What makes the jeepney so special?
10:35 The beauty of our food
13:00 Day trips, overnight food trips and 3 delicious days
13:15 Bicol's terroir
16:50 Growing businesses around food
17:50 Redefining "luxury tourism" in the Philippines
23:00 Lessons from travelling the country
25:15 "It's time to compete"
26:05 Touring chefs for Madrid Fusion Manila
28:10 Recipes from cooks of Spanish friars in Bulacan
32:00 The culinary champions of Pampanga
33:20 Plantanillas: A native Philippine dessert
35:50 What else is there?
38:10 Making "Food Holidays Philippines"
39:50 Winning the Gourmand World Cookbook Award
42:45 "We're at the cusp of a gastronomy revolution"
44:30 The appeal of food tourism

FIND THE FULL EPISODE TRANSCRIPT HERE.

Links for this episode

  • Order a copy of "Food Holidays Philippines" through The Kitchen Bookstore.

  • F&B Report, the Philippines' premiere food service industry magazine, recently published a feature on Clang. You can purchase a digital copy of that issue here.

  • Follow her on Instagram!

Subscribe and share your feedback below!

May 26 2018

47mins

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Rank #4: EP 03: Rediscover Philippine Ingredients with Amy Besa

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Why does Amy Besa go to great lengths to find a vanishing fruit, turn it into jam, then serve it to diners who come to her restaurant in search of a truly Filipino meal? That answer is in Amy and Chef Romy Dorotan’s philosophy to cooking at Purple Yam - the restaurants they own in Malate, Manila and Brooklyn, New York City.

What prompted this episode?

Filipino chefs are drawn to Amy’s quest for sourcing the best Philippine ingredients available like bees are drawn to nectar for making honey - they know it takes work to get the good stuff. Her stories are perfect for scrapbooking; they’re snapshots of rural life in the Philippines, where indigenous varieties of fruit and vegetables grow, of how those ingredients become our personal travel guides to tasting food from different regions and micro-climates on a plate.

I wanted to know where those beautiful ingredients that Amy posts on her Instagram feed come from. What do they taste like and what did it take to get them to the restaurant? How can we use food to better understand Filipinos in general?

One thing I’ve learned from Amy is that “discovery” is a lifelong process. The idea of exploring relatively undocumented Philippine ingredients across professional and home kitchens is incredibly exciting.

Show notes

04:35 "It's so easy to win Filipinos over"
06:20 Sineguelas fruit at Madrid Fusion Manila
07:20 Doing what it takes to get the best ingredients into the restaurant
09:15 Sourcing from small farms
09:45 Benguet cherries
10:50 Their philosophy at Purple Yam
11:35 "Nature is not a factory!"
12:15 Purple Yam's kitchen mindset
13:35 On flavours embedded in our DNA
14:25 A profound concept
16:00 Community supported agriculture (CSAs) in the Philippines
17:30 Working with Philippine ingredients
18:40 New techniques
20:20 The importance of storytelling
21:50 "Back of house" stories
22:20 Kitchen is like a lab
23:00 Developing a relationship with ingredients
23:20 Training at Purple Yam
23:55 On sawsawan (dipping sauces)

FIND THE FULL EPISODE TRANSCRIPT HERE.

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Mar 26 2017

25mins

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Rank #5: EP 12: American Influence On Filipino Food With Alex Orquiza

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While lots of people talk about Filipino food in America today, I'm more interested in telling my story as a middle-class kid who grew up in Manila in the 90s. While I wasn't ashamed of having Filipino food in my lunch box, I definitely wanted hotdogs and french fries more than rice - and so did everyone else. But how exactly did Filipinos come to love American food so much? I asked Rene Alexander Orquiza, a professor based in Rhode Island whose research and teaching interests focus on 20th century American and Philippine history. He’s got fascinating stories to share about how 50 years of American colonial rule really shaped not just our food, but to a broader extent, the culture and traditions of the Philippines.

Show notes

05:15 About
08:05 Finding an area of study
11:15 Old menus in libraries
12:20 What I found in school syllabi
13:10 American missionaries arrive
15:00 The Fannie Farmer effect
17:05 A trickle down of knowledge
18:15 Del Monte ads
19:45 "The perfect drink for new mothers"
21:40 Hotdogs, ketchup and coca-cola
23:25 Giving context to our food culture
24:50 Why is American influence so important?
26:00 "That colonial mentality"
27:00 Another missing piece
28:05 "Filipino food was from 5 provinces"
29:20 On regionality
30:45 A visit to Marawi State University
33:55 The restaurant reviewer
35:50 Travel guides
37:00 Dinner and a show
39:40 The worldview of Mrs. Taft
44:30 "My parents make more sense now"
46:05 Regional cuisines are the future
48:40 Building a collective
50:00 Tying narratives together

FIND THE FULL EPISODE TRANSCRIPT HERE.

Links for this episode

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Mar 29 2018

52mins

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Rank #6: EP 07: On Pinoy Heritage With Francis Ang

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We’re talking with Francis Ang, the man behind a pop-up dinner series called Pinoy Heritage. Francis has worked in some of San Francisco's best restaurants, including the acclaimed Gary Danko and Fifth Floor. He's been named a west coast "People's Best Pastry Chef" by Food and Wine Magazine and nominated for Zagat's "30 Under 30" list in San Francisco.

Pinoy Heritage is a culinary project Francis started with his wife, Dian, following a trip to the Philippines. For the full story of how that led to the most exciting pop-up dinner series I've ever heard of - one that's grounded in Filipino food traditions - you'll have to listen in.

Show notes

03:20 Training at culinary school and in San Francisco's best kitchens
05:00 A life-changing visit to the Philippines
07:05 The seeds of Pinoy Heritage
10:25 Interpreting traditional Filipino dishes
11:30 Personal experience as a source of inspiration
12:50 The "soul" needs to be in it
14:25 Dishes with roots
17:35 On travel plans
22:20 Dishes come from what's local and abundant
26:55 Why you need to go to the Philippines
27:45 A nod to tradition
32:15 Advice for interested cooks
34:20 On Filipino hospitality

FIND THE FULL EPISODE TRANSCRIPT HERE.

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Jul 28 2017

37mins

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Rank #7: EP 06: Cooking Filipino Food At Home With Betty Ann Quirino

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We’re talking with Betty Ann Quirino - an author, recipe developer and prolific blogger at AsianInAmericaMag.com whose thoughts and experiences on cooking has personally helped me develop confidence in my own cooking abilities - to become part of what keeps global Filipino food culture alive.

This episode we talk about adapting Filipino recipes for modern kitchens, how our personal histories and experiences shape our relationship with food, and why you just need to pick up some groceries, get in the kitchen and start cooking. Can't promise we won't make you hungry!

Show notes

04:25 "People paid attention to my stories?"
06:10 From writing ad copy to blogging & authoring
07:30 Moving to the US
09:35 Starting the blog
12:20 On food, family and cooking
13:35 Growing up on a farm in the Philippines
19:50 The story of mangoes in a jar
23:50 "Who cares?"
24:50 A lesson learned
28:20 Finding ingredients is a challenge
28:45 3 components to successful recipes
29:30 Substituting traditional Philippine ingredients
32:30 Remember the origins of a dish
34:45 A visit to the Ilocos region
46:25 Food traditions are priceless
48:50 Advice for home cooks

Links for this episode

FIND THE FULL EPISODE TRANSCRIPT HERE.

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Jun 28 2017

54mins

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Rank #8: EP 09: On Travel With Purpose To Manila, A Farm And Ancestral Lands

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This episode, we're going off the usual path - actually, quite a ways off from my studio in Toronto, back to where it all begins: the Philippines. We can't really "Explore Filipino Kitchens" without going back to the motherland, right? So today, no interviews - just some raw thoughts from my trip, instead - and you'll hear horns rise above the traffic of Manila, tricycles speeding by, the calm of the countryside and the best joke about a caterpillar. Let's go! 

Show notes

02:05 A walk through the old walled city
05:15 Why "the middles" matter
11:45 At the Gawad Kalinga Enchanted Farm
12:35 Growing SEED (The School for Experiential and Entrepreneurial Development)
15:30 Why I love the countryside
18:30 "What song does a centipede hate?"
20:05 Walang iwanan, or no one is left behind
21:50 The stories that get to the heart of me
29:00 A journey to ancestral lands
34:25 Planting black-eyed peas in a nursery in a valley
36:55 The Yangil Tribe
37:50 The importance of a light switch
38:55 On tourism that gives back

Links for this episode

FIND THE FULL EPISODE TRANSCRIPT HERE.

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Nov 28 2017

43mins

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Rank #9: EP 04: Recording Filipino Food History with Felice Sta. Maria

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Have you ever wondered what it’s like to study food history? In the Philippines, it’s not a topic often discussed by the general public - despite our love for debating the origins of pancit or adobo. There are a handful of authors who delve into questions about where Filipino food comes from - and fewer still who frame the question of “tell me what you eat and I’ll tell you who you are” in the context of being Filipino. Felice Sta. Maria is the Philippines’ foremost scholar on food history - an award-winning author and advisor to the country’s top cultural institutions, whom I can honestly say has ignited my desire to read as much as I can about food history. The Foods of Jose Rizal and The Governor General's Kitchen were legitimate eye-openers to the depth and breadth of information we've found (and have yet to find) about food in the Philippines. To me, Felice made history approachable (and way more interesting than my high school textbooks could ever be).

If you’re a chef, tune in for Felice’s suggestions, as she outlines what food history can do for you and developing your dishes. R&D is, after all, an important aspect to the craft! If you’re interested in food history, whether Philippine specific or global - I promise you’ll learn a few new things (and wonder what it was like to live with cows at sea in the 1600s). If you’re Filipino and wondering “why should I care?”, that's a question you'll have to answer for yourself. Why is history relevant today? How much does an understanding of our past shape how we think of ourselves today?

Show notes

02:45 Who is the Filipino?
03:50 Developing an interest in food
09:35 Research on the Spanish era
11:20 Research on canned goods
15:10 What the new world brought to us
17:30 "How were our favourite dishes cooked originally?"
21:55 The importance of food studies
29:45 "It's like being a detective"
30:15 A human element to history
32:40 On traditional tastes
34:50 Benefit to locals
36:15 Catch the interest now!

FIND THE FULL EPISODE TRANSCRIPT HERE.

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Apr 26 2017

39mins

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Rank #10: EP 11: The Regional Cuisine Of Cebu With Louella Alix

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We’re going to the province of Cebu, in the central Visayas region of the Philippines, to talk about a much-beloved way of cooking with Louella Alix, author of a book called "Hikay: The Culinary Heritage of Cebu".

Cebuano cooking in itself - like many regional cuisines of the Philippines, is a reflection of its landscape - with local communities that each have distinct ways of preparing meals and various traditional food products. Like "puso", those perfectly steamed heart-shaped rice packets, and the famous "sutukil".

I am so excited to dive into the regional cooking of Cebu. Let’s get to it!

Show notes

02:30 About
03:25 "I was commissioned to write about food"
05:30 The meaning of "Hikay"
08:05 How families eat
09:30 Writing to preserve culinary traditions
10:25 Cebuano adobo
12:10 Flavours of Cebuano cooking
13:30 The essence of tinolang/tuwang isda (fish soup)
14:00 Cebuano escabeche
14:50 "There's ginger in everything"
16:50 Utan bisaya and the need to keep vegetables whole
20:00 Finding "Lagda Sa Pagpangluto"
25:30 Recipes from the book
29:30 All about torta
35:30 "This is my life's work"
36:30 "Reality makes you optimistic"
41:00 A little context on local food culture
43:15 What happens when you eat an "old" dish
44:10 "Filipinos are all about food"

FIND THE FULL EPISODE TRANSCRIPT HERE.

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Feb 19 2018

45mins

Play