The Philippines is an archipelago of islands in the west Pacific Ocean. The country is located in southeast Asia with the South China Sea to its west and the Philippine Sea to its east. It comprises of over seven thousand islands with the capital city being Manila. Around the 15th century, the island nation was colonized by the Spanish empire. It was in fact named after Philip II, the crown prince of Spain. During this period the city of Manila developed as a major trade hub, forming the connecting link between Asia and America.
Towards the end of the nineteenth century, the Philippines declared their independence from the Spanish rule only to come under the governance of the United States. Many revolts and uprisings followed for the next fifty years. It was only after the Second World War in 1946 that the Philippines was established as an independent nation.
The country is a melting pot of multiple cultures and ethnic groups. The native Austronesian and Melanesian cultures are visible apart from the mix of American and Spanish cultures. Though English and Filipino are the official languages, the Filipinos speak more than a hundred native languages with the likes of Tagalog, Cebuano being most common. Though Catholicism is the most dominant religion, others like Islam, Hinduism are also seen among the people.
What is interesting to note is that food and fiestas are an important part of the lives of the Filipinos. The Filipinos love food and even go into debt to pay for their parties. The people also maintain very close family relations. In fact, it is a tradition to welcome strangers to their fiestas.
Speaking of the Filipino cuisine, it is a mix-up of Indian, Spanish, American and Chinese food. It is often a combination of a sweet, salty and sour taste. The Filipino food recipes are known to be less spicy and depend on garlic, onion, and ginger for building up the taste. Rice is the staple food there. Of the many amazing Filipino dishes, Adobo (could be of meat or vegetables) is one very often found in local restaurants. Served with rice, it is very tasty and loved by all Filipinos. Pansit, rice noodles cooked with the perfect mix of sauces, vegetables and meats is the most popular dish.
Sinigang is a unique sour soup of the cuisine made of native vegetables, tamarind, meats. Sisig is a traditional dish of chopped up barbecued pork, also found in different variations. It's a must to try for travelers. Lumpia is yet another unique and tasty snack. It's more of a wrap of meats and vegetables served with a not-so-common banana sauce. When it comes to fiestas, the families gather together and cook for long hours. Noche Buena(celebrated onChristmas eve) is their most important fiesta. And in such occasions, lechon forms the main attraction of the table. It is nothing but an entire roasted pig, stuffed with herbs and vegetables. Chicharon, Halo-halo, Calamansi juice, paellas, tapa, mechado and Jollibee are some other dishes and drinks to be tried by travelers.
First, let me introduce myself. I'm Arwa; a citizen of the world. I like to explore the world, and try different foods from around the globe. Here, I share my passion for food with you, bringing you closer to different cultures an...Read more