Monday, May 24, 2010

Zambales -- a food Trip

I spent Saturday and Sunday in Candelaria, Zambales, with my siblings and their families, just soaking up the sun (just the heat, really), swimming and trying out the different delicacies. Candelaria is popular not just for its sweet mangoes but also for its pastillas which is made from carabao's milk and sugar. The one made in Candelaria is a bit more white in color than the ones sold in Iba. I was told it is because some use brown sugar and condensed milk, unlike the ones sold in Candelaria which is made only with pure carabao's milk and white sugar.

When we arrived, i took the time to visit their public market, since i am a fan of Frank's Burgers. I got distracted and got a chance to try some of their fish balls instead. Unlike the ones sold in Manila, their fish balls are made from real fish and carrots in batter, scooped and deep fried to crunchy perfection. It was so good i ate 30 pieces! I also got to try their melon milk which was a good way to wash down the fish balls.

Since my family loves to eat, my sister's expert cook Manang Gaya prepared some belly busters when we arrived in time for lunch. Steaming hot sinigang na baboy and grilled Bangus with fresh seaweeds on the side for lunch on our first day and homemade fried chicken and gravy, picadillo and enseladang talon on our first night. (ooops, i forgot to mention the fresh mangoes!)

Breakfast was no exception-- tortang talong, garlic sausage na hubad, english breakfast sausages with cheese, fresh oranges, daing na bangus and sinangag were served, and for lunch we were served by my sister Ruby and brother-in-law Mario with the freshest and sweetest giant prawns and crabs. We had such a good time eating that it took us a good 2 hours to finally put down our plates and end our lunch.

Another sea food i love in Candelaria is the Barellete (which looks a lot like yellow fin tuna). Whenever i am in Candelaria, i make it a point to request some grilled barellete (if it is available -- i was told it is hard to come by). Luckily for us, my sister and the cook Manang Gaya managed to buy some in Santa Cruz' public market.

On our way home from our weekend getaway, my sister Ruth said we would have dinner at Xtremely Xpresso. We ordered their big pesto chicken pizza (and another pizza flavor which i don't remember), some spicy oriental shrimp pasta and an order of Ben's Burger -- a tasty hamburger grilled to perfection the size of a dinner plate. I washed the food down with some ice cold coffee (and a stick of Marlboro Ultra-Menthol). I wanted to order one for take out but decided against it in the end. Big mistake on my part. Tsk. Tsk.

I guess every time we go on a weekend getaway, it turns into a food trip -- but hey, who's complaining?

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