Now that is THE question.
This wasn’t the first time I was asked to share my knowledge about Filipino cuisine. In fact, the lunch date earlier was the FOURTH time I was asked to help navigate a non-Filipino through a maze of dishes on a Filipino restaurant’s menu. Who wouldn’t want to help out a fellow foodie in need?
I somehow surprised, or maybe even was so dumbfounded, on how enthusiastic and proud I was talking about my culinary roots. I managed to pick up and formulate a lot of insights from realizations about Filipino food from observations, history lessons and geography lessons from school, my food loving family and personal travels, which I have never ever given the light of day in my entire life. I don’t like talking about Filipino food. In fact, I won’t deny that Filipino food isn’t my most favorite cuisine in the world, even if it means home for an OFW (Overseas Filipino Wife) like me. It really isn’t. But I found myself loving Filipino food all of a sudden. I found myself asserting my Filipino roots. I found myself proud to be Filipino, even if, sometimes, I feel an undeniable need to just renounce my nationality all together.
Is this the same sentiment for all Filipino migrants? Amidst a sea of alien cultures, do you suddenly feel that insatiable urge to learn more about your country, your history and your culture? Do you suddenly feel that fervor to assert your Filipino-ness?
Now I wish that I had paid more attention in my Philippine history classes. Now I wish that I consciously listened to all my father’s monologues about Philippine history. Now I wish that I had bought and brought along Filipino food history books to take a deep dive into the what, where, how and why of this dish and that dish.
I know I can be a Filipino food ambassadress. In some twisted limitless corner in my head, I know I can be. But somehow, I need to build more knowledge of Filipino food. So would someone be so kind to send over some Doreen Fernandez and other notable Filipino food history and culture books? I desperately need them right now.
Delirious about delicious,