Top 10 Philippine Street Food

Photo by Lori Baltazar

Philippine street food is a multi-colored spectrum of permutation and imagination. Filipino ingenuity is boundless and so is our appetite for portable food that demands to be satisfied with high flavor at a low price. Here, a (very) short list of street food commonly sold on Manila streets.

Photo by Lori Baltazar
Corn (Mais)
One of the simplest is also one of the most sundry. Just boiled, steam escapes from its plastic cocoon, its fragrance at once familiar and sparking cravings. Grilled, the yellow or white corn is brandished with marks and burnished. Or fancier still if the vendor so fancies it as well, the corn can be shredded from its husk and seasoned with salt, smeared with butter (margarine, most likely), or stirred in with a cheap cheese mixture to make cheese corn.

Photo by Lori Baltazar
There's also something called binatog. It's sold on the streets by itinerant vendors who make their presence known by knocking a piece of wood with a stick. The resultant sound is hollow and short. Binatog is a Laguna delicacy of boiled corn served warm and mixed in with grated coconut. It's made from native white corn which is stickier, mealier than the more common yellow variety. It's eaten with either salt or sugar and is exceedingly pleasing because of its chewiness and various textures.
Peanuts (Mani)
Most of the time, these peanuts are brought to bored people idling in their cars at the stoplight. Pushed around in a makeshift cart, peanuts are strangely satiating when eaten warm, the tongue puckering from the excess of salt. The peanuts can be boiled and sold still in their shells, or fried with lots of garlic chips.

Photo by Lori Baltazar
Kwek-kwek and its clique
Perhaps the most vibrantly colored of all the street foods, this one also has the funniest name, triggering chuckles to the uninitiated. The basic version is kwek-kwek (also quek-quek): boiled quail eggs dredged in an orange batter and deep-fried. The color comes from tints of annatto powder, locally known as atsuete or pinulbos na atsuete. Kwek-kwek is eaten with lots of vinegar to offset its inherent greasiness.
For those with bigger appetites, there's the bigger, badder version called tokneneng (also tukneneng or tuknanay), hard-boiled chicken eggs prepared the same way. Other versions include hepalog, the balut or duck egg version, believe it or not.

Photo by Lori Baltazar
The "-cues": Banana cue, Camote Cue and Turon
A motley of spellings here, from banana-q to banana-que, with or without the hyphen. I prefer to stick to my spelling above. Semantics and spelling aside however, this has to be the most-loved street food, cutting across all classes and biases.
Local plaintains or savory bananas, saba, are immersed in hot oil and brown sugar. The intense heat and sweet thoroughly coat the banana in a gleaming copper coat. One bite, gingerly taken, rewards the eater with shards of crackling sugar breaking away to reveal soft banana. It's endlessly satisfying and oh so cheap, all eaten on a stick. The same treatment is given to camote (also, kamote) and stuck on a stick, or French fry-style as in camote chips.
Turon is saba enclosed in an egg wrapper, sprinkled with sugar, and depending on availability and inclination, strips of langka (jackfruit). It's given another dredging in brown sugar and is then promptly dropped into hot oil. It emerges and is then sold upright in a tall container, edible soldiers for a sticky-sweet snack.

Photo by Lori Baltazar
Kakanins are rice cakes, usually sold at markets in the morning or by roving vendors, usually women. They come in motley colors and shapes — rectangular and purple, white and round — all promising to sate hunger quickly and with the maximum carbo-load that we Filipinos crave.

source: yahoo ph

Earthquake hits Manila Philippines Capital

An earthquake has hit several parts of Manila Monday, the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology confirmed.

In a televised interview, Phivolcs Director Renato Solidum said the 6:27 p.m. earthquake registered a magnitude 5.8, its epicenter recorded in Lubang Island.

Solidum later clarified in a radio interview the earthquake registered a 5.7 magnitude.

The earthquake was also personally felt by the staff of Yahoo! Philippines.

Solidum said Intensity 4 was recorded in the following areas: Manila City; Marikina City; Talisay, Batangas; Tagaytay City.

Intensity III - Quezon City; Alabang; Makati; Taguig; Malabon; Bacoor, Cavite; Lubang Island; San Jose, Mindoro Occidental.; Abra de Ilog; Calapan, Mindoro Occidental.

Intensity II - Lucban, Quezon; Plaridel, Bulacan; Cabanatuan City, Nueva Ecija; Baguio City

In a separate report by United States Geological Survey (USGS), it said the earthquake registered a 5.4 magnitude, its epicenter at least 88 kilometers southwest of Manila.

Solidum said there was no reason for Filipinos to panic, amid growing fears of a local quake disaster. On March 11, Japan listed an 8.9-magnitude quake which already left thousands killed and several thousand others missing.

"Siyempre ang paalala lang itong mga lindol na ito ay maliliit pa lamang, kung malalaki dapat paghandaan," said Solidum.

Solidum said the recently felt quake wasn't extraordinary as the Philippines records at least 20 earthquakes a day.

"Hindi pa ito masyadong malakas kasi magnitude 5.7-5.8. Ang dapat paghandaan malapit sa magnitude 7," he added.

Solidum also allayed fears of a tsunami occurrence.

"Wala pong threat ng tsunami masyado ng malalim yung lindol," said Solidum.

Bb. Pilipinas bet disqualified over sexy photos

MANILA, Philippines - After a string of disqualifications for this year's Binibining Pilipinas pageant, another candidate is struck off the list of 40 official candidates vying for the country's most prestigious beauty title.
In a statement, Binibining Pilipinas Charities Inc. (BPCI) said candidate Bianca Paz is out of the competition "due to circumstances affecting her which recently came to light."
"Binibining Pilipinas Charities Inc. has today removed another candidate from the 2011 roster due to circumstances affecting her which recently came to light. As with the previous statement, we urge everyone to cease further speculation regarding the matter as respect to the privacy and integrity of all those concerned," BPCI said in a statement Thursday.
The 2-time Binibining Pilipinas candidate was reportedly released from the official list because she posed for a sexy calendar in the past.

The photo shoot had behind the scenes footage, where the side of Bianca's breast was reportedly exposed.
Paz was an official candidate of the pageant in 2009 and placed 6th overall in the final standings.
Early this month, beauty queen hopeful Roxanne Cabanero was also removed from the official list of Binibining Pilipinas candidates because of a nude photo scandal.
Cabanero, however, vehemently denied that she is the woman in the picture.
source: yahoo ph

Tsunami alert up over 19 Philippine provinces after Japan quake

UPDATED 4:20 p.m. - State seismologists raised a tsunami alert over at least 19 areas in the Philippines on Friday afternoon after a magnitude-8.9 quake hit Japan, the biggest to hit that country in seven years.

The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) raised Tsunami Alert Level 2, warning of possible waves reaching Philippine shores between 5:00 and 7:00 p.m.

The Phivolcs advised the public to be on alert for unusual waves, which may be as high as one meter.

The United States Geological Survey (USGS) said the quake occurred at 1:46 p.m. near the east coast of Honshu, Japan.

Phivolcs director Renato Solidum Jr. said in an interview on dzBB radio the areas in the eastern coastline include:

  • Batanes Islands

  • Cagayan

  • Ilocos Norte

  • Isabela

  • Quezon

  • Aurora

  • Camarines Norte

  • Camarines Sur

  • Albay

  • Catanduanes

  • Sorsogon

  • Northern Samar

  • Eastern Samar

  • Leyte

  • Northern Leyte

  • Surigao del Norte

  • Surigao del Sur

  • Davao Oriental

  • Davao del Sur

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    Biggest quake in seven years

    The USGS estimated the epicenter at 130 kilometers (km) east of Sendai, Honshu; 178 km east of Yamagata, Honshu; 178 km east-northeast of Fukushima, Honshu; or 373 km northeast of Tokyo.

    According to a report of Reuters, the USGS said the quake struck off-shore 81 miles (130 kms) east of Sendai in Honshu at a depth of 15.2 miles (24 kms).

    The USGS earlier reported a 7.9 magnitude for the quake. However, the USGS revised its report to state that it was a magnitude-8.9 quake.

    The massive earthquake shook buildings in Tokyo, causing "many injuries," at least one fire and triggering a four-meter (13-ft) tsunami, NHK television and witnesses reported.

    There was also a warning of a 10-meter tsunami following the quake, Japan's biggest in seven years.

    No evacuation

    "Walang evacuation order pero dapat maghanda ang komunidad sa eastern coastline ng ating bansa at maghintay ng additional information kung sakaling magkakaroon ng evacuation," Solidum said in an interview on dzBB radio.

    (While there is no evacuation order, the communities in those areas should watch out and wait for additional information in case an evacuation is needed.)

    He said the alert level also stemmed from a similar alert from the Pacific Tsunami Warning Center.
    "Ito pwedeng malaki at may pwersa (Such waves can be very big and powerful)," Solidum said, adding such waves may continue for hours.

    He advised people to stay away from the shorelines, and not go to the coast to watch the tsunami.

    People in coastal areas should also go further inland, he added.

    "Huwag maging usyoso pagpunta sa dalampasigan (Do not go to the shore to watch the waves)," he said.

    Earlier, Solidum also said residents with boats should secure the vessels in preparation for the waves.

    Meanwhile, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council warned fishermen against going out to sea at this time.

    "Ang mangingisda bantayan nila ito (Fishermen should be on alert)," NDRRMC head Benito Ramos said in a separate interview on dzBB.
  • Massive 8.9 magnitude earth quake hits Japan

    Tokyo (CNN) -- An 8.9-magnitude earthquake hit northern Japan on Friday, triggering tsunamis and sending a massive body of water filled with debris that included boats and houses inching toward highways.

    The epicenter was 373 kilometers (231 miles) away from the capital, Tokyo, the United States Geological Survey said. But residents there felt the tremors.

    The quake rattled buildings and toppled cars off bridges and into waters underneath. Waves of debris flowed like lava across farmland, pushing boats, houses and trailers toward highways.

    In Tokyo, crowds gathered in the streets and tried to reach relatives via cell phone.

    Scenes inside office buildings showed papers strewn all over the floor and people clinging onto seats and desks.

    Such a large earthquake at such a shallow depth creates a lot of energy, said Shenza Chen of the U.S. Geological Survey.

    It caused a power outage in about 4 million homes in Tokyo and surrounding areas.

    A tsunami in the Pacific was moving closer to other shorelines in other countries, said CNN meteorologist Ivan Cabrera.

    It triggered tsunami warnings for various countries, including Japan and Russia, the National Weather Service said.

    "Earthquakes of this size are known to generate tsunamis potentially dangerous to coasts outside the source region," it said.

    "Based on all available data a tsunami may have been generated by this earthquake that could be destructive on coastal areas even far from the epicenter."

    The quake was the latest in a series in the region this week.

    Early Thursday, an earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 6.3 struck off the coast of Honshu.

    A day earlier, a 7.2-magnitude earthquake struck off of Honshu, the country's meteorological agency said.

    The largest recorded quake took place in Chile on May 22, 1960, with a magnitude of 9.5, the USGS said.

    The song and music video aim to encourage Filipinos to be more aware and appreciative of their own local attractions and inspire a renewed sense of pride in the beauty, history and culture of the Philippines.