Filipino Fiesta Menu: Popular Filipino Dishes Served in Every Filipino Occasion
The local food scene here in the Philippines is genuinely something to be proud of. Even with the fact that so many diverse cultures have influenced the country over the years, which also reflects beautifully in the culinary scene, there are a lot of Pinoy dishes that stand out on their own.
Also, the Filipinos are well known to be rice-loving folks. The rice or Kanin is the food that is always served at the table first. As the saying goes, you know you are Filipino when you have both spoon & fork in hand instead of the knife & fork because every Filipino meal involves rice. And of course, what are the favorite dishes commonly paired with rice that go so well with it.
Here are the top ten favorite Pinoy dishes best served with rice. Plus, you will not be surprised to see these Filipino Fiesta dishes that will ever be present on any and every Filipino occasion.
Your ultimate “Fiesta Ulam” spread will not be complete without Adobo on the spread. Adobong Manok, as it’s known locally, is a classic Filipino Fiesta dish connected to the Spanish roots because Adobo translates to “marinade” in Spanish.
This dish starts with marinating the chicken in a mixture of vinegar, soy sauce, black peppercorn, and garlic and then left to simmer in a pot until the chicken meat is tender. Also, the pork adobo recipe is cooked the same way.
Lechon, or roast pig, has never been absent in any celebration like fiestas and most especially on any grand occasion. It is always considered to be one of the star dishes served.
Because honestly, what is a Filipino fiesta without its counterpart in the form of a whole roasted pig, with its thick and crunchy pork skin and succulent pork meat?
The pancit (or pansit) is undoubtedly a favorite classic dish on any Filipino fiesta menu. This dish is cooked in many different ways due to the variety of noodles available per region. Popular regional noodle varieties are Pancit Lucban, Pancit Cabagan, and Pancit Bato of Bicol.
But the usual take for a classic pansit is cooking it with stir-fried veggies and your chosen lahok (chicken or pork).
Barbecue is also on the list since kids and adults love the good ‘ol barbecued meat of chicken, pork, and hotdogs. Because when there is a Pinoy party, you’ll be sure to find smoke billowing out of the backyard and the aroma of meat being grilled to perfection.
Morcon is the Filipino version of a meat roll with hotdogs, pickles, carrots, cheese, liver, and egg as stuffings. Morcon is considered a local Christmas dish so expect this dish to turn up on your dining table this Christmas season and on New Year’s Eve.
Lumpia is one of the favorites as well, and this dish is an influence of Chinese cuisine. Lumpia or spring rolls are trendy in the Philippines and almost always served on any occasion because it is very easy to make a large serving in less time.
Bistek Tagalog, more commonly called the Philippine Beef Steak, is prepared by marinating strips of beef sirloin in a sauce composed of soy sauce, pepper, and garlic before it is fried alongside white onions.
Once it’s done, it usually is finished with a bit of lime or calamansi juice to counteract the soy sauce flavor. The end result, of course, is the Filipino version of a saucy beef steak.
Some have called it the peanut stew of the Philippines, mainly because kare-kare is, in fact, a dish composed of oxtails and tripe with a peanut-based stew, along with a few sets of vegetables that includes petsay, long beans, and eggplants. This dish is usually paired with shrimp paste or alamang.
Aside from the lechon, the Crispy Pata is also a Filipino favorite because no one can resist the crispy skin and moist, tender pork meat.
The deep-fried pork leg is best served with some tasty dipping sauce, or its partner called the atsara, a pickled papaya relish. Every Filipino Occasion is not complete without Crispy Pata.
And lastly, for dessert, the one and only Halo-halo! It’s a very well known Filipino dessert which is made of shaved ice, mixed in with local fruits, banana and sweet potato, sweet corn, macapuno and coconut, sweetened beans as well as the two stars of the dessert – a scoop of ube and a piece of Leche flan and a scoop of ice cream to make it “special.” Of course, traditionally, you mix all of it together hence the name, Halo-Halo (meaning mix and mix).