A trusted brand in every Filipino kitchen, Unilever Food Solutions recently launched its series of online videos called "Food Trends" set to heighten food innovation. These bite-sized but informative videos feature six Southeast Asian food trends--namely: Food Tourism, Serving Portions, Dish Innovation, Creating Memorable Experiences, Smarter Kitchens and Rise of the Chef--these are worth watching for especially for Filipino chefs and restaurateurs. The said videos are free and downloadable at Unilever Food Solutions' official website
In 2013, the food service industry had seen the emergence of new restaurants and concepts together with the evolution of the Filipino palate seeking for more adventurous and sophisticated food. Philippine tourism also contributed to this growth as there were about 4.7 million tourist arrivals in the country. Local Filipino cuisine is now taking the spotlight this 2014 as more people both local and international tourists plan their destination and itineraries around food. Tourists are looking forward towards trying a wider variety of cuisines and sample the most daring dish innovations they can find.
Selected members of the media and bloggers were lucky to have been invited by Unilever Food Solutions to the Food Trends launch where we were able to sample an array of Filipino Kapampangan foods from traditional ones to exotic. It's a way to promote original Kapampangan dishes. The said event was held at Abe's Farm in Pampanga. Food tourism in Pampanga had also been consistent as it is said to be the culinary capital of the country--home of the best chefs in town! We were able to sample cultured frogs cooked Deep Fried Stuffed Betute. It was my first time to eat something as exotic and I realized it tasted just like chicken--only with a twist! The frog was stuffed with ground pork and frog meat with loads of garlic and pepper that it actually tasted like longganisa. The deep fried frog was served alongside crispy chicharon bulaklak and fiddlehead fern salad. Both complement the frog's taste.
Binukadkad na Plapla with Burong Hipon
Rice Cooked in bamboo
Grilled Pork Liempo with Atchara
We were also served Bulanglang Bangus Belly Sinigang in Guava. It was truly a comfort food as upon sipping the hot soup, you'll know it wasn't done using any short-cuts! It was honest-to-goodness soup that tasted the richness of guava. Of course, not to be missed was the Binukadkad na Plapla (served looking like a butterfly)with fermented shrimp (burong hipon). The fermented shrimp did not smell good but it goes perfectly well with the fried fish. No wonder this dish is a favorite among Abe's restaurant goers.
Kare-kare made of veggies, peanut sauce and Ox tail
Vegetable version of Bicol Express
There's an all-vegetable Bicol Express in a creamy white coconut based sauce, another Bicolano favorite Laing, sinfully Crispy Pata and to die-for Kare-kare in sumptuous peanut sauce! The brown rice cooked in bamboo is also worth mentioning. It's a viand on itself, reminds one of chow fan or yang chow rice. As if that wasn't enough, Sikreto ni Maria perfectly ends our hearty meal. Composed of homemade macapuno ice cream with sticky suman with ripe mango slices and panocha syrup (muscovado syrup)--it's the best way to cap off our meal.
Sikreto ni Maria Dessert
"As the food service arm of Unilever, we at Unilever Food Solutions believe in its mission to keep chefs and restaurant operators equipped with the knowledge and skills to run their food business successfully," shared Seanta Reyes, UFS Philippine Marketing Manager. "The Food Trends videos at www.UFS.com are made so that our partners, business owners and operators would keep abreast the latest food innovations, to be in sync with their clients' needs--that's hat Food Trends aims to provide."
"Nowadays, traveling isn't simply just about seeing new sights but it is also about trying authentic local eats," says UFS Philippines Sous Chef Pippo Aluning on Food Tourism. With the demand and competition on the rise, operating a successful commercial kitchen isn't an easy task. But with food trends online videos, Unilever Food Solutions provide the much-needed resources to keep up with the quickly evolving industry. For more information and to watch Food Trends online series, log on to www.UFS.com/foodtrends.