I remember having to sit on a high chair, with everyone seated around the kitchen table freely taking whatever they wished to eat with their own plate, spoon & fork. What I ate every meal time on the other hand was not of my own choosing. A bowl and a teaspoon was assigned to me, yet I didn’t even have the freedom to touch them myself since someone else did that while feeding me. Most of the time, what I ate didn’t taste interesting at all. Some rice in my plastic bowl swimming in some sort of bland, lukewarm soup with mushy vegetables was probably all I could digest, after all I didn’t yet have molar teeth to chew food with.
At this point you’d probably be salivating at the thought of making different dipping sauces fit for every fish or meat dish that showed up on the dining table since the day you decided to stay. Yet you’d also be wondering what happened to that stink that got you out of the kitchen, swearing you’d never touch bulad, tamban, daing, tuyo ever again, or whatever salted dried fish or squid your charming Pinoy spouse fried or grilled for you, which was supposed to be the scope of this piece (it still is).
So the next time your beloved Pinoy spouse fries some bulad, tamban, daing or tuyo on the sly, stick around a bit and see if there’s garlic fried rice, fried eggs, diced salted tomatoes and a saucer with vinegar & crushed garlic to go with it, so you can finally enjoy it the way it’s supposed to be savored.
Occasional LiP visitor & commentator "Biz Doc" will contribute articles from time to time on day-to-day Pinoy realities.