Well, since you read my last article, I’ve aged another year! Yep, my birthday was on Saturday! I normally don’t enjoy having a birthday party or anything like that. In fact, I can’t really remember the last time I had a party for my birthday, other than just enjoying a good meal with our immediate family. But, this year, Feyma suggested to me that we invite a friend over for my birthday, and I agreed. As it happened, after that, I kept thinking of other friends that I wanted to invite, and it kept growing! It still was not huge, just very close friends, and a couple of new acquaintances that I had recently met, but wanted to get to know better.
It all started about a week ago when I was reading one of the blogs that I normally read called Market Manila. It is a cooking/food blog written by a Filipino fellow who calls himself “Market Man”. MarketMan always features some really scrumptious food, and I enjoy following him. Well, anyway, MarketMan recently featured an article about “Liempo on Bamboo a la Marketman,” or his adaptation of “Balamban Liempo” a creation from Balamban, Cebu. When I saw the article, the pictures of his creation looked absolutely delicious! I immediately told Feyma that I wanted to try it, and she agreed readily. As a matter of fact, this is when she told me:
What if we cook this for your birthday and invite some friends over?
So, that is how the birthday party idea was born! Feyma started searching for a full liempo, which is the rib cage area of a pig, including the ribs and everything. The ribs are cut out from the cut of meat and used to make soup or something later, if wanted. The liempo cut is then marinated, and spices are put on it. Read Marketman’s article to get the full scoop on how it is cooked – I’m more into the eating than the cooking, which is obvious! See pictures below of the process of cooking the liempo.
For the party, we invited my Bisaya Teacher, Bebe Metillo and her family, and also my long time friend, Michael, who moved to Davao last year from Israel. Lucky, a German who is also a Bisaya student attended too. One person whom I met last week for the first time is LiP reader Preben Christensen and his wife Glen, who are visiting the Philippines right now. Preben and Glen took us out for dinner at De Bonte Ko last week, and we enjoyed their company so much that we wanted to get together with them again before they left Davao, so this was a perfect chance! Also, another regular LiP reader and commenter had just arrived in Davao the day before my birthday, John Coldwell, aka “John from Austria” so I also invited him to join us. So, like I said, not a huge party, just a couple close friends, and new friends that I wanted to get to know better.
My brother-in-law, Jhun Ortiz came up from GenSan for the party too, he did the cooking of the Liempo, which I greatly appreciated! Thank you, Jhun! My nephew, Deo, and my kids also helped with the cooking of the Liempo too, so thanks to all of them for the help! Of course, thank you to my nieces and household helpers who did much of the “inside” work, and getting everything ready for the party. And, of course thanks mostly to Feyma, as she got everything rolling, and was the driving force behind the party. Hey, I even helped a bit myself! Thanks to me? Ha ha.
So, that’s what we did for my 48th birthday! It was a great party, great people, great food… first class all the way. Thank you very much to Feyma, and all the family who put in work to make it a special day for me! On the Pork Liempo, I really have to say that this was the best pork I’ve eaten in my life! We will certainly be cooking this again, and again!