Wednesday, February 27, 2008


Throughout the trip, we ate, ate again, snacked and then at ate some more. The Filipino term for a mid-day snack is Merienda. Well, it seems to me like they "snack" a lot. They aren't big people, so I don't know how they can do all this eating without being really overweight.

We passed countless food stands and vendors EVERYWHERE. Along roadsides, throughout villages, every place we visited and passed seemed to be selling food.

Funnily enough, there were also lots of burger stands. Being a fan of old-fashioned drive-ins, I found myself enamored with one burger stand in particular - Burger Machine. It was so charming with it's stainless steel counter, bar stools and a weird little santa-like mascot.

When I finally had the opportunity to try out the burger at the Burger Machine, I wasn't as enamored. It was more of a pork patty than a beef patty. Like breakfast sausage if you will. They served it with cheese, loads of "special" sauce and ketchup. I guess it was banana ketchup, but was not as good as the banana ketchup I'd had earlier in the trip. It was so sweet it was almost like jam. It wasn't great, but the experience was worth it.

There were lots of stands selling fresh fruit and fresh steamed corn on the cob. We also saw lots selling buko - young coconut.

I asked Marie what her favorite street food is and she said fish balls. Evidently these are really popular with school kids, so you can always find the stands near schools.

Well, sure enough we found a fish ball stand. This was actually located near Florin's school in Manila. We made it past there on a shopping excursion to buy some pirated DVDs.

The fish balls were indeed very tasty. They are basically white fish mixed with flour and then deep fried. You get a little skewer full of them and then your shoice of dipping sauces. All this for about 50 cents.

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