The Boodle Fight Experience

Have you ever been in a boodle fight? No, not like the violent Pacquiao-Algieri boxing fight last weekend, but the this-is-so-not-fine-dining-but-that’s-fine-because-the-food’s-hella-delicious military-style dining experience that’s becoming ever popular nowadays in the Philippines.

The boodle fight was first practiced in the Philippine Military Academy (PMA), wherein traditional Filipino food is prepared following joint military exercises or to welcome visiting politicians or high-ranking officials. Instead of the food being served in separate dishes, everything is laid out on banana leaves for everyone to “attack” with their bare hands.

It has since gone a long way from solely being a Philippine military eating tradition to becoming a unique and festive part of the Filipino eating culture.

Many restaurants in the Philippines and everywhere else in the world where there are Filipino communities are now bringing the “boodle fight experience” to the public.

If you aren’t close to one, you can host your own boodle fight at home!

Photo Credit : Flor A. of California a Filipina friend

3 Ingredients To A Successful Boodle Fight Experience:

1. The People – Family and friends willing to pig out on delicious homemade Filipino food. This is the vital ingredient that makes the whole dining experience heartwarming and festive – eating with people you share a deep connection and friendship with. Do not invite people who gross you out (kidding here, but barely) because of ingredient number 2!

2. The Eating with Bare Hands – This is what truly makes the boodle fight exciting and uniquely Filipino. Remember, in a boodle fight, there are no plates, spoons and forks. People will be eating with their bare hands, and food that doesn’t go into their mouth falls back to the uneaten pile of food on the table.

This may be a turn off to some, but it is what makes the boodle fight an experience of camaraderie, fraternity, and equality.

3. The Food – No boodle fight is complete without rice. Whether it’s plain rice, java, or garlic rice, it’s a must-have on the table. There are no holds barred when it comes to the viands. Some of the most common ones include lechon, grilled chicken, fish, squid or pork, shrimp, kinilaw, salted egg, pancit, lumpia, crabs, and almost any traditional Filipino viand. Of course, don’t forget your sauce or sawsawan.

I had my first boodle fight early this year and I can say it was one of my best dining experiences to date. How about you? Have you been in a boodle fight? How was it? Let me know in the comments below!

A Feud at Sea : Philippines vs China

The Philippine government, after filing 12 diplomatic protests against China, is now escalating the territorial dispute concerning Scarborough Shoal to the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS). This is amidst the advise of international law experts that, this plan may seem futile since China does not recognize the jurisdiction of the said organization.

In my humble opinion, this whole maritime standoff with the economic powerhouse is scary. Let us face it, most of the products sold in our markets (and the rest of the world) are imported from China. If the tension intensifies for the worst, where will that leave us?

Here is a sample – a Philippine flag made in China

A Philippine flag made in China

My Take On The Santiago-Barretto-Tulfo Airport Brawl

This is getting crazy! Everyone involved in the Santiago-Barretto-Tulfo airport brawl is suing somebody. This is just in – the ground stewardess involved may sue Claudine Barretto for human rights violation. What’s up with that? I know what’s wrong here – Cebu Pacific has proven its inferior customer service training to its employees. Granted, Claudine Barretto is a “monster” customer, but still as a customer service representative of the company, which a ground or flight stewardess belongs, an enormous amount of patience should be practiced. I can understand, if she cried after the incident, but to sue? Come on! Is somebody milking somebody here? You decide.

Each person has his own way of dealing with frustrations. Unfortunately, Claudine Barretto does not do it in a calm and graceful manner. But suing her of such is insanely extreme. In the US, the way Claudine acted is nothing but just another dissatisfied customer. It may not be right, but it is acceptable. After all, customers are always right.

To all people involved, they need to alienate themselves from the media and think deeply. Maybe and somehow, their emotions and pride will simmer down. As what Senator Miriam Santiago said in a TV interview, “to file no case is the best case” for this whole scandalous incident.

Congrats, Miss Philippines Shamcey Supsup!

For the past two years, our candidate to the Miss Universe beauty pageant made it to the final 5, among the 80+ beauties all over the world. It is an accomplishment in itself.

Miss Universe is considered the World Cup of beauty pageants. Once in the top 5, it is the question-and-answer portion that decides which candidate gets it. This year’s Miss Philippines is Ms. Shamcey Supsup. When I heard Shamcey’s answer, I somewhat knew that she would not bagged the crown. Somewhat, I (and my daughter) was confused of her answer. It is probably because of the redundancy of words and the usage of the pronoun “he-she”. The erroneous usage of he-she (and his-her) is common among  Filipinos in speaking English. In fact, I am guilty of this. Whether Shamcey said “…she’d love my God too” or not, she is still a winner. Congrats!

Free Online Filipino Movies At Ebenta.Com

Things are getting better at Ebenta.Com! The site is adding Filipino movies to their video freebies. There is no need to register or sign-in. All you need to do is visit their website, and click a button. No hassle.

I just watched Catch Me, I’m In Love, a 2011 movie starred by Sarah Geronimo and Gerald Anderson.

Thank you, Ebenta.Com.

Happy Fiesta, Cagayan de Oro!

How could I forget the festive and colorful fiesta of my homeland, Cagayan de Oro City? Known as the City of Golden Friendship, this place never cease to amaze foreigners and tourists with its smiling and accommodating residents. Really, without expecting anything in return.

How could I forget my weeknight at the Night Cafe in Divisoria, devouring the sumptuous lechon (roasted pig) matched with puso (steamed rice wrapped in coconut leaves)? Indeed, a staple in a traditional Filipino feast.

How could I forget the array of okay-okay (used clothing) stalls, carrying imported brands? I wonder – are these the same clothes that the generous people in the USA donated to the Philippines? Read: should be FREE. Sigh. 

How could I forget the pirated music CDs and movie DVDs displayed openly to the crowd? This is illegal, right. But I guess, not in the Philippines.

How could I forget this “no-work” holiday? Thanks to the Filipinos’ commitment to Catholicism. St. Augustine, hats off to you!

There is so much more that I miss, but the list goes on and on…might as well stop. Care to share?