When it comes to food the Philippines has it all - a fabulous mix of foreign cuisine plus its own
As a result of its successful mix of Eastern and Western cultures and cuisine, the
Philippines is considered the melting pot of Asia. Philippine food is the result of Malay, Spanish, and Chinese
influences going back over 400 years. These influences, combined with Filipino ingenuity, have created an array of
food that is totally different from the neighboring Asian countries such as Thailand, China, Korea, and Japan.
Some people say that Filipino food is bland by comparison with other Asian food, especially the hot and spicy Thai
food. However, doing away with the hot spices allows Filipino food to develop its own delicious taste without the
overbearing, eye-watering sting of red hot chilies. The very mildness of Filipino food makes it suitable for those
with appreciative and sensitive taste buds.
Filipinos love to eat and, like other Asian countries, rice is the staple food and is served with most meals.
Filipinos typically eat three main meals a day, plus a morning and afternoon tea called merienda which
literally means "snack." These "snacks" however, are often as filling as main meals.
In the Philippines you cannot escape the temptations of food; you are literally surrounded by it. Take a stroll
down a beach and the chances are you will find vendors selling everything from barbecue sticks to balut -
boiled, unhatched chicken or duck eggs.
Filipino restaurants come in many guises, from small roadside stalls or canteens to large restaurants like The
Seafood Market in Ermita where you choose not only your seafood, but also how you want it cooked.