Thursday, October 9, 2008

Street Food: Vegan MoFo #6

I hope this counts as my Wednesday post! So I missed the "deadline" by a few minutes, big deal...

Anyway, I've been wanting to blog about Pinoy (Filipino) street food that is vegan naturally. Of course I'm not talking about balut or betamax. I'm talking about cruelty-free, yummy, dirt cheap food (about P7 or US$0.17 each piece), like:

When I'm in a Filipino restaurant and all that's available is sizzling pig face and pig blood stew, I feel really sad that Philippine cuisine is so meat-centric. Even vegetables are cooked in animal flesh unless you order otherwise.

Lumpia is the Filipino term for "spring roll". Actually, according to Wikipedia, lumpia's name is actually a derivation from Chinese: ; pinyin: rùnbǐng; POJ: jūn-piáⁿ, lūn-piá. Lumpia can be eaten fresh or fried, and in this case, it is the latter.

There is nothing better than a deep fried vegetable lumpia doused in coconut vinegar (suka) spiced with garlic, black pepper, and bird's eye chili (from a recycled mineral water bottle with a hole in its cover), eaten straight from the bilao (woven basket) to plastic bag to mouth.

Street food seems to be extremely photogenic, probably because of the insanely bright sunlight. Turon is a saba banana wrapped in a spring roll wrapper, sometimes with a sprinkle of brown sugar and a piece of jack fruit inside (or not). While in the process of being fried, the turon is sprinkled with brown sugar again, which caramelizes and coats the surface of the roll.

Turon probably comes in third after the lumpia as best street food (the number one street food is carioca -- caramelized fried balls made from rice flour -- which was sold out when arrived). The lady who peddles her treats comes at around 3pm everyday and sits at the corner sari sari store (mom and pop shop) to serve the yuppies and blue collar workers near by.

More on Pinoy vegan street food to come in later posts!


evestirs said...

it all looks yummy!
coconut vinegar? what does that taste like?

Anonymous said...

Oh my gosh I love Filipino food! It does make me sad that my favorite Filipino dish, Sinigang, is made with pork ribs, or at least the way my mother makes it. I've been considering trying to veganize it with Seitan, though. Hummm.

vegan domestic goddess said...

Evestirs - Thanks! Coconut vinegar tastes nothing like coconut... It's made from fermented coconut juice and is very acidic. If you like "vinegar-y" vinegars and you come across some coco vinegar, try it! The sharp vinegar and the melt-in-your mouth spring roll go really well together =)

Pbjade, I miss sinigang too! We should try experimenting with tofu instead of seitan though. I don't think seitan goes well in clear soups though I've never tried. I've tried making a Thai-style clear sour soup and I used tofu (which you pan fry first so you get a crust) and it turned out well.

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