A little history
Today, exactly 27 years ago, I first set foot on Philippine soil. It was the anniversary of the People’s Power Revolution.
When I look back, I have noticed that the country has changed a lot. And not always for the better.
Corruption is worse than in 1988, streets are polluted, traffic has gone hectic while nothing or very little has been done to improve the infrastructure and sweet food among many more things.
This is just the intro of today’s real story :
One of these ‘many more things’ is the sweet food. I am not talking about the general food recipes like Adobo, and the like, but the bread. Filipinos have started to put lots of sugar in many food products. One good example is the Filipino style Spaghetti, but there are many more. How about the ‘honey-ham’ or any other Filipino style ham or bacon?
Back in 1988 I liked the ‘pandesal’ (spanish for bread with salt) a lot. Not that they were salty, on the contrary, they tasted perfect, it is just the name. Nowadays this little bread is so sweet; actually, the name should be changed into ‘pan-de-azucar’. The same with other bread one can buy in food stores and bakeries. They all contain lots of sugar, even whole wheat bread.
No wonder that recent studies have revealed that 8 out of 10 Filipinos have caries. Eating so much sweet food, drinking lots of soda and eating too many candies are the reasons for that.
My eating habit
I like to eat open sandwiches for my lunch with slices of meat or cheese and accompanied by a glass of cold milk. But I
have had problems finding good tasting bread. I prefer whole wheat bread, because it is healthy and has a lot of fiber in it. One brand which is acceptable is Gardenia, but it still contains lots of sugar, although less than other brands. I should also mention that I like sweets a lot, but not in my bread. I eat a lot of candies, and drink my coffee with lots of sugar but the sweet taste of ordinary bread ruins it all.
“OK”, I hear you say, “But you can buy French bread all over the Philippines!” These long thin white or whole wheat bread. Exact, that is what I am also buying from time to time. Problem is that they need to be reheated in the oven to become crispy and tasteful.
Lately I am buying my bread at Shopwise (belongs to Rustan’s). A supermarket chain in and around Manila. I have found my preferred bread there at a reasonable price. It is made of whole wheat and costs 46 pesos a loaf. The shape is that of an American Football, and I have to slice it myself. See the picture on top of this post.
For some time last year, they also sold Rye bread (in Rustan’s only), which I liked even more. But on a certain moment they started adding caraway seeds in the bread and I did not like that very much, so I stopped buying it. Now I do not see this bread anymore. Maybe They are going to read this blog…(Wishful thinking ??)
So once a week I am heading for Cubao or Libis, both in Quezon City, to buy my delicious whole wheat bread and I can enjoy my perfect lunch. And I am buying enough for the whole week. At home I am putting them in the freezer so they stay fresh. And if you are lucky there is a special offer: 2 for the price of 1.
Also at Shopwise there’s a wide variety of meats and sausages and cheese to put on my bread. I only have to take care that I am not choosing any: honey-ham or other Filipino style sausages to accompany my bread. 😉
Update: Bought again some bread in Shopwise a few days ago. The moment I opened the first one: the baker has forgotten the salt….. Bread without salt does taste so different…LOL (and this has happened once before…) It’s definitely more fun in the Philippines.