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Saturday, May 18, 2024

Celebrate culinary heritage the Kapampangan way

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Pampanga isn’t known as the “Culinary Capital of the Philippines” for nothing, with its rich and delicious traditions passed down through generations.

Whether it’s the iconic sisig sizzling on a hot plate or the mouth-watering sweet tibuk-tibuk served on a banana leaf, Pampanga never disappoints.

To celebrate the Kapampangan cuisine, the local government held its annual “Manyaman Festival” that gathered Pampanga’s bests of the best dishes—a labor of love meticulously prepared to perfection.

Special Assistant to the Governor Angelina Blanco said the annual festival, held at Megaworld’s Capital Town in San Fernando, Pampanga, is a celebration not just of the dishes but of the stories behind them as well.


“Our dishes are not just about delicious flavors – they tell stories of our ancestors, their love for family and community, and their ability to make the most out of what they had. Classic Kapampangan dishes, such as those featured today, are not only mouth-watering, but they also showcase our creativity and resourcefulness,” said Blanco.

“The Manyaman Festival is a perfect venue to celebrate this culinary heritage which [is] composed of pieces of our history passed down from generation to generation – a testament to the passion of our people,” she added.

The festival featured dishes served in 22 towns of Pampanga, grouped into four districts.


For District 1, Angeles City, Magalang, and Mabalacat City showcased the following dishes: Putung Babi (appetizer); Paku (salad); Sabo Bulanglang (soup); Sisig, Pindang Babi, and Bringhe (main dishes); and Tibuk-tibuk (dessert).

The towns of Sta. Rita, Floridablanca, Lubao, Porac, Guagua, and Sasmuan for District 2 served Chicharon with Atsara Papaya (appetizer); Paku (salad); Sale Manuk (soup); Asadong Matua, Sisig Bangus, and Gisang Pugang Panas (main dishes); and Sanzrival, Hopia, Pituklip, Ale Ube, and Masa Podrida (dessert).

Meanwhile, District 3’s Bacolor featured Ambulang Dila, Tamales, and Putoseco; the City of San Fernando had Tsokolateng Batirul and Pindang Damulag; the town of Sta. Ana served Kilayin and Yema Palitaw; Mexico had Asado Matwa, San Nicolas Cookies, and Kalame Gandus; while Arayat showcased Kapit, Sapin-Sapin, Ensaladang Pako, and Kalderetang Bibi.


The last group, District 4’s San Simon, Sto. Tomas, Minalin, Apalit, Masantol, Macabebe, Candaba, and San Luis, served Panara, Bulanglang Bangus, and Sisig Mangga, Seafood Kare-Kare, Buro, Hito, and Gule, Seafood Cajun with Taba ng Talangka, Sampelut and Tibuk-tibuk.

Provincial Tourism Officer Michael Castañeda said aside from sharing a glimpse of the culinary prowess Kapampangans have to offer, the festival also aimed to encourage young people to become interested in Pampanga’s culinary tradition.

“It’s not just about the delicious food, but the story behind every dish, and of course, the intangible cultural heritage, as we consider, the unique processes of Kapampangans when it comes to cooking,” Castañeda said.


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