Dubai: I grew up in one of the busiest streets in Manila where the street is jam-packed not only with people but with food. The voice of different sellers serenaded me from start until the end of the day: taho in the morning; dirty ice cream, kwek-kwek (deep fried, battered egg), fish ball and all kinds of barbeque in the afternoon; and balut (fermented duck's egg) completes my daily concert of food.
These are some of the things that I really missed after living here in Dubai for almost 11 years.
But not anymore! Newly opened restaurants and even hotels are now offering Filipino street food. Unlimited street food, street food buffet, and boodle street food have now mushroomed in every culinary corner.
For those who miss the delicious delights from the Philippine streets (and to those who are just about to discover it), here are the top 7 street food that you can find in Dubai.
What is it? This snack is made of soft tofu mixed with brown sugar syrup and topped with tapioca pearls. It is the popular choice for those who don't have time to have breakfast at home or snack in the afternoon.
How do you eat it? Taho is a street food on the go: sip it, spoon it and go! Much love for this.
Yay or nay? It's a yay!
2. Fishball, kikiam, and squidball
What is it? These deep-fried delights are made of starch and flavourings and are usually eaten with your choice of sweet and sour sauce or vinegar with lots of chillies and onions.
How do you eat it? Just grab a stick, skewer the ball, dip it, and go!
Yay or nay? It's a yay!
What is it? Isaw is marinated chicken intestine, barbequed and eaten with sauce or vinegar. Well, it might look bizarre to others but it's a delicious treat for Filipino food lovers. It can be your snack, appetiser, side dish or anything you want. It's a street food and comfort food for most.
How do you eat it? Dip it in vinegar spiced with minced garlic and onions
Yay or nay? Absolutely a yay!
What is it? Not the famous brand but an equally famous street food in the Philippines. Adidas is marinated chicken feet, barbequed and eaten with sauce and vinegar as well.
How do you it eat? Just grab your shoes, I mean your Adidas, dip it (it's vinegar with onions for me), and go!
Yay or nay? Definitely yay!
What is it? The helmet - as it is aptly called - is marinated chicken head (sometimes with neck), barbequed and eaten with your choice of sauce or vinegar.
How do you eat it? To be honest, I haven't tried this one and I still haven't mustered the courage to try it. Perhaps one day.
Yay or nay? For now it's a nay.
What is it? Turon is a wrap made of plantain banana with a little jackfruit that is crispy-fried to perfection in oil with muscovado sugar.
How do you eat it? Have it as a finger food. Perfect for your afternoon snack or tea.
Yay or nay? Well, not that much for me, but still a yay!
7. Sago at gulaman
What is it? This refreshing drink is made of tapioca pearls, jellies and brown sugar syrup mixed with cold ice water. An ideal companion for all of the above.
How do you drink it? Simply sip it with a fat straw so you can get those tapioca pearls in your mouth.
Yay or nay? A yay of course!
There you go! That's some of my favourite Filipino street food that is now rocking the streets of our second home, Dubai. What's your favourite? Leave a comment below.