Ordering Local Take-Out

At the end of the backroad to the school (or at the start, depending on perspective, I guess), there is a kerenderia. This is a special kind of restaurant- sort of open air, with a rotisserie grill for chicken, and pans of food sitting out at meal times. You can eat there or you can carry out. Carry out is dished into plastic bags (called cellophane bags here)

I got rice (the large center bag, IMO, enough rice for three people, but they meant it to serve one), a meat dish, two sweet bananas on a stick, and a muffin for just under 1.50, and the muffin was about .30 of that.

This is the meat dish. I don’t know what it’s called and I don’t know the cut, but I suspect intestine or stomach.  She told me it was karneng baboy, which is pork.

Sugary carmelized banana.

I(t’s not a normal banana.  It’s a bit drier and not as sweet as the regular lacatans, except for the added sweet to the outside.

The muffin, which she called a pie.  It was .30 (or 15 pesos). More about that below.

A friend asked me how I order when I don’t really speak Visaya and I don’t know what the food is.  Here’s what I told her.

First of all, Filipino people are the friendliest people in the world and really want you to be comfortable. Secondly, they speak a lot of English and understand quite a bit more. Thirdly, I have a few Visaya words, but this mainly only helps to make them even happier with me, you could get along without them. It’s 1 and 2 that would help you out the most. Fourthly, I don’t mind making mistakes and the culture is geared toward avoiding making anybody feel bad (this does have drawbacks in other situations, but it works okay here)

So I point and I say, “Unsa ba kini?” which is garbled ‘what’s this” and then they know enough English and I know enough Visaya that they can tell me the kind of meat it is, and at any rate, it’s nearly always going to be pork anyway. Although this time there was pancit (which I recognize), Tripe, which I know I don’t want, fish, and 3 kinds of soup which I didn’t want to carry back. So I went with this pork dish which was probably some kind of intestine or other organ judging by the small circles on the meat. I can understand the type of meat it is in Visaya, but the finer details of the other ingredients and the specific cut is mostly guess work.
Fifthly: It is a good thing that I have what one of my local friends calls a “Missionary stomach.”=)

So when I have gone down the row of pans and gotten some remote idea what’s going to be the main ingredient in each of them, I point and say kini, palihog (this, please), and hold up how many fingers I want it to serve (I get lunch for my husband, the Cherub, and myself).

This time the sales lady or owner  also told me she had some kind of pie. I didn’t understand her, except she was offering something extra, so I looked puzzled, she brought it out. It wasn’t pie- it looked sort of like a muffin. I can ask how much in visaya, so I did, and I went ahead and bought it because she was so sure I’d like it. I did. The inside was a kind of creamy coconut custard filling. I wish I had bought four so my husband and I could each have two. Instead I only bought one, so I ate it by myself.

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