Mon Jun 4, 2007
It's rainy season in the Philippines, and as I'm writing this tonight, listening to the rain come down outside, I can't help but think that this annoyance from above actually helped authenticate what was an truly excellent Filimeato Feast. The precipitation could not stop The Meatwave this weekend, as it hit hard with a plethora of Filipino treats in an attempt to bring home some cultural learnings from my trip to the 7000 islands over the winter.
The feast started Saturday afternoon with a trip to "Little Manila," a one block strip along Roosevelt Avenue between 69th and 70th St in Woodside, for some lunch at Renee's and then shopping at the Phil-Am Mart. Loaded with new knowledge of Filipino ingredients that I've been learning over the past few months, I was able to find just about everything I needed in this tiny market. This included frozen ube (for making ice cream), calamansi, pan de sal, tocino, lumpia shanghai, and the list goes on. So it only took one stop for me to load up on specialty items and I was able to spend the rest of Saturday afternoon prepping food.
After making a not-quite-right Filipino BBQ, I tried my hand at devising my own recipe based on a list of ingredients provided by the gf's uncle. This ended up coming pretty close to what I've gotten in Filipino restaurants and was truly delicious. Along with the bbq, I also made some Chicken Inasal, garlic rice, and Ube ice cream. There'll be more on the meat later this week, including recipes, so stayed tuned.
Since I knew rain was just over the river in Jersey, I was hoping people would come out earlier than normal, and started grilling at 1pm to be prepared. Long time friend and co-worker, but first time Meatwaver, Tea, was the only one to show up on time to take advantage of the rainless couple hours we had. She brought with her a true Meatwave spirit, baking a Filipino cookie made with cornstarch instead of flour to share. This brought much delight to the wheat-tarded Tom, who took most of these cookies home with him at the end of the day.
Daphne D and Robot Blair are quick becoming Meatwave regulars, and we're all very happy about that, because they come bearing great treats for all. Although I boast this as a Filimeato feast, Daph and Blair brought some much needed, and very fitting, fruit for sharing including plantains, lychees, and mangos (the Philippines is known for its mangos).
I've heard so much about the $3 wine from Trader Joe's, but never actually had it. Luckily, Marissa and Tom fixed that for me today, and I must say, it's pretty good for the price. Marissa is my partner in crime in making ice cream. I had promised cheese ice cream along with the ube, but couldn't find the time to make it. I stupidly did not call Marissa to save the day...next time I'll know better.
There isn't much that would stop Dr. Popsicle from making it out to a Meatwave (besides studying to be the best doctor ever, so that's understandable). I think she's becoming the resident Meatwave Mixologist, bringing a very delicious watermelon margarita today, which was gone almost the second it hit the table. Being such a die hard Meatwave fanatic, maybe it's time to give her an official Meatwave title, any thoughts of what that could be?
So what happens at The Meatwave when it starts raining at 4pm? Well, from now on it looks it's going to be Wii (although I'm hoping there won't be any more rainy Meatwaves). Yes, after months and months of waiting, The Meatwave has finally acquired a Wii, and boy does time fly when you're making Miis and trying to find them.
So, despite the rain, this was one kick-ass Filimeato Feast, and I hope all in attendance feel a little more cultured (or at least the non-Filipino folk). Look like fun? Just a little upset you didn't brave the weather to make it out? Well there's still hope for you yet, Meatup in coming in two weeks, and don't forget to bring your friends to that one!