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फीडिंग फ्रेंज्य

Feeding frenzy

FEED her mine— uh, mind.

The bit of lapsus lingua is brought about by designs erratic or erotic… and may be loosely translated as lapping up fond mammary, ehek, memory… hi-hi-hi-higop ng sabaw sa tasa, uh, what’s the hidden agenda in a 38C cup but embers that can be stoked to flames?

I was told that Ibaloi natives of Cordillera listen to the silence of lamb chops, lend an ear to titters of baby back ribs or painful cackles of pinikpikang manok… there’s some meaty food for thought that can hush more than hunger in the guts.

Sarap talagang kumain, lalo na kung ikaw ang kakainin… food should be kept hot, o, nag-iinit ka na ba?

Idagdag na nga pati kanta ni Craig David, “What’s Your Flavor?”

Can thoughts of yours be steered toward hearty eating, my dear?

The secret to flavorsome broiled tulingan— skewer with peeled-off fresh guava stick, rub length of fish with ginger and tamarind juice, score sides, season with rock salt, freshly ground black pepper and garlic powder—is to let the fish rest at room temperature for about 18 minutes… enough time for a pray-over or a few mutterings of a Thai love katha… Tagalog equivalent is gayuma to inflame passions of the beloved, maybe induce a state of arousal.

My gramps always floored me with freshwater shrimps—tagunton— lovingly stewed in coconut cream, minced finger chili peppers, grated malunggay roots—it has subtle horseradish notes-- and lots of chopped sour cucumber fruits, yes, kamias.

And who can do a reprise of my grandmother’s pinatisang pata ng baboy? Slow-simmered barely above boiling point so that meat and tendons come nearly tender as butter off the bones. The dish is a soupy variant of paksiw na pata using patis puro—the golden liquid cream skimmed off fish sauce fermentation vats-- instead of soy sauce. Ah, quick-fire cookery is akin to a quickie or premature ejaculation… slow food is lots of tender loving care that really caresses the heart like a sigh or moan of the beloved.

Good taste can be dirt-cheap: a small plastic bag of shucked maratangtang (sea urchin) meat and roe roseate in hue like labia minora and is reputedly an aphrodisiac, that fetches for P20 in Bolinao’s public market… perfect for folding into an egg omelet titivated with minced garlic chives and cherry tomatoes… with a breakfast like that, back to bed, there’s bound to be a workout between the sheets.

An adventure in simplicity: baby milkfish simmered in sour-sweetish palm vinegar, finger chilies, young onion sprigs, fresh ginger, and rock salt to taste… all such on a bed of young guava leaves in an earthen pot.

Now I’m drooling over you, my dear.


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