In a rice-crazy country like the Philippines, we eat rice at least three times a day. Westerners find this hard to believe that anyone could eat so much rice in his lifetime. But this is how Pinoys are wired. If we go rice-starved for several, believe me, we get iffy and agitated. Do not even try it… *turns into green like the Hulk*
But westernization caught on a bit. So now we have a growing fascination with bread. Not just the panaderia/bakery type bread of our childhood. It has become mainstream that there are days we feel it can suffice as our staple starch. Sandwiches have become more popular, artisan bakeries have sprouted like mushrooms. But sad to say, really good mindblowing sandwiches are hard to find in the metro. So if you are still unsatisfied as I am, we all have to.. D.I.Y.
The ingredients to that sandwich of your dreams are now within our reach, lucky earthlings. Once you have that sandwich craving, deli visits are in order. I can cite three such occasions that I was a happy girl after building my own dream sandwich 🙂
Santi’s Deli (with several branches around the Metro) almost always saves me from my dire sandwich cravings. It will have almost anything you need for days like those. Choices of bread, cheese, cold cuts, greens and garnishings. You won’t leave emptyhanded, I assure you that!
During this visit, I grabbed a few butter croissants, slices of the cheapest gouda cheese I found from their display, organic arugula, turkey breast and pepper lyoner, and a tube of Thomy mayonnaise. Stacked these to my heart’s content and popped them in the toaster till the cheese melted. So here was my sandwich board for a healthy, hearty snack!
On a Tagaytay roadtrip, we had brunch at Breakfast at Antonio’s. To bring back that Tagaytay feel to Manila, I bought several items from their deli. They had freshly baked Olive, Jalapeno and Parmesan Cheese Bagels, organic mesclun greens and tuscan kale. We made a pitstop to Paseo de Sta. Rosa, and from the Santi’s branch there, I picked up Kokos Coco Cheese (promise, it tasted like coconut!) and some slices of farmers’ ham and mortadella. Before serving, we showered the sandwich with freshly ground pepper and sea salt.. And bam!
The Peninsula Boutique also has some surprises up its sleeve. If you purchase goodies using your Pen Club membership card, you get 20% off. With the discount, you’ll find the items there are reasonably priced for the quality you get.
I was very impressed with their salmon and leek quiche and cheesy croissant… So I got those… And do not ever ever forget their chocolate treats. The Peninsula makes awesome chocolate. That dark chocolate bar with rum raisin, which has a P160 price tag ($3.47) is one of the best you can get, ANYWHERE!
These take-home specials will not make you feel bad eating at home. They could pretty much rival the best sandwiches you can order in any restaurant. It just takes a bit of creativity and imagination, and a lot of trial and error 🙂