Before last night I knew nothing about Filipino cuisine, so I was really excited to go to the Gallery Vask and Iggy’s Four Hands dinner. Visiting Chef Jose Luis Gonzalez (Chef Chele) is Spanish and good friends with Chef Aitor, which made for a dynamic collaboration. Chef Chele, who is based in Manila, uses ingredients indigenous to the Philippines in his recipes, which really opened my eyes to the depth and diversity of Filipino cuisine. Here are photos of the highlights for me:
—My two favorite snacks were the beautifully plated “sardines” and the super tasty “salted egg” hipon (shrimp) by Gallery Vask
—Next is Gallery Vask’s 5.6 which is its take on a popular Filipino stew called Bicol Express. Chef Chele’s version uses oysters and the stew is packed with layers of flavor from chilis, coconut milk and shrimp paste. It looks unassuming but it’s not! —The fourth photo is of Iggy’s “Vegetable Foie”, another seemingly straightforward dish that was anything but. It is steamed avocado with a squid broth. Excellent textures and umami. —Another stellar dish was Iggy’s “Heirloom Tomatoes” with capers, cucumber and basil. Each tomato was delicately compressed with different flavors.
—Next up is Gallery Vask’s “Tear Drop” which were tuna cheeks with sibujing (a chive/scallion native to the Philippines) and kalingag (from the cinnamon tree). The tuna cheeks were so hearty that I first mistook them for a meat. —And for the desserts: Gallery Vask’s “Pingol Bato” with dalandan (a citrus indigenous to the Philippines also called sour orange), fermented ginger ale, yoghurt and pili nuts. I loved this!
—Last but not least was Iggy’s and @tess31386 ‘s amazing “Coconut” dessert with yoghurt, lime and basil seeds. I’m not a huge dessert person but could eat this every day!
Thank you @chelegalleryvask and @aitortxuchef for such a delicious introduction to Filipino cuisine. And as always, thank you to the team @iggys.sg and @vinopothamus for taking such great care of us.
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