I Want To Be a Pescetarian

Some people will not eat fish.

They say it’s too much work picking those tiny bones.  Well, there are fleshy fish that come in tinik-free slices.  There are also fish that are big enough to let the eater avoid the bones.

Others object to the smell of fish.  Well, maybe their past experience included eating fish that was past its prime… You know, bilasa.

And then there are those who take pride in being meat-eaters, as if this distinction gives them a higher rung in the social ladder.

If you ask me, I’d rather eat fish than any other protein source.  A pescetarian is one who eats seafood and not any other source of meat.  I’m not there yet, but i know that it’s possible.  Off the top of my head, these choices give me enough variety:

Tochong bangus
Inihaw na tilapia
Pesang dalag
Ginisang sardinas
Talimusak sa toyo
Maruyang labahita

Pritong hasa-hasa
Ginataang biya
Inihaw na tanigue
Sinigang na bangus
Binusang dilis at sawsawan

Sarsyadong dalangang bukid
Burong hito na ginisa sa bawang at kamatis

Pinangat na salmon
Pritong lapu-lapu
Binusang danggit
Tinapang galunggong
Tilapia sa gata
Relyenong bangus
Adobong pusit
Halabos na hipon
Nilagang alimasag
Inihaw na talaba
Pesang tulya
Inihaw na tahong
ATBP.

See, there are so many choices!  Considering that the Philippines has the fifth longest coastline in the world* due to the islands nature of the country, it’s easy to stay away from “meat which comes from animals that walk or fly.”  It’s easy to be a pescetarian!

You can be a pescetarian, too.  Do you have any favorite seafood dishes to add to my list?

 

* Number one is Canada, followed by Indonesia, Greenland, and Russia.

Go Make Some Peanut Sauce

Peanuts, which we call mani after the Spanish name, came to our shores during the time of the Galleon Trade.  Peanuts are a native plant of South America.

From the Philippines it spread to Indonesia, India, China, and other parts of Asia.  Traders brought the legume farther afield, until it became known throughout the world.

 

Uses of peanuts in Filipino cuisine are not as varied as, say, in other parts of Southeast Asia.  We boil peanuts for snacks, we pack it with caramelized sugar to prepare sweet treats, we fry it in oil with some garlic to make adobong mani, and we mix pulverized roasted peanuts with coconut milk to prepare kare-kare sauce .

How come we don’t copy the way Thai or Malay and Indonesian people use it in an all-purpose sauce?  When served with pork or chicken threaded in bamboo sticks and roasted over coals, the peanut sauce is called satay sauce.


Peanut sauce goes a long way in making the plainest vegetables more palatable.  Fresh or steamed leaves, sprouts, or fruits get a flavor blast when complimented by peanut sauce, which you can easily make from the following ingredients:
* ground peanuts or peanut butter
* some cooking oil or sesame oil, if available
* some soy sauce
* some minced garlic
* some minced siling labuyo
* some green onion, sliced thin
* some sugar
* some kalamansi juice
* coconut milk or water to thin the sauce.

You will notice that no quantities are given for the ingredients.  This is to encourage your creativity!  It’s also a way of recognizing that individual tastes vary, and personal preferences will dictate the degree of sweetness and spiciness of this wonderful sawsawan.  Now go and make some peanut sauce and surprise your family!

Banana

KODAK Digital Still Camera
Bunches of bananas for sale along a Philippine highway.

Pigafetta wrote:

In this island of Zubu there are dog and cats, and other animals, whose flesh is eaten… there are also figs, oranges, lemons, sugar-canes, cocos, gourds, ginger, honey…

In this island, which we learned was named Palaoan, we found pigs, goats, fowls, yams, bananas of various kinds, some of which are half a cubit long, and as thick as the arm, others are only a span long, and others are still smaller, and these are the best…


============================================================================ Pigafetta, let us remember, was from Venice.  He wrote the account of the Magellan expedition in Italian, which was translated into French… In the meantime, the original Italian manuscript was lost.  The French was re-translated into Italian, and from there to other languages, such as English.

The above material is from a translation into English by Lord Stanley of Alderley.
============================================================================

The “figs” seen in Cebu by Pigafetta were probably bananas.  Never having come across the fruit before, he had to rely on previous concepts.  The fig, an Old World fruit, has an interior that looks similar to what turned out to be bananas.

fig - Fruit Photo (31188699) - Fanpop Figs

Banana Cross Section cross section free photos absolutely for download ... Banana

Following their misfortune in Cebu, the Spaniards planned to sail back home, but along the way visited Palawan, where they saw more… bananas.  It is unknown why Lord Stanley chose to use the word bananas instead of figs during the Palawan sighting of the fruit.  Go back to the quote above and see if you can figure out the varieties of bananas described by Pigafetta.

Can you name some varieties?  These are what I remember…
Lacatan
Latundan
Senyorita
Saba
Cavendish

Photo of four several large green, smaller red, very small yellow, and medium-sized yellow bananas
By Timothy Pilgrim on en.wikipedia
Left to right:  plantain, red, latundan, and Cavendish bananas

For sure, there are more I haven’t named.  Cavendish is the most popular variety sold in Western markets.  They are grown extensively in the Philippines and other exporting countries.  Cavendish bananas keep well during transport

Archaeological evidence suggests that bananas were cultivated in Papua New Guinea as early as 8,000 B.C.  The natives called it biku in the Hiri Motu language.

It is likely that other species of banana were domesticated later in other parts of Southeast Asia.  Southeast Asia is comprised by mainland SEAsia and Maritime SEAsia. Mainland SEAsia (known historically as Indochina) includes Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Thailand, Myanmar, and West Malaysia.  Maritime SEAsia is comprised by Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, the Philippines, East Timor, Brunei, Cocos (Keeling) Islands, and Christmas Island.

From SEAsia, the banana spread in all directions, to China, India, Arabia, and to Africa.  The word banana is thought to be derived from the West African word banaana.  The theory is that Portuguese sailors picked up the fruit — and the name — in the 1590s.

A search across languages in Sanskritdictionsry.com reveals that banana translates, thus:
Pilipino         = saging
Indonesian   = pisang
Malay            = pisang.
Spanish         = platano

Looks like I have more digging to do in order to discover the root of our word saging, which is a really old term, considering that our islands are some of the incubators of banana development.

The Spanish platano is akin to  plantain, which is the English word for the starchy cooking banana, sort of like our saba.

Drinking Straws

 

I thought that drinking straws were invented around the time when soft drinks became popular.  I couldn’t be more wrong!

 

Do you remember Antonio Pigafetta from our study of Philippine history?  Pigafetta served as the historian of the Magellan expedition, which sailed from Spain on Sept. 20, 1519.  Magellan perished at the hands of Chief Lapulapu during the Battle of Mactan in 1521, but Pigafetta was among those who survived and successfully circumnavigated the globe, returning to Spain in 1522.

Pigafetta was a very patient note-taker; he jotted down foreign words and their meanings, he wrote long descriptions of things that he saw and heard.  From him we learn that the people in the Visayan islands, in 1521, were sipping their wines with some kind of straw!

Following is a section from Pigafetta’s account, translated by Lord Stanley of Alderley:

          When our people went on shore by day or by night, they always met with some one who invited them to eat and drink. They only half cook their victuals, and salt them very much, which makes them drink a great deal; and they drink much with reeds, sucking the wine from the vessels. Their repasts always last from five to six hours.

Pigafetta paints the Visayans as consummate hosts.  Whenever the Spaniards came ashore, be it day or night, they were met by someone who invited the visitors to eat and drink.

Pigafetta goes on to say that the Visayans only half-cooked their food, which they seasoned with a lot of salt.  Then he adds that the salty food made the locals drink a great deal.

===========================================================================WOW!  I wonder if the Visayans did that on purpose: I mean salting their food a lot, so that they could drink more wine.  I do know that in modern bars, the management gives away bags or bowls of salty popcorn so that patrons will get thirsty and order more beer or mixed drinks.
============================================================================

Lastly, we see from the Pigafetta quotation that the Visayans sipped their wine with reeds, and that their meals lasted up to six hours!

A reed is the straight stalk of any of various tall grasses.  Here are a few examples:

Home / African Thatch Reed Panels 31" x 18" (6 Pack)   Free photo: Reed, Nature, Marsh Plant - Free Image on Pixabay - 268034

 

But, guess what, the use of reeds to facilitate drinking is a very, Very, VERY old practice.  The Sumerians were the first to use straws, and they used it for drinking beer, which sometimes had solid by-products in the fermented liquid.  To avoid getting the solids into the mouth, they used reeds to sip from the middle of the vessel.  Artifacts discovered in a Sumerian tomb from 3,000 B.C. included a gold tube, probably used by a ruler or a very rich individual for sipping beer.

To jog your memory on world history:  Sumer was a civilization in modern-day Iraq; it was about as advanced as the Egyptians and the people of the Indus Valley.  Sumerian farmers cultivated grains and other crops near the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers, which enabled them to settle in a permanent place and develop their civilization.

 

The modern drinking straw was initially made of paper.  It was invented by Marvin Stone in 1888 in Washington, D.C.   Some of you might remember sipping soft drinks with paper straws, but those have now been superseded by plastic straws.

Plastic straws present a problem in garbage disposal; they are not biodegradable.   Fortunately, resourceful people are able to come up with further uses for the plastic straws.  In Uganda, for example, waste straws are collected and cleaned, then woven into mats or bags.

Have you seen some ingenious ways of re-using plastic straws in the Philippines, or wherever you’re located as an Overseas Foreign Worker?

Karne Norte

Bakit nga ba tinawag nating karne norte ang corned beef?

Ang corned beef ay karneng baka na inimbak sa pamamagitan ng pag-aasin.  Isang paraan ito sa pagtatago ng pagkain bago naimbento ang refrigeration.

Ang salitang corned ay mula sa kurnam, Aleman para sa “maliliit na buto ng anuman.”  Ilang halimbawa ay ang sumusunod:

buto ng trigo                = wheatcorn
buto ng barley             = barleycorn
buto ng paminta         = peppercorn.

Sapagkat ang uri ng asin na gamit sa pag-iimbak ng karneng baka ay kasinlaki ng mga nasabing butil, ito ay tinawag na corn of salt, at ang resultang produkto ay tinawag na corned beef.

Bakit dalawang hugis ang lata ng corned beef?

Iyong medyo kwadrado ay para sa madaling pagsa-salansan sa knapsack ng mga sundalo.   Mula pa noong World War I, kasama na ito sa mga supplies sa giyera.  May kasama itong susi na pambukas, para hindi kailanganin ang abre-lata.

At kung bubutasan ninyo ang kabilang dulo ng binuksang de-lata, madaling maidudulas palabas ang karne.  Sa ganoon, pwede itong i-slice tulad ng nasa larawan sa kaliwa.

Corned_beef     About the Product:

Iyong bilog na lata ay para sa pambahay na gamit.  Ito ay madaling buksan ng abre-lata, at karaniwang iniluluto bago ihain.

 

Ngayon, balikan natin ang tanong:  bakit ito tinawag na karne norte?  Alalahanin natin na sa Pilipinas lang gamit ang pangalang ito; hindi sa Espanya, Mexico o iba pang bansa sa Latin America na nagsasalita ng Kastila.

Ang sagot ay natagpuan ko sa isang miyembro ng British-Filipino.com.  Noon daw Digmaang Pilipino-Amerikano (Peb. 4, 1899 – Hulyo 2, 1902), kabilang sa supplies ng mga sundalong Amerikano and de-latang corned beef .  Ang bansag ng mga Pilipino sa nasabing pagkain ay karne Norte Amerikano.   Pagkaraan ng ilang panahon, at hanggang sa kasalukyan, pina-igsi ang pangalan at naging karne norte  na lang.

 

Kung interesado kayo sa istorya ng ating bansa, i-search ninyo ang:
Philippine-American War
Battle of Manila (1899)
Campaigns of the Philippine-American War.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Foods to Fight Diabetes

During a visit to Manila, I pledged to help an elderly aunt with her medical expenses. She had recently been diagnosed with diabetes.

When I arrived home in California, I received a text message indicating that the pills would cost around $150 per month.  I dutifully sent the money for three months, until I received some unpleasant feedback from my brother whom I assigned to deliver the pledged amount.

My brother said, “Hindi naman nag-iingat sa pagkain si Tita, dahil may gamot naman daw,” (Auntie is not being careful with what she eats… said she has medication, anyway).

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Reading someone’s travel blog last night, I came across the very same attitude toward healthy eating.  I will let this photo speak for itself.

Hippocrates, father of medicine, (c. 360 –  c.470 B.C), lived to the ripe old age of 90 years. He had wise advice to patients, among which is, “Let your food be your medicine.”

Simply put, this means that we should try to get nutrients from the foods we eat, rather than relying on pills.

Diabetes is a widespread problem nowadays.  Readers’ Digest/Best Health listed today the top 20 foods for beating diabetes.  I have selected five that are easily accessible in the Philippines.  You don’t have to eat these everyday, but occasionally giving your body the benefits of their nutrients will help keep your diabetes in check.

AVOCADO.  Some food writers compare this fruit to butter because of its smooth consistency.  Try to eat it by the spoonful, without adding sugar and milk.  Or, slice it thinly and use as a sandwich filling.

Where I live in northern California, avocado costs at least $1 each;  folks in the Philippines have it really good, because the cost per kilo is so affordable.

The word avocado derived from Nahuatl, the language of the Aztecs in Mexico.  They called it ahuacatl.

BEANS.  There are many of these you can consume: sitaw, bataw, patani.  I can just picture a serving of bulanglang, pinakbet, adobong sitaw, or Bicol Express.  Yum!

Sitaw is also known as long beans; some really long varieties are called yard-long beans.

Bataw and patani are known as Lima beans, according to my favorite reference for Philippine fruits and vegetables, http://www.stuartxchange.com.  Lima beans are so-called because the first commercial shipment to the U.S. came from Lima, Peru.

CARROTS.  I suggest you learn to eat this veggie in stick form; it’s kinda like a crunchy potato chip, and it’s better for you.  You don’t need to peel the carrot; just wash it well, cut into 3- or 4-inch sticks, and store in a zip lock bag in the fridge or bring with you to work or school.

When you see it in pancitchopsuey, or afritada, don’t push it to the side of the plate; eat it with the rest of the food.   It seems we don’t have a Pilipino term for carrot; it’s called zanahoria in Mexican Spanish.  Good thing, the name didn’t travel to the Philippines during the Galleon Trade!

And here’s a bit of trivia for you: the carrot is native to Afghanistan.

NUTS.  Peanuts and cashew are good for keeping diabetes in check.  Peanut butter in a sandwich counts, of course.  It’s also okay to lick a spoon of peanut butter, the way you make papak while watching TV or doing your homework.

Have you heard that the peanut is neither a pea nor a nut?  It’s a legume!

And the cashew (caju to a tribe in South America) is often regarded as a curiosity because the seed is outside the fruit, which is the yellow, fleshy portion.

SWEET POTATO.  Eat some kamote!  Get the yellow or orange variety if you can.  Washed and dried, you can have it ready to eat after five minutes in the microwave oven.   Split it, put some butter or margarine, and you have a quick snack.  You can even bring a raw kamote to work, and cook it in the office microwave.

Spanishdict.com has this advice: Don’t put sugar on the sweet potato; it’s already sweet!  To this I add:  if you have diabetes, try to avoid the street food kamote cue because the crunchy coating is obviously not good for you.

The Curious History of the EGGPLANT

Curiosity #1:  The name EGGPLANT.  Yes, folks, the first eggplant seen by Europeans in the 18th century really looked like an egg.  The descriptive name has stuck ever since, in spite of…


By Horticulturalist RJ – Own Work, CC, BY-SA 4.0
(https:/commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=48026339)

 

The first eggplants were purplish in color.  Selective breeding by farmers and plant scientists resulted in the development of different varieties or cultivars.  And so, we see eggplants in many shapes, sizes, and colors.

Eggplant display (source: via Wikimedia Commons, user Phoebe (Own work))
Source: Wikimedia Commons, User Phoebe (own work)

 

In the marketing of apparel — clothes, shoes, bags, for example — we encounter eggplant as the name of a color.  Every now and then, the color is called aubergine,  French for “eggplant.”  More on this later.

 

Curiosity $2:  The eggplant is a FRUIT.  The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines fruit as “the usually edible reproductive body of a seeded plant.”

The word fruit is generally associated with sweet produce which are consumed as desserts.  One exception to that generalization is the eggplant.  Because it has seeds, it is classified botanically as a fruit.  But because of its bitter taste, it is usually cooked and eaten as a vegetable.

 

Curiosity #3:  The eggplant is a WELL-TRAVELLED plant.   Aneela Marchandani of San Francisco, via her website The Odd Pantry, takes us along the route of the eggplant.

The eggplant was cultivated in India long before the place became a country.  The plant and its fruit was called in Sanskrit by the names vrintaka and batingan.  From these words arose other names for it, thus:
Hindi: baingan
Kannada: badne kai
Telugu: vankaya
Bengali: begun
Marathi: vangi
Sindhi: vangan

When it reached Iran, the Hindu word batingan turned into the Persian bandenjan.  It was widely accepted, and many recipes were developed.

When the Arabs conquered the Persian lands, the prefix al was added, thus al-bandinjan.

The Arabs also occupied the Iberian Peninsula (Spain and Portugal) for hundred of years, bringing many crops and ways of cooking.

  • The Spaniards dropped the prefix al and called the eggplant berenjena.
  • In Portugal, it became berengela.
  • The headstrong people of the Cataluna region (see map: northwestern Spain) kept the al prefix and modified the original word into alberginia.Map of Spain and France and sub-regions
    http://mapsofdallas.blogspot.com

    Next door, the French were willing to adopt the vegetable into their cuisine, but had problems saying the prefix al.   Aubergine suited them just fine.

    More interesting details of the eggplant’s travels across Europe can be told, but the above names should be enough to help you navigate many world markets.

    Now, the big question:  WHY DO WE CALL IT TALONG IN THE PHILIPPINES?

    As discussed in many posts in AtoZFoodnames, Indonesian and Malay settlers helped to populate our islands during pre-Spanish times.  Very likely, they gave us the name for this vegetable.

    The terung of  the Malay language and the terong of Indonesian are the probable parents of our talong.

    And where did the Malays and Indonesians get their words?  Let’s go back to Curiosity #3:  The eggplant is a well-travelled plant.

    Among the variations of the eggplant’s early name in India is the Bengali word begun.  I’m not an expert in linguistics, but I bet begun gave rise to terung and tarong.  You see, ancient India exerted a profound influence over Southeast Asia through, religious missions, wars, and other forms of contact.

    Pre-colonial Malaysia was part of the Indian-ized Kingdoms which included the Shri-Vishaya and Madjapahit empires.  If you recall our Philippine history, those two kingdoms also had contact with the early inhabitants of our archipelago.  In fact, the middle group of islands in our country, the Visayas, is named after the Shri-Vishaya.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lost in Translation: GULAI and ULAM

Most of us know that Pilipino (or Tagalog) shares many terms with the Indonesian and Malaysian languages.  Sea-faring peoples from those countries came to our shores during pre-Spanish times to find new places to live, bringing with them language, cuisine, and other aspects of culture.
During visits to Singapore, Melaka, Yogyakarta, and Bali, I was delighted to find commonalities in language.  It was easy for me to figure out that ruma makan meant restaurant, or that sendok, mangkuk, and kuali were kitchen terms with Tagalog equivalents that were easy to figure out.
 
 
Imagine my surprise when I learned that GULAY (gulai in Malay and Indonesian) did not mean vegetable!  Rather, it is a saucy dish, usually made with meat or seafood, and occasionally with vegetables.  The operative word in gulai is saucy, and by that is meant rich with turmeric, coriander, black pepper, ginger, garlic, shallots, fennel, cinnamon, and many more, in a whole slew of proportions and combinations.   
Gulai ayam.JPG
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gulai
Chicken gulai swimming in a rich sauce.
Now take the word ULAM.  It’s what you eat with rice, correct?  Dishes of meat, seafood, or veggies; meat with veggies; seafood with veggies; or meat and seafood with veggies.
In Malay or Indonesian households, ulam is a salad made of the herb called pengaga (Philippine name: takip-kuhol or yahong-yahong).  You can have other daun (leaves), but the pengaga is a must.
The required herb for ulam salad.

Some Foods That Came with the Galleons: SAYOTE, KAMOTE, TSOKOLATE

The Galleon Trade, which saw large three-masted sailing ships travel back and forth between Manila, Philippines and Acapulco, Mexico, lasted between 1565 and 1815.  A total of 110 galleons set sail during those 250 years of unprecedented prosperity.  The enterprise is said to be the first instance of global trade:  goods from China, India, and Southeast Asian realms (and other countries they traded with) were trans-shipped from the Philippines to Mexico, for further trans-shipment to Europe where consumers were hungry for imported goods.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manila_galleon
The Manila-Acapulco Galleon Memorial
at the Plaza Mexico in Intramuros, Manila
.


 
The ships carried spices as well as silk, porcelain, ivory, lacquerware, and many more.  Such items were much in demand in European markets; the sales provided a lucrative business for Spaniards in the Philippines, in Mexico, as well as in Europe.
While buyers in Europe longed for Asian products, the Chinese were self-sufficient and wanted only the metal silver.  Spaniards in Mexico obtained from these from local mines.  
 
Thus, the return of ships from Acapulco to Manila allowed for the ferrying of agricultural products, thereby enriching the cuisines of both the Philippines and Mexico.
 
It’s interesting to note that some Philippine food names actually originated from the Aztec language called Nahuatl.
 
SAYOTE is derived from the Spanish chayote.  The word is derived from chayotli, the name of a Mexican squash.
 
Our KAMOTE easily relates to the Spanish camote, which — again — is from the Nahuatl camotli (their word for sweet potato).
 
Our third vocabulary lesson for today is TSOKOLATE.  Some folks might think that the Spanish chocolate is a European word; after all, the best chocolate products come from the Netherlands, Switzerland, Belgium, and England.  Well, surprise, surprise!  The root word is the Nahuatl xocolatl.   One reason why the Mexican way of serving the beverage didn’t gain popularity right away is that they didn’t add sugar or milk to it.  It was a bitter “food for the gods.”

Daming SIBUYAS sa Mongolian Beef!

Isa sa mga paborito kong order sa Chinese restaurant ay MONGOLIAN BEEF.  Ewan ko kung gustuhin din ito ng mga kabayan natin sa ‘Pinas, dahil maraming sahog na sibuyas: ordinaryong sibuyas dilaw, at mga murang sibuyas (green onion).   

 
Sige nga, aminin ninyo na: kayo ba ay kabilang sa mga nagtutulak sa tagiliran ng plato ng mga sahog na sibuyas, bawang, kamatis, atbp.?
Bakit ba?  Hindi naman masama ang lasa ng mga gulay na ito, at may flavor din ng anumang timpla na ginamit sa pagluluto ng putahe.
 
 
Mula nang mabasa ko na bahagi ng diyeta ng mga trabahador sa Egyptian pyramids ang tinapay, sibuyas, at serbesa, nagpasiya ako na kakain ako ng sibuyas tuwing may pagkakataon.  
 
Bagong impormasyon, ayon sa http://www.timetrips.co.uk/pyramids-home.htm:
Mga ordinaryong mamamayan ng Ehipto — hindi mga alipin — ang nagtayo ng mga pyramid.  Buong puso silang nagbigay ng pagod sa kanilang Pharaoh, upang siguruhin ang matiwasay na pagpunta nito sa kabilang buhay, at magpatuloy ang pag-unlad ng bayan nila sa ilalim ng susunod na pinuno.
 
Bilib ako sa paniwala nila na mahusay itong proteksyon sa maraming karamdaman, kasama ang sakit ng ulo, sipon, ubo, hika, atbp.  Siempre, kung may seryosong sakit ang isang tao, kailangan ang payo ng doktor;  pero kung malusog naman tulad ko, sa palagay ko’y walang mawawala kung kainin ko ang lahat ng sibuyas na sahog sa pagkain.
Ayon sa National Onion Association sa America, ang sibuyas ay napatunayan na mataas sa Vitamin C at fiber.  Nakakatulong din daw ito pagbabalanse ng sugar level sa dugo.  Isa pang kabutihan ng sibuyas, sabi ng mga siyentipiko sa University of California / Berkeley, ang sibuyas ay mayroong quercetin, isang anti-oxidant na nakakabara sa pag-buo ng cancer cells.
Ang salitang SIBUYAS ay hinango natin sa Kastilang cebolla.
Bakit kaya nabago ang tawag natin sa gulay na ito?  BAWANG ang pangalan nito sa salitang Indonesian at Malay.  Bago dumating ang mga Kastila noong siglong 1500s, marami tayong gulay na bigay ng mga ninuno natin mula sa katimugang karagatan.  Dinala ng mga taga-Indonesia, Malaysia, at India sa ating mga pasigan ang kanilang kultura, pananalita, pagkain, atbp.
At saka for your information, ang garlic ay BAWANG PUTIH sa salitang Indonesian at Malay.
Ayon sa kaalamang kalawakan, may tatlong klase ng sibuyas:  puti, dilaw at pula.  May mga recommended na gamit sa bawa’t klase ng sibuyas; tingnan ninyo lang sa mga recipe, para sa pinaka-masarap na resulta.
Mixed onions.jpg
By © User:Colin / Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=26689765
Sa mga palengke sa Pilipinas, iba-iba ang pangalan ng sibuyas:  sibuyas Tagalog, sibuyas Bisaya, sibuyas Bumbay, sibuyas Kastila.   Siempre, naroon din iyong sibuyas puti, sibuyas pula, at sibuyas dilaw.  Madalas ay dalaw ang tawag sa isang klaseng sibuyas.  Nakakatuwang isipin ang mga leksiyon na maaring matutunan tungkol sa food origins, geography, at world history sa pagtingin lang ng sibuyas!
May isang uri pa rin ng sibuyas na kung sabihin ay kapareho din ng mga nabanggit sa itaas, kaya lang ay hina-harvest ito bago gumulang.  Pero ayon sa ibang babasahin, ang green onion / scallion o berdeng sibuyas ay katangi-tanging uri ng tanim na ito, hindi lang basta immature o murang bersyon ng ordinaryong sibuyas.
Kamakailan lang, nagluto ako ng arroz caldo.  Walang luya sa bahay, pero mayroon sa fridge ng  kapirasong turmeric (luyang dilaw, gamit ko sa paggawa ng inuming Bali Elixir).   Ginamit ko iyon, at natuwa ako sa naging resulta.  Ganda ng kulay ng sabaw, parang nilagyan ng atswete o kasubha!  Siempre, binudburan ko ng kaunting green onion bago isilbi.  Yum!