SM and the Philippine STAR celebrate the flavors of Philippine regional cuisine with its My City My SM My Cuisine contest. During festivals in key cities around the Philippines, SM shoppers and Philippine STAR readers will have a chance to share their version of signature dishes from each area, and win P5,000 worth of SM gift certificates, as well as gift packs from SM Homeworld.

“People with a proud sense of regional identity have brought forth Philippine regional cuisine,” says Corazon Alvina, vice chair of the Board of Trustees, of the Metropolitan Museum of Manila.

Alvina carefully selected the key recipes from each area — an entrée and a dessert, based on her extensive research in books like GCF Books’ The Culinary Culture of the Philippines. She notes that the surrounding environs have a great impact on each city’s cuisine.

“Culinary styles evolved from the major regions of the archipelago,” she adds. “The variations are traceable to our rich natural resources, and to the gustatory tendencies and communal practices of families and communities. Contact with foreigners also flavored native cooking practices.”

The My City My SM My Cuisine contest first stopped at SM City Santa Rosa and food enthusiasts competed  for the best puchero or yap yap for the entrée and puto maya with kilawing puso ng saging for dessert.

Chit Lijauco, Tatler Philippines managing editor  and last year’s “My City, My SM” honoree in Santa Rosa, made a culinary tour around her city and showcase heirloom recipes from prominent families in the city.


My City My SM My Cuisine then proceeded to key cities in Southern Luzon namely SM City Lucena where hardinera and pancit habhab as well as matamis na santol were highlighted. It was also held in Cavite where foodies competed for the best tamales and sapin-sapin. The following month, Batangas’ kaldereta (beef or goat) and coffee dessert recipes will be showcased.

Recipes from Mindanao will be showcased in August as the culinary road show makes a stop in Cagayan de Oro and Davao in August where pastel (lengua or beef) and pineapple desserts and tuna and durian and mangosteen desserts will be highlighted, respectively.

It will then go to Bulacan and Naga in September, where foodies will compete for the best pancit Marilao and pastillas de leche and laing and pinangat and pili desserts, respectively.

Just in time for the Masskara Festival in October, it will stop in Bacolod for the cook fest with inasal and piyaya. In December, it will be in Pampanga in search of the best bringhe and tibok tibok.

Next year, “My City, My SM, My Cuisine” will make stops in Cebu and Iloilo in January and Baguio and Clark in February.

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Here’s how to join:  Submit your version of your city’s selected entrée or dessert along with your name, address, and occupation. The recipes should be for a serving of six. Also share your thoughts on food, especially Filipino cuisine, and if you have had any training in cooking. E-mail your recipes to sm_starculinary@yahoo.com and lorena.martinez@smsupermalls.com or submit these to the Publicity Department, Building C SM Corporate Office, JW Diokno Blvd., MOA Complex Pasay City, or the Lifestyle Section of the Philippine STAR at R. Oca Jr. and Railroad Streets, Port Area, Manila.

Two winners will be selected from each city, one for the entrée and one for the dessert. There will be a prejudging of the selected recipes of the month, and a total of 10 finalists will compete in the cookout — five for the entrée and five for the dessert. Winners will be selected on the following criteria: 30 percent fruitfulness to the original recipe or dish; 40 percent taste; 15 percent use of ingredients; and 15 percent presentation. Each of the finalists will receive gift packs from SM Homeworld, and the two winners will each receive P5,000 worth of SM gift certificates.
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