The aromatic shrub is a mainstay in Filipino gardens because of its therapeutic properties. Last year, a study on lagundi made the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) consider it as a supplemental treatment for COVID-19.
But did you know that the five-leaved plant is also edible? In Teachers Village, Quezon City plant shop-turned-kitchen Terra Bomba makes vegetarian pizzas using edible local plants and herbs, including lagundi.
Based on the Hindu philosophy of “sattva”—one of the three guṇas or “modes of existence”—Terra Bomba Kitchen’s pizza recipes are “sattvik” or pure vegetarian with a focus on seasonal produce.
Since launching their kitchen late last year, Terra Bomba has explored a variety of plant-based flavors for pizza toppings, first of which was based on their best-selling malunggay pesto-based pasta called “Cancelini.” Its pizza version (16-inch medium crust, P560) has the same creamy and herby base but with grilled soba pien (soy fiber protein), vegan mozzarella, capers, moringa leaves, cashew nuts, fried garlic—and get this, fried bougainvillea flowers, which are apparently edible.
Other than local produce, Terra Bomba adds edible flowers to their pizzas. These include squash blossoms that top their laing pizza (16-inch medium crust, P630) and the vibrantly hued ternate or butterfly pea flowers on their ginger sauce-based talinum sattvik pizza (14-inch semi-thin crust, P660). Oh yes, they use local medicinal herbs too like talinum (Talinum triangulare), commonly used in folk medicine to relieve swelling, inflammation, and sores. Talinum is also believed to have an effect on regulating blood sugar levels.
And then there’s lagundi. Like most common plant-based cough remedies, it is thought to have a bitter taste, especially when made into tea. To balance out its taste, Terra Bomba’s lagundi sattvik pizza (14-inch semi-thin crust, P580) is made with a creamy lemon-ginger sauce then topped with grilled apples and bell pepper, vegan mozzarella and cheddar, capers, cilantro, bougainvillea flowers, and for protein, vegan ham.
As of writing, Terra Bomba kitchen is currently accepting orders for lagundi and talinum sattvik pizzas for dispatch on Jan. 28 to 30, 4 to 7 p.m. They will also be accepting same-day orders until 6 p.m.