Filipino food can be healthy, this Fil-Am chef proves
Enter Sariwa, a Filipino food business that serves healthy, veggie-based dishes
Apr 2, 2018
When we talk about Filipino food abroad nowadays, it’s almost always either something trendy (ube) or hearty and meaty (sisig, adobo, barbecue). It’s always presented as a cuisine that’s festive; seldom as a healthy choice.
And while that’s technically not a bad thing, it also presents an incomplete image of what Filipino food is, even for us here in the mainland. This is where Filipino-American chef, Aileen Suzara, turns things around. Her food business, which officially opened in the summer of 2017, was born from her search into the “connections and possibilities for using Filipino-American food culture as a culinary intervention for health,” she said in an interview with NBC News.
The business, which Suzara called Sariwa (meaning “fresh”) focuses on serving vegetable-based Filipino dishes. It also looks at healthy traditional food practices, especially ones from different regions in the Philippines. Sariwa holds popups, catering, and workshops featuring healthy Filipino-American food.
More than just about being healthy, Suzara envisions Sariwa to champion wellness as a whole. Part of it, she shares with Bon Appetit, is to help people “who want to reconnect to cultural foods gain skills in the kitchen.” Being able to create “good, nourishing food” for yourself and for others, after all, can also contribute to wellness.
Sariwa currently has a popup cafe running until Apr. 6 at MLK Student Union in the University of California, Berkeley.
Check out some of the dishes Sariwa has come up with:
…tried out an extra vivid background for fun…now I’m obsessed w/ the bright vibes x lemon, shiitake & veg pancit & wanna live in it. 🌈☀️Life can be so complex. Yet sometimes it’s a gorgeously vivid place too. Thanks @sanajaverikadri for taking this pancit to another dimension! 💕💜. . . . #pancit #sariwa #sariwakitchen #gulay #shiitake #hellacolorful #filipinofood #goodbyegray
So glad to meet new folks through food, esp those who you learn from and follow online across the miles, and then connect IRL! Thanks for coming out to today’s @samasamacooperative brunch 💜Repost @naynakatigbak ・・・ Amazing vegetarian Pinoy brunch today! I had the crunchy #bibingka waffles with coco jam, fruit & greens. Shaun & Nopc enjoyed the #arrozcaldo with egg, roasted veg & pickles. Familiar flavors interpreted with flair. Congratulations!
Photos courtesy of Sariwa
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