Part of my summer road trips was when our chef Mark, invited us to go to his farm in Bataan. Mark’s farm is a private lot, he has trees and plants in there and a natural pool and river that flows from the mountain. We woke up really early to meet the students, Ria and Mike, in the restaurant and we were on our way.
We passed by Subic, and then when I woke up, we were at the Morong market in Bataan already. The Morong market is small, but it had some interesting things like fishes I haven’t seen for a long time.
One resembled a papakol, a unicorn fish…without the unicorn. Hehehe I haven’t eaten that fish for a very long time so I bought it. We also got some squid, chicken and vegetables.
I also found some very fresh pako in the market, or fern. It was only at P20 for a bundle which was really affordable. It was really green and crisp! We also bought rice, calamansi, onions, tomatoes, soy sauce, vinegar, oil and some chilies.
When we got to Mark’s farm, it was a short muddy trek to the house because it rained a bit. We bought all the needed provisions, a barbeque, a cooler full of ice and beer and drinks, some plastic cups and our ingredients. When we got to the house, we went right down to prepping our lunch.
Mark’s place has unlimited water from the river that’s transported through these tubes.
Chef Mark decided to make adobong pusit and bbq chicken. He used a homemade stove to cook the squid with simple ingredients like chilies, garlic, a bit of soy sauce, vinegar, peppers and the squids.
For the chicken, he marinated them in bbq sauce and then precooked them over coals. He covered them in banana leaves and cooked them through just before lunch.
For the fish we just roasted them. The skin turns into a sand like consistency when its been in the fire for a while. But the flesh was pretty oily with a distinct taste of the sea.
I also made a pako salad with tomatoes, salted egg, onions and a calamansi dressing with a bit of fish sauce and sugar.
After lunch, the rest of the day was devoted to drinking beer and trying to relax in the water. The water in the natural pool is usually clear except for that day because it rained before we got there. Still the water was cool and refreshing that you couldn’t feel that 1 liter of beer hit you until you stand up.
After an afternoon of wading and relaxing, we dropped by Subic to pass by Chef Mark’s favorite shawarma place in Royal Subic…a stall called San’s Shawarma. Unlike most shawarma places, this had nice thick cuts of medium rare meat cooking and being stuffed into breads with vegetables. There was a pretty long line of people wanting to get their piece before the meats runs out. And with good reason.
For the first time, the meat tasted like butter and it was tender, juicy and perfectly cooked. This is a small stall but I think this is one of the better shawarmas I’ve tasted in a long time. Usually the meats would be very tough and cut small in other shawarma stalls. It’s too bad this place is all the way in Subic.
We had a really good day!