Being one of the moderators of the Lasang Pinoy food blogging event has its advantages. One of them is you get to know in advance what theme is coming up!
This gives someone like me an enormous amount of time to think of an entry. But it always ends there. Period. Executing the idea has always been a great challenge as I have experienced in the past twenty-four events.
The 25th round of Lasang Pinoy challenges foodies to create â€œbentoâ€ boxes (as inspired by one of Annalynâ€™s own post in her blog), or in the local parlance – â€œbaonâ€ packs. The Japanese â€œbentoâ€ or â€œobentoâ€ (translated as â€˜for foodâ€™) which I assume everyone is familiar about, is one of the most creative and elaborate of all packed meals known.
For me, nothing beats the â€œfiambreraâ€ (Spanish for â€œlunchboxâ€) which Iâ€™ve always been fascinated with ever since I was a kid and up until now . . .
The fiambrera is a lunch box made with food-grade stainless steel with usually 2-4 compartments (sometimes more): the lower compartments are mostly used for soup and rice, while the topmost compartments are for
viand and dessert. The containers are stacked on top of each other and are secured together with stainless steel bottom supports, side flanges, and handles on top with lockable catches.
The fiambrera (or â€œtimbreraâ€ as my late lola would also call it) was also my late fatherâ€™s favourite vessel to put his food in when heâ€™d be traveling for the day to the jungles while he worked as a forest ranger at the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) as it was easy to reheat the food without removing them from the stainless steel containers.
When I went to the Middle East and then
Brunei, I was again reunited with the easy-to-maintain shiny containers known in those parts as â€œtiffinsâ€ or â€œtiffin boxesâ€. In the Indian sub-continent, Singapore, Malaysiaand former British colonies around Asia, tiffin carriers were also popularly used during the â€˜50s and â€˜60s.
In the Middle East and in
Brunei, small-scale caterers deliver meals packed in tiffin carriers right to your doorstep (for lunch or dinner) then collect the empty carriers at the end of the day. The system repeats on a daily basis or as when required. It was a very effective and convenient way to have meals without the hassle of preparing and cooking food especially when one has a very limited time. Menus are also planned on a weekly basis and submitted to customers for selection and booking ahead of time. Furthermore, you also get billed for the food consumed only once a month!
For this round of Lasang Pinoy â€“ yes, you guessed it right! My entry is food packed in the lowly â€œfiambreraâ€ or “timbrera” â€“ the way I remember how my late father would pack his lunch on his way to the jungles of Isabela. Please take a look . . . Just click on the thumbnails below to view full images of my fiambrera bento . . . :-)
Due to time constraints, I did not cook any special dish to put in my fiambrera containers. LP25 cramming . . . Tee hee! Instead, I decided to use the actual dishes prepared by our cook as our regular “baon” yesterday. To that, I simply added my father’s favourite fiambrera baon – salted eggs with fresh tomatoes on a bed of salad greens.
Annalyn, a million thanks to you for hosting this round!
Lasang Pinoy, which could mean â€˜tastes of something Filipinoâ€™ or short for â€˜the Filipino tasteâ€™ is a monthly food blogging event to promote Filipino food. It is a product of e-mail brainstorming sessions of several Filipino food bloggers who thought it was time for a Filipino event in the tradition of Is My Blog Burning. The blogger organisers of Lasang Pinoy and participants strive to make the events reflective of Filipino culture.