Of the regional cuisines that I know literally nothing about, Filipino cuisine tops my list. My knowledge of the Philippines has mostly been gleaned from Neal Stephenson’s Cryptonomicon and the works of seminal turntablists, the Invisibl Skratch Piklz. 100mph Backsliding Turkey Kutz may be one of the canonical scratch weapons that every aspiring hip hop disc jockey should have in their armoury, but it hardly provides much insight into food and culture of the Filipino people. Thankfully, the Internet is filled with people who know that there is more to Pinoy food than Jollibee and are conversely less interested in hip hop marginalia than me. It seems that Filipino expats aren’t too badly served by the Phnom Penh food scene. Toe writes:
In markets and supermarkets, you can buy bagoong, patis, bulalo, kangkong, ampalaya, and others. Probably the only thing you can’t buy here is bangus.
When it comes to restaurants, there is a handful. There is Helen’s Bakery which is a carinderia-style turo-turo where she cooks super-delicious pork chops, ampalaya, Filipino fried chicken, menudo, afritada, pinakbet etc. for about $1.50 per meal. Her tapsilog, longsilog, and tocilog are famous all over Phnom Penh. She also delivers for free. Her carinderia is visited not only by Pinoys but also westerners who like her tacos, potato salad, and pizzas.
Then, there’s Bamboo Restaurant, situated strategically near the Independence Monument. It’s a little bit more elegant than Helen (air-conditioned) and of course a little more expensive… but still quite reasonably priced. They have crispy pata, kaldereta, lumpiang shanghai, sinigang na hipon, pancit bihon and everything else you could think if you’re craving for Filipino food. Their leche flan and halo-halo are to die for.
Locations: Helen’s Bakery is at No. 159B, Norodom Blvd; Bamboo Restaurant is on the strategically important corner of Sihanouk Blvd and St.9.
See Also: kurokuroatbp