Pan de sal, Pan de keso, Bicho-Bicho, Egg Pie and Pineapple Pie...classic treats from a neighborhood bakery.
Since 1939, Kamuning Bakery Cafe has been serving these baked treats and more using traditional old-school methods with its pugon, a wood-fired brick oven. Like a trip down memory lane, Kamuning Bakery Cafe stands out with its nostalgic freshly-baked artisanal bread and rustic pies, serving a new generation of loyal customers.
Kamuning Bakery Cafe is one of the metro's few remaining links with the past, preserving the tradition of a neighborhood panaderia with its small batch production. Like clockwork, the neighborhood awakens to the aroma of freshly baked bread, just like any other day since 1939.
The local Pan de Sal, or "bread of salt" is a common bread roll made with flour, eggs, yeast, sugar, and salt, a staple in Filipino cuisine for breakfast or afternoon snacks, and one of Kamuning Bakery Cafe's bestsellers. The small, soft and fluffy local bread has a mildly sweet note, pairing well with butter, kesong puti, and savory fillings. And there's just something about bread baked in a wood-fired brick oven, with a much lighter texture and more pronounced flavors. "Kamuning Bakery is famous for its pugon-baked pan de sal and pan de suelo bread. The pan de sal is the historic and unique national bread of the Philippines, it is bread eaten by the masses, middle-class, and by all. The pan de sal is a basic necessity of the people, like rice. The humble pan de sal represents the people's simple wish for liberation from hunger. Hot freshly pugon-baked pan de sal also represents happiness," said Wilson Lee Flores. The local bread culture traces its roots from Spanish and American influences, evolving into one of our local culinary staples. And this is all lovingly preserved at Kamuning Bakery Cafe.
Kamuning Bakery Cafe was acquired and revived in 2013 by award-winning writer, historian, and realty entrepreneur, Wilson Lee Flores (R), restoring the old cafe and its pugon, and continuing the legacy of the neighborhood bakery. And just like the early days, a fresh batch of bread is pulled out of the pugon, ready to serve.
Fresh from the wood-fired brick oven, a small batch of bread is sent to replenish the counter at Kamuning Bakery Cafe.
The freshly-baked products are then packed and displayed at the counters, picked up by customers for an afternoon snack at home.
At the counters, you can find a variety of freshly-baked bread including the Pan de Keso (L), soft rolls willed with cheese; and the sweet Bicho-Bicho (R), another childhood favorite, with its unique twisted shape coated in sugar.
Other traditional treats include the wittingly named Pan de Regla (L), with its vibrant red stuffing made with stale bread, milk, eggs, sugar, vanilla and food coloring, one of the iconic panaderia classics; and fresh-baked pies like the all-time favorite, Pineapple Pie (R)...
...topped with intricate lattice-like strips of dough over sweet pineapples. The sweet and tart pineapples deliver rich and intense flavors, perfectly tempered by the thick buttery dough, and one slice usually isn't enough.
No visit to any local neighborhood bakery is complete without the classic Egg Pie, with a sweet and smooth egg custard on a thick and rustic pie crust. One slice, and one bite of the comforting pie takes you back to carefree childhood summers with its rich and sweet flavors, layered with a hint of vanilla. The thick crust completes the pie, with its buttery notes. It's classic panaderia fare like these that keep customers coming back for more, and Wilson Lee Flores proudly mentioned names of prominent celebrities, politicians as well as society's movers and shakers as frequent customers. And they also have a seriously good Apple Pie too.
Wilson Lee Flores has transformed the neighborhood bakery, updating it as a modern cafe serving light meals and snacks along with high-quality arabica coffee beans from the mountains of Benguet province alongside premium Brazilian coffee. And you can enjoy your coffee with a freshly baked snack or sandwich with the day's newspaper, with stacks of dailies and broadsheets inside Kamuning Bakery Cafe.
After the success of Kamuning Bakery Cafe's Pan de Sal Survey on the recent local elections with the Pan de Duterte, a spicy burger pan de sal as the overall winner, Wilson Lee Flores takes another tasty crack with a follow-up, offering the Pan de Trump Meatloaf sandwich, the Pan de Clinton corned beef sandwich, or the Pan de Nada, with ham & egg.
It's specials like these that keep Kamuning Bakery Cafe relevant and up-to-date. More traditional dishes, like the Noche Buena (P 165, L), a comforting dish with jamon, kesong puti, and pan de suelo or the Pan de Suelo Sampler (P 165, R), a tasty dish with corned beef, adobo flakes, and menudo paired with with colonial era bread, are also available.
Pair your snack with Kamuning Bakery Cafe's Signature Hot Choco (P 80), using the rich and creamy local chocolate tablea prepared in traditional batirol.
Sometimes, all you need is some freshly-baked pan de sal with cheese and kesong puti paired with a cup of hot choco, and the day just seems a whole lot better. Indulge in a comforting and nostalgic tasty bite of the past with a visit to Kamuning Bakery Cafe and relive the neighborhood bakery experience...
Kamuning Bakery Cafe is located at 43 Judge Jimenez Street corner K-1st Street, Quezon City or call 416-1637, 929-2216, and 412-6628 for inquiries. You can also visit their FB Page at https://www.facebook.com/kamuningbakery1939/.
Dude for Food is now on Facebook and Instagram, check out the FB Page and IG Feed for regular updates on good eats. Better yet, click "Like" and "Follow" and enjoy the ride...just look for the FB and IG widgets on the right sidebar.