Wednesday, June 5, 2013

An Afternoon with Master Chefs at F1 Hotel Manila

After enjoying an epic all-Filipino buffet lunch at F1 Hotel Manila's LUZVIMINDA Filipino Fiesta of Flavors (check out my previous post on the awesome Filipino food fiesta here at, it was time to get to know the chefs behind the month-long food festival. Led by F1 Hotel Manila's very own Chef Sau del Rosario and assisted by Chef Willie Ertez, the culinary cast for the food festival included noted chefs from the Visayas and Mindanao who shared their distinctive style and authentic regional flavors. 

The participating chefs in F1 Hotel Manila's LUZVIMINDA Filipino Festival of Flavors spent an afternoon with guests sharing their signature regional recipes, highlighted by unique dishes from Cebu and Davao. And the best part? The recipes are included at the end of the post so you can recreate some really cool regional dishes.

Chef Sau del Rosario opens the afternoon's event with an overview of the dishes to be demonstrated and served by the participating chefs, ranging from a unique local salad, Cebuano seafood dishes and a cool dessert from Davao using the iconic "king of fruits."

The afternoon's demo began with Chef Martin Jickain's refreshing Pako Salad with Shrimps and Salted Egg. Chef Martin Jickain is the owner and chef of Station Juan at the White House Boracay, and his salad recipe clearly shows that the simplest dishes an still pack some bold flavors with the use of the freshest ingredients. Pako, or young fiddlehead fern, is a popular item in Luzon and the Visayas, and its subtle yet distinct flavors lends itself well for salads.

Chef Martin Jickain combines plump shrimps and salted eggs for flavor and texture, and tomatoes and onions for more ayers of flavor. The different ingredients are then combined and tossed in a sweet and sour vinaigrette using coconut vinegar.

The simple yet elegant dish is then plated and topped with micro greens. And in just a few minutes, you have a local, regional salad favorite that is refreshing and healthy, and a medley of flavors and textures.

Individual sampler servings were then passed around, lightly chilled, complete with all the flavor components. The sweet and sour vinaigrette ties all the different ingredients together, with the salted egg providing a nice little kick in flavor, and the shrimps add a sweet and briny note to the salad. And yes, I did get a second serving while no one was looking...

Next up, Cebu's up and coming dynamic culinary duo, Chefs Karl Noel and Paul Sydney Uy, both successful restaurateurs. Blessed with abundant marine resources, Cebuano cuisine uses a lot of seafood. And again, fresh and premium ingredients always make the dish a sure winner, no matter how simple the dish is. Chefs Karl Noel and Paul Sydney Uy prepare a true Cebuano classic, Seafood Kilawin Visaya Style, the region's version of a ceviche.

For the seafood Kilawin Visaya Style, Chefs Karl Noel and Paul Sydney Uy use fresh tuna, shrimps and mussels with fresh herbs and local vinegar.

The dish captures the purest flavors of the seafood, with a subtle sweetness and nice briny hint of the ocean. As Chef Karl Noel shares stories on reeling fresh catch offshore and grilling it right on the beaches of Cebu, the dish is plated and topped with fresh herbs. Chilled sampler shooters were then distributed to taste the simple yet flavorful Cebuano dish.

The ginger, garlic, onions and chili combine for bold flavors in this simple dish. Fresh, pure and the flavors of the sea captured in a shooter glass. Seriously good.

Next, Chefs Karl Noel and Paul Sydney Uy prepare another Cebuano specialty, Whole Fish Wrapped in Banana Leaf. For the dish, a bright multi-colored fresh Parrot Fish is used. The fish is scored and the marinade is prepared.

The marinated fish is then tenderly wrapped and grilled, and after a few minutes, we were served individually wrapped sampler portions. The banana leaf releases a fragrant aroma as the fish is slowly unwrapped. The fish is tender and moist, with the banana leaf retaining the juices. Another excellent dish representing the region.

And finally, Chef Ed Tuazon and his team from Marco Polo Hotel Davao prepares dessert using Davao's very own "king of fruits", the iconic durian. The dessert infuses the durian in a clever and inventive manner that pretty much changed the way I view this notorious fruit. Not a real fan of the fruit, but offer me Chef Ed Tuazon's  Durian Panna Cotta, and I can have this without hesitation, any time.

Made just like any other panna cotta dessert, the durian puree is then added to the double boiler, and stirred until a certain consistency is reached. Then the mixture is poured into shooters, with some poured on the fruit itself. Nice touch.

And then the shooters were served, and I still couldn't believe how much I was enjoying this dessert.

A fresh, unique and clever adaptation with a nice regional touch, another winner. And it's good, perhaps the only way I can enjoy durian. Now that's a cool afternoon well spent in my weekend staycation at F1 Hotel Manila.

You can enjoy all these dishes and more at F1 Hotel Manila's LUZVIMINDA Filipino Festival of Flavors, a month long culinary celebration of Filipino cuisine, from June 1 to June 30. You can also check out my previous post on the awesome food festival here at and F1 Hotel Manila's facilities and amenities here at

And as promised, here are the recipes...

Pako Salad with Shrimps and Salted Egg
Yield: 2 Servings

200g  Pako (Fiddlehead Fern) washed and cleaned
50ml  Coconut Vinegar
10g    Chopped garlic
5g      White Sugar
1pc    Red onion, cut into rings
20g    Tomato, cut into wedges
100g  Shrimps, peeled and deveined
1 pc   Salted egg, cut into wedges

1.  Heat pot with water and bring to a boil.
2.  Put shrimps and boil for approximately 1 minute.
3.  Drain and put on ice bath and set aside.
4.  In a mixing bowl, mix vinegar, sugar, garlic and season with salt and pepper.
5.  Combine pako, tomato, red onions, prawns and salted egg, and drizzle with vinaigrette.

Seafood Kilawin Visaya Style
Yield: 5 Servings

300g   Tuna Fillet
100g   Shrimp
100g   Mussels
8Tbsp Native Vinegar
2pc     Red onion
100g   Ginger
50g     Garlic
3pcs   Chili
50g     Spring onion
30g     Coriander
200g   Red ripe tomatoes

1.   Dice tuna by 1/2 inch by 1/2 inch cubes.
2.   Dice red onions and tomatoes.
3.   Mince garlic, chili, coriander and ginger.
4.   Mix all the ingredients.
5.   Toss with vinegar.
6.   Season with salt and pepper.

Whole Fish Wrapped in Banana Leaf
Yield: 4 Servings

2 pcs   Whole banana leaves
1pc      Whole Parrot Fish
100g    Onion
100g    Tomatoes
50g      Garlic
100g    Spring onions
8pcs    Calamansi
8Tbsp  Soy Sauce
Dash of Sesame oil
Salt and pepper to taste

1.   Wash and clean Parrot fish.
2.    Heat banana leaf to make ot flexible and easier to handle.
3.    Mince garlic and onion.
4.    Chop tomatoes and spring onions.
5.    Slice calamansi.
6.    Mix soy sauce, calamansi and add all other ingredients for the marinade.
7.    Marinate fish with marinade.
8.    Wrap fish in banana leaf.
9.    Grill the wrapped fish.

Durian Panna Cotta
Yield: 15 Servings (shooter glass)

500L   Whipping cream
125ml  Coconut cream or fresh milk
150g    White sugar
120ml   Water
5pcs     Gelatin sheets (5g per sheet)
200g    Durian puree (blend fresh durian until smooth)

1.    Add gelatin to water and soak for 5 minutes.
2.    Combine whipping cream, coconut cream and sugar in a double boiler, put under medium heat.
3.    Stir until sugar is dissolved, and bring the liquid mixture to a light boil.
4.    Add in soaked gelatin and stir until gelatin is dissolved.
5.    Add durian puree and ix well, do not boil but keep stirring for 5-8 minutes at low heat.
6.    Strain and pour mixture in cups or molds.
7.    Refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving.

F1 Hotel Manila is located at 32nd Street, Bonifacio Global City. For more information, call 928-9888 & 908-7888 or visit for inquiries and reservations.

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  1. I truly love this combination every single dishes.

    1. hi cquek, cool regional flavors, great to hear from you!


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