January 27, 2011

filiping out

I have a new addition to my favorites among the almost 200 gourmet food trucks in LA. @ManilaMachine is the first Filipino food truck in LA, and its actually one that comes to my part of town a fair amount, but I had still never tried it. Knowing absolutely nothing about Filipino food, the menu items seemed so unusual that I just never knew where to start. But this week at the LAX Truck Lot I decided to finally dive in. I tried a couple sliders - the longganisa and the original manila dip, whose main ingredient is chicken adobo. Their menu says Adobo is "braised in vinegar, soy sauce, garlic, bay, and black pepper." Its an unusual combination that I really loved - and oddly enough, it really reminded me of the vinegar-based barbecue I grew up with in the south. But what really took the cake was their Ube Cupcake. I had seen tweets raving about it, but never knew what the fuss was about. I didn't even know what Ube was - Google taught me that its a purple yam, common in desserts in the Philippines. The color is almost alarming, but cool to know that its natural (I think?!) And the taste is just plain amazing. Today the truck was nearby again, so I had to go back for a second round. This time I ordered a regular order of Adobo served over rice - turns out its a full piece of chicken prepared the same way, just not shredded as it was for the slider. So many people don't understand my fascination for the gourmet food trucks. New discoveries like Filipino food (who knew?) because of the Manila Machine are a perfect example why.

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