May 3, 2021 11:53 am
Imagine it’s 3PM, pre-pandemic. You and your officemates hurry out to take a quick break. Going from one stall to another, you look for cheap filling merienda to get you through the rest of the day. Aha! You lock eyes with Manong’s glistening deep fryer and you figure out what you crave for! With a bag of Adobong Mani on one hand, and a bag of kamote fries on the other, you walk back to the office with a big, big smile on your face.
It’s hard not to miss the daily merienda runs we got used to, especially that it’s been over a year since we last stepped into the office. So if you’re craving for classic afternoon Pinoy snacks, here are recipes you can follow to enjoy the office merienda experience from home.
In a pan, put together some oil, thin slices of garlic and peanut with skin on. Pro-tip: Adding the peanut before the oil heats up will prevent you from over-roasting it. Cook until you smell the fragrant aroma of toasted garlic and the peanuts have achieved a nice brown color. Get your strainer and drain the oil. Now, put the fried peanuts in a bowl or jar and season generously with AJI-SHIO® Garlic. No need to add salt to cut down on sodium. Mix or shake well and your merienda is ready. Adobong Mani is best served hot for that perfect crunch.
Learn more about the recipe here: Adobong Mani
If you’re craving for a mix of textures and tastes, Tokwa’t Baboy is a good pick for merienda. It is protein-filled and filling, with a mix of salty, sweet, sour, and umami flavors. To cook it, begin by preparing your ingredients. Slice your pork and tokwa into bite-sized pieces. Coat the meat with AJI-GINISA® Flavor Seasoning Mix for 15 minutes to let the umami flavor seep in. Deep-fry the pork until cooked then add in the tokwa squares. Fry them together until you achieve a crispy, golden brown texture. Drain the excess oil out and set aside. In a different bowl, mix together some garlic, vinegar, soy sauce, salt, and brown sugar. Add in your fried pork and tokwa into the mixture and top with onions and spring onions. Time to dig in!
Learn more about the recipe here: Tokwa’t Baboy
If you want something deep fried and crunchy with lesser guilt, go for this nutritious and flavorful Kamote Fries! Making it is very simple! Begin by slicing your sweet potatoes into thin strips– the thinner you go, the crunchier it will be! Now dip and coat your kamote in beaten egg and TASTY BOY® (Regular). Set them aside while you heat oil in a pot. Deep fry your kamote sticks until golden brown. Drain and cool down for a few minutes so you can enjoy it to your heart’s desire. To add a special twist, you can replace kamote with cassava or saba. Experimenting with your merienda is always a good idea!
Learn more about the recipe here: Kamote Fries
Running low on energy? Recharge with a heavier plate of Bihon Guisado. Here’s how to cook it: First, soak the bihon noodles in 2 cups of water for 10 minutes. Then on a hot wok, sauté your garlic and onion. Add chopped sayote, water and soy sauce and bring it to a boil. Add your bihon, sliced cabbage, and PORKSAVOR® All-in-One Seasoning Mix. Wait until the noodles absorb all that delicious liquid and your merienda is ready to be served! Give it a squeeze of calamansi for a zesty kick. You can also add in some thinly-sliced carrots for better presentation and Vitamin A boost.
Learn more about the recipe here: Bihon Guisado
Want a filling snack? Why not try this healthy vegetable snack to get you through the afternoon: the Lumpiang Sariwa. For this, let’s first prepare the filling. Wash and boil some shredded ubod until slightly tender. Set it aside. Get a pan and heat up some oil to sauté the garlic, ground pork, shrimp, and ubod together. Season it with a little soy sauce and AJI-GINISA® Flavor Seasoning to bring out the deliciousness of the ingredients.
Learn more about the recipe here: Lumpiang Sariwa
Now for the sweet sauce, begin by caramelizing sugar in a pan. On another pan, combine vegetable broth, soy sauce, cornstarch, and AJI-GINISA® Flavor Seasoning Mix. Slowly pour this mixture into the caramelized sugar and stir until you reach the desired thickness.
For the perfect serving, get a lumpia wrapper and spread some lettuce over it. Add the vegetable filling and let’s get rolling! Generously pour the sauce over your lumpia and top it all off with crushed peanuts. Your deliciously healthy snack is now ready to be enjoyed!
Merienda plays a huge part in Pinoy food culture, and these 5 recipes are just a few of all the Filipino dishes to try. Fried, grilled, saucy or soupy, you may find more merienda-worthy snacks at www.ajinomoto.com.ph or at Cookmunity® by Ajinomoto Philippines on Facebook.