Wandering into Tawi – Tawi, a lot of things are waiting to be discovered. As a typical tourist would have done, definitely you would also love to taste and experience the delectable dishes the place has to offer. After all the energy you have put in exploring the new found land, it is now time to reward your growling tummy and give in to your sensitive taste buds for some local favorites in Tawi – Tawi.
1. Syagul – this is a very spicy stingray meat cooked in coconut milk and burned coconut grated meat. This gave its olive color sauce. If you are a monster for seafood, this one is for you!
2. Guso – this is a kind of seaweed (others call it agar) that is very much common in coastal waters of Visayas and Mindanao islands. However, instead of serving it fresh and decorated with onion, tomatoes, and vinegar, the people of Tawi – Tawi bleach the seaweeds and add a little soy sauce, and other spices like onions and ginger to give it a yellowish color.
3. Syanglag – Simply, a roasted cassava that replaces rice as a main source of carbohydrates. The islands are not much blessed with lands that can accommodate rice cultivation; the mountains are planted with root crops like cassava and sweet potatoes.
4. Utak Utak – this is a dish in Tawi- Tawi that would absolutely set your mouth on fire! A patty of fish with an infinity of spices mixed with beaten eggs rolled in flour and then deep fried: this could be the spiciest dish you’ll ever taste, but just as delicious as you could ever remember.
5. Tyula Itum – Needless to say, Tyula Itum is the pride specialty of the place. It is actually the Bulalo counterpart of Tawi – Tawi that has a very spicy soup. It is made of beef broth mixed with burned grated coconut that results in blackish color. This may not be delicious at the first look, but it sure tastes better than the regular meal in town. This is best consumed while it is still warm.
Although these dishes may seem unfamiliar to you, rest assured you’ll leave the place with a happy tummy. With the great minds possessed by the Filipinos, the country will never run out of newly invented dishes that could surely amaze all the tourists and the locals.