Madrid Fusión 1st Regional Lunch: Rice in Different FormsApril 8, 2017
Think you know rice? Think again. There is more to rice than just the fluffy, white carb component that accompanies the daily Filipino meal. With the growing awareness of its different varieties—including Balatinaw, Ulikan, Chong-Ak, Mt. Violet, Lasbakan, Innawi, and Balatinaw—as well as its different uses, there could not be a better time to embrace the staple grain. Most heirloom varieties come from the Cordillera region, home to the hardworking rice farmers who relentlessly devote their time, energy, and heart in keeping these agricultural treasures alive. Rice serves not just for their physical sustenance, but also as a source of their livelihood.
Curated by F&B Report’s Angelo Comsti, the first of Madrid Fusión 2017’s regional lunches paid tribute to heirloom rice by putting it under the hands of some of Manila’s most highly-coveted chefs. Aside from utilizing different varieties, each of which has its own distinct profile, each booth showed how rice can function in different ways: for substance, for flavor, and for texture. The selection of dishes is a testament to rice’s surprising versatility—as the basis of rice cakes such as Tausug junay and Japanese mochi; pulverized into flour to be toasted and used as a finishing powder; moprhed into other forms, such as rice paper, tortillas, and flatbreads; steeped into tea or soaked and pureed as the basis of horchata; fermented into buro, a Kapampangan condiment; and more. Here are some of the event’s highlights: