Last August 17 to 21, 2012, I’ve been to Ilocos. I’ve seen a lot of places and I ate a lot of food, including the very popular – Ilocos Empanada. I taste the Ilocos Empanada from different towns of Ilocos – Vigan, Batac, Laoag, Pagudpud and even the Empanada from Katipunan (QC). I tried to eat all to know how good the empanada is.
Empanada is composed of 2 to 3 kinds of vegetables with egg and Ilocos longanisa (for the special one). It is wrapped in a rice flour with orange food color and some seasonings. The empanada is cooked by deep frying.
I want to describe the Empanada in a nice thought that I could, but I can’t. I am wondering what is special in Ilocos Empanada, what is it? Why is it very famous? In trying the various empanada, there’s one thing that I am sure, that’s the name itself that I am paying for. I said that because there is no special taste, no WOW factor! (Or I just expect too much for the taste). VIGAN EMPANADA: It is just more of flour (light brown in color) and oily with vinegar dippings. Actually, I don’t like vinegar and it is too oily, if you will eat the Vigan empanada, you have to drink softdrinks along with it to avoid the “Umay” (lose of appetite) factor and for me, single order is good for 2 persons.
BATAC EMPANADA: (the original and most famous): My Tita told me that I should not leave Batac without tasting it because for her, it is really good. I am confused with the taste of it knowing that my Tita is very meticulous when it comes to tastes of the food. And I became curious that she actually boasted it to me. To stop my curiosity, I tasted the Batac Empanada and I can say, it is much better than the Vigan’s. It is not salty but at the same time, not tasty. But again, you need to have softdrinks with it but not as the craving for the softdrinks that I felt when I am eating the Vigan’s Empanada.
PAGUDPUD EMPANADA: It has the same color like Batac’s that’s orange in color. It has monggo beans and cabbage with a lot of MSG, an egg and longanisa. It’s good to eat the empanada while it is hot but again, nothing is really special with it. I am really wondering. What’s there in empanada. I want to know, I want to satisfy my curiosity.
LAOAG EMPANADA: For the fourth time, in Florida Bus Station while waiting for our trip going home, my brother bought an empanada again. He actually likes it because of the free catsup. Yes, it taste better but the crust is thinner and it is messy even if it was put in a paper bag. I ate only the fillings and left the crust in the paper bag. Again, I need softdrinks and I am full already.
KATIPUNAN EMPANADA: Actually, this is the last empanada that I have eaten. Popular Ilocos Empanada in Katipunan that my Tita bought after her work. I like the crust but not the fillings.
After tasting the Ilocos Empanada from different suppliers, I can say that the only special ingredients is that one (1) whole egg – Nothing more, nothing less. And since it is deep fried, it is oily that you will only crave for softdrinks. And I believe that one serving is good for two.
Therefore, don’t expect for more “WOW” factor in Empanada because there’s nothing special on it. It is just my curiosity to try the famous Ilocano food. But then, you should try it, there’s may be special that you can find. Unfortunately, it’s not the case for me. Though, it is the cheapest way to feed my hungry tummy in a cowboy style (on my Ilocos adventures).
This is written by my neice, Keishel. I am sharing the same sentiments also. But as to its cost, I feel that it is expensive based on the ingredients used. It costs Php30 to Php45 (Blue Lagoon, Pagudpud is the most expensive). In addition, I personally disliked deep fried food and those wrapped with flour. So, it may add the factor of not liking it.