Nicole Ponseca and Miguel Trinidad, the duo behind the two popular Filipino restaurants in New York (Maharlika and Jeepney), just released their debut cookbook, I Am A Filipino. It's a guide to both the subtleties and history of Filipino food, and the dishes themselves. From pancit and adobo to chorizo burgers and jackfruit ice cream, this book demonstrates the delicious recipes that define the vibrant cuisine.
“This is not just a cookbook. It’s a manifesto,” they said. In the last few years, Filipino food has gone from a little-known immigrant cuisine, mostly experienced at home, to being on the forefront of American restaurant dining.
“Part cookbook, part manifesto, Nicole Ponseca wants to change the conversation around Filipino food. For Filipino readers, the book is a statement of pride in Filipino identity and culinary heritage and for those still learning about the cuisine, the book is an excellent course in the flavors that ground it and how to bring them into your home. For the latter group, don’t skip the book’s Filipino 101, which grounds cooks in the essential methods and ingredients of this complex and intensely flavorful cuisine.”
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“This cookbook offers modern Filipino recipes that capture the bright, tangy, savory, and spice essence of the country's food, which reflects an array of influences from Chinese, to Middle Eastern, to Spanish, Mexican, and even American. Learn to make fried street snacks like ukoy, tender adobos, and bright seafood.”
A native of San Diego, Ponseca moved to New York to pursue a career in advertising but found her true calling upon discovering a lack of authentic Filipino food in the city and decided to do something about it. Together with chef Trinidad, she opened Maharlika in 2011 and Jeepney one year later. Both authors live in New York City.
Ponseca has done what no other Filipino restaurateur or chef in the Philippines or US has done--and that is be the leading courageous light in taking Filipino food to mainstream America. And everyone is taking notice. In the US, it's common for Filipinos to ignore other Filipinos or be envious of another Filipino's success which can be challlenging for the likes of Ponseca. Praises are seldom extended to Filipinos by fellow Filipinos where the US mainstream just does the opposite: Lavish praises on well-deserved. Congrats to Ponseca and Trinidad.
The book is available at Amazon and other stores like Walmart, Target and Barnes and Noble.