Women all over the world are feeling special today because it’s Mother’s Day! So Happy Mother’s Day to the women to whom we credit the fullness of the world, without you it would be empty (literally).
Celebrating Mother’s Day and any other occasion is very important for Filipinos. We are sentimental people; we never forget birthdays, anniversaries, or any special day. It’s always a huge deal for Filipinos to celebrate occasions, no matter now big or small the handaan is.
We celebrated Mother’s Day a night in advance to avoid the long queues for restaurant seats. This year is extra special since we’re welcoming another lady to the Mother Hen Club. Mother’s Day in the Philippines is supposed to be the mothers’ “day off” from the kitchen so the men of the house would either cook or take them somewhere nice to eat with the family.
We decided on going out for dinner at Hukad sa Golden Cowrie. It’s a nice Filipino restaurant with a homey ambience and delectable food.
I first encountered the goodness that is Hukad sa Golden Cowrie in Cebu City. It is after all, a Cebuano homegrown restaurant that has spread its influence on the Filipino dining experience all over the country. I remember always having to wait for at least 15 minutes to be seated at their Ayala Terraces Cebu branch.
The restaurant is popular for good reason. And it’s not just about the food. But let’s talk about the food first.
We’re a family of seafood lovers go it goes without saying that we feasted mostly on blessings from the sea. And we don’t care much about main dishes, appetizers and the order they should be consumed. Most Filipinos eat with abandon and we’re no exception.
Here are the honored (and devoured) members of our Mother’s Day feast:
It’s basically tenderized unripe jackfruit slices cooked in tuno (coconut milk) and mixed with onions and a variety of other spices. It may be the only veggie dish I could eat every day without complaint.
Kinilaw sa Golden Cowrie
Fresh malasugue (blue marlin) is cooked in white vinegar and mixed with ginger, onions, tomatoes and other fresh ingredients. Hukad gives their diners the option of having their order with or without coconut milk.
This one’s made of pork. Sisig is a heavenly mixture of chopped stuff including pork ears, meat and spices. It’s usually served on a sizzling plate and may come topped with a freshly cracked egg.
Hukad’s version is shelled prawns with scallions, spring onions and egg. It resembles an omelet on a sizzling plate. Not too appetizing to look at but delicious, nonetheless.
Fried Tuna Fingers
These are tuna sticks, breaded then deep fried. It’s a bit too dry for my liking but it comes with a yummy dip and some atsara (pickled papaya) which offset the dryness. We did not finish off the serving so I guess my dining companions did not like it that much too.
It’s the next best thing to lechon, in my opinion. Crispy Pata is pork leg/hock that’s boiled, salted, and finally deep fried to perfection. It’s best consumed with spicy vinegar and a bottle of San Miguel.
We also ordered Tinolang Manok for the little girl who cannot live without soup.
What’s the other thing aside from food that I love about Hukad sa Golden Cowrie? It’s the personalized service by the staff. They greet you with “Maayong Gabie” (Good Evening) in good old Cebuano fashion and take your orders politely and always, always, always with a smile.
What I don’t like? I think it’s their dinner plates (or lack thereof). Diners eat on a flat slab of plastic lined with cut banana leaf. Hats off for sticking to the native theme but I’d appreciate it more if I had a real plate to enjoy my food on.
If you’re ever craving for excellent Filipino classics, use your smartphone apps to locate the closest Hukad sa Golden Cowrie branch. They have multiple locations in Cebu City, Cagayan de Oro City, Davao City, Tagbilaran City, Dumaguete City, General Santos City and Boracay Island. The Hukad experience will soon be enjoyed by locals and visitors in Palawan and Butuan.
NOTE: Most of the dishes in this post are included in our Fiilipino Home-Style Cooking e-book. Click here to download your free copy.
Philippine Traveler’s Rating
Have you dined at Hukad? What did you think about the food? Let us know in the comments below!