Attend any Filipino gathering and you’ll find the Filipino version of spaghetti bolognese (tomato sauce and meat) at the center of the dining table, its meaty, red sauce dripping over the glistening al dente (or often overcooked) noodles. It’s even topped with a generous amount of hotdog slices and grated cheese, making this Pinoy specialty (and Italian nightmare) the ultimate comfort food for families and friends.
We were reminded once again of the Pinoy spaghetti’s power to bring people closer together while spending a Jollibee “sweet-sarap” afternoon with Asia’s Songbird Regine Velasquez and her son, Nate.
Here’s why we think spaghetti is (and will be) an eternal Filipino favorite:
1. It’s sweet and meaty.
Plain and simple, Filipinos are food-loving people. We particularly love our sweets and meat. Combine the two and you’ve hit the jackpot.
2. It’s filling.
Filipinos take their carbohydrates seriously. We’re also a nation of practical eaters. We tend to devour quick yet filling meals to power us through the day. In a day of celebration, it’s usually to keep everyone energized in catching up and consuming all the drinks.
3. It hits three birds with one stone.
Spaghetti is a staple in kiddie parties or Christmas parties for very good reasons. It’s able to fill tummies. It satisfies the Filipinos’ sweet tooth. Most importantly, it’s budget-friendly. Some have even come up with extenders to their sauces such as milk, sweet banana ketchup, and sliced hotdogs for that meaty addition.
4. It’s a great pansit alternative.
Noodles are a must, especially in birthday parties. It’s widely believed that eating noodles on your birthday will lengthen your life. Unfortunately, not everyone is fond of pansit. It can be greasy and non-filling for those who love to eat a lot (a.k.a. us).
5. It brings back memories.
Spaghetti is like that ’90s boy band song you’ll always sing along with. It’s what you grew up eating. A serving of spaghetti just reminds you of childhood and how that sweet, meaty taste delighted your taste buds. For all that it has done to the Filipino family, spaghetti is the ultimate nostalgia-evoking food on this side of the globe.