Filipinos love to eat it for breakfast, but pandesal can be eaten any time of the day
At Pandesal (it means “salt bread” in Spanish) Bakehouse, they bake the soft, fluffy, slightly sweet, yeasted buns in small batches around the clock. Chances are the buns will still be warm from the oven when you get your mitts on them. And you can watch the whole production process: the proofed dough stretched out into long ropes, cut, rolled in fine breadcrumbs and then proofed again before baking. Get them for 40c each or a dozen for $3.60. Have them with butter or jam for afternoon tea, or make like a local and have them dunked in tea for breakfast.
But wait, there’s more: Spanish bread are little log-shaped loaves filled with a paste of butter and brown sugar. Ensaymada with cheese is another fluffy sweet bread, rolled up in a scroll and sprinkled with sugar and - you read that right - grated cheese. It sounds crazy but it works. Really.
Customers flow through this tiny bakery non-stop on the weekend – it’s mostly locals but also Filipinos who have travelled from several suburbs away. There’s a whole heap of Filipino treats for homesick expats including a rotating mix of hot dishes in a covered bain marie.
They have adobo pork, caldareta beef stew, callos beef tripe and bicol express pork in coconut gravy when we visit. The callos beef tripe is particularly good with tender honeycomb tripe, peas and carrots in a tomato stew. Get a medium-sized takeaway box for $8 and dinner’s sorted. Check the freezer too for embutido (a Filipino meatloaf) and kikiam, a tasty mix of sweet pork mince and five spice wrapped up in bean curd sheets.
Don’t forget dessert, either. There’s taho sweet bean curd in syrup, ube purple yam cake and leche flan, the Filipino version of crème caramel made with condensed milk. And if the sans rival meringue with French butter cream is a little too sweet, get a cup of cold ready-made Milo to go.
|Venue name:||Pandesal Bakehouse|
16 Tooronga Terrace
|Opening hours:||Mon-Fri 8am-5pm; Sat 8am-2pm|