Getting started with cooking a new cuisine requires ingredient procurement. For a cuisine like Filipino, which has many specialty ingredients, this can be challenging. In North America, Seafood City, the supermarket chain specializing in Filipino foods, is one of the best options available. There is a wide assortment of fresh fruits and vegetables, meat and fish, dry goods, and frozen goods. They carry a large assortment of Filipino food products from such brands as Pamana and Mama Sita’s. As of February 2018, they have 25 locations in North America with most located in the state of California. If there is not a Seafood City conveniently located, a local Filipino grocer is another great option. For example, the city of Chicago is also home to Three R’s Filipino Grocery and Café and Uni-Mart, two specialty Filipino grocers.
The next place to look for Filipino ingredients can be another Asian grocer, whether it’s a chain like H-Mart, Great Wall Supermarket, or Mitsuwa or a local Asian grocer. Some ingredients are used across multiple Asian cuisines, so a well-stocked Asian grocer would likely carry items like fish sauce and long beans. Many mainstream American grocers have an ethnic aisle where basic Asian ingredients such as soy sauce are readily available. Even Whole Foods Market carries bok choy.
Finally, Filipino ingredients can be purchased online. Efooddepot.com and Amazon. com both offer an assortment of Filipino ingredients and ship across the United States. So whether there is a recipe for a Filipino dish from a book, a blog, or even this newsletter that piques your interest, it is possible to find the ingredients needed to prepare it.
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