Food and History

Reaction paper When we study Filipino history and learn about the great heroes who helped lead the country to its freedom, we tend to forget that each of these heroes, no matter how great, were people too. Even though they fought, whether outright or silently, almost all their lives for the release of the Philippines from the clutches of its “mother” Spain, they still had the things that made them normal people, like their favorite food. As I was researching I thought of why knowing what food they liked mattered.

They spent their lives fighting for the rights of their countrymen; why should we even bother to notice what they thought tasted good? Its just food, I thought. Then thought it would be fun to imagine them as if they were normal people. imagined Marcelo del Pilar enjoying a meal of pocherong manok with ensaladang talong with his family after a day of travel, or Mariano Ponce savoring the tempura his wife had just repared for him, or Andres Bonifacio in the middle of an intense battle, wishing he was home to have some lechon manok sa saha ng saging with his siblings. ealized it then. Food wasn’t just food, and it wasn’t just a source of energy; the favorite foods of these amazing heroes could have comforted them when they were troubled, or healed them of their homesickness, or just made them feel a little bit better in the midst of the massive pressure the Spaniards were exerting on them and their countrymen.

All these little things about our heroes – the dish they like most, where they liked to go, what they did in their pastime – tend to be overlooked because these details do not matter to us as much as their heroic deeds did. But no matter what we do, these tiny details of their lives are what make them people too, and I think it would be only right to pay attention to these seemingly unimportant particulars – even if it means just knowing what their favorite food was.

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