Best of Bicol delicacies you should definitely bring home from your trip

Bicol Laing Photo from Wikipedia

Are you a foodie looking to explore the diverse flavors of the Philippines? Look no further than the Bicol Region, located in the southern part of Luzon Island. Known for its spicy cuisine and unique delicacies, Bicol is a food lover’s paradise. In this article, we’ll take you on a culinary journey of Bicol’s best delicacies to bring back home after your Bicol Trip. Also, if you are wanting to visit Bicol from now and then, you might want to consider getting your own condo, Yes that’s right, you could own a condo in Bicol soon. There are a number of condominiums that are rising at the heart of Camarines Sur click here to learn more.

Bicol’s cuisine is famous for its spicy dishes, and Bicol Express is the most popular of them all. This spicy pork stew is cooked with coconut milk, chili peppers, and shrimp paste. When you pack it to take back home, make sure to use airtight containers to prevent spillage. Let’s explore different Bicol food and delights and tell you how to make them yourselves and how to pack them for your next trip back home.

Bite into the Flavors of Bicol Region with these delicacies:

Spicy Delights

Bicol Express: Spicy Pork Stew with Thick Coconut milk and Shrimp paste.

Bicol Express is a spicy Filipino dish that originated in the Bicol region of the Philippines. It is made with pork meat, coconut milk, shrimp paste, and lots of chili peppers. The dish is named after the Bicol Express train that runs from Manila to Bicol, which is known for its speed and spicy flavor.

To prepare Bicol Express, you will need the following


  • 500 grams of pork belly or shoulder meat, sliced into small pieces or you may yous pagi or manta rays meat.
  • 2 cups of coconut milk
  • 1 cup of water
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 2-3 tablespoons of shrimp paste (bagoong)
  • 10-15 pieces of red chili peppers, sliced
  • 2-3 pieces of green chili peppers, sliced
  • 1 tablespoon of cooking oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Crab meat (optional)

Here’s how to prepare Bicol Express:

1. In a pan, heat the cooking oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and onion, and sauté until fragrant.

2. Add the meat and sauté until lightly browned not fully cooked.

3. Add the shrimp paste and stir well to combine with the pork.

4. Add the sliced chili peppers and stir well to distribute evenly.

5. Pour in the coconut milk and water, and bring to a boil.

6. Lower the heat and let the mixture simmer for about 20-30 minutes or until the meat is tender and the sauce has thickened.

7. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

8. Serve hot with rice.

To pack Bicol Express for travel, it’s best to store it in airtight containers to prevent leaks and keep the meat tender. You can also freeze it for longer storage, but be sure to thaw it before reheating.

Note: if you are into seafood, you may substitute the pork with pagi or manta rays meat.

Bicol Express is a flavorful and spicy dish that is perfect for those who love a little heat in their food. Give it a try and taste the flavors of the Bicol food here in your own home.

Tip: You don’t have to go and visit Bicol to get the spices. You may also save some budget by growing your own spices with this tips.

Sili Ice Cream:

Sili Ice Cream is a unique dessert that you can only find in Bicol. It is made with local chili peppers and spices, which give it a spicy kick. The chili ice cream is sweet and creamy, with a subtle heat that lingers in your mouth.


  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh red chili peppers (siling labuyo)
  • 4 egg yolks
  • Pinch of salt
  • Ice cream maker


1. In a saucepan, combine heavy cream, whole milk, and granulated sugar. Heat over medium heat until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture is hot, but not boiling.

2. Add the chopped chili peppers to the mixture and stir well.

3. Let the mixture steep for about 30 minutes. The longer you let it steep, the spicier the ice cream will be.

4. After 30 minutes, strain the mixture to remove the chili pepper pieces.

5. In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and a pinch of salt until light and frothy.

6. While whisking constantly, slowly pour the hot cream mixture into the bowl with the egg yolks.

7. Pour the mixture back into the saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until it thickens and coats the back of a spoon. Do not let it boil.

8. Remove from heat and let it cool.

9. Once cooled, pour the mixture into an ice cream maker and churn according to the manufacturer’s instructions.

10. Transfer the ice cream to a freezer-safe container and freeze for at least 4 hours or overnight.

11. Serve and enjoy!

Where to Buy and How to Pack: You can find sili ice cream in various specialty stores and markets in Bicol. Some popular brands include 1st Colonial, and Elmer’s. To bring Sili ice cream back home, it is best to pack it in a cooler bag with dry ice or ice packs to keep it frozen during transit. It is also important to check with airline regulations before bringing frozen items on a plane.

Sweet Treats

Bicol Region in the Philippines is known not only for its fish and spicy dishes but also for its sweet treats. Two of the most popular sweets from Bicol that you should try and bring back home are Pili Nut Products and Toasted Siopao.

Pili Nuts

Pili nut is a type of nut indigenous to the Philippines, particularly in the Bicol region. Pili nuts are creamy and have a buttery flavor that makes them a perfect ingredient in many dishes, desserts, and for making sweets.

Pili nut products come in different variations such as Pili Nut Candy, Pili Nut Tart, Pili Nut Brittle, and Pili Nut Spread. The Pili Nut Candy is a must-try food, as it is one of the most popular pili nut products in Bicol. It is made with caramelized brown sugar and mixing it with pili nuts, creating a crunchy and nutty treat.

Aside from the classic Pili Nut Candy, there are different variations of pili nut products that you can try. Pili Nut Tart, for instance, is a dessert that features a buttery crust filled with pili nut cream. Pili Nut Brittle, on the other hand, is a thin and crunchy snack made from ground pili nuts and caramelized brown sugar. Pili Nut Spread is also an excellent option for desserts for those who love nut spreads, as it has a creamy texture and a slightly sweet taste.


  • Fresh pili nuts
  • Water
  • Salt


1. Harvesting: Pili nuts are harvested from the pili tree, which is native to Southeast Asia. The outer shell of the nut is quite tough, so you will need a strong tool to crack it open. Use a nutcracker or a small hammer to crack the shell and remove the nut inside.

2. Soaking: Once the nuts are removed from their shells, soak them in water for about an hour. This will help to loosen the skin and make it easier to remove.

3. Peeling: After soaking, remove the skin from the nuts. You can do this by rubbing the nuts between your fingers or using a small knife to scrape off the skin. Be sure to remove all of the skin, as it can be bitter and affect the flavor of the nuts.

4. Roasting: Preheat your oven to 350°F (175°C). Spread the peeled pili nuts on a baking sheet in a single layer. Sprinkle with a little bit of salt to enhance the flavor. Roast the nuts for 10-15 minutes, or until they are lightly browned you’ll know it is cooked when you smell fragrant aroma.

5. Storage: Once roasted, let the nuts cool completely. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to two weeks, or in the refrigerator for up to a month.

Where to Buy and How to Pack Pili nut products can be bought in most souvenir shops and local markets in Bicol. But if you want to ensure that you’re getting the best quality, you can check out the Pili Nut Center, which is located in Sorsogon City. To pack pili nut products, make sure to put them in an airtight container to preserve their freshness.

Toasted Siopao

Toasted Siopao is a delicious snack that is popular in Bicol. It is a type of siopao or steamed bun that has been toasted until it’s crispy on the outside and soft and fluffy on the inside. Here is a detailed explanation of how to make Bicol Toasted Siopao and how to pack it for travel:


  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup warm water
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup oyster sauce
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 kilo ground pork


1. Make the dough: In a large bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, and baking powder. Add the vegetable oil and warm water and mix until a dough forms. Knead the dough for about 5 minutes until it becomes smooth and elastic. Cover the bowl with a damp cloth and let the dough rest for 30 minutes.

2. Make the filling: In a small bowl, mix together the brown sugar, soy sauce, oyster sauce, water, and cornstarch. Set aside. In a pan over medium heat, heat the vegetable oil. Add the chopped onion and minced garlic and sauté until fragrant. Add the ground pork and cook until browned. Pour the sauce mixture over the pork and stir until well combined. Let the mixture simmer until the sauce thickens. Remove from heat and let cool.

3. Assemble the siopao: Roll the dough into a log and cut it into 12 pieces. Flatten each piece with a rolling pin and spoon about 2 tablespoons of the pork mixture into the center. Gather the edges of the dough and pinch them together to seal the filling. Repeat with the remaining dough and filling.

4. Toast the cooked siopao: Preheat a non-stick pan over medium heat. Brush the pan with vegetable oil. Place the cooked siopao in the pan and toast each side until golden brown and crispy.

5. Pack for travel: Allow the siopao to cool down completely before packing them for travel. Place each siopao in a ziplock bag and seal tightly. Arrange the bags in a plastic container and place them in a cooler with ice packs to keep them fresh during travel.

Bicol Toasted Siopao is a great snack to bring back home from your trip to Bicol. With its crispy exterior and savory pork filling, it’s sure to satisfy your cravings for something delicious. Follow these simple steps to make your own toasted siopao and enjoy the taste of Bicol wherever you go.

coffee, coffee cup, cup

Bicolano Coffee: A Unique and Flavorful Brew Worth Trying

When it comes to coffee, many of us have our go-to brands and blends that we rely on for that daily dose of caffeine. But have you ever tried Bicolano coffee? If you haven’t, you’re missing out on a unique and flavorful brew that’s worth seeking out.

Bicolano coffee is grown and produced in the Bicol region of the Philippines, which is known for its fertile soil and ideal climate for coffee cultivation. The coffee beans are carefully handpicked and sun-dried, which allows for a richer and more distinct flavor profile.

Bicolano coffee is known for its smooth and full-bodied taste with a hint of sweetness. It has a low acidity level, which makes it a great option for those who may experience stomach sensitivity or discomfort with other types of coffee. The coffee beans also have a distinct aroma that’s sure to wake up your senses.

Variations and Flavors

Bicolano coffee comes in various blends and flavors that cater to different taste preferences. Some popular variations include the following:


This is a mild and smooth blend that’s perfect for those who prefer a less intense coffee flavor.


This blend has a stronger and more intense flavor, with a slightly bitter aftertaste.


This is a type of Robusta coffee that’s grown in the Philippines. It has a bold and robust flavor with a nutty undertone.


For those who prefer flavored coffee, the Hazelnut blend offers a smooth and creamy taste with a hint of nutty flavor.

If you’re visiting the Bicol region, you can find Bicolano coffee in local coffee shops and markets. Some popular brands include Café de Legazpi, Café San Pablo, and Bicol Isarog Coffee. You can also buy Bicolano coffee online from various retailers.

When it comes to packing Bicolano coffee for travel, it’s best to choose airtight containers to preserve freshness and flavor. Mason jars, ziplock bags, or vacuum-sealed bags are great options. You can also consider adding a desiccant packet to absorb any moisture and keep the beans dry.

All in all, Bicolano coffee is a unique and delicious brew that’s worth trying. Its distinct flavor profile and low acidity level make it a great option for coffee lovers who may experience stomach sensitivity or discomfort. With various blends and flavors available, you’re sure to find one that suits your taste preferences. So, the next time you’re in the Bicol region, be sure to grab a bag of Bicolano coffee to enjoy at home or share with your friends and family. Here is a Related article to help you become your own barista at home or condo.


Bicol is a food lover’s paradise, especially for those who love spicy cuisine. Bicol Express and Sili Ice Cream are two of the most famous spicy delicacies in the region. They are both delicious and unique, making them great souvenirs to bring home with you. So if you’re visiting Bicol, make sure to try these spicy delights and bring some home to share with your friends and family.

Written by JJM

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