Cebu has a relatively buoyant demand for its finest native delicacies, which aside from giving boost to the province’s tourism sector, has also sustained the livelihood of many delicacy traders.
These various delicacies are sold in grocery stores, “pasalubong” shops, public markets and even on the streets. The Taboan Market is where most of the delicacies of the province are sold. It is the buying center of various dried fishes that come from the island of Bantayan as well as other pasalubong snacks only found in Cebu.
Here are the top 10 famous Cebu delicacies:
1. Lechon. Considered as the “Lechon Capital of the World,” Cebu offers the best kind of lechon.
2. Danggit. It is the most popular dried fish in the province among tourists and locals. Other dried seafood products include Pusit, Dilis, Tapa, Buwad Pinikas — are all available in Taboan. These come from the Bantayan Island, the leading dried fish producer in the region, and the province of Leyte. A kilo of Danggit would normally costs P550.
3. Dried Mango. Deemed as one of the Philippines’ most famous export product, dried mangoes come in two varieties: the ripe and green. Guadalupe of Cebu City is known for producing sweet mangoes. The price of this product ranges from P40 to P350, depending on the quantity and brand.
4. Chicharon. Carcar City is the major buying center for the best chicharon, a deep fried pork’s back fat or pork rind.It is best eaten with spiced vinegar. Chicharon can be bought for P600 a kilo or a quarter of a kilo is pegged at P150.
5. Otap. Otap is an oval-shaped crunchy baked biscuit sprinkled with sugar. It is one of Cebu’s trademarks and in-demand pasalubong snacks. Otap’s price ranges from P50 to P300, it varies on the quantity and brand.
6. Chorizo de Cebu. It is a special kind of the native Filipino sausage or “longganisa,” Cebu-made chorizo is known for its sweet, spicy taste. A dozen of large Chorizo costs P50 and the small one sells at P25.
7. Mazareal. Mandaue City is where the best Mazareal products come from. These are rectangular bars of mixed ground peanuts and sugar, packed in white papers. A small pack can be bought at P20 and P40 for big ones.
8. Torta. The one made in Argao in southern Cebu is still the best although torta are available in many bakeshops in Cebu. Argao’s previous Pitlagong Festival was replaced in 2011 by La Torta Festival, a feast mainly dedicated to its famous delicacy. The cheapest Argao-made torta is sold at P15 to P20; the large sells at P35 but one can buy 3 for P100.
9. Rosquillos. Originally made in Liloan Cebu, Rosquillos, a circular shape cookie with a hole at the center, is now one of the favorite snacks among locals and visiting tourists. A pack of Rosquillos would cost P115.
10. Bibingka. This type of rice cake is available in many parts of the country, but Mandaue City is known for its special bibingka as it is baked in a special oven locally known as “Urnohan.” Each is sold at P10.
There are many delicacies in cebu but we cannot list all of them here.