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Thursday, February 27, 2014

Happy Finds in Naga: Bulastog

"Bulastog kita sa plaza!". This is a statement commonly uttered by students or employees before going home. Hello, hello! We're back for our "Happy Finds in Naga" series, this time another street food that is identifiable by every Nagueno called the "Bulastog".

Ever wonder why our home cooked fish balls does not taste as yummy as the ones that we buy on the streets? Fish balls, bulastogs  and others once cooked at our own kitchen are boring. Perhaps it's because we have associated it for so long that these foods are meant to be sold and eaten outside the comforts of our home. Right on the streets were everything is noisy, busy and dusty, we still find comfort in eating these street foods. Perhaps not every comfort can be found at home that we need to explore other comfort zones in order to survive. It's just like saying that dirty ice cream is delicious even though it's called dirty. Dirty in a sense that it is being sold on the streets and not packed in containers or served in extravagant plating in restaurants. Street foods are not sophisticated, it's very simple and makes our tummies happy once in a while. For that reason, we can really say that eating Bulastog at the Plaza is one of our Happy Finds in Naga.

Photo by bhojhabao - Pueblo Naga
Bulastog is Naga's version of Tokneneng (hard boiled chicken eggs) and kwek kwek (hard boiled quail eggs) covered or dipped in orange coloured flour batter and deep fried. Using a plastic soup bowl,  bulastog is served and topped with the following choices: white onions, cucumber, turnips (singkamas), rock salt and vinegar (spicy or not). Others prefer to use the sauce available for the other street foods. How will you eat it? You can use a bbq stick or have a spoon dipped in hot oil in the frying pan first which the vendors normally do. This is how fun and simple eating at the Plaza can be.

The Culture of Bulastog.

The location, time of availability, price, and the honesty of the various walks of life patronizing the street food can summarize the culture of Bulastog in Naga. Bulastog is just one of the street foods that you can find at Plaza Rizal. Yes, at the Plaza Rizal which is one of the iconic places in the whole city. This is where the vendors with their orange carts are designated to sell only. While the location is the Plaza Rizal, waste management has never been a problem in that area that at least we never get to desecrate the symbol of our national hero. Once every vendor calls it a night, you can never see a trace of left overs the next morning. Spick and span throughout the night with the extra help of our Manong and Manang MRF (materials recovery facility) aids. Over the years the vendors have been in the same area transferring from one corner to another. Vendors set up at around 3 in the afternoon and at 4 pm then everything is good to go until midnight. Location is very accessible since it is at the Central Business District I of Naga. Kaya bago magpuli, hali sa eskwela o trabaho, maghapit muna sa plaza ta mag snack lamang ning bulastog. =) (That's why before heading home after school or work, drop by at the plaza and have a snack of bulastog). Honesto! Why is honesty among the patronizers of bulastog needed in this kind of business? Because you can actually sit wherever you like near the area and just come back to pay. C'mon, the food is very affordable, don't eat and run.

Twenty pesos is all you need for one solid and liquid. The price is nothing to worry about especially that we are dealing with street foods here. Bulastog (chicken egg) as of this writing (Feb. 28, 2014) is Php 12.00 per piece topped with your choice of garnish. Five years ago it was P10 and two years earlier it was P7. See, it's still VERY affordable. Other street foods available are fish ball (and other balls), and breaded chicken nuggets for P5. On the ihaw ihaw side we have isaw for P2, adidas, hotdogs, dugo and  the like. You can always go beyond twenty pesos. So, enjoy!

Pangtulak. Palamig comes in  the usual buko, mango, pandan with gulaman served chilled for only P5.00 and P10.00  for small and big cups respectively. There are stalls that sell 8 oz. bottled softdrinks.

Present location of the street food vendors at Plaza Rizal
Photos by Naga Boy of camsurstaystray.blogspot.com
Bulastog is for everyone! Dawa estudyante ka ning private o public school, empleyado kang gobyerno o pribadong institusyon, mayong pinipili.

Patronizing our street foods in Naga is a big help for our local economy.


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