Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Breakfast's In The Bag!

Pandesal would always be associated to breakfast. This small, round bread, which has been present since the Spanish times, is a Filipino favorite in every breakfast table. Despite the rise in prices of bread today, people still manage to buy some of this delicious bread at their local bakeshops. If there's one question that we would like to know about this yummy breakfast treat, it's this: "What would be the future of our very own pandesal?"

In the very unassuming road of Julia Vargas lies a food haven most people wouldn’t think of. Popularly known as “Home Depot”, this place has become one of the go-to places for foodies who want to try something new, or corporate slaves who just want to have a good fun night. The place comes alive during night time, but little do we know that during the morning, there’s a quaint bread place that offers hearty breakfast sets everyone ought to try.

The Bread Bag is the attempt at reincarnating Casa Marcos’ very popular pandesal. The owners opened a separate little store that offers only the well-loved pandesal and its different gourmet recipes. Who knew our normal neighborhood pandesal can be so chic? In The Bread Bag, pandesal can be bought bare or in its more sosyal form. Of course, Glutton Guy and I tried the sosyal recipe. We can eat pandesal in its normal state any time but in the rich-and-the-famous style? Not everyday.

Here's what we got:

Adobo Flakes with Kesong Puti, 122 php

Glutton Guy: Aodobo? As palaman? I found it weird at first. But I got to realize how good the idea was when I tasted it. I expected the adobo flakes to have that crunchy, crispy texture. I tried adobo flakes before (at a different food place, though) and it was really crunchy and crispy. Bread Bag didn't have that exact crunchy texture I was looking for. But, what they had was really good. The kesong puti accentuated the flavor of the adobo. It actually looked like marshmallows in a sandwich. It's perfect with the soft and hot bread. Not a big fan of the sauce and the chips, though. The liver sauce was really off for my palate. But, the dish is an absolute must-try. It's a purely Pinoy pandesal sandwich. : )

Glutton Girl: I am in love with cheese, all forms and sizes, so this was a no-brainer. When I saw kesong puti in the menu, I was completely sold. Add adobo flakes to that and the sandwich already sounds so appetizing. True enough, when my sandwich arrived, it was overflowing with crunchy flakes and white cubes of cheese. Pure bliss. I just didn’t like the liver-like sauce that came with my sandwich. I kept on getting sauce from Glutton Guy haha! But that was dismissable. The sandwich alone was great. And VERY filling. Don’t let that small-looking pandesal fool you.. it’s really heavy on the stomach. The plates came with knife and fork, all fit for the very pang-mayaman pandesal that I was having. There were times though that I wanted to just grab it by the hand and eat it like a caveman. It was THAT good. But I had to keep my composure and be lady-like. Knife and fork it is. I know what you guys are thinking now. “How can a pandesal sandwich cost P122?!?” Yeah, I had the same reaction too. Although I think the sandwiches can be priced a little bit cheaper (maybe P80-P90 per order), they are good splurges once in a while. Again, like I said, it’s not everyday that you get to eat sosyal pandesal. Might as well enjoy it and not think of the price, right?

Chicken and Mushroom, 111 php

Glutton Guy: I wasn't into pork or beef during that time, so I opted for chicken. The chicken and mushroom pandesal was like the Filipino version of chicken pot pie. I liked the creaminess of the sauce. It suited the chicken well. I was expecting it to be a bit salty for the bread. But, it actually had the right flavor. It wasn't overwhelming, and despite it being saucy, it didn't soak the bread. The chicken was I found really interesting. It wasn't tough and was really tender. You won't have any problem with it. The mushrooms worked perfectly with the chicken and the creamy sauce. My dish had a gravy just like the one you would have with fried chicken. It was delicious, but the pandesal sandwich was as delicious even without it. I think I'll try creating a version of this at home. : )

Glutton Girl: This was Glutton Guy’s order, but he was generous enough to let me taste his order. It was good. Creamy mushroom sauce and the chicken chunks were tender. Our sandwich orders came with sauces that should suit our gourmet pandesals, but I kept on getting Glutton Guy’s sauce. I liked the gravy/mushroom sauce that came with his sandwich more than the liver-like sauce I had. Hey, a girl can experiment!

If you’re looking for a new breakfast place (and free parking that comes with it), go to Home Depot and head on straight to The Bread Bag. Have your gourmet breakfast fix once in a while and see pandesal in a different light. Maybe after a meal in this quaint place, you will change your perspective regarding our “national bread” pandesal.

Here's how we rated The Bread Bag:


(The Bread Bag is located at Unit 20A, 20B Ortigas Home Depot, #1 Julia Vargas Street, Pasig City. It's just beside the Home Depot store, among the line of food places there.)

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