As the famous saying goes, “The way to a person’s heart is through his/her stomach.” We Filipinos enjoy sharing good food and company because of our firm familial ties and love for gastronomical experiences, with homecooked Filipino meals being among our favorites to indulge in. It takes time, effort, and passion to produce hearty meals that leave a mark on people.
Other than the outcome, cooking has further benefits for people. For instance, others use it to express their creativity or emotion. But when it comes to the youth, the older generation sees cooking as an avenue to learn valuable life skills. After all, eating is a basic necessity to survive.
Whenever possible, some mothers take the time to teach their children some basic cooking skills, treating it as a way for them to bond.
In celebration of Mother’s Day 2023, Manila Standard revived its Clash of Kawali cooking competition to bring A Mother’s Day Special, where mothers will demonstrate their cooking and budgeting skills while working closely with their daughters to create savory meals.
Besides the thrill of the competition, the contestants, Maricris Canceran, Jacie Libuano, and Neriza Deligero, all see it as an opportunity to further instill a sense of responsibility in their children.
Canceran has a deep passion for cooking. She learned from her American employer, who would provide her with a cookbook so she could follow recipes closely. She passed her interest in cooking to her daughter, Jannelle.
“Since nagtrabaho ako, kaming mag-asawa, natuto na siyang magluto. Responsible siya kasi siya ‘yung gumagabay sa dalawa niyang kapatid.
Siya ‘yung nagluluto sa bahay,” she shared, adding that her daughter can cook dishes like tinola, adobo, and afritada, among others.
On the other hand, Jannelle hopes to turn her passion for cooking into a profession someday, as she realizes the fun and complexity of whipping up dishes in the kitchen for herself and others.
Cooking for herself and others also prompted Libunao to start in the kitchen at an early age. As the eldest child, she would care for her younger siblings when their parents were away for work. She passed on the same mindset to her eldest daughter, Jasmine, because she and her husband were away for work on weekdays.
“Tinuruan ko siya para makatulong din sa amin sa bahay. Para pag-uwi, may nakahanda ng kanin at ulam na lang kulang,” Libunao said. She also taught her daughter how to slice ingredients while considering her safety, something that people should frequently think about.
Giving her daughter some responsibility and familiarity in the kitchen also enables the child to explore new flavors and experience different kinds of food when possible.
Meanwhile, Deligero, a mother of three, imparts her knowledge and wisdom in the household to all her children. Her youngest, Angelina, is independent enough to cook her meals when her mother is away. Deligero learned some tricks of the trade in the kitchen through her mother, who also passionately cooks for her family.
“Nagluluto ako ng iba’t ibang ulam para sa kanila. Nakakatuwa pag inuubos nila ‘yung niluto ko kasi doon ko din pinapakita ‘yung pagmamahal ko sa kanila. Minsan, natututo na din sila magluto sa sarili nila kaya kampante ako na kaya nila sarili nila,” Deligero said.
Through the example she sets, Deligero’s youngest daughter has gained confidence in the kitchen, sometimes experimenting with other cuisines that piqued her curiosity.
Cooking is more than just producing food, as these mothers demonstrated. It’s also a great way to create deeper connections and encourage the younger generations to learn life skills, gain confidence, and have a healthy relationship with food.
Watch Manila Standard’s Clash of Kawali: A Mother’s Day Special live on Manila Standard’s Facebook page (www.facebook.com/ManilaStandardPH) today at 1 p.m.