ISABELA | Eddie’s Panciteria, First Taste of Pancit Cabagan | Lakad Pilipinas

Pancit Cabagan Eddie's Panciteria

My favorite noodle dish in the Philippines has always been Tuguegarao’s pancit batil patong. But I’ve always been curious about its kissing cousin, the pancit cabagan, an almost similar noodle cuisine found about an hour or so from Tuguegarao City, originating from a town whose name it came from.

Pancit Cabagan Noodles
CABAGAN MIKI BEING SOLD AT THE MARKET

Coming from another town in the province of Isabela where we visited the Tumauini Church, we decided to drop by the municipality of Cabagan before heading to Tuguegarao City. Our only purpose in doing so was to have a taste of its pancit. It can’t get more authentic than having my first taste of pancit cabagan at Cabagan itself.

Pancit Cabagan Eddie's Panciteria
SPARSE INTERIOR OF EDDIE’S PANCITERA

We have no idea where the best pancit cabagan was in town, so minutes before alighting from the bus, we quickly did a Google search. It didn’t get us far. We resorted to what old-school travelers do when confounded with such issues; we went to the public market and asked the first friendly-looking local we met. She pointed across the street, Eddie’s Panciteria.

Eddie’s Panciteria it was.

Patrons Eddie's Panciteria
PATRONS HAVING A GOOD TIME WHILE WAITING FOR THEIR PANCIT

The panciteria was as ordinary as panciterias get, but the few locals we asked all swore by its name. The open-aired eatery was half-full with locals having their breakfast when we arrived. We sat down on its wooden benches and tried to decipher their menu.

Naimas Cane Vinegar Eddie's Panciteria
NAIMAS CANE VINEGAR FROM ILAGAN, ISABELA

They have Regular Pancit (Php35.00), Special Pancit (Php60.00), Derecha w/ Egg (Php40.00) and Derecha w/o Egg (Php30.00). We wanted a plate of pancit cabagan and we were told we should order Special Pancit. We tried to ask what Derecha was but they can’t seem to explain it to us.

Pancit Cabagan Eddie's Panciteria
PANCIT CABAGAN, READY TO BE SERVED

We met Josephine, the proprietor of Eddie’s Panciteria and she told us that they’ve been serving pancit cabagan since 1998; their beginnings rooted from temporary make-shift stalls, with a dish costing a mere five pesos.

We asked her if we can see how a plate of pancit is prepared. She obligingly led us to her kitchen.

Pancit Cabagan Eddie's Panciteria
MIXING THE PANCIT CABAGAN

It was quite dark and stuffy in their kitchen but we managed to see how their cook transferred the saucy cabagan miki from a vat to our plates; a piece of hard-boiled egg here, chunks of pork lechon carajay there, and finally portions of braised pork. My mouth was already watering.

Pancit cabagan is usually served with quail eggs, but according to Josephine, their patrons prefer chicken eggs since they’re more filling.

From here, I can already see the main differences of pancit cabagan with pancit batil patong. This one’s saucier, its uncooked miki dryer, its egg, hard-boiled, it has no liver and uses pork instead of carabeef.

Pancit Cabagan Eddie's Panciteria
PANCIT CABAGAN WITH CHILI VINEGAR DIP

Soon, everything was on our table. We looked at the locals eating and mimicked what they were doing. They poured a Naimas cane vinegar into a small plate for dips, we poured some too. They put in a bunch of chilies, we followed suit. Naimas in Ilocano means delicious, and their locally made vinegar must be so.

Pancit Cabagan Eddie's Panciteria
SAUCY PANCIT CABAGAN FROM EDDIE’S PANCITERIA

Finally, it was time to for my first bite of an authentic pancit cabagan. From looks alone, I know it would be really delicious.
I poured a bit of vinegar in, forked a mouthful with a piece of braised pork on top, followed it through with a slice of egg and a crunch of lechon carajay. My favorite pancit batil patong may have met its match.


Eddie’s Panciteria Pancit Cabagan
Address: In front of Cabagan Public Market, National Highway, Cabagan, Isabela, Cagayan Valley
Contact Number:
Open Hours: 6:00 am to 7:00 pm, everyday
Menu: Click Here

GPS Coordinates Map: 17°25'40.6"N 121°46'21.7"E


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Posted by Christian Sangoyo on Saturday, April 4, 2015

5 comments:

  1. A big Thank you for your blog. I was honestly planning to visit Cabagan just to get a hold of the recipe. Your description of the elements and taste is enough for me to start cooking my own version.

    - charles

    ReplyDelete
  2. by the way, the pictures helped a lot as I was clueless as to how "saucier" the Cabagan pancit was. Can you please confirm if the braised pork is Igado? Thanks again.

    - charles

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    Replies
    1. Hi, just been to Cabagan last week. My friend is from there.. You need to use the miki and soy sauce from Cabagan to do it right.. The miki, when added to the broth and soy sauce, thickens the sauce.. The braised pork is indeed Igado.. When the noodles are cooked, they add the vegetables and igado, then topped it with the lechon, egg and onions.

      Delete
  3. Hi,

    Thanks for your confirmation :) And yes, nothing tastes like authentic cane vinegar and miki from up north :)

    ReplyDelete