I tasted my first pancit batil patong dish the night before at a guerilla-type roadside eatery. I was instantly hooked.
This was about two years ago and it was my first time to visit Tuguegarao City. The next morning, we hunted for a proper panciteria, asking locals as we went along. They were all saying the same thing, go to the Tuguegarao Cathedral, there’s one along its left wing. We followed their advice and we found Ed’s Panciteria.
|INSIDE ED’S SIMPLE PANCITERIA|
It was basically a shack with a bare ceiling, unfinished floor with a few plastic chairs and makeshift tables. The thing that made us decide to eat there was the number of locals having their fill of their noodles, a good indication that this place serves a mean dish.
|OF COURSE, YOU HAVE TO ORDER TODO!|
Ed’s Panciteria, like most in Tuguegarao, serves nothing but pancit batil patong. They have it in Regular (Php50.00), Special (Php60.00), Super Special (Php70.00) and Todo (Php80.00). The difference between the first two is simply the serving size; and the last two, aside from the size, has an additional hotdog mixed in with the whole shebang.
With only a ten-peso difference between each order, we decided to go Todo. And well, who can’t help but order todo when you see one in the menu, right?
|COOKING TUGUEGARAO’S PANCIT BATIL PATONG|
We took a peek at their makeshift kitchen out back to see firsthand what makes pancit batil patong tick.
We saw manong cooking both the pancit miki or noodles and its ingredients on one a huge vat, mixing and tossing as we watched. This noodle dish is a staple snack for Cagayanos. Unlike most uncooked noodles, its miki is soft and slightly soggy, making it difficult to transport to other places. But what makes this noodle dish really different is the meat mixed with the noodles, carabeef; meat from water buffalos.
|A HUGE MOUND OF PANCIT BATIL PATONG|
We went back to our tables and were flabbergasted when our order arrived. It was enormous! Covered with toppings of crushed kropek, chopped cabbages and carrots, bits of bean sprouts and small portions of carabeef and hotdogs; the thing doesn’t even resemble a pancit!
The poached egg (patong), which is supposed to top the pancit is also covered by the huge mound of ingredients.
|THE BATIL PART OF PANCIT BATIL PATONG|
We were given two cups of soup, which we were told were called batil; an egg-drop broth made from bihas or carabeef bulalo, and small plates filled with chopped onions which we were supposed to mix with calamansi and soy sauce. This isn’t supposed to be a dip for the noodles; you eat these along with the noodles.
To be honest, we were unable to finish the whole thing.
But it’s not because it’s no good, but it was simply too doggone gynormous. We were so full, we couldn’t even drink a sip of water. Ed’s Panciteria reinforced my previous night’s eureka moment, pancit batil patong just might be the best noodle dish in the Philippines.
Address: Luna Street, Centro 6,
Tuguegarao City, Cagayan
Contact Number: (078) 304-0557 | (0905) 658-9888
GPS Coordinates Map: 17°36'47.7"N 121°43'46.1"E