Snackin’ at Xian’s Choice

Fresh Lumpia (Spring Roll)

Even with a prime location in Laoag, Kentucky Fried Chicken lasted only a year. Let’s face it, Ilocanos are frugal especially when it comes to food. Speaking about the shelf life of an eatery here, didn’t you notice, the paksiw, miki, hi-bol, and empanada places stay longer than your average fancy eatery? The moneyed investors eying food business in Ilocos should think twice — that’s just my two cents.

Xian's Choice

We all love good budget food, and so I started a local food adventure in the most unlikely places and thanks to friends who are free-spirited enough to share the joints they frequent, I was able to find mention-worthy Xian’s Choice (east of the old Ivan Dominic along P. Gomez St.).

The stars in this garage converted into a canteen are fresh lumpia, palabok, spaghetti, miki and hi-bol (paksiw with pancit). The servings are comfortably sized. I paid only 65 pesos for one single palabok and two servings of vegetable lumpia. It’s singkamas and not ubod, yet it roughly tastes like the real thing. The size is actually bigger than the one at Max’s which costs way a lot more.


Neighbors and students from the nearby provincial high schools and colleges frequent the place I heard. The merienda size palabok is huge enough for two if you’re ordering lumpia on the side. Though it lacked  the usual fastfood palabok garnishings such as tinapa flakes and shrimps, the chicharon topping was not “tipid” and the sauce was flavorful. They also have bilao size palabok, ideal for potlucks.

Fresh Lumpia

I love fresh lumpia, so this place is love!

Photographed by Blauearth © Blauearth™ All Rights Reserved 2009-2014

Veggie Nice

Fresh Lumpia (Spring Roll)

Another work week coming. Hope you all had a nice Sunday. Remember the Tsinoy-style fresh lumpia (spring roll) recipe I posted here? A friend was able to pull it off. There was just one little error, the hubby mistook parsley for cilantro. Nonetheless, we all enjoyed rolling our own lumpia. Good he didn’t forget the chili bean paste (that red thingy in the photo). Without it, it’s like having turkey without the cranberry sauce. Four is my lucky number:)

Rolling a Fresh Lumpia (Spring Roll)

The white lumpia wrappers are better than the yellow ones used for deep-fried lumpia or turon. Be sure they are the thin kind, fresh and not frozen. We order ours from a Chinese-owned specialty store at the public market.

In addition to the lumpia, adobo French beans was served. Quite like utong (string beans), but with more crunch. Really yummy! For added flavor, he used oyster sauce instead of soy sauce. Iced coconut juice, chilled fresh pears and watermelon wedges completed the wonderful summery dinner.

French Beans Adobo

Photographed by Blauearth © Blauearth™ All Rights Reserved 2009-2012