As Jean de Jesus explains, Edmonton’s Manila Grill Express was the dream of her of her mother, Aurea, who had many influences growing up surrounded by a large family. “Food was a love language for her,” says Jean. “She showed her love to others by cooking large homemade feasts.”
Patience is key when it comes to preparing Filipino food, says Jean. “Some dishes need a little bit more preparation so if you have the time, get your family involved with cutting vegetables and make it an event!” As with any cuisine, fresh is best, and Jean advises sourcing your ingredients from local butchers and farmer’s markets.
Among Jean and Aurea’s favourite dishes on the menu is Crispy Pata. “It’s a showstopper of a dish that is usually only brought out during a special occasion due to time and preparation. However, with the growing popularity of the air fryer, this can also be made easily at home!” Don’t rush the boiling process, advises Jean, and allow the meat to dry before frying: “This will result in the juiciest, crispiest crispy pata!”