Saturday, August 25, 2012

De Pugon

I first heard about this baked treat from my younger sister, Adette, a year or so ago.  When going to Tandag City, the capital of the province of Surigao del Sur which is some 90 kilometers north of Lianga, be sure to stop by the town of Marihatag, she suggested, to buy and try some of the local pan de pugon.  I, of course, had no idea what she was talking about.  For me, bread is bread yet on my next trip north I did exactly as she advised me to do and since then that is exactly what I have been doing every time I get the chance.

Pan de pugon, for the uninitiated, can be loosely translated from the original Spanish as "bread of the hearth oven" and refers originally to home-baked bread using the old fashioned brick oven but now is often used to lump together many types of home-style bread products using all or some of the traditional dough making and baking techniques dating back to the Spanish colonial period until the early years of the last century.

I had lived much of my pre-school years in Lianga but even in the 1970's, bread was something you bought from the neighborhood bakery which happened to be just located conveniently beside our house..  I never had the opportunity to sample  homemade bread although my mother was fond of baking cakes and other pastries.  Bread was mostly thought to be too ordinary, too time consuming and uneconomical to produce in any quantity at home.

Marihatag's pan de pugon is produced in a small makeshift stall just beside the town's bus terminal along the national highway.  The stall itself is drab and surprisingly ordinary, the kind that might be selling pork and chicken meat on barbecue sticks elsewhere.  The only sign that it is a bakery of sorts is a contraption made of old wooden planks, plywood and cannibalized sheet metal that sits in the back and from which, in the midst of a shimmer of heat haze, a plume of grey smoke slowly continues rising.

This is the oven heated by wood charcoal from which the small bread loaves come out after baking.  They emerge toasty and brown, the outer skin dark and taut yet the inside white, soft and chewy.  The warm, yeasty aroma is deliciously appealing and the taste not overly sweet or cloying but just enough to make you reach for another piece even when your stomach tells you already had enough.

A variety of the same bread shaped like hole-less doughnuts and stuffed inside with bukayo or sweetened buko or young coconut meat strips is also available for those who may need a sugar fix.  I prefer the plain loaves myself but the latter is a different taste variation I like looking forward to from time to time.

Like the ubiquitous pan de sal of breakfast fame coming from the typical street corner bakery, however, Marihatag's pan de pugon are best eaten fresh from the oven.  After a few hours at room temperature, they become rather hard and tough although a little warming up in the oven toaster can restore some of its appetizing goodness.  Storing leftovers in the refrigerator or chiller can help keep them from spoiling for a day or two especially the bukayo variety but they will never be the same treat you bargained for when they were still piping hot and oven fresh.

So nowadays, as trip to Tandag back to Lianga is never complete without the halfway stop in Marihatag.  Even if time is short and there is a need to hurry, there is always the quick glance to check if the bread stall is open and that the telltale smoke from the oven is wafting skyward.  If both conditions exist then who can begrudge any person a couple of precious minutes in order to be able to to indulge himself, even for a moment, in what is definitely a unique taste experience that conveys, in the best gastronomical sense, the warm, comforting and delicious taste of home.


  1. Anonymous8:10 AM

    Great blog here! Also your web site loads up very fast!
    What web host are you using? Can I get your affiliate link to your
    host? I wish my website loaded up as quickly as yours lol
    Also visit my webpage :: words game

  2. Anonymous7:22 AM

    I usually do not write many remarks, however i did some searching and
    wound up here "De Pugon". And I do have a few questions for you
    if you don't mind. Is it only me or does it appear like a few of the comments come across as if they are coming from brain dead folks? :-P And, if you are posting on other online social sites, I'd like to follow anything new you have to
    post. Could you make a list of the complete urls of all your public sites like your linkedin
    profile, Facebook page or twitter feed?

    Feel free to visit my web page :: sleep apnea treatment

  3. Anonymous5:53 PM

    Greetings! This is my 1st comment here so I just wanted to give a quick shout out and tell you I truly
    enjoy reading through your articles. Can you suggest any other blogs/websites/forums that
    go over the same topics? Thanks for your time!

    My web-site - online parkour games

  4. Anonymous9:57 AM

    I'm truly enjoying the design and layout of your blog. It's a very easy on
    the eyes which makes it much more enjoyable for
    me to come here and visit more often. Did you hire out a developer to
    create your theme? Superb work!

    Feel free to surf to my homepage ::

  5. Anonymous9:30 PM

    Amazing blog! Do you have any tips for aspiring writers?

    I'm hoping to start my own website soon but I'm a little lost on everything.
    Would you propose starting with a free platform like Wordpress or go for a paid option?

    There are so many options out there that I'm completely confused .. Any suggestions? Appreciate it!

    Feel free to visit my site :: 666games

  6. Anonymous10:15 AM

    Hey just wanted to give you a brief heads up and let you know a few of the pictures aren't loading correctly. I'm not sure why
    but I think its a linking issue. I've tried it in two different internet browsers and both show the same outcome.

    Also visit my web site: 1000 cooking games

  7. Anonymous11:29 AM

    Hola! I've been reading your site for a long time now and finally got the courage to go ahead and give you a shout out from New Caney Tx! Just wanted to mention keep up the excellent job!

    My web site :: 666 games net violent

  8. Anonymous7:30 PM

    I feel this is among the so much important information for me.
    And i am happy reading your article. However want to commentary
    on some basic issues, The site taste is great, the articles is actually great : D.
    Excellent activity, cheers

    Feel free to visit my blog post:利用者:TheronWVV

  9. Anonymous3:31 PM

    You ought to take part in a contest for one of the most useful blogs on the web.
    I most certainly will highly recommend this web site!

    Also visit my blog post; ford ranger

  10. Anonymous5:00 AM

    Greetings from Colorado! I'm bored to tears at work so I decided to browse your blog on my iphone during lunch break. I really like the info you present here and can't wait to take a look
    when I get home. I'm surprised at how quick your blog loaded on my phone .. I'm
    not even using WIFI, just 3G .. Anyhow, superb site!

    Here is my webpage :: meet and fuck games

  11. Anonymous2:26 PM

    I like it whenever people get together and share thoughts.

    Great site, keep it up!

    Here is my site: ford Ranger Forum

  12. Anonymous8:00 PM

    Excellent items from you, man. I have have in mind your stuff prior
    to and you are just extremely wonderful. I really like what you
    have got here, really like what you are saying and the way in which wherein you
    assert it. You are making it entertaining and you continue to take care of to stay it smart.
    I can not wait to read much more from you. This is actually a
    tremendous site.

    my webpage - ford ranger forum

  13. Anonymous1:51 PM

    Hey there I am so excited I found your site, I really found
    you by accident, while I was searching on Yahoo for something else, Anyways I am here now and would just like to say kudos for a marvelous post and a
    all round exciting blog (I also love the theme/design), I don’t have time to go through it all at the moment but I have bookmarked it and also included
    your RSS feeds, so when I have time I will be back to read a great deal more, Please do keep up the excellent b.

    Feel free to surf to my blog post - horse games

  14. Anonymous12:16 AM

    I know this website gives quality based content and
    extra material, is there any other web site which offers such
    information in quality?

    my site ... play free horse riding games online

  15. Anonymous12:54 AM

    Hi friends, its wonderful article on the topic of tutoringand fully explained, keep it up
    all the time.

    Check out my web blog - ford ranger forum

  16. Anonymous9:22 AM

    Kеeρ on ωrіtіng, gгеat job!

    Feel fгеe to surf to my homepagе: meuble de salle de bain

  17. Anonymous9:27 PM

    Its like you read my mind! You seem to know so much about this,
    like you wrote the book in it or something. I think that
    you can do with a few pics to drive the message home a
    little bit, but other than that, this is excellent blog.
    A fantastic read. I will definitely be back.

    Also visit my web page ... trick photography and special effects

  18. Anonymous9:21 AM

    Whаt's up to every , for the reason that I am truly eager of reading this weblog's ροst
    to bе updatеd гegularly. It includeѕ faѕtidious іnfοrmation.

    Feel free to ѕurf to my ѕіte :: disque dur SSD

  19. Anonymous10:36 PM

    That is very fascinating, You're a very skilled blogger. I've joined your
    feed and look ahead to looking for more of your excellent post.
    Additionally, I have shared your website in my social networks

    Also visit my blog :: voyance par telephone

  20. Anonymous3:44 PM

    That is really interesting, You are an overly professional blogger.
    I have joined your rss feed and stay up for looking for more of your great post.
    Also, I've shared your web site in my social networks

    Stop by my homepage: zygor guides free download

  21. Anonymous6:17 AM

    I like the valuable information you provide in your articles.
    I will bookmark your blog and check again here regularly.
    I'm quite certain I will learn lots of new stuff right here! Best of luck for the next!

    my web page - chevy silverado headlights

  22. Anonymous12:14 AM

    I for all time emailed this weblog post page to all my contacts,
    since if like to read it then my links will too.

    My web page - cedar park summer camps

  23. Anonymous6:25 AM

    An outstanding share! I've just forwarded this onto a friend who had been doing a little research on this. And he actually ordered me dinner simply because I discovered it for him... lol. So allow me to reword this.... Thank YOU for the meal!! But yeah, thanks for spending the time to talk about this issue here on your site.

    My blog post; übersetzungen kostenlos **

  24. Anonymous6:04 PM

    Great web site you have here.. It's hard to find quality writing like yours nowadays. I truly appreciate individuals like you! Take care!!

    Here is my blog ... Wasserdichte Kamera []

  25. Anonymous1:06 AM

    What's up, just wanted to say, I liked this blog post. It was practical. Keep on posting!

    Here is my web site :: übersetzungsbüro berlin

  26. Anonymous10:35 PM

    Great delivery. Great arguments. Keep up the great spirit.

    My weblog chevrolet silverado recall

  27. Anonymous10:00 PM

    I almost never leave a response, but i did a few searching and
    wound up here "De Pugon". And I do have 2 questions for you if you don't mind. Is it simply me or does it look as if like some of these remarks look like they are coming from brain dead individuals? :-P And, if you are writing on additional online social sites, I'd like to keep up
    with everything new you have to post. Would you make a list of all
    of your communal sites like your linkedin profile, Facebook page or twitter feed?

    my web site ... voyance

  28. Anonymous12:11 AM

    I think this is among the most significant information
    for me. And i'm glad reading your article. But wanna remark on few general things, The site style is wonderful, the articles is really great : D. Good job, cheers

    Also visit my blog ... Wasserdichte Kamera **

  29. Anonymous3:49 PM

    Thiѕ pοst is wοrth everyоne's attention. When can I find out more?

    my web blog :: eat stop eat download - -

  30. Anonymous5:37 PM

    I reallу like іt when folks get togethег and sharе opinіons.
    Greаt blоg, stick with it!

    Feel free to suгf to my web site ...
    text your ex back free pdf

  31. Anonymous4:08 AM

    WOW just what I was looking for. Came here bу seaгching fοr panic away free

  32. Anonymous6:36 AM

    Grеat info. Luсkу me I ran across your website bу acсident
    (stumbleupоn). Ι haѵe book marked it
    for later!

    my web-sitе; panic away free

  33. Anonymous11:23 AM

    I knοω this іf off toρic but I'm looking into staгting mу own blоg and was curious ωhat all is гequiгed to gеt setuρ?
    I'm assuming having a blog like yоurs ωould coѕt a ρгettу penny?
    I'm not very internet smart so I'm not 100% sure. Anу
    tips or аdvіce would be greatly appreciated.
    Many thаnks

    Hеre is my sitе; 7 Pasos Para Olvidar Un Amor Descargar

  34. Anonymous6:05 PM

    You're so awesome! I do not believe I've read through a single thing like this before.
    So good to find another person with genuine thoughts on this subject.
    Seriously.. many thanks for starting this up.

    This website is something that's needed on the web, someone with a bit of originality!

    Here is my web-site - this contact form

  35. Anonymous12:24 PM

    Greetings from Carolina! I'm bored to tears at work so I decided to browse your blog on my iphone during lunch break.

    I enjoy the information you present here and can't wait to take a
    look when I get home. I'm amazed at how fast your blog loaded on
    my mobile .. I'm not even using WIFI, just 3G ..
    Anyhow, superb blog!

    Also visit my blog post ipod repair center ()

  36. Anonymous2:44 AM

    ӏ'vе beеn browsing online more than t&X68;ree hоurs today, yet I never
    found аny interesting article like youгs.
    It &X69;s ρretty worth enough for me.
    In my view, if all webmasters a&X6e;d bloggers &X6d;ade
    good content a&X73; you diԁ, the web will be a lot
    more useful tha&X6e; еver b&X65;fo&X72;e.

    Look into my we&X62;-site; eat stop eat download

  37. Anonymous8:32 AM

    Hi it's me, I am also visiting this web site regularly, this
    site is in fact good and the visitors are
    genuinely sharing good thoughts.

    Feel free to surf to my page Anchor (