The Legend of Lumpiang Shanghai Launches in New York
Sentro Rizal New York and the Philippine Consulate General in New York commemorate “Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander Heritage Month” through a book launch featuring “Ang Alamat ng Lumpiang Shanghai” (The Legend of the Filipino-Style Spring Roll) by writer, Nina Daza-Puyat, at the Philippine Center on Friday, 12 May 2023.
“Ang Alamat ng Lumpiang Shanghai,” a children’s story written in both English and Filipino, tells the mythical origins of the iconic Filipino finger food, which is slowly gaining mainstream acceptance, with Taste Atlas – a reputable online travel guide – recently naming it among the best street food in the world – second only to Malaysia’s flat bread, roti.
Consul General Senen T. Mangalile, during his welcome remarks, cited the ubiquitous nature of the Lumpiang Shanghai, as it is served practically in any Filipino gathering – from birthdays and Christmas parties, potlucks and reunions, to picnics and even wakes.
Nina Daza-Puyat, in turn, spoke about how she had imbibed an “unmistakable pride and appreciation for Filipino food” through her mother, Philippine culinary icon, Nora Daza, who introduced Philippine cuisine to New York, through her restaurant, “Maharlika,” which operated in the Philippine Center in the early 1970s. Through her children’s book, Nina Daza-Puyat makes it her mission to help younger generations of Filipinos have a better appreciation of the basic ingredients of dishes. “How many of us even remember to acknowledge the food producers, the farmers, the fishermen, the makers of ingredients like the lumpia wrappers from the palengke or the manufacturers of condiments like suka, toyo and patis? We would have a deeper understanding and appreciation for our food if we could connect it to our land, our people, our traditions, author during her presentation. She challenged the audience to make a commitment “to learning more about the rich and unique Filipino culinary heritage” and encouraged everyone to start documenting recipes for posterity. “Let us be proud ambassadors of our own culinary traditions, just like my Mom was many decades ago,” she added.
An excerpt of her book was read in Filipino by Nina Daza-Puyat, while accompanied with animal sounds in the background. She capped off her book reading with a demonstration of how Lumpiang Shanghai is prepared. To make it more interactive, children from the audience took turns helping with mixing the ingredients. The author then signed copies of her book, while Lumpiang Shanghai and Pancit Bihon were served as refreshments.
Sentro Rizal New York and the Philippine Consulate General in New York will continue to support more book launches aimed at promoting Philippine heritage. END