My Affair with La Paz Batchoy
THIS IS chronic. This is not just an affair. It’s an addiction.
I fell in love with batchoy when I was in college. Being a city of Ilonggos, there’s no question that Koronadal is home to the best La Paz Batchoy here in the south. Every time I feel like having a food trip, a bowl of batchoy would always be part of the menu.
I couldn’t afford Ted’s Old Timer La Paz Batchoy then, so I settled for local shops like Popoy’s, Edwin’s, or Jaicho’s, which all prepare their own versions of this tasty noodle soup with pork innards ( Oh, how I love pork liver!), crispy pork chicharon, and spices for only 20 pesos. When you order a Special Batchoy, it sure would come with egg that is either fresh, hard boiled, or even fried!
It has become my comfort food and I look for it all the time.
When I moved here in Sarangani, my penchant for batchoy never faded. There were times that I had to go to GenSan just to eat at Ted’s inside KCC Mall of GenSan. It saddened me when I visited the shop and found a notice it has closed. Good thing, there’s Lab’s Old Timer La Paz Batchoy in South Osmeña, in Roxas, and in J. Catolico Streets and RADney’s Old Timer La Paz Batchoy in Daproza.
When and I crave for batchoy but couldn’t go to GenSan, I would just make do with the batchoy at the town’s market, which do not taste like that of the Old Timers. It’s really different when it’s the real thing.
I’m sure you’ve noticed that owners add the phrase old timer to their shops’ names. That is because of the belief that nothing beats the original recipe, which came from the district of La Paz in Iloilo City. Both Deco’s and Ted’s claim to be originators of this Ilonggo delicacy. Whichever came first, we should let the taste decide. I have yet to taste Deco’s, so I really can’t tell.
Anyway, after hitting the publish button for this post, I’m heading to the newly opened RADney’s Alabel Branch, just two blocks away from here, to enjoy a bowl of hot batchoy just to take away my blues. I’m sure I’d feel better after finishing a bowl.