“Your eating habit is not Filipino anymore!!”… Thats what my Filipina (rather Cebuana) crew mate had said after over a month of working and living together.
Marica and I met in Antibes, France last year. I was walking near the port, when she tapped my shoulder and asked if I was from the Philippines. I said yes, from Cebu. She turned out to be Cebuana too.

We barely got to know each other, her yacht left for Greece and Turkey and we went to Italy and Croatia. I saw her few more times in Antibes towards the end of the season last year as she was getting off in Spain before heading back to the Philippines.

Little did I know then I would be in Florida in the next few weeks.The very day we arrived from the Bahamas and entered the yard at West Palm Beach, there she was waving at me…. screaming at the top of her voice…”Shalimarrrrrrrrrrrr”

Pinch , pinch was I day dreaming? We just did 25 hours passage from Exumas and so exhausted after 5 weeks trip. Is that really Marica? Oh boy, it was her and she actually had seen me in Nassau.

To make the story short, I flew out to UK for a short break, when I came back, she and my Captain has just started going out. Thats how she has become of our crew and been feeding me Filipino food ever since then.
Perhaps even help me gain few kilos with our day to day kitchen escapades.

So on one dreary wet afternoon while we were in West Palm, I asked her what she was going to do with the plantain she bought. I made ” lambing” to her if she could make me SAGING PINAYPAY.
Lambing in our language literally translates to show affection and tenderness.

She laughed and gave me a hug…. saging pinaypay… is one of the easiest Filipino food to do. She laughed the way I asked to do for me and yes with lots of affection, she sweetly made me some

Saging (banana) pinaypay (to fan out.. paypay is fan). You slice the bananas thinly, spread it out to form a fan, dip in a batter and fry. Just before serving, sprinkle it with sugar.

I was almost teary eyed… when Rob our engineer came in and asked what’s that?

Dreamily, I replied:

A childhood favourite…….