Kapampangans are not only popular for their traditional dishes, but also for food that leans to the exotic side. From insects like CAMARO to BUTETE or frogs, Kapampangan cuisine is as diverse as its culture.
One of the more exotic finds and certainly not for the faint of heart is the EBUN BARAG or the MONITOR LIZARD’S EGG.
The monitor lizard, or as known to the Tagalogs as BAYAWAK, is one of the largest lizards in the Philippines. They are found widely in the country and mostly Asian countries. These lizards lay their eggs in hollow tree stumps and cover them with soil for protection.
The lizard’s egg itself is not your usual hard shelled, round egg. It is almost oblong in shape, and the shell is as soft and fragile as a baby’s skin.
Cook it as you would of a usual egg, soft boil and careful not to overcook. Once boiled, pinch the top of the egg to make way for a small hole and then squeeze. The first to come out will be the clear egg white, and then the yolk which is yellowish in color comes out like icing in a pipe. Make sure to squeeze every bit of the yolk until the shell flattens.
Steamed rice and a drizzle of rock salt is the perfect partner for the EBUN BARAG. These eggs are not easy to find. Because of their rarity, an egg can cost up to 200php ($4.5) each.
Selling of EBUN BARAG is now monitored and not as rampant as it used to. This is to control and avoid the extinction of these reptiles.
The novelty of these exotic finds is undoubtedly a part of the culture and food experience in Pampanga.