No. of :

No. of Shares:

Currently viewed by: Marcus Rosit

Chicken Humba, the next CDO signature dish

There are three reasons why Chicken Humba exists. The first reason is, why not?

Humba, a beloved dish in Filipino cuisine, has long captivated palates with its tantalizing blend of tender pork, salted black beans, and an array of spices. Celebrated for its harmonious fusion of sweet and savory flavors, hHumba has etched its place in the hearts and taste buds of Filipinos. However, the culinary enthusiasts of the Cagayan de Oro Hotel and Restaurant Association (COHARA) have embarked on a culinary journey to infuse new dimensions into this traditional favorite.

Jeffrey Limbonhai, COHARA president, said during the opening of Hala Kumbira at SM CDO Downtown Premier Event Hall, "More and more of our people are getting more interested and more enthusiastic when it comes to creating dishes related to Filipino food."

The second reason is because of the high price of pork.

Meanwhile, chicken is cheaper and more readily available, he explained.

"Tungod sa presyo sa baboy, mahal kaayo ang baboy [because of the price of pork, it is so expensive]," he said, adding that chicken is cheaper and more readily available.

The Cagayan de Oro Hotel and Restaurant Association, together with the Department of Tourism-10 opens the longest-running culinary show in the country, Kumbira, at SM CDO Downtown Premier Event Hall. (JMAG/PIA-10)

"Back in 2016 and 2017, Humba was included as one of our signature dishes in Cagayan de Oro alongside Sinuglaw (a combination of grilled pork and uncooked fish in vinegar and spices) and Sikwate (hot chocolate), but because of the African Swine Flu (ASF) and inflation, the price of pork has really gone up, so pork is expensive. Chicken is much cheaper, more available, and more accessible," he further shared.

The third reason is inclusivity.

"Daghan kaayo dili mukaon og baboy [so many people do not eat pork], and as much as possible, we want to include everyone to join in the fun," Limbonhai said.

Inclusivity is not just limited to who can eat what or what is being prepared; it’s also about the people behind the scenes.

Chicken Humba infused with nipa fruit, pineapple juice, and chili pepper. (JMAG/PIA-10)

Hala Kumbira, a prelude to the main Kumbira events

A total of 10 barangays joined the inter-barangay cooking competition to make the best-tasting chicken humba.

These include Barangays Patag, 12, Camaman-an, Cugman, Bulua, Consolacion, Bonbon, Kauswagan, Nazareth, and Lapasan.

Naty C. Balawing, cook from barangay Bulua, said, "Para sa akoa ang gihimo nako karon kakaiba ug gikuha nako ang timpla akong tan-aw nga magustuhan pud [for me, I made something different and I got the taste that I believe the judges will also like]."

She also made sure that she had the perfect ingredients, including soy sauce, pepper, vinegar, laurel leaves, and other secret spices, to make the dish simply delicious.

"Happy ko magluto. Mao akong ingredients sa lami, ang happy [Also, when I cook, I am happy cooking. That is my ingredient for the dish being good—happy cooking]," Balawing said.

Initially, she admitted feeling nervous. But after joining the competition, she already considered herself a winner.

Chicken Humba con Piña with Quail Eggs uses chicken breast and thigh, pineapple juice, black beans, and other spices. (JMAG/PIA-10)
Chicken Humba is made with native chicken and infused with cucumber, achuete, pineapple juice, black pepper, and banana blossom. (JMAG/PIA-10)

Kumbira is the longest-running culinary show in the Philippines. It is usually hosted in August, but due to the change in the start of school, COHARA has to move the main event of Kumbira to October, so Hala Kumbira served as a teaser for the main event.

In a world where culinary boundaries are constantly redrawn, COHARA's "Hala Kumbira" stands as a testament to the association's dedication to pushing culinary horizons. As traditional flavors merge with innovation, the event beckons food enthusiasts to embrace a taste of the future while cherishing the essence of the past.

In the halls of SM CDO Downtown Premier Event Hall, "Hala Kumbira" transcends the ordinary, transforming a traditional dish into a canvas of innovation and culinary prowess. (JMOR/PIA-10)

About the Author

Jasper Marie Rucat

Regional Editor

Region 10

Feedback / Comment

Get in touch