The Mama Sita Foundation (MSF) recently sponsored “Peacetime Quiapo (1920 – 1940): Home Recipes from the Art Deco Era,” a non-profit dinner held at the Chef Tatung’s Lore Manila in Bonifacio Global City. The event was curated by food writer Ige Ramos and organized by Fernando Nakpil Zialcita, PhD and his class at the Cultural Heritage Studies Program of the Department of Sociology and Anthropology of the Ateneo de Manila University.

Mr. Ige Ramos, Dr. Fernando Zialcita, Dr. Czarina Saloma-Akpedonu, and Ms. Clara Reyes-Lapus

The four-course meal, interpreted by Chef Tatung Sarthou, featured recipes from the illustrious families of Old Quiapo, then a cosmopolitan enclave that linked Asia, Europe, North and South America in the couple of decades leading up to WWII. Mama Sita’s Balatinaw Heirloom Rice Champorado topped with Balatinaw Pinipig and Danggit bits was served for dessert. Clara Reyes-Lapus, MSF President talked about the Foundation’s Heirloom Grains Project, which was established to support the Kankanaey tribe whose ancestors hand-carved the rice terraces out of the Cordilleras 2,000 years ago.

Keynoted by Dr. Zialcita, the program articulated the vision of converting the Quiapo district into a living heritage and pilgrimage zone with talks from Claire Vitug of the San Sebastian Basilica Conservation and Development Foundation, Architect Roz Li of Bakas Pilipinas, Dr. Czarina Saloma-Akpedonu of the Loyola School of Social Sciences of the Ateneo de Manila University, and Congressman Joel Chua, chief proponent of the Quiapo Heritage Zone Act, which awaits deliberation at the House of Representatives.

Dr. Fernando Zialcita, Yuan Gabriel Reyes, Ria Tenido, Earl Joy Lopina, Joshua Imperio, Ige Ramos, and Chef Tatung Sarthou

Miss Gemma Cruz-Araneta, writer, director, and former Tourism Secretary was among the event’s notable guests. Paintings of Quiapo-native Brian Villareal were exhibited in the restaurant.  The event was attended by students and guests from the Ateneo de Manila University, Quiapo stakeholders as well as media practitioners.