7

For people coming from colder countries, there are certain vegetables used in typical national dishes, which only grow in colder climates. For example, most Brassicas only grow in cold climes, and lots of kale requires a frost to grow well. At the point when Manila is having frosts, recreating a typical Scandinavian dish is probably the least of your worries, so growing locally is likely out...

Is it possible to buy cold climate vegetables in Manilla? Is there perhaps a special market where you can go which specialises in importing vegetables like that? (I guess probably grown and brought in from Japan or northern China)

5

Although the majority of stuff you can buy is local and therefore warm weather you can easily get imported cold weather vegetables in the major supermarkets. My local supermarket, Robinsons, sells cabbage, brussels, etc. Dark leafy greens are a bit rarer but some deli's will sell it. In short, if you look around they're pretty easy to find.

Actual markets are more likely to be selling locally grown stuff rather than imported so you're better off with the bigger shops.

3

Santi's Deli imports high quality fresh produce daily, but you can't always be certain that they'll keep the same things in stock, as it heavily depends on the market. In the colder months where specialty kale and different kinds of cabbages are in season, they'll generally have them.

Caveat - they tend to be a bit more expensive than the larger grocery chains (like Rustan's), but the quality of the produce itself tends to be quite high. Also a good source for fresh turkey, hens, and other things not easily found.

Rustan's Supermarket is also a source for high quality imported produce, but also a bit on the pricey side.

2

The Philippines is a mountainous country with varying climates and various vegetables. You should be able to find domestically grown broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, and bok choi at a good outdoor market. I'm north of Manila, closer to the hills, though, and it's possible less produce makes it that far. The temperature does make shipment and storage troublesome.

Lettuce, mostly imported, is well-stocked at a good supermarket (try Pure Gold), along with other salad greens including occasional kale.

Other varieties are harder to find. I don't recall ever seeing brussels sprouts. Such imports are usually from China, and while the supermarket is cleaner than the bazaar, I suspect the pesticides.

1

You can just get it delivered, and not worry about the fuss. Here are some places that might cater to what you want/need; (I am not affiliated with any of these companies in any way, and in no way endorse them, just providing them as options)

http://www.thegreengrocermanila.com/

http://www.organicmanila.com/products.php

There are plenty of non-organic versions as well that you can look into, and it provides a convenient way to get your shopping done for you. It can also sometimes be inspiring if you find something that offers a "basket" service, where you let them choose the best quality stuff for you and deliver x amount of KG of vegetables a week. This is what we do in Hong Kong to get our organic, fresh vegetables.

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