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At the dinner table kamayan, eating with the use of hands instead of utensils. The use of kamayan gives a full taste to the food and not the after taste of silverware.

One may wonder how does one perform kamayan?

Step One: it is important to wash your hands thoroughly,

especially underneath your fingernails.


Step two:  gather some of your rice and ulam, main course,

together in an area on your plate with your hand.

Step Three:  gather your rice and ulam making a clump and

pick it up with fingers, holding it down with your

thumb on the tips of your fingers.


Step Four: Place your fingers to you mouth and using your

thumb push the clump of food into your mouth

to enjoy.

kamayan image

Often in the Philippines, kamayan is used mostly in families that do not have a lot of money, mostly peasants, and farmers. They use kamayan to eat mostly vegetables, rice with some kind of meat like chicken, fish and pork.

In the U.S., kamayan is done at home amonst family members, not at resturants. However, Anakbayan New York/ New Jersey has a organized a gathering of Filipinos and Fil-Ams each month at local resturants to promote small businesses and to popularize the traditional way of eating using kamayan.

Don’t forget to wash your hands before and after…. Happy Eatings!!!!

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