23 Mar2010


A recently caught, proud looking tulingan, simply grilled and consumed in a thatched roof hut on a small isolated beach with powder fine white sand… Life is good. We purchased this 2+ kilo tulingan at the Coron town market at 7am, then headed out to the islands for a day of sightseeing and set up “camp” for lunch at about 11 am on Banol Beach. Our early start meant we were an hour or more ahead of the other bancas doing the same thing, so we had an hour at each “site” completely to ourselves.


The fish was gutted, salted and simply laid over a charcoal fire. It was well-charred when done, but the meat was perfectly cooked. A hardy, oily and meaty fish, tulingan is best enjoyed reef fresh like the one above. A little vinegar or soy was all that was needed along with lots of white rice. Our hotel had packed up some pork adobo for us and this made up our incredibly satisfying picnic lunch that day.


The fish cost an amazing PHP90 ($2) and it easily fed 7 people along with rice and some pork adobo. It is meals like this that draw me back to the provinces still abundant with fresh seafood and produce again and again… Simple but incredibly satisfying fare. :)



  1. Delia says:

    Wow! Tulingan with kamatis on the side is my ideal beach food! I thought it can only be found in Batangas? It’s been years since I’ve had tulingan!

    Mar 23, 2010 | 5:30 am


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  3. chiqui says:

    reminds me of the time my friends and I bought 2 kilos of lapulapu from a fisherman who just came ashore. just for twenty pesos! we were frolicking at an isolated beach in Caluya island, Antique. it was the most enjoyable fish-eating experience I had in my whole life.

    Mar 23, 2010 | 5:41 am

  4. atbnorge says:

    I am wary of tulingan; but I appreciate that a lot of people love this fish.
    The first time I ate tulingan when I was a kid, I remember I got sick. I was the only one in our family who acquired fever and vomitted a lot after eating that wonderful fish.
    Since then, I avoided eating the fish. Then when I was a teenager, just to be social, I ate ginataang tulingan while picnicking with my friends. The same thing happened; I got sick afterwards…I heard one must be careful in cleaning this fish—there is some sort of poison in the tail, they say. Pero bakit kaya ako lang ang nagkasakit samantalang ‘yung iba ay wala lang…?

    @Delia, heisann!!! Godt Ã¥ se deg igjen her i Marketmans webside. SÃ¥ herlig at vÃ¥ren har kommet…Mvh og klem fra atbnorge

    Mar 23, 2010 | 6:45 am

  5. Lou says:

    Oh my, you are making me hungry. That tambakol and the clear blue sea? Heaven!

    Mar 23, 2010 | 7:03 am

  6. esquire says:

    MM, what’s the name of your hotel?

    Mar 23, 2010 | 9:57 am

  7. Toping says:

    You don’t even need to gut fresh tulingan. This is how we do it here in Leyte, but only when it’s grilled. Remove gills, twist the tail to “dislocate” it a bit (or make an incision at the base of the tail–on the underside part), salt and that’s it!

    @atbnorge: The “twisting” bit is to prevent the build-up of histamine in the fish’s flesh. That’s what made you allergic to it, I suspect…

    Mar 23, 2010 | 10:03 am

  8. Ley says:

    I miss barrio life. We had this regularly back in the 1980s.

    Mar 23, 2010 | 11:22 am

  9. Toping says:

    One more thing: I notice that your tulingan looks “flat.” The conventional wisdom hereabouts is that round-ish tulingan is more flavorful than the flat-looking ones. Vendor: Ma’am, bili na po kayo. Presko po ‘to. Customer: Wala bang bilugin nyan? Vendor: Wala po, pero presko po ‘to. Customer: Ay, ‘wag na lang.

    Any truth to this? Would love to hear from Moni. ;-)

    Mar 23, 2010 | 11:37 am

  10. Sarah says:

    Hello Marketman. I was in Coron too last week, and my group ate a 9kilo tulingan =) Oh and how much? The owner of the Banana Island bought it for Php800! That’s more than a week’s worth of kilawin!

    Mar 23, 2010 | 11:56 am

  11. Quillene says:

    MM, just want to ask if your regular boatman Emmerson still has the same number posted here in your previous posts? Hopefully, a family reunion this year slated in Palawan will materialize. Hope I can have Emmerson take us around.

    Thanks much!

    Mar 23, 2010 | 2:10 pm

  12. Quillene says:

    MM… no worries… just went back to some of your trip posts and found the contact number of your other bangkero, Fredo… Hope he will be available when we get there. Thanks!

    Mar 23, 2010 | 2:16 pm

  13. Candygirl says:

    Sarap! I was at Coron last year…wish I could go back this year.

    Mar 23, 2010 | 2:28 pm

  14. kiko says:

    my kind of beach side meal! love this with a side of kulawo or ensaladang talong!

    Mar 23, 2010 | 2:34 pm

  15. atbnorge says:

    @Toping, thanks for the info, the “tulingan tale” was a mystery that nobody from my hometown was able to answer. But your answer led me to another question; who should do the “twisting” of the tail bone to stop the histamine build up?

    Mar 23, 2010 | 5:17 pm

  16. wandetingfoodie says:

    wow! this a classic bol-anon way of cooking tulingan. in our hometown we call it mangko….my father used to cook tulingan paksiw(inun-unan) and ate it after one week. the best!

    Mar 23, 2010 | 9:26 pm

  17. Marketman says:

    Quillene, I think Emmerson has since sold his boat, so we now use Mang Fredo on recent trips.

    Mar 23, 2010 | 10:06 pm

  18. moni says:

    @Toping, in Baybay, they also twist and pull the tail off tulingan (mangko). But I haven’t heard the difference between a flat and round tulingan. I love tulingan and I cook it adobo style instead of paksiw — vinegar, salt, garlic, peppercorns, bay leaves and oil. I am now in Haikou, China and missing this.

    Mar 23, 2010 | 11:16 pm

  19. botchok says:

    Sinaing na tulingan then fried, best with rice and atchara. Oh i miss this a lot!

    Mar 24, 2010 | 1:52 am

  20. jingle says:

    Banol and the next 2 beaches were packed with tourists last Saturday, so dwife and I had our grilled tulingan, kinilaw na dilis, lato, mangoes, and water melon in an isolated beach in a small island near the skeleton wreck. Love sinaing na tulingan, but it was fantastic last sunday when we ate it in the white sands of Malcapuya island off coron.

    Mar 24, 2010 | 9:44 am


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