Price shock at the wet market
IN MY BASKET - Lydia D. Castillo (The Philippine Star) - July 1, 2018 - 12:00am

Two weeks ago, we got shocked at how the fishmongers have increased their prices.

When we moved to our current residence, we found the Sta. Rosa wet market to be the nearest to us. But we were forewarned that prices were higher there than in other markets. It was clean, organized and had a very active carinderia at the back. We braved the costs which, at that time three years ago, were reasonable. We would sometimes prefer to go there instead of to a supermarket, because the catch would always be fresh.

But two weeks ago, we got shocked at how the fishmongers have increased their prices. 

Consider these – a kilo of talakitok for P380, medium sugpo for more than P312 for 400 kgs; salmon head at P266 per; squid at P380; lapu-lapu at P432 for a 900 gm fish and the lowly GG (galunggong) for P240 a kilo.  Seafood has indeed become more expensive. Now even if an average family would eat GG all the time, the inconsiderately proclaimed average income of P10,000 will not suffice. Haha… Do those people ever go to wet markets, much less supermarkets?

In the vegetable area – we found fresh sampaloc (tamarind) at P120 kilo but we got only 300 gms for our sinigang, which tasted better than if we used the packets. Camias is also an ideal souring agent but is not always available. Ginger sells for P120, leeks at the same price, tomatoes and eggplants both at P80, sitao (string beans) at P20 a bunch.

We would always buy leeks and celery to enhance the flavor of our nilaga and steamed fish. For a Chinese flavor, try this – after cleaning the fish, season lightly with salt and pepper. Marinate in soy sauce and calamansi juice and a few drops of sesame oil. Let stand for a while. In a steamer put the fish and place a stalk each of leeks and celery (cut into 4-inch pieces) and steam. When done, put on a server and pour the marinade, which has been boiled, over it, and top with the greens.

Cream Dory has become a popular fish and is versatile, it can be cooked in many ways. One recipe, which a niece tagged as “parang galing sa restaurant (like it came from a restaurant),” is something we concocted using fennel seeds.

Cream Dory in Mustard Cream with Fennel Seeds


One piece Cream Dory, slightly seasoned with salt and pepper

2 tbsp prepared mustard

1/4 cup olive oil

1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

1 tsp fennel seeds


Mix all ingredients in a pyrex and marinate the fish in the mixture for about an hour.

Lay fish on a griller with the marinade.

Cook on low fire until done.

Serve with green salad.

Serve Cream Dory this Sunday!

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