05 November 2008

Modern Tanda

They use what is free and in abundance. These days that includes lotto tickets.

Lumpia or spring roll wrappers are sold from large piles in palengkes (wet markets). The uninitiated will assume they are sold by piece, but will eventually be asked how many tanda they want.

Tanda, in Tagalog, means "marker" or "reminder" (in older Southeast Asian, "the end of a loincloth"). In the world of lumpia, this is usually a thin strip of banana leaf hanging from the edge of every 10 or 12 wrappers, making it easy to lift a bunch at a time. At our nearby market, to buy one tanda means forking over about 7 pesos.

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