“Because local producers need our support, and we need their quality products. Because plastic is ugly, it leaches into your products and food, it clogs our waterways, and, the carbon used to create them is totally not worth their function. So, you can come in, bring your own containers, fill them up with local goods, and chat for a bit.
Our answer is to put joy into our everyday lives by providing things that give pleasure when used or eaten, and decrease the inherent displeasure caused by plastic.”
Here are MYNILA’s favorite RITUAL products!
DAHON NG ANIS / KALUMATA
Often referred to in old texts or verbal recipes, “dahon ng anis” turned out to be kalumata (Clausena anisum-olens) leaves, and not the leaves of true anise. Once a common backyard plant, it is now very sporadically propagated and yet still thrives well in low rainforests, though it is on the red list.
Traditional uses of the plant include making into tea for morning sickness, boiling into a bath for rheumatism, and stuffing the leaves into pillows to create a calming “soporific” effect. Burning the leaves is said to repel ticks and mosquitoes.
In food, it is used to flavor rice cakes, macapuno, and a specific native fried dough treat called gorgorya.
Tapilan is a munggo relative that is fairly pest resistant and keeps well. It is called tahores in the Visayas and balinsoek in northern Luzon.
It takes longer to cook and retains its form despite stewing, making it a good candidate for a salad bean. It is also great sweetened in syrup for halo-halo.
LAVENDER PINK KAOLIN CLAY
This pure pink kaolin clay with lavender essential oil is a must for dry and sensitive skin. All clays have drawing power, removing impurities from the skin.
FACIAL MASK: for a drawing facial treatment, place a teaspoon of pink kaolin in a small bowl. Moisten slowly with water and mix into a paste. Gently apply onto face, avoiding eyes and mouth. Leave for 10 minutes. Rinse off.
INSECT BITES: to relieve itchiness and inflammation from insect bites, prepare as above. Apply paste in a thicker manner and leave for 10-20 minutes. Rinse off.
Here’s something to make your cookies and loaves of banana bread exponentially yummier! Mascobado sugar is warm and rich like molasses, but without the bitterness. It brings out the best in coffee and cacao. Mixed with butter and slathered on pancakes, it turns your Monday into a Sunday. Mascobado sugar is made purely from boiled sugarcane juice. It contains phosphorus, magnesium, calcium, and iron, as well as a range of vitamins. Present in many forms across Asia and all sugar-producing nations, this was the original brown sugar (the “brown” sugar you get now is mostly white sugar with colorant).
In Chinese medicine, it is considered restorative and medicinal, made into a sweet tea and given to women after childbirth. Its minerals (especially iron and calcium) supposedly help new mothers regain their strength and vitality. It is also used as a substitute for excessively salty condiments such as soy sauce. (A pinch of mascobado instead of MSG in all Philippine kitchens? One can dream.)
Tapuey (or tapuy) is a sweet rice wine common among highland areas of Northern Luzon. This particular one is from Adams, Ilocos Norte, and lacks the overly yeasty aftertaste in most tapuys. It is made of glutinous rice, fermented and aged for two months in traditional clay jars.
This flavored mushroom salt is great sprinkled on just about anything that needs a little savoriness. It is made with pure sea salt and dried oyster mushrooms, and does almost any dish good: fried eggs, open sandwiches, champorado, and even plain rice.
Balicucha is made by boiling sugarcane juice. When the boiling syrup gets thick enough, it is pulled and shaped. This thing will melt in your mug of coffee. It’s basically mascobado sugar looking especially fab, a hundred times better than a sugar cube.
RITUAL is open Tuesdays to Saturdays from 11am- 8pm and can be found on the second floor of the Languages Internationale Building, 926 Arnaiz Avenue, Makati City.
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