Asian Catering

At the Asian Festival held in downtown Cleveland this spring I met a woman named Marina Villanueva-Velmin. She has a catering company based in Westlake called Tamarind Tree that specializes in the cusine of her homeland, the Phillipines. I tasted her cooking at the Festival and thought it was wonderful.

We’ve been in communication since then and I’ve had a chance to look over her  complete menu.  It includes some really unusual dishes: a chicken stew called Calderetta; Mechado, the Filipino version of beef bourguignon ;  Pancit Malabon made with rice noodles, garlic spiked pork, eggs and vegetables; pork and chicken adobo, the country’s national culinary mascot, and cocido, a meat-based stew featuring cabbage, chick peas, sweet potatoes and green beans.  She also offers a small selection of foods from other Asian cuisines such as Vietnamese spring rolls and Thai chicken curry. Putting this sort of thing on your table would definitely make for a unique and memorable party. On second thought, why wait for a party? You can order two dozen empanadas ($30) just for yourself, and freeze the leftover mini meat filled pastries to be enjoyed another day. Sounds like a plan to me.

If  you are curious about Filipino food and culture, plan to attend the Phillippine Festival  Sunday, August 15.  It happnes from 10-6, 9440 Ridgewood Drive in Parma.

Tamarind Tree has no website and Marina doesn’t do email but you can call to talk with her about your next event, 440-871-8708



Filed under Advice, Culinary

3 responses to “Asian Catering

  1. I might have to steal some ideas from you!
    Great photos, also.

  2. Joyce

    Hi, my name is Joyce and I’m a Clevelander who loves ethnic eats! Thanks for publishing your book. I received it as a gift and enjoyed it as a great resource. However, I wanted to note one error that I found several times in the book. For some reason, Koko Bakery was noted as a “Thai” cafe several times in the index, under restaurants, and under markets. This puzzled me because the articles talked about how Koko Bakery is a Taiwanese cafe. I had to note that next time, maybe Koko Bakery can be put under its own Taiwanese category instead of Thai. I would hate to see readers confused about Taiwan being the same as Thailand!

    • You are so right. The mistake occured when the book was reprinted for the current edition and we didn’t catch it until it was too late . Don’t know how it happened but I sure am embarrassed. Koko Bakery is Taiwanese, as you say, not Thai. The publisher will definitely correct the error when the book is reprinted.

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