The food industry has been one of the hardest-hit industries in the country because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Food establishments have been affected greatly because of the health crisis, and even their customers who rely on their fast food meals had to make adjustments because of their sudden closures.
As food options are limited due to the quarantine, many have resorted to bringing packed lunches or baon to work. And one of those who started to prepare baon during the pandemic is Paula Bernabe, who fixes up lunches and snacks for her husband who goes to work. (Read: 5 Easy Korean Meals for Work Week Lunches)
“The company’s canteen where my husband works remained non-operational since office resumed after ECQ. They’re not allowed to go out once they enter the office premises until they call it a day and food delivery is strictly prohibited,” Paula says.
She posts her daily packed lunches on Instagram via @baonseryenimister, the account dedicated just for it.
Baon Serye ni Mister
According to Paula, everything started after she posted on an Instagram story a photo of the lunch she made for her husband. “[My family and friends said] that we should post more often to inspire super Moms and Dads at home who are possibly having a hard time coming up with ideas as to what they should prepare for their partner,” she says.
And that’s how Baon Serye ni Mister was born. Now, with a dedicated account for all the lunches and snacks she prepares, Paula shares with her followers what food her husband would bring to work for the day. (Read: How do you eat healthy while in quarantine? We asked a nutritionist-dietician!)
Preparing Packed Meals
Paula says the most challenging part of preparing work meal lunches is planning. “The challenge really is on the brainstorming part on what to prepare that suits our budget without compromising the nutritional value,” she explains.
“Due to the unending price increase of meat and other ingredients, I always have to make sure that what I will prepare remains hearty and delicious,” Paula adds. (Read: 3 Ways to Turn Holiday Leftovers Into Healthy Work Meals)
Paula shares a few tips for those who also want to prepare baon for their loved ones:
- GIVE IT A TRY. “With social media platforms running very high as we speak, almost everything with regards to cooking is already searchable,” Paula says. Surf the internet for helpful tips in preparing work lunches— trust us, you’ll be a baon expert in no time!
- EXPLORE YOUR KITCHEN MORE OFTEN. Not everyone gets it perfectly on the first try. Experience is the best teacher— especially when it comes to cooking! “So don’t be afraid if it turns out too salty, bland, or even burnt. You’ll eventually get there as long as you keep on practicing,” Paula says.
- SUPPORT YOUR PARTNER. Regardless if you’re the cook or the one they cook for, always give your full support. “In our situation, my husband washes everything I used after I’m done cooking for us. He gives me honest feedback on how to make each meal even more delectable. He buys me stuff I need: the ingredients, the tools, and basically almost everything necessary to get the work done,” says Paula.
- EMBRACE NEW IDEAS. “I get to learn more techniques and ideas every time I cook for my husband. Cooking is an endless wave of modification so always remember Tip #1,” Paula says.