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What kids are eating at the school cafeteria–from dim sum to pasta

The variety is wider than ever–perfect for IG. But is it nutritious?
/ 05:00 AM February 07, 2018

As food becomes easily the most shared post on social media, it’s small wonder that high school students today are not frugal when it comes to feeding themselves. At the very least, food has to be visually palatable, whether they are junk food or canteen-served Chinese dim sum dishes and Italian pasta.

While school cafeteria food is becoming more and more Instagrammable, and its variety more interesting, you ask: But is it nutritious?

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At Colegio San Agustin-Southwoods, a Catholic school owned and managed by the Augustinian Friars of the Province of Sto. Niño de Cebu in Biñan City, Laguna, Miguel Rizardo reports on the huge selection in the student cafeteria.

There is the popular traditional Mexican dish, taco, Chinese food (“Yes, it’s unbelievable, but we have dim sum”), and even grilled Pinoy street food that Rizardo swears are affordable and “absolutely delicious.”

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At the Elizabeth Seton School, the canteen, said student Keona Lozada, offers Italian pasta, healthy salads, Asian fried noodles, and french fries.

At San Beda College Alabang, Rovi Sandoval likes the orange chicken with rice.

Likewise, there are sizzling sisig, tonkatsu with rice, siomai rice, shawarma, liempo with rice, mozzarella sticks, hotdog with rice, chicken nuggets with rice, and tapa with rice, said Fritz Tumao.

Steven Justin Sy, a student at Xavier School in Greenhills, San Juan, said its school canteen offers rice bowls, burgers, pasta, dim sum, nachos, chicken wings and ice cream, although “a lot of it are overpriced.”

Are there still meals that cost less than P10? They have those at Leuteboro National High School in Socorro, Oriental Mindoro.

“There are no burgers and fries at my high school in the province,” said Winona Rica Sigue. “What we usually have are cheap finds like spaghetti sandwich and jelly milk (gulaman in condensed and evaporated milk).”

The usual chips

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The Philippine High School for the Arts has more variety. Its cafeteria serves empanada, fish balls, Graham balls, spaghetti/macaroni, lugaw/arroz caldo, cheese sticks, gummies, coffee and, well, “the usual chips,” reported Jude Macasinag.

The Filipino Dominican institution, Angelicum College, offers breakfast food such as hotdog, chicken nuggets and ham, and drinks like Milo, fruit juice and shakes.

Apart from that, it also serves Filipino favorites like adobo, barbecue, afritada and beefsteak, and food that kids normally go for like fried chicken, fried fish and pork chop, said its student Niña Rodriguez.

Therese Dianne Francisco and Anna Reese Custodio, both from Assumption College San Lorenzo, reported that there are cheese sticks, popcorn, fries, and chicken and rice in the canteen, although Custodio said she usually eats sisig and Plato wraps.

Barbecue with rice, katsudon, chicken with rice, hotdog sandwiches and chips are the favorites of Raziel Muñariz, a student at De La Salle University’s Laguna campus.

Predictably, chicken is a popular choice among students, followed by pork chop, pasta, cheese sticks and fries. Joms Saquilayan, a student at De La Salle Santiago Zobel, likes fried chicken, mac and cheese, carbonara and pork chop.

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