Image Source: pepper.ph
Pan Burikat is one of Cebu's most nostalgic pastries. We remember it for its sweet and brightly-colored filling and most especially for its odd name. That got us wondering. Why on earth would anybody call such an innocent pastry after a sex worker?
We asked that question to our social media followers and they provided us with some pretty interesting answers. Pan means bread in Spanish, and burikat means “prostitute” in Cebuano. According to Jericho Garcia, pan burikat got its name because of its appearance. He commented on our Facebook post, the “bright red paste” in the pan burikat conjures up erotic symbols. He said that “red is for passion, lust, sex, love, or the heavy red lipstick that prostitutes usually wear on their face. “
Another Facebook user by the name Superproxy Diaz suggested it might be because pan burikats are cheap and can be found and bought in the corners of the street like prostitutes. Even Y101’s very own Carlow thinks so too.
In Luzon, pan burikat is called “pan de regla” (literally menstrual bread). That is because the cross section of the pastry looks like a used sanitary napkin.