Kyle's island insights: The local tradition of 'balutan'


Kyle's island insights: The local tradition of 'balutan'

by: Kyle Mandapat | .
The Guam Guide | .
published: July 03, 2013

Hafa Adai!  Hope all is going well for you thus summer. If you haven’t already, don’t forget to check out the Liberation Carnival in Tiyan, it is fun for the whole family. This month’s subject comes from a letter I received last week. It reads:

Dear Kyle,

Thanks for the good reads these past months. Since coming to Guam they have helped me understand a couple things and have helped me make some friends at my new job. This month I will be hosting some friends and their families for a cookout. A friend of mine suggested I ask you about the custom of ‘balutan.’ Got any info for me?

With regards,

Hey Effy! Thanks for reading, I really do appreciate it! Let’s talk balutan . . .

Balutan is what we here on Guam call it when someone takes some food home from a party or get together. In my experience, it may include your leftovers from your meal, but most of the time includes another trip back to the table to grab another full plate or plates to chow form breakfast or dinner after the party. I got some quick tips for you.


Whether using a zip lock bag or aluminum foil make sure your food is properly secured. Make sure all your stuff is stuffed where it should be. The last thing you need is some juices or rice flowing out of your takeaway and landing all over your car floor. Trust me, you don’t want your car smelling like finadene, especially when you don’t have rice.


Don’t gonna crazy when packing your balutan. Plan it, strategically, no matter what your state of mind. Last thing you’re going to want to eat tomorrow morning is cake, packed with kimchee. Kimchee cake? Didn’t think so . . .


Finally, non fair balutaning at the beginning of the party. That has party fail written all over it. Grab your first round of chow, then dessert and when your just about ready to hit the bricks, reach for the foil and take care of bidness.

Hopefully this helps. If you got anything you would like info on please throw me a line at, or find me on Facebook or Twitter! Until next month, take care, have fun and I will see you on the radio!

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