Sumptuous Filipino Recipes
Once you get to any place in the Philippines, the first thing you should ever do is try out the sumptuous Filipino recipes that can easily be found anywhere, whether you are in a five-star hotel, or in the beach, or simply walking by parks and streets where a nearby restaurant is within reach.
My favorite Filipino recipes are adobo, sinigang, nilaga and bulalo, sisig, various inihaws, Crispy Pata, Lechon, and balut. For those who are vegetarian, you may want to try out Pinakbet. Don't worry, I shall walk you one by one on these Filipino recipes.
Filipino Adobo Recipes
There are many styles of adobo but this is usually pork that is semi-fried in vinegar, soy sauce, and salt. There are many locals that like adobo very salty and others who want it less salty.
This dish usually sits in its own sauce, which is thin, unlike thick gravy. The sauce is best when you mix it with your rice since it gives the adobo flavor to the rice that you are eating.
Note that the staple food in the Philippines, like Japan, China, and Thailand, is rice. Since rice is the staple food in the Philippines, almost all restaurants serve rice except for those restaurants whose cuisines in Europe or East Asia.
Sinigang also comes in many forms but this is the term for a dish that has a soup with a sour-tinge.
You may want to try out "sinigang na sugpo" (large-shrimp), "sinigang na hipon" (shrimp), "sinigang na bangus" (milkfish) or "sinigang na baboy" (pork).
Depending on how the sinigang is cooked, The sour-tinge may be provided by tamarind, tomatoes, vinegar, or a combination of all those.
You will love this dish if you take this on a beach. I, however, actually love sinigang anywhere.
The sour-tinged soup gives accent to the usually salty meat, prawn, or fish. The taste of the semi-sour soup plus its meat, prawn, or fish, is so complementing that you will never think that it were possible to have this dish.
The pork version of sinigang, "sinigang na baboy", usually has thicker soup, since this is usually mixed with "gabi", a vegetable root that makes the soup tastier and richer. All kinds of sinigang have vegetables mixed with them so taking this dish is not just delicious but nutritious as well.
Nilaga and Bulalo Recipes
Nilaga literally means "to boil something". There can be many nilaga recipes but the best is the "nilagang baka", or "boiled beef".
Nilaga always refers to "something" plus the soup that comes with it. Thus, "nilagang baka" is the beef with the beef broth, with other "rekados" (essential ingredients) such as cabbages, beans, pechay, carrots and potatoes.
If you want a still tastier form of nilaga, never ever miss out a "Bulalo". The "bulalo" is also a "nilaga", but with beef and the cow's knuckles. There is something with the cow knuckles that makes "bulalo" so tasty.
You should never miss out trying a "bulalo" or "nilaga" since this is a real standard and classic Filipino recipe.
The term sisig refers to "pork's ear". The others usually want to take this with beer but there is no problem taking this for your meal.
There are many variations of sisig but I suggest to try out both the crispy sisig and the classic one, which is fried but not crisp.
The sisig is usually served on a sizzling platter as meat chopped into corn-like sizes cooked with a mix of soy sauce and other spices.
Sisig is a perfect beer-match but like myself who love sisig, I also take it with rice.
Various Inihaw Recipes
Inihaw means "grilled". Thus, inihaw can mean anything from grilled prawns to grilled beef.
Try out a grilled liempo (pork) or grilled tuna belly and you will have known how delicious are Philippine "inihaws". What makes the Philippine "inihaws" unique is the fact that they are not simply grilled dishes.
There are many inihaws that are prepared in the "binabad" style, which means that the dish has been soaked into a sauce several hours before it is grilled. This "binabad" process adds a lot of rich flavor to any of the grilled dish and makes anyone want to crave for more inihaw.
Crispy Pata Recipes
This is one of the best Filipino recipes that will make you want to come back again and again in the Philippines. "Pata" refers to the thighs. However, when we speak about "Crispy Pata", we refer to Pork thighs.
This dish consists of pork thighs deep fried in salt until the pork skin becomes crispy while the meat becomes tender.
When you take the "crispy pata" and dip it in soy-sauce mixed with vinegar and some pepper, you will find the taste so captivating that you will want to have this over and over again.
This is the dish that you should not just eat but should see. Lechon refers to an entire pig cooked over slow fire.
The lechon is a standard part of the menu in every major Philippine celebration or fiesta. It takes around 8 to 10 hours to cook a lechon.
The best Lechon in the Philippines is in the town of Carcar, in Cebu. The lechon of Cebu is one the most flavorful of all lechons.
It is common for folks in Manila to order lechon from Cebu. The lechon is delivered via planes that fly from Cebu to Manila.
If you are interested in Cebu lechon and are not in Cebu yourself, contact your travel agent to make arrangements to have lechon delivered.
However, any Philippine cuisine restaurant all over the country also serve lechon.
For the vegetarian, this is the perfect dish for you.
Pinakbet is a mix of string beans, eggplant, okra, (and sometimes squash or pumpkin) cooked with a fish sauce called "bagoong".
Pinakbet is the perfect complement to any traditional Philippine meat or fish cuisine.
Pinakbet is a healthy dish and it is good to try it out even just once.
For the adventurous type of person, you may want to try out balut. No matter what you have heard about balut, one thing I could say is that it is one of the most exotic food you could find anywhere else in the world.
Balut is the local term for a duck egg that is about to hatch but did not.
Balut is only sold in the evening on the streets and if you ever want to try out this dish, your best chance of buying one is to take an evening walk at any street in front of a supermarket, a grocery or a mall.
Balut is usually peddled by street vendors and you would know one if you see a circular basket covered with cloth. This is to keep the balut warm.
To eat balut, you have to crack the egg shell, dab some salt on it, take all the soup, then eat it as you deem appropriate.
If you want a really rich experience, ask any of your local friends or contacts to accompany you to buy and eat balut. Once you've tasted one, it's either you will want more or never want to eat it again.
In whatever case, eating balut will be a true exotic Filipino recipe that an adventurous person would not want to miss.
Filipino recipes are exciting. Many restaurants serve them at very affordable prices. Make restaurant hopping a part of your itenerary to add to the excitement and fun of your stay in the Philippine.
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