“Growing up, whenever my family felt homesick, they would make Filipino food like sinigang to remind them of home. This dish feels like a way to honor my family’s history and the journey it took for them to come here.”
– Josephine Ledda, CHN Nutritionist
The Philippines was a trade crossroads for many Asian countries, such as China, Japan, and Malaysia. The Spanish colonized the Philippines for over 300 years. In the early 20th century the United States had control over the Philippines until 1946, when it gained independence.
These cultural influences are present in the language and cuisine. There are over 120 languages spoken in the Philippines, but the national language is Tagalog.
What is Sinigang?
Sinigang is a dish native to the Philippines, an archipelago made up of more than 7,000 islands in Southeast Asia. Traditional dishes are often soups or stews that can be simmered for many hours. Because of the warmer temperatures, many souring agents are used as preservatives.
Common ingredients are sour mango, tamarind, vinegar and Calamansi, a variety of lime specific to the Philippines. This recipe relies on tamarind paste, which can be found at Latin and Asian supermarkets.
Ingredients you’ll need:
- 5 cups of water
- 1 tablespoon neutral oil
- 1 inch peeled ginger, sliced
- 1 small daikon radish, slice
- 1 onion, sliced
- 6 cloves of garlic, chopped
- 1 1/2 pounds of salmon?
- 2 tablespoons of fish sauce
- 3 tablespoons tamarind paste
- 1 cup of okra, sliced
- 1 small eggplant, cut into rounds, halved
- 1 bunch of spinach
How to make:
- Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat.
- Add garlic, onions, and ginger to the pot and sauté until translucent.
- Add tomatoes. Cover with a lid and cook for ~ 5 minutes, or until tomatoes are softened.
- Add water and simmer for 10 minutes.
- Add in tamarind, radish, eggplant, and okra. Stir occasionally and continue cooking until vegetables are soft.
- Add salmon, making sure it is fully immersed in the broth and cook for 2 minutes.
- Add in spinach and fish sauce. Simmer for 1 minute then remove from heat.
- Serve over rice.
Recipe adapted from Riverten Kitchen