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Posted by on Jul 24, 2013 in Featured, Food & Drink, Guest Posts, Philippines | 3 comments

5 Filipino Dishes You Must Try

Guest blog post written by Cherry. Check out these interesting dishes, I definitely want to try the pig when I finally get to the Philippines.

The Philippine cuisine is like its lovable summer treat “halo-halo” (literally, “mix-mix”), a concoction of different influences reminiscent of the Spanish, Chinese and American presence centuries past, with a hint of Malay and Indian herbs brought on by pre-Spanish trade with these countries. There is an entire smorgasbord of Filipino delights that await the adventurous palate, and here are five Filipino foods to get you started.

1. Adobo

To preserve meat in the pre-cooler era, Filipinos would cook pork or chicken meat in vinegar and fish sauce, and toss laurel leaves for more flavour and aroma. With the arrival of the Spaniards, they named this marinated meat dish “adobo” after their own “adobado.”

Adobo - marinated meat dish

2. Lechon

A Chinese legend has it that “lechon” was accidentally discovered when a man’s hut and swine burned down to the ground; hence, the Philippine ”lechon.” An entire pig is spit-roasted for three to four hours to achieve that salty, crunchy, melt-in-the-mouth taste of pig skin and evenly cooked pig meat.

Lechon - spit-roasted pork

3. Bulalo

Beef shanks boiled until the collagen and fat melts, bulalo is often garnished with corn and pechay leaves, as in Southern Luzon’s version in northern Philippines, or prepared in its barebones form, as in “cansi” of the Visayas in central Philippines.

Bulalo - Beef shanks

4. Ginataang Alimango

Freshwater or sea crabs cooked in thick coconut milk and carrots, “ginataang alimango” is made more savory by turmeric (an Indian spice that is also widely available in the Philippines), black pepper and other spices.

Ginataang Alimango - crabs cooked in thick coconut milk

5. Sisig

Filipinos are known for their kitchen resourcefulness, and “sisig” is a fine example of how pig brains, ears, snout and jowls – traditionally discards from the kitchens of American Naval base in Pampanga – are converted into a highly popular dish (laden with cholesterol). “Sisig,” either taken with a cold beer or eaten with rice, it is best served with a squeeze of citrus and a topping of raw egg (and more cholesterol).

Sisig - Pig brains, ears, snout complete with raw egg

I hope you will give all 5 of my must try Filipino foods a go should you visit my wonderful country.

Photo Credit – 1. essgee51, 2. whologwhy, 3. Roberto Verzo, 4. AndySnaps2011, 5. Squareh00r

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  1. I am doing NYE in the Philippines and you have just got me super excited for the food, especially Bulalo and Ginataang Alimango. Can’t wait! Cheers

  2. Glad it was useful! I read a couple of your posts.

    Frightening stuff that shark attack, I’m currently in Coral Bay, Ningaloo Reef. Seen reef sharks and lemon sharks, they get pretty big, yet to see any while snorkeling but sure that’d feel unsettling for my first time!

    • Coral bay looks magical, I am yet to venture over that side of the country. At first they may be unsettling but you will get used to it and become awed by their gracefulness in the water. Have fun there mate, keep living the dream

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