Must Try Food in Philippines
I had been writing must try food items for several months now and those are the food items we had tried while we were on vacation in Europe, others might be wondering whether I already made a list from my home country? Well not yet and that’s about to change because that’s what we’re having now, the must try dishes in the Philippines.
For Filipinos this will be a no brainer and will definitely open a big debate on what should be included, everyone have their favourites but here is what I think I should include for those who does not know anything about the Filipino cuisine. Philippines have a lot to offer just imagine how many combinations our culinary roots like Spanish, Chinese, American and Native Filipino Dishes can create, not to mention some Japanese and Indian but if we will be limiting it to ten then here are my suggestions, a sampler for each taste dimension (not arranged in any order).
Sinigang (Pork Stew in Tamarind Broth) – This slowly simmered pork belly or pork ribs cooked in tamarind broth with vegetables, taro and sometimes chillies is an all-time favourite by most of the Filipinos so it is a must try.
Adobo – So far the most popular Filipino dish of all time, it might be our national dish??? Meat like pork, chicken or combination of both is cooked in vinegar, soy sauce and sugar resulting to a savoury, sour and sweet dish that goes well with rice. All I can say is that it is an explosion of flavours.
Kaldereta – Another popular dish which has its Spanish origins where beef or mutton is cooked in a hot and spicy tomato based stew, very popular with beer drinkers and people who likes their food spicy hot.
Sisig – Another popular dish with beer drinkers where finely chopped meats are served in a sizzling plate topped with raw egg and crispy cracklings. You should try it first before knowing what meats are used otherwise you will not dare to try them, trust me they are all edible, safe and surprisingly delicious.
Pancit Palabok – This is a noodle dish like no other, rice noodles with mixed seafood, egg and pork crackling are topped with vibrant orange gravy made out of crab fat, crab meat, smoked fish and annatto extract.
Pinoy Spaghetti – Yes we have spaghetti in the Philippines but it is different from its Italian counterpart, ours is sweet but in a good way. A party in the Philippines is not complete without it even McDonalds serve this in the Philippines.
Ube Macapuno Cake – Now let’s go to desserts, this is a tough choice as we have many, from rice cakes to sweets but to show the American influence in our cuisine this cake is the best example. Purple yam and gelatinous sweet mutant coconut in a cake sounds so exotic for a flavour but everyone loves them and trust me it does not taste like how it sounds.
Cheese Ice Cream – An odd flavour for an ice cream? Yes! But this is one of the best flavoured ice creams out there, sweet and savoury combination made in heaven.
Halo Halo – Halo halo in English if directly translated means mix mix and it is a good definition of what’s in this glass. Ingredients can include boiled kidney beans, boiled adzuki beans, garbanzos, sugar palm fruit (kaong), sweet mutant coconut (macapuno), caramelized plantains, jackfruit (langka), agar jelly (gulaman), tapioca pearls, nata de coco, sweet potato (kamote), pounded crushed young rice (pinipig) served in shaved ice with evaporated milk topped leche flan (crème caramel), purple yam (ube halaya), or ice cream.
Taho – Hot drinks and breakfast combined in one. It’s very soft tofu served with caramelized brown sugar and tapioca pearls, usually sold by walking hawkers in villages during every morning. Very nutritious and delicious.