Common Filipino Ingredients
Filipino Foodie | On 29, Jan 2013
Common Filipino Ingredients
Filipino food has been influenced by different nations from all around the globe, thus Filipino cuisine has a wide variation of ingredients in which they cook with.
Like most Asian countries, the staple food of Filipinos is rice. Steamed white rice is often served during meals and to avoid wasting any rice, leftover rice may be cooked into fried rice with garlic, or sinangag. This is often served during breakfast with sausages and fried eggs. Variations of rice like the bagoong rice with green mangoes are also a popular choice among Filipinos.
Beef is one of the main meats used in different dishes in Filipino cuisine. The specialty in Tagaytay is bulalo, which is a soup that uses the bones and meat of beef as base. It is cooked slowly in constant heat to allow the taste to grow. Beef is also the main meat eaten in Mindanao because of the Islamic influence in the region.
Pork is used in so many dishes in Filipino cuisine. For fiestas and special occasions like Christmas Eve dinners, lechon will always be included in the menu. Lechon is roasted pig served whole with a special dipping sauce called sarsa. Pork is also used in different dishes like adobo, bicol express, inihaw na liempo and may also be used in soups like sinigang na baboy.
Filipinos love chicken. Kids love fried chicken. Bacolod is also famous for their chicken inasal.
One very famous Filipino dish which uses goat meat is kalderetang kambing.
The comon types of fished used in Filipino cooking are bangus (milkfish), catfish, grouper (lapu-lapu), mackerel (galunggong), swordfish, tilapia, blue marlin, tuna, and cod. These are just some of the many types of fish that Filipinos eat. Fish can be prepared in different ways but the most common is to have it seasoned and pan-fried or deep fried. They can also be cooked in a sour broth like sinigang, or grilled (inihaw). Another way of preparing fish is by stuffing it with tomatoes, onions and other vegetables called relyeno. A way to preserve fish is by drying them in the sun (tuyo) or smoking them (tinapa).
The Philippines is rich with natural resources like seafood such as pusit (squid), tahong (mussels), hipon (shrimp), sugpo (prawns), talaba (oysters), halaan (clams), and many more.
Fruits and vegetables
Coconut is one of the popular fruits used in Filipino cooking. The flesh of the young coconut, or buko, is usually used in desserts and candies but it can also be used in soups and salads. For more mature coconut flesh, they are grated and pressed to make the coconut milk or gata which is used in cooking a number of dishes like the popular Bicol express. Other fruits used in cooking are mangoes and bananas (saba in particular). Green mangoes are made into salads and sometimes mixed in rice with bagoong.
Vegetables like kangkong, pechay, upo, okra, sitaw, ampalaya, cabbage, talong and sayote are used in various dishes like pinakbet. They can also be sautéed individually with ground pork and some garlic. Root crops like potatoes, carrots, gabi, cassava, ube and kamote are also used in cooking main dishes and desserts. Gabi (taro) can also be included in sinigang, a soup with a tamarind base to add thickness to the soup. The combination of tomatoes, onions and garlic is a popular practice in many dishes. Sometimes they are eaten fresh with preserved duck eggs as a side dish.