Sinigang is a Filipino dish famous for the variety of ingredients one can use as well as for its taste. Though considered a soup, it is not eaten as is, but rather combined as a viand with rice. Sinigang is typically sour and is most often likened to Thailand’s tom yam. Sinigang’s characteristic taste is attributed to the ingredient that gives its sour taste, not to the meat’s flavor.
If you intend to serve the sinigang as a soup then, the significant thing is to have the best quality broth you can make. That means bones — lots of bones. If, however, you intend to serve the sinigang as the main dish, you need meatier cuts of pork. Otherwise, you’ll be practically serving rice with broth and vegetables and very little meat. Sinigang na baboy is a sour soup and putting tamarind as the main souring agent. Love it with bony parts or even slabs of pork fat. These, of course, must be simmered for quite a while to be tender and nice.
500 gm boney pork
3-4 medium tomatoes – sliced
1 big onion – sliced
1 Tbsp sea salt
1-2 green chilis – pointed ends cut off [optional]
6-8 cups water
souring agent (tamarind puree, lemon and/or lime)
1 aubergine (eggplant) – sliced 1 inch thick and quartered
1 bunch long string beans (sitaw) [optional] – cut into 2 inch pieces
2 taro roots (gabi) – peeled and quartered
spinach leaves or kangkong – washed and plucked from stems
• Combine tomatoes, onion, and sea salt in a big pot. Mix and mash them a little bit with your fingers. Add chilis (optional) and pork.
• Pour just enough water to cover them and bring to boil. Cook for about 3 minutes. Mash the tomatoes with a sandok (cooking spoon).
• Pour in the rest of the water, bring to boil and simmer until pork is tender (about 1 1/4 hours). Add taro, aubergine and sitaw. Bring to boil and simmer until taro is almost cooked (about 5 minutes).
• Add the souring agent and spinach (for tamarind puree I use about 1/2 cup of it plus a squeeze of lemon/lime). Cook for 1-2 minutes. Taste soup and adjust seasonings accordingly. Serve.