Sinigang. One of the dishes that define Filipino cuisine, Sinigang’s sour, full-bodied flavor evokes memories of childhood spent in Lola’s kitchen, eating rice swimming in sour broth, accompanied by either pork, shrimp or fish. I usually dip the meat and veggies in some patis (fish sauce) for that perfect sour-salty taste, spicy too, if you choose to crush the siling pangsigang (finger chili) in your patis. Oftentimes compared to the Thai Tom Yum Goong, for me, Sinigang has a cleaner, lighter flavor, compared to its richer thai cousin.
Because I like my sinigang piping hot, I opted to bring my lunch in a microwave safe container instead of my thermal bento, for easier nuking. This was leftover Sinigang na Baboy (pork sinigang) from the day before. Aside from the pork and broth, I made sure to include some of the sinigang veggies as well: kangkong (swamp cabbage), labanos (daikon radish), and gabi (taro). Sinigang is one of those dishes that get better with reheating, because by the next day, the spiciness of the chili has already permeated through the broth, creating a slightly spicier version. Still, I also made sure to include some siling pangsigang (finger chili) so I can crush it in my fish sauce.
In the other container, I have rice, and a container of patis to complete the meal. I can never eat sinigang without patis. To add some color, I added two mint leaves—you can’t go wrong with mint! Heck, you can use it to freshen your breath afterwards.
Simple, filling and comforting. Was it a happy lunch? Definitely. In fact, I’m sure you guys would agree with me. Sinigang = Happy!