Soup is an important part of the Filipino cuisine. And there are dozens of various Filipino soups that one can find all over the archipelago.
These are soups that carry the tradition, culture, and identity of Filipino food in hot bowls. And they are not mere meat or veggies in boiled water, since each carries distinct features that makes a soup unique among others. That’s why Filipinos love these hot bowls either on occasions or on simple days.
Of course, you’d love to know them too.
The undisputed most popular soup dish that the Philippines has. It is a sour soup with different variations depending on its meat content and souring agent.
Common variations include pork, fish, and shrimp Sinigang, while common souring agents include unripe tamarind, unripe guava, unripe mango, cotton fruit, kalamansi, and unripe pineapple among others.
Moreover, Sinigang traditionally contains many veggies that bring more flavor to the soup, such as water spinach (kangkong), radish, Chile, okra, eggplant, etc.
This super flavorful dish is the soup of beef shank and bone marrow which are cooked for many hours in a pot.
You’d know that it’s already done when the collagens and fats attached to the bones melt into the soup. This cooking technique draws out the rich beef broth from the meat which gives the soup its thick flavor. Depending on the cook, the soup may have fish sauce, bay leaves, corn, bamboo shoots, and cabbage among other additions too.
One of the Filipino soups that shouldn’t be missing in this list. Batchoy or La Paz Batchoy is a noodle soup that is popular as a street food. It is usually sold at night, and is usually consumed as a drunk soup or a hangover remedy.
Batchoy carries pancit miki or egg noodles, and pork or chicken meat in a clear broth soup. But the most popular variations also have pork or chicken innards in the bowl.
Also, it is commonly served with crushed pork rinds or chicharon and boiled eggs as toppings.
This soup dish is perhaps the simplest to prepare in this list.
Nilaga is pork or beef meat that is boiled for a few minutes, and then seasoned with leafy vegetables such as cabbage and bok choy. It has some additions that bring more flavors such as squash, sayote, and corn too.
This is another simple Filipino soup that is usually made with chicken or fish.
It contains squash, unripe papaya, sayote, malunggay, and lemon grass among others. It commonly has garlic and ginger too, which are both cooked with the meat before water is added.
6. Noodle Soups
The Philippines has numerous soups with noodles too. That includes sotanghon, lomi, mami, and miswa among many other flavorful bowls.
But usually, these are pork, chicken, or fried fish soups served with the noodles in a bowl. However, some variations include other ingredients, such as mixing beaten eggs into the soup of lomi.
7. Monggo Soup
Monggo or mung bean soup is traditionally considered as the worker’s meal in the Philippines.
That is because monggo soup is usually served after the act of Bayanihan, or the tradition where some people help together to move a nipa hut from one spot to another. This makes monggo soup one of the best Filipino soups that bring rich history in a bowl.
To make this soup, mung beans are cooked in broth or water, while garlic and onion are sautéed in a separate pot. The boiled mung beans are then poured into the other pot, and cooked until finish. Mongo soup usually has pork, chicken, or fish meat as well.
Many animal right advocates’ shouts “foul” on this pinikpikan soup recipe because of its preparation process. This is a traditional native recipe from the Cordillera Mountains that involves unique chicken meat.
What makes it unique is because the living chicken must be slowly beaten to death during the slaughtering step. The goal is to keep the blood in the meat, that you wouldn’t see blood pouring out while slicing the chicken. The bones must remain intact as well. This process is traditionally done in a ritual by a native tribe in such area.
After the slaughtering step, the meat is then smoked, cured, stored in jars, and buried for a few days.
9. Soup Number 5
Lastly, this is another one of the controversial soups that the weird soul of Philippine cuisine can offer.
Soup Number 5 is probably one of the strangest Filipino soups since it is a hot bowl of bull’s penis and testicles. The said organs are boiled, chopped, and are served together with pork or beef meat and some veggies in a stew. Many people believe that Soup Number 5 has aphrodisiac properties, that’s why many stores sell this at night.
Enjoy these Popular Filipino Soups for the Best Hot Bowls!
There is still a long list of soups that the Philippines offer. However, these are the best that you shouldn’t miss to try regardless of the occasion. Marvel with the taste and features of these Filipino soups, and know the different traditions that this country can tell.
Looking for other Lutong Bahay Recipes to try on? Feel free to check out our ulam recipes, desserts recipes and snacks recipes.
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