Thursday, July 19, 2007

Sinigang: the ultimate comfort food

Nothing brings back happy and warm memories of the Philippines like a hot, soothing bowl of mouth-puckering, saliva flow-inducing sinigang. Even here in The Great White North, sinigang remains one of our staple meals, making an appearance on our dinner table at least once a month.

It's so quick and easy, I even consider it "emergency food." The pressure cooker makes quick work of frozen pork bones and in half an hour, a perfect meal is ready. I also consider it "budget food." $2.70 for 3 pounds of neck bones, $1.29 for the kang kong, another few cents for the gabi, a couple of tomatoes, an onion, sinigang mix --- a nutritious, delicious dish that feeds all of us for less than $7.

I do use ready mix pang-sigang (gasp!!!) but I tweak it a little by adding tomatoes, onions, whole peppercorns and patis :-)


3 pounds pork neck bones
2 plum tomatoes, quartered
1 medium onion, quartered
1/4 cup fish sauce
3-4 pcs. gabi (or edo as it is known here), peeled
1 tsp. black peppercorns or siling pangsigang (if you have some on hand, which I usually don't)
1 bunch kang kong (look for tung choi in the chinese market) or spinach
1 to 1 1/2 packets of Knorr Sinigang Mix with Gabi (my preferred brand)

1. In a pressure cooker, cover pork bones with enough water.
2. Add in tomatoes, onion, fish sauce and pepper.
3. Seal pressure cooker and cook until pressure cooker whistles.
4. Lower heat to maintain whistling. Cook for 12-15 minutes.
5. Release pressure.
6. Skim off fat then add gabi/edo. Simmer for about 5-7 minutes, until gabi is almost done.
7. Add sinigang mix. Adjust seasoning according to taste.
8. Finally, add the green veggies.

9. Simmer a few minutes more until veggies are done.

Other vegetable options include sitaw/long beans, eggplants, radish, or any other green leafy veg. The possibilities are endless...


Junji said...

...the ultimate comfort food...true...true...

Anonymous said...

i recommend you have a manila based friend buy some dried kamias for you, to make sinigang sa kamias. it lasts a long time and you can put it into dishes that need a natural acid kick. i found some at salcedo weekend market once, also in the weekend sidcor market in QC.

James Francisco said...

When my family cooks sinigang, they do one thing differently. The water that we use for the rice, is then poured into the pressure cooker to soften the meat and act as the water for the sabaw. Try it! Makes it taste all the more better =)