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Sinigang is a Philippine soup that is considered to be one of the most home-grown dishes in the
present Filipino cuisine. It is a Philippines dish famous for the variety of ingredients one can use
as well as for its taste. Even though it is considered as a soup, it is not eaten as is, but rather
combined as a viand with steamed rice.Its characteristic flavor comes from the tamarind which
gives it its sour taste that not only lingers in the soup part but is also infused into the meat.

Food historians have often extolled the wonders of sinigang, especially as refreshing, energizing,
appetite-encouraging food for the humid tropics. The sour lightness is a perfect match for the
oppressive tropical heat.

Sinigang is basically composed of a meat (e.g. pork, fish, shrimp, beef, chicken), tamarind, green
chili, tomato and onion. Vegetables such as okra, kangkong, taro, radish, string beans and
eggplant may also be added. Most Filipinos like to cook sinigang with green finger pepper in
order to enhance the taste while adding a little spice to the dish.

A common variation of chicken sinigang is called sinampalukangmanok or sinampalukan from

sampalok, Filipino for tamarind. Sinampalukan is distinguished by its use of shredded tamarind
leaves. It is also made with ginger, onions, and tomatoes. Sinampalukan is sometimes prepared
to be a little spicier than the other sinigang dishes.

Through time, the typical Sinigang has evolved and produced different varieties in which
ingredients to make it sour other than tamarind, such as guava, raw mango, and calamansi, are
used. It not only evolved through as we call home cooking but even in the different regions in the
Philippines, each region has their own version of the famous and most loved by the Filipinos the

A food writer Doreen Fernandez suggested that its origins are most likely indigenous and hence
it may be considered the national dish of the Philippines. Nobody knows where and what is the
origin of sinigang. Sinigang also bears some similarities to Indonesian sayurasem (tamarind
vegetable), Vietnamese canhchua (sour soup), and Thai tom yam. Sinigang shares some
characteristics - but should not be confused with - singgang, a tamarind soup dish from
Terengganu, Malaysia, which has a large number of fishing villages, making the most common
version there ikan (fish) singgang, but there are more varieties like singgang of shrimp (udang),
chicken (ayam) or beef (daging).