Growing up, I was and still am very lucky to have a mom who is such a magnificent cook and baker! Her passion for cooking and baking really shows through the taste of her food. All our relatives, friends, acquaintances, and clients LOVE her food. From sweets to savory, she really has a great talent for cooking, and most especially BAKING! My mom is also very talented in other areas, such as, music and art, on top of that she really is the Jack of Trades at home! She worked full-time, yet she managed to still keep a clean house, and meals on the table! Unfortunately, I didn’t get the talent of art and music from her. I did, however, get the love for cooking and her OCD on housework chores (haha).
My first cooking lesson in high school with my mom was to make Sinigang. A Filipino tamarind soup. It’s so delicious, and it’s a comfort food in our home. You can make Sinigang with beef, pork, fish, or shrimp. But, what I love most about sinigang are the vegetables. I love the okra, gabi, and spinach it in the most. Traditional Filipino sinigang calls for kangkong (river spinach), sitaw (string beans), daikon radish, gabi (taro), and Japanese eggplant. For my version of sinigang, I love to add regular spinach instead, and okra. I sometimes omit the daikon. Also, the more sour the better. I’ve seen recipes where they make sinigang from an actual tamarind and boil it first. Then use the broth to make the soup sour. However, I do not have time for that, and I like my soup super sour! So I use, Knorr Tamarind Soup Mix. Which has a lot of sodium, but that’s alright because it’s not often that I cook sinigang.
Beef Sinigang Recipe:
Makes 8 Servings
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 2 hours
Ready in 2 hours and 15 minutes
*1 1/2 lb beef stew meat cut into cubes
*3 small onions or 1 1/2 large onion
*2 3/4 large tomatoes
*11 oz sitaw (string beans)
*1 bunch spinach (it’s better to use organic)
*1 large Japanese eggplant
*1 bag of frozen okra
*4-6 small pieces of gabi (taro)
*1 long green chili
*1 1/2 packets of Knorr Tamarind Soup Mix (if you like it extra sour like I do, go ahead and use 2 packets)
1)I first wash all the vegetables, then peel off the skin of the gabi (taro), then I slice the eggplant and sitaw (string beans). Set aside.
2) In a heavy pot, boil beef with 1 L of water for 1 hour or until tender.
3) While the beef is boiling, cut up the onions and tomatoes.
4) When the meat is tender, turn off heat and dump out the water in the sink and rinse beef in a strainer. I also like to wash the pot until all the grease and fat that rose to the top the pot comes out. I really don’t like serving greasy sinigang to my family.
5) After rinsing the pot, return meat into the pot and add 1 L of water and then add the tomatoes and onions,
6) Return to stove, and boil until tomatoes and onions are soft. You should be able to mash the tomatoes a little. I like to mash the tomatoes a little to flavor the soup. I also add in the gabi (taro) because they take a while to cook.
7) Once the tomatoes and onions are soft, add in the Knorr Tamarind Soup Mix. Bring it to simmer for about 15 so that the meat cooks into the broth.
8) Add in the rest of vegetables (okra, sitaw, and eggplant, and chili), except the spinach. Cook for 15 minutes.
9) Add spinach and cook for only 5 minutes. It’s nice to still have a little crunch in the spinach.
Once all of the vegetables are cooked, your sinigang is ready to eat!
Some people add in fish sauce (patis) for extra saltiness, but I personally do not like fish sauce, so I omit it. I know some people may question why I dump out the beef broth and add new water. That’s because I really do not like the grease and fat in my soup.
This is my son’s favorite Filipino dish, just like his mommy! I cut up all the veggies and beef really small, and added it with brown rice and quinoa. He LOVED it!
Let me know if you want to try this recipe or if you love sinigang like I do! My mom lives about 45 minutes away from us, but we talk every day. I always ask her questions on how to cook or make things. Because of her I learned how to cook, but I put in my little twist 🙂
Til Next Time,