So much of Filipino life is centered around the dinner table. From the little conversations that try to catch everyone up on a day’s worth of work and play, to greater moments of healing and mutual understanding, it’s a crucial space that lends particularly well to shared growth.

Thanks to this association, food also takes a starring role in the picture of our lives, providing feelings of warmth, comfort, and satisfaction among others. Few evoke as strong a response as these classic Filipino delicacies.

Regardless of where you are in the country (or the world, even), you could count on these kitchen favorites for a good helping of them warm, fuzzy feelings.

Nilaga

Whether you’re in the mood for pork or beef, a bowl of nilaga is an exercise in self-care and caring for those around you. Between a nice helping of broth, and a hearty mix of meat and vegetables, you have a classic dish that pairs great with a fair amount of hot, steamy rice.

Sinigang

Another soup-based wonder, sinigang marries the inherent sourness of tamarind with pork, beef, or seafood. This dish has the special ability to reflect each cook’s personality with the balance of savory and sour. Whichever way you want it, the possibilities are endless!

Adobo

Adobo is probably the be-all, end-all Filipino dish. It’s the first thing people think of when you mention Filipino cuisine, and for good reason. This all-time favorite is fairly easy to make in large quantities, and has a lot of wiggle room for creativity. If you prefer your adobo sweet or savory, wet or fairly dry, there’s always a way to tastefully pull it off.

Bistek

The idea is simple enough on its own, with marinated steak slices cooked to a nice shade of brown with onions and a nice portion of its own juices poured directly on top of a plate of rice. This is a particularly popular baon favorite too, found in lunchboxes the whole country over.

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