What it is: Hot and sour soup.
Why it’s awesome: Tamarind paste and calamansi (or Philippine lime) juice infuse the broth with its signature sour flavor. This version calls for salty chunks of pork and a splash of creamy coconut milk to round out things out. Recipe here.
4. Cassava Cake
What it is: A creamy, not-too-sweet dessert made from cassava root and coconut milk.
Why it’s awesome: It’s sweet, but not cloyingly so. For texture, the top is broiled until it’s almost crunchy. It can also be made gluten-free. Recipe here.
6. Ube Ice Cream
What it is: Exactly what it sounds like: ice cream made from the root crop ube, also known as purple yam.
Why it’s awesome: Purple ice cream. ‘Nuff said. Recipe here.
What it is: Sweet coconut cake.
Why it’s awesome: Rice flour + coconut cream = a Filipino Christmastime treat that’s delicious enough to eat year-round. Recipe here.
12. Sizzling Pork Sisig
What it is: Pork parts (often: head, liver, cheeks) mixed with onions, chiles, citrus, and egg.
Why it’s awesome: The pork is prepped in multiple ways — in this case: boiled then grilled — then served on a sizzling hot plate. Recipe here.
What it is: Dessert made with a hodgepodge of ingredients, including shaved ice, sweet beans, fruit, tapioca, and ube ice cream.
Why it’s awesome: Halo-halo means “mix mix” in Tagalog, and that’s exactly what you’re supposed to do with it. Recipe here.
18. Arroz Caldo
What it is: A thick and creamy rice soup or porridge.
Why it’s awesome: Comfort food at its finest. Rice is simmered with spices and aromatics (and in this case, chicken), then topped with spring onions and fried garlic for extra crunch. Recipe here.
What it is: Sweetened cured pork.
Why it’s awesome: Thin strips of pork sit for several hours (or days) in a mixture of sugar, salt, garlic, and oil, then are fried up in a hot pan until the coating caramelizes. Recipe here.