By Samantha Nicole Alarilla
Here are the top “sarsa” and “sawsawan” that no Filipino would ever survive without! Surely, because we love our dipping sauces so much, we wouldn’t want them go to waste, right? Find out how to properly store your panlasang Pinoy favorites here:
Store in the Cupboard
Also known as catsup, ketchup is a sweet and tangy table sauce that nanay’s special friend chicken definitely cannot be eaten without. It is usually made from tomatoes, sweeteners, vinegar, and varying spices and seasonings that would differ from recipe to recipe.
Our go-to dip for fried fish,toyo,is usually a combination of soybeans, wheat, and salt and is a lot thinner in texture and saltier in taste compared to other Southeast Asian versions. It’s usually the base for more creative sauce combinations such as toyomansi or chilimansi.
Vinegar is made by fermenting ethanol and is widely used as a Filipino cooking staple, especially for popular dishes such as adobo, but it is also commonly used as a dipping sauce for fried dishes such as tinapa or tapa. Fancier households would have tomatoes and onions slices mixed in with their dipping vinegar in tall bottles, but it’s definitely just as good on its own.
Also known as fish sauce, patis is made from fermented fish and salt and is commonly a by-product of bagoong. Its salty taste makes it a good substitution for table salt, and most Filipinos would dash a bit of it straight from the bottle into their dishes or pour it into a small saucer with calamansi.
Store in the Refrigerator
Bagoong, which is best with kare-kare or paired with green mango, production varies from region to region, but it is commonly made of either fermented fish or krill with salt.
Also known as chili sauce, is a condiment in which each recipe varies from its bases to its ingredients, but one thing in common is its use of chili peppers to make it notoriously spicy. Filipino versions of it would include sweet and spicy sauces or chilimansi.
It is a fermented liquid condiment in which its ingredients are made to mature for 18 months before being combined and bottled in Worcester, where to this day nobody but them knows the recipe! It is usually combined with other sauces such as soy sauce or ketchup to make fancy tonkatsu and barbecue sauces in a pinch, but we also pair it raw with Max’s Chicken and their famous banana ketchup!
Atsara is a pickle made from grated unripe papaya that no breakfast tocilogor barbecue can go without. This tangy and sweet condiment is best stored in the refrigerator.