I've lived in my neighborhood for 2 years and 4 months. It's quiet, I've got a tree, and the neighbors have dogs that yap a lot. Around the corner, there is a pinoy diner which is my literal translation of a turo-turo. Low cost, basic foods available daily. The place caught my attention, however, for their tarp sign that advertised their specialty, a soup, a sour soup well known among all filipinos. Sinigang is probably our best known soup. Similar to the thai tom yum, it's base is either tamarind, or guava or any sour fruit puree cooked with fish or pork or shrimp. This soup is so quintessentially pinoy in my mind.
Variations abound, and being special or known as a specialty for a soup so ubiquitous is darn hard to do. So my neighborhood diner's banner must mean this a darn good soup. But even more interesting was its main ingredient. At night, the tarp would roll up a bit, and coming home, I'd see this:
"Sinigang na Ulo ng Norwegian"
Literal translation - Sour soup of Norwegian head. Eegad.
When the tarp is unrolled, you see the full details - sinigang na ulo ng norwegian salmon sa miso. Norwegian salmon! ah. Fish head soup with miso in a tamarind broth.
For 2 years, 4 months, I haven't stopped to check on my neighorhood head soup. Till this afternoon. I finally went in and took home a container of hot, sour soup. And I ladled some of the soup, some of the mustard leaves and a chunk of the jaw of the norwegian. Mmmmm, tart, a hint of garlic, the miso touching on meaty, the salmon tasted lean and sweet. Perhaps not the greatest of the sinigangs in this archipelago, but a good soup. Price - P140 for a large container good enough to feed 2 to 3 people.
Look for the sign on Hemady, near Aurora Boulevard, New Manila, Quezon City. They are now advertising rolled up lechon belly, another 2 years to try that?