Two of my favorite dishes are sinigang na hipon/baka/baboy and nilagang baka/baboy. We seldom cook beef so beef steak and nilagang baka are considered special dishes. (The mini-market near our house does not sell beef, we buy beef from the supermarket) Cooking in our house is alternatively done by my husband and I. Call it regional differences but we sometimes have small arguments about how a dish is supposed to be cooked. Do you put ginger on nilagang baka? We don’t do it in Bataan. Do you put saging na saba on sinigang? The taste would be weird! Do you put tomato on nilaga? Ah, that would appear to be meztisang sinigang! One thing that I notice about Visayans are their simple taste in food. They don’t prefer foods with a lot of spices and ingredients. They would rather eat sinigang sa sampalok na isda instead of afritada or menudo. Okay, maybe this only applies to the Visayans that I’ve met.
Going back to cooking nilaga and sinigang, I still prefer my nilaga with corn kernels, stringbeans and cabbage. My sinigang should have lady finger, kangkong and eggplant. Minor things like what ingredients must be put on the dish should be discussed by couples of different regional background because eating together should be harmonious.