Filipino seafood

Tinolang Pusit (Squid in Ginger-based Soup)

Saturday, January 25, 2014Enz F

A favorite authentic Filipino dish, Tinola is a soup-based recipe with typically chicken as the main ingredient, stewed to tenderness with ginger, onions and some seasonings, and best complimented with green papaya wedges and leaves of siling labuyo (chili pepper). Though traditional tinola is more well-known with chicken, other variants use pork, fish or mussels as alternative. Depending on the geographic location, some may also choose chayote (vegetable pear) as substitute for green papaya, and other greens like malunggay (moringa) leaves, spinach or bok choy instead of chili leaves. In this particular recipe, I picked squids, along with green papaya and chili leaves, as the main component. 

Filipino tinola with a seafood twist
The cooking procedure is basically the same except that this one yields a blackish broth because of the ink from the squid. This is quite a twist from the famous tinola soup we have known as a comfort food during cold or rainy season. Nevertheless, this remains a soothing and tasty dish that would never fail to satisfy our appetite.

Squid soup, perfect for the cold season.

Tinolang Pusit (Squid in Ginger-based Soup)
Number of servings: 4

  • 1 lb. fresh squids, cleaned and sliced into rings 
  • 1 small green papaya, peeled, deseeded and cut into wedges 
  • 1 bundle siling labuyo (chili pepper) leaves, washed and trimmed 
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced 
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped 
  • 1 inch ginger, sliced into strips 
  • 2 – 3 cups water 
  • 2 tbsps. cooking oil 
  • 1 tbsp. patis (fish sauce) 
  • salt and pepper

  1. In a saucepan, heat the cooking oil and sauté onion, garlic and ginger over medium heat. 
  2. Add squid rings. Stir frequently until the squids slightly turn opaque. 
  3. Pour in the water and fish sauce. Simmer for 5 minutes. 
  4. Add papaya and simmer for another 5 minutes or until the papaya becomes tender. 
  5. Add the siling labuyo leaves, and season with salt and pepper. 
  6. Serve hot with steamed rice. Enjoy! 

  1. Do not overcook the squid as the meat may get tough or rubbery, 
  2. This dish is best consumed with squeezed calamansi (calamondin) and patis on the side.

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