Bagoong (fish paste) is a popular condiment used all throughout the Philippines. It is used as a dipping sauce for countless food such as grilled bangus, tilapia, tortang talong(grilled eggplant), grilled meat; as a seasoning for all-time Filipino favorite foods such as pinakbet(vegetable dish flavored with bagoong) and binagoongan (pork cubes cooked in bagoong); or as gifts to relatives both locally and abroad.
Bagoong made in Pangasinan, especially in the capital town of Lingayen, has long been regarded as the best bagoong in the Philippines due to its great taste and aroma. This great taste and aroma is due to the perseverance and creativeness of the local bagoong producers as well as the countless hours of experimenting and many months of fermenting in order to make that special Lingayen bagoong brand.
Bagoong or fish paste is made of fishes of different varieties ( monamon/anchovies, padas/rabbitfishes , terong/bonnet mouth fish, galunggong /round scads, etc) mixed with salt and place in concrete tanks and allowed to ferment for about 3-6 months. After the fermentation process, the bagoong is place in big earthen jars for added fermentation and flavor and is now ready for use or sale. Ground fermented bagoong (fish sauce) placed and sealed in bottles is now the major trend in bagoong packaging which is being exported internationally.
Bagoong making has come a long way from its early days. It is now a major industry in the town of Lingayen and nearby coastal towns providing economic income for most of Pangasinenses living in these areaa. It is an indispensable part of the Pangasinan culture heritage that Pangasinenses willingly and proudly share to the country and to rest of the world.
So, if the Koreans have their kimchi, the Japanese have their wasabi, we Filipinos have our Bagoong!! Don't you want your grilled bangus or that tasty unripe mango dipped in tasty Pangasinan bagoong?! Oh come on, let's eat!!!