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The “ballsiest” soup in the Philippines: Soup No. 5

2 min read

We are in the Philippines.
Here Soup Number Five is well-known, as are its purported aphrodisiac and healing properties.
Originally served by roadside eateries, some men even believe that eating it will give them the virility of a bull: Cebuanos know it as “lanciao” and is believed to give the physical attributes of the animal to anyone willing to take a sip.
Or, at least, increase their libido even if, nutrition-wise, a serving of Soup no. 5 gives less zinc (the mineral which increases libido) when cooked.
According to others, it improves metabolism, energy and warms the body.

To the unsuspecting consumer, it resembles a typical meat soup.
The difference?
The use of a bull’s penis and testicles, considered by many as the “fifth leg” of the animal, hence one of name’s possible explanation.
Despite individual variations and secret recipes abound, the defining feature is the genital component.
Actually, how the dish got its name is uncertain, but popular food lore points to marketing tactics.
Another popular explanation says that restaurants explicitly labeled their first four soups: chicken, pork, beef, and seafood. Then, the fifth option would be left cryptically unelaborated upon, perhaps to intrigue the customer, perhaps to avoid getting into details.
However, uninspiringly, some say that the name was just randomly given and it stuck as time passed.

Images from web – Google Research

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