Saturday, April 23, 2005

Kare Kare

When I was in the Philippines, I used to prepare Kare-kare by cooking the whole ox tail, cut in about 2 inches lengths and a bit of the beef skin overnight using charcoal. I would fill our "kalan" with lots of coal and just leave it boiling in a big pot with lots of water in it. It wasn't actually as tedious as others thought. The thing is, you just have to know whether the meat is done or not. You know that the oxtail pieces are ready if you can poke them and the skin with a fork and they are as soft as a chiffon cake.
Now that I am not in the Philippines anymore, a pound of oxtail is so expensive and the skin is discarded by the shop before it even makes it to the shelves. The real atchuete could hardly be found. I noticed though that our importers from the Philippines are learning what to export these days although the ready mixes have become helpful to me now. I learned from my friends that they use tripe instead of the skin. I now use a combination of tripe, brisket and oxtail and lately i also started using the pressure cooker instead of the coal. I still do not get the taste I used to have when I was in the Philippines, but better than nothing, anyway.


1/2 lb of tripe sliced in bite sizes
1/2 lb of brisket
1 lb of ox tail
2 medium eggplant, cut in about 1.5 inches lengths
1 can of canned banana blossoms
about 10 pcs of long beans cut in 1.5 inches lengths
Pechay (optional)
2 packs of Mama Sita Kare-kare Mix
1/2 cup of peanut butter

Cook the tripe, brisket and ox tail in a pressure cooker. Adding about 6 cups of water. Cook for about an hour. Once cooked, add the eggplant, banana blossoms and long beans. Add also the peanut butter. Mix kare-kare mix in 1/4 of water and add to the pot and stirring the pot occasionally to avoid the mix from burning at the bottom of the pot. Add the pechay last and make sure you don't overcook.
Serve with Guinisang Alamang (Shrimp Fry)

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Filipino Style Spaghetti

We went downtown one day purposely to eat at a well-known Filipino Restaurant. My kids are not racists. In fact they grew up in an environment where "multiculture" seems to be the most common heard word if you are talking about anything social. However, they could not help themselves from paying too much attention to this couple sitting in a corner eating rice and spaghetti. Well, the man was caucasian and the lady was of course a Filipino. "Rice and spaghetti, whoa, too much carbo" said my daughter. Funny how they thought about it.

Of course, the man probably could not complain. He was in a different territory, if you know what I mean. At the back of my mind was a different question, "is their spaghetti here sweet?". Filipinos are so fond of putting sugar to anything they cook. My kids could not remember it but once I mentioned to them about "Greenwich", they finally remembered that indeed, Greenwich' spaghetti was sweet. I tried reminding them about the Philippines one day and cooked this for them.


1/2 lb of ground pork
1/2 medium onion coarsely sliced
3 pcs of hotdogs, sliced
1 can of 225 ml tomato sauce
2 tbsp of white sugar
salt to taste
spaghetti noodles cooked according to packaging instruction
1/4 cup grated cheddar cheese

In a pan, brown ground pork. Add onions and cook until translucent. Add hotdogs and cook for about 2 minutes. Add the tomato sauce, sugar and salt. Cover pan and simmer for about 10 minutes on slow heat.

Serve noodles with sauce topped with cheese and garlic bread.

Monday, April 11, 2005

Sauteed Vegetables with Ground Pork

My children once complained that they were getting tired of my usual vegetables with chili sauce and sesame oil. Tired and weary, I asked them to cut any vegetables of their choice and I was going to make something out of them. My son brought out the frozen peas and my daughter cut some potatoes, carrots, cabbage and green beans.

With the help of about half a lb. of ground pork, I made this dish. I seasoned it with fish sauce and voila! Sauteed Vegetables!!

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Spicy Eggplant

Okey, on this one, I used Lee Kum Kee Spicy Eggplant seasoning. Cooking it was also simple. I used the white onions here. First, cook the ground pork until brown. In the same pan where where you cooked the pork and add the onions. Cook until translucent. The add the sliced eggplants. Once the eggplant is cooked, add the seasoning. Voila, it's as good as what you order from Chinese restaurants.

Word of caution: Spicy. I love it.