Lechon Kawali – Deep-fried Pork Belly

Lechon Kawali (deep-fried pork belly) is a favorite dish at family gatherings since it is the best of both worlds, deep fried pork goodness with a crisp skin. The secret to the recipe is the cooking process which consists of par-cooking it by boiling the pork belly first then finishing it off by deep frying…

Sarsa ng Lechon – Liver Sauce

No lechon (whole roasted suckling pig) is complete without a side of the sweet and vinegary sarsa ng lechon. The sauce also pairs well with lechon kawali (crispy pork belly) and serves as a contrast to the savory salt flavors of roasted pork. I remember my dad laboring over this sarsa to make sure that the taste was…

Bulalo (Beef Shank Soup)

Bulalo is a soup made with beef shanks and is named for the bone marrow found inside the shank. It takes a slow cooking method to transform the meat and marrow into a rich flavorful broth. Ingredients 3 lb | 1.36 kg of beef shanks cut through the bone in 2 inch pieces ½ cup…

Beef Estofado – Tangy Braised Beef

Estofado which translates to stew is a Spanish dish that has been localized to Filipino taste and consists of meat stewed with tomatoes. A hearty stew like this is best accompanied by a generous serving of kanin (cooked rice) and I have always considered this a comfort food good for a cold night. Ingredients 1½ lb |…

Pan de Sal – Bread Rolls

Considered a staple, pan de sal or salt bread is more sweet than salty and most likely derives the name from the pinch of salt used to make the bread. The earliest versions of wheat-based breads were introduced in the Philippines by the Portuguese back around the 1500s. Pan de sal is popular as a mid-morning…

Bibingka – Coconut and Rice Cake

Christmas or Pasko as it is known in the Philippines marks the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ. Although Christmas Day lands on December 25th, the celebrations by Filipinos begin several weeks earlier. Filipinos will give each other a hearty “Maligayang Pasko” or Merry Christmas. Pasko itself officially starts on the morning of December 16th and is…

Siopao – Steamed Buns with Pork Filling

Filipino food culture is an amalgam of several different nationalities with siopao being happily adopted from China. Siopao is something that I always associated to my Lola (Grandma) who was able to whisk together this special treat of steamed buns with a savory pork filling. The following recipe consists of two parts, the filling and the…

Inihaw na Baboy – Filipino Pork Barbecue

Inihaw is simply a method of cooking over coals or other heat source for grilling. Inihaw na Baboy (Grilled Pork) is considered one of the dishes that you can easily find in many of the food stalls that you may see as you wander the streets of the Philippines. The flavor profile of this dish is sweet,…

Picadillo – Ground Beef and Potato Soup

Picadillo is a dish with its roots in Spain and localized to Filipino tastes and availability of ingredients. Filipino picadillo is also known as giniling and consists of ground beef, tomatoes, potatoes, and aromatics. The variation made in the Philippines is more soupy and can be served over rice. Notice a theme here with Filipino food?…

Tinolang Manok – Chicken Tinola

Chicken Tinolang is known as Tinola in the Philippines and is traditionally made with green papaya and pepper leaves. The variation that I grew up with had to make do with local ingredients, so the version made by both my nanay and lola took advantage of this change. In lieu of the pepper leaves, fresh baby…