My Filipino-Style Korean Beef Stew

My Filipino-Style Korean Beef Stew

Growing up, my mom’s only slow cooker recipe was Korean beef stew. It was sweet and there are cute sesame seeds floating on top. Falling off the bones tender, it was always a hit among my siblings and I.

Then in 2006, I went to Korea to become a flight attendant, knowing only one dish I could probably survive with. In a few weeks of training, I tried to learn the language to the best of my ability (well, I know how to read the characters) because it’s quite difficult to go out and just make assumptions about the food. I tracked down the beef stew which translated to 갈비찜 (gal-bi-jjim), but it was nowhere near what my mom cooked.

After a year with the airline–my tolerance for spicy food has become significantly higher–my parents were then eligible for free tickets. They decided to go to the US, but along the way–as any [Filipino] parent would–they planned to stop by Seoul for a few days and see what my overseas life was like.

Spicy food being unpopular in our household, I warned my parents that almost everything was spicy (except if they end up at an Italian restaurant or a bakery). My mom said, “Well, just tell me where to get Korean beef stew and I’ll be fine.”  Continue reading “My Filipino-Style Korean Beef Stew”

Ginisang Baguio Beans with Pork Giniling

Ginisang Baguio Beans with Pork Giniling

For non-Filipino readers: “Ginisa” is sauteed, “Baguio beans” refers to green beans, and “giniling” is anything that’s been ground. So this Filipino dish translates to Sauteed Green Beans with Ground Pork.

I have this budding newfound love with tomatoes. You see, I’m not fond of mushy things. I only like tomatoes when they’re not too ripe, otherwise it just becomes this gooey mess with very little crunch. However, when it comes to sautéed meats and vegetables, this is a must-have for me.

When I was younger, the only sautéed ingredient I could identify was actually just garlic. Regardless of whether I added onions and tomatoes, I thought only garlic made a difference.

Decades later, I’m discovering that I was probably just too impatient to let onions and tomatoes do their thing. I’m now more inclined on faux-roasted tomatoes, almost charring in the pan. Continue reading “Ginisang Baguio Beans with Pork Giniling”

Lumpiang Isda (Fried Fish Rolls)

Lumpiang Isda (Fried Fish Rolls)

Lumpia came from the Chinese, which are spring rolls that usually contain meat, vegetables and sometimes noodles. In the Philippines, we have different types of fried (and fresh) lumpia. The most common is Lumpiang Shanghai, filled usually with minced pork. Isda is the Tagalog word for fish, therefore “Lumpiang Isda” translates to Fish Rolls.

My mom used to make these fish rolls using galunggong–in English it seems to be some sort of scad–and I really never knew how tedious this was. While it is cost effective (a.k.a. cheap), making it from scratch will easily take a couple of hours of your time! And it will be gone in fifteen minutes! Continue reading “Lumpiang Isda (Fried Fish Rolls)”

Filipino “Salmon” with Sotanghon

Filipino “Salmon” with Sotanghon

When I was younger, I really didn’t like this dish. My mom made these with misua (some thin salted wheat noodles) which always ended up too starchy for me. I also never got why it was called ‘salmon’ (pronounced SAL-mon, instead of samən) when it’s Not. Even. Salmon. It’s mackerel.

The most popular brand was Hokkaido–some argue that this is Hekkaido, with an e. My husband and I think that the brand Hokkaido used to all just be the Pink Salmon variety, hence homecooks called it “salmon,” but maybe some time later the mackerel was introduced. It was most likely much cheaper than pink salmon and made its way to Filipino homes, but got stuck with the name! Well, that’s our theory.  Continue reading “Filipino “Salmon” with Sotanghon”

5-Ingredient Easy Tartar Sauce

5-Ingredient Easy Tartar Sauce

There was this very frustrating time before my broken stove was fixed that I have missed fried chicken and chicken tenders that I attempted to bake it. It turned out horribly, and being the baking noob, I didn’t know what went wrong, when I followed the recipe meticulously. (You could see some uncooked white flour on the bottom part of the chicken strip. Eep! And it was horribly overcooked inside.)

The only upside of that experience was that while baking, I thought of making tartar sauce blindly–not referring to any recipe online. (The recipe did not suggest any dip.) I didn’t plan on it, nor know how to make tartar sauce, so I had to rely on memory and depend on what’s in the fridge.  Continue reading “5-Ingredient Easy Tartar Sauce”

Spicy Hoisin Bokchoy

Spicy Hoisin Bokchoy

I most always try to make a huge serving of stir-fried vegetables (using my super easy stir-fry recipe) as side dish when I’m roasting chicken or having fried fish for lunch. But ever since my induction cooker brokedown, I was left with baking and steaming veggies.

There’s this one day I was baking chicken quarters, lazily rubbed with prepared spices, and thought I’d better prepare some veggies. I looked around and saw I had hoisin sauce, and the half-full jar of our favorite Chili Garlic Crunch from Chef Alex. Continue reading “Spicy Hoisin Bokchoy”