Friday, July 1, 2011

I bet, it’s Pinakbet !

Pakbet (Pinakbet in Ilocos) is on the top ten of my all time favourite and easy recipes. It is colourful, wholesome and best of all- nutritious! This recipe has a delicious and real Filipino flavour. Here’s my Southern Tagalog version of this popular Ilocano dish…

Pakbet Tagalog 
2 tbsp.        Vegetable oil
3 cloves       Garlic, minced
1 pc             Onion(medium), chopped
2 pcs           Tomatoes, quartered
2 c               Squash, cubed
2 c               Okra, sliced
2 c               Sitaw (string beans), 1-1/2 inch long cut
2 c               Eggplant, sliced
1/2 c           Ampalaya (bitter gourd and/or bitter melon), sliced
1 c               Coconut cream
4 tbsp.        Bagoong alamang ( shrimp paste)
Chicharon (fried pork skin)–Optional
In a wok or a large pan, heat oil over medium heat.  Stir in garlic, onions and tomatoes. Sauté for a few minutes until tomatoes wilted.
Add bagoong alamang and coconut cream. Bring to a boil then lower the heat.
Add squash and cook until tender. Add the rest of the vegetables and gently stir. You may wish to correct the taste by adding more bagoong alamang.
Remove from heat and transfer to a serving dish and top with Chicharon.

Food Notes:
  1. Pinakbet is originally from Ilocos (northern region of Philippines)
  2. The Ilocano word Pinakbet means shrivelled.
  3. Traditionally, pinakbet is cooked until vegetables are wilted..
  4. … but i like my vegetables crunchy! (cook vegetables the way you want ‘em!)
  5. If you don’t want chicharon—You can pretty much add any kind of meat, seafood or even cubes of fried tokwa (tofu) into this recipe and it will surely come out a winner!
  6. Don’t forget the rice !!!
Posted SEPTEMBER 2010

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