• 1 ½ lbs (750 g) pork butt or shoulder, cut into 1 ½-inch (4 cm) cubes
• 1 tsp (5 ml) minced ginger root
• 1 tbsp (15 ml) minced garlic
• 3 bay leaves
• 6 cloves or ¼ tsp (1 ml) ground cloves
• 2 2-inch (5 cm) pieces Asian cinnamon stick or cinnamon stick
• 1 tsp (5 ml) ground turmeric
• 1/8 tsp (0.5 ml) black pepper
• ¼ cup (50 ml) rice vinegar
• 3 tbsp (45 ml) fish sauce or 6 finely chopped anchovies mixed in 2 tbsp (25 ml) water
• ½ cup (125 ml) small whole shallots or pearl onions (optional)
• 1 to 1 ½ cups (250 to 375 ml) peeled, cored and cubed chayote squash or green papaya or another green-fleshed squash
• 1 cup (250 ml) green peas, fresh or frozen
• 1 ¾ tsp (9 ml) cornstarch dissolved in 2 tsp (10 ml) water
• 1 tbsp (15 ml) finely chopped Chinese celery or regular celery
• 1 tsp (5 ml) finely chopped mint or parsley (optional)
1. In a saucepan combine pork, vinegar, fish sauce, garlic, ginger, turmeric, pepper, cloves, bay leaves, cinnamon and shallots, if using; mix well. Let stand 10 to 15 minutes.
2. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to simmer; cover and cook 45 minutes or until meat is tender. Stir in squash and fresh peas, if using; cook, covered, 10 minutes or until squash is tender. Stir in frozen peas, if using; cook 1 minute longer. Bring to a boil and stir in cornstarch mixture; reduce heat to simmer and cook 1 minute. Stir in celery; cook 20 seconds. Serve garnished with mint or parsley, if desired.
For a slightly different flavor, first brown shallots or pearl onions in 1 ½ tsp (7 mL) oil; remove from pan and lightly brown pork pieces, then add garlic and dry spices; cook 30 seconds, add other ingredients and return shallots or onions to the pan and proceed as above.
Fresh turmeric root is often available at Southeast Asian or Indian grocers. It has a very raw taste and is best dry-roasted before using. To use here, first toast 1 ¼ tsp (6 mL) very thin slices of turmeric in a dry pan over medium heat until color darkens and the slices become fairly dry; it should be extremely fragrant by then. Either first pound into a powder or add slices directly to the stew.
Inexpensive pork butt or shoulder is the best cut for the stew, but leaner leg meat (fresh ham) can be used.
Use a mild, light-colored vinegar; if you are able to purchase native Filipino palm or nippa sap vinegar, use it here.
Serve with rice.
We Pinoy have a natural likeness on eating rice. That is why this Pinoy food recipe should be partnered with it. If you want to have more updates on Pinoy Food 201 blog, you may subscribe here: Subscribe. You may also want to try these amazing Pinoy Food recipes:
- Pork Afritada - Pinoy Food Recipe
- Pork Morcon - Pinoy Food Recipe
- Pork Binagoongan - Pinoy Food Recipe
Photo by: Cooks TR