Recipe Time: Kare Kare (Oxtail and Peanut Stew)
Over the past couple of months, I’ve received a few requests to post more Filipino recipes up on my blog and in the light of seeing Poh featuring Filipino food on her show recently – I’ve dug into my drafts folder and am starting to finish these off as my number one priority!
First off the rank is Kare Kare – a household favourite in the Philippines and is a popular at dish and fiestas not too mention house parties. Each province has a different take on the dish. You can cheat by using a premix, like what you can do with a green curry, but I prefer to use my mum’s recipe which dates back many generations from my hometown of Pampanga.
Although this may not apply to myself (!), I am very proud of that fact that my hometown Pampanga is actually well known in Philippines for our culinary skills. If you’ve ever tasted any of my mum’s dishes, you’ll understand why. In addition to specialising in pinoy cuisine, her Lasagna is incredibly popular requiring her to make three batches to ensure my brother and I would have some to take away. Friends of mine even keep their diaries free during the Christmas season to ensure they havea spot at the table. Funnily enough, it’s like a waiting list. If a spot comes up, I’d give them a call!
For those who love satay you will also love Kare Kare. What’s so amazing about this dish is that it’s simple and straightforward. My favourite part is sipping the bones. Oxtail is not mandatory. Other options widely used are beef sirloin cuts, pork or my other favourite but leaning towards the expensive side are lamb shanks baby!
8 oxtail pieces
2 table spoons of of peanut butter (smooth)
Two handfuls of snake beans
12 teaspoons of rice flour
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 onion, diced
1. Firstly, pan fry the cut up Oxtail pieces with crushed garlic and diced onion until you see no visable blood. Ensure that all sides are seared to a golden brown tinge.
2. Then top it off with enough water to cover the meat and boil on high heat until tender. This part will take up most of the cooking time. Oxtail tastes amazing when the meat falls off the bone and is worth the wait. If you don’t have the time to wait around, you can leave it simmering for 1 -2 hours whilst you do other important things, like making dessert perhaps!
3. Stir in 2 tablespoon of smooth peanut butter, the eggplant, 1 teaspoon of sugar (I like it a little sweet) chuck in a few teaspoons of Annatto Seed powder which gives it a depth of yellow/orange colour along with 12 tea spoons of rice flour to help thicken. You will want a sauce that is not too runny like a soup or overly thick like a paste.
4. Add the snake beans towards the end, preferably just before serving in order to retain its crunch. I tend to always add my vegetables at the end. You may also want to add kang kong which is also a popular option but I though I’d stick with one vegetable so I can slurp up the soup with no interruptions.
You’ve Been Served!
Serve with with a side of bagoong (below) as a condiment and steamed rice. Fortunately, I have some homemade bagoong (fermented shrimp and pork fat paste)
I love dipping green mangoes in this stuff! So addictive!
What do you use Shrimp Paste with? Have you ever tried unripined mangoes with shrimp paste?
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