Pinakbet is a popular dish in the Philippines that consists of Pork (Either Lechon Kawali or Crispy Fried Pork Belly) and mixed vegetables such as Sitaw (String beans), Kalabasa (Squash), Okra, Ampalaya (Bitter Melon), and Talong (Eggplant).
A delicious dish that so easy to cook. This is actually one of my favorite dish that doesn’t require any occasion for me to cook it. I can easily cook it anytime. What about the dish that I love? It is the crunchiness of Sitaw, the tender sweetness of squash, the bitter like take of Ampalaya and of course the slimiest texture that comes from Okra. not to mention the addition of Bagoong (Shrimp Paste). The entire meal is so mouth watering you definitely want to order an extra rice for yourself.
There are two variations of Pinakbet: Pinakbet Tagalog and Pinakbet Ilocano. The ingredients and steps are basically the same, the only difference is the type of Bagoong or shrimp paste used. For Pinakbet Tagalog, it uses Bagoong Alamang (Shrimp Paste), made from shrimp-like crustaceans while on the other hand with Pinakbet Ilocano, it uses Bagoong Isda (fermented fish). The two most common fermented fish are Bagoong Terong and Bagoong Monamon.
In the recipe on how to cook Pinakbet that I will be sharing below, I will be using Pork belly instead of Lechon Kawali. Although at one time I used shrimp instead of pork, it was still a perfect dish. And we will be making Pinakbet, the Tagalog version. Not only Pinakbet is my favorite meal, but I also consider and recommend Pinakbet or Pakbet to be on your list of Top 10 delicious foods you must try in the Philippines.
RECIPE ON HOW TO COOK PINAKBET TAGALOG
Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 35 minutes
Total: 40 minutes
Serving size: 4 people
- 1 pound Lechon Kawali, Sliced
- 2 cloves ginger, minced
- 1 medium sized onion, peeled and minced
- 1 pc Knorr Shrimp cube
- 12 pcs Sitaw (String beans), cut into 2-inch length
- ½ from the whole Kalabasa (Squash), cubed
- 12 pcs Okra
- 1 pc medium size eggplant, sliced into pieces
- 1 pc Ampalaya (Bitter Melon), sliced
- 2 pcs tomato, cubed
- 2 tbsp Bagoong Alamang (Shrimp Paste)
- 2 ½ cups of water
- 3 tablespoons cooking oil
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- In a cooking pot, pour in cooking oil and bring to heat. When cooking oil is hot enough, saute garlic and onion. Stir occasionally until onion softens. Sometimes I add ginger too (optional).
- Add Lechon Kawali. Saute for about a minute.
- Add water, allow to boil.
- Add Knorr Shrimp Cube. You can choose whichever brand of shrimp cube you want or is available in your area. For this recipe, let us use knorr. Cover the cooking pot and cook on medium heat for about 20 minutes. This is to allow lechon kawali to become tender. (40 minutes if you will be using fresh pork instead of lechon kawali)
- Add tomato and Bagoong Alamang (Shrimp Paste). Stir to mix and cook for 3 minutes. Then add Kalabasa (squash). Since these vegetables usually takes long to be cook that’s why it is added first than the rest. Cook for another 7 minutes.
- Add Sitaw (String beans), Okra, Ampalaya (Bitter melon), and Talong (Eggplant). Stir to mix and cook for 5 minutes while the pot is covered.
- Seasoned by adding salt and pepper. Add remaining Lechon Kawali left that are crunchy. This can give pinakbet a nice texture.
- Add additional water (optional) to add more or if the sauce had dried up.
- Serve hot and enjoy!
Interested in other recipes? Feel free to comment below. Also, let me what you think about this recipe. I look forward to hearing from you