I love that Maya Kitchen invites talented Chefs to generously share their recipes of their beloved dishes. It was Chef Gene Gonzalez’ turn at The Maya Kitchen Culinary Elite Series when he presented recipes near and dear to him. He shared this delicious dish, Menudo Sulipeña, a slow simmered dish of oxtail, ham and Chorizo Bilbao with a dash of brandy. Just reading the list of ingredients will make you realize that this dish is truly remarkable.
Menudo or “little stew” refers to a common, everyday dish of slow-simmered bits of a variety of meats, such as tripe (in Mexican menudo), or ground or cubed pork mixed with potatoes. In Pampanga, common menudo is never complete without tidbits of liver or heart. Menudo Sulipeña however, is an oxtail stew or braise decadent enough to grace a banquet. The dish reflects the extravagance of that time though it carries the “humble” name, menudo.
One advice. Purchase the oxtail from a reputable dealer because strong, undesirable odors are often present in improperly cleaned or processed oxtails.
~1 kilo oxtail cleaned and washed
~ 2 tablespoons butter
~ 3 tablespoons olive oil
~ 1 head garlic, chopped
~ 1 medium onion, chopped
~ 1 red pepper, seeded and roasted
~ 1 green pepper, seeded and roasted
~ Dash of paprika picante
~ ½ cup ham, cubed
~ ½ cup sliced chorizo Bilbao (Spanish sausage)
~ 1 cup tomato sauce
~ 1 tablespoon tomato paste
~ 1 tablespoon cooked garbanzos (chick peas)
~ 1 tablespoon Spanish brandy
~ Salt and pepper
1) Pressure cook oxtail 20-25 minutes or simmer with enough water to cover until tender. Debone and cut into ½- inch cubes. Set the stock aside.
2) In a casserole, heat butter and olive oil. Sauté garlic and onion, then add red and green peppers and paprika. Stir fry 2-3 minutes.
3) Add oxtail, ham, chorizo, tomato sauce and tomato paste. Add stock and simmer over low fire about 10 minutes.
4) Add garbanzos and brandy. Season with salt and pepper.
My kids love to snack on French fries, whether it be from their favorite fast food chain or lovingly prepared at home. The latter takes time to prepare as I cut potatoes into slices. Well, did you know that the best quality frozen potatoes are from the United States Potato Board (USPB)? They come in straight-cut, wedges, natural crisp (chips), slices, twister fries, hash brown and basket weaves and crinkles. How convenient for busy moms . I am convincing family member that French fries don’t need to be eaten alone or during snacks. There are hundreds of innovative and healthy ways and reasons to make potatoes part of your dinner aside from rice and pasta.
USPB Partner Restaurants
I thought of getting recipe inspiration from USPB Partner Restaurants like Sunrise Buckets and Peri-Peri Charcoal Chicken both located in Greenhills. First stop was Sunrise Buckets located at Madison Square, Ortigas Ave. North Greenhills, San Juan.
Sunrise Buckets is a cozy restaurant giving you that feeling you are by the beach. They offer a wide array of dishes but I wanted to see how they incorporated French Fries into their menu. Though they offered French fries dipped with flavors, two preparations caught my attention:
1. Cheezy Bacon Jalapeño Poutine Fries- Thick cut fries coated with Jalapeño cheese, Jalapeño slices, showered with bacon bits, dripping brown gravy, and topped with homemade Cheese curds.
2. Cheezy Beef Poutine Fries – Poutine fries loaded with ground beef, melted cheese, homemade cheese curds and brown gravy.
I chose the latter because it reminded me of my comfort food– Mexican taco mix without the Jalapeño. I loved the cheesy flavors mixed with the fries, just like how melted cheese pairs with nacho chips. This is an innovative idea. Instead of nacho chips, use french fries. Too much of the brown gravy though , caused the French Fries to get soggy. They could have minimized the brown gravy or offered it separately. It tasted so good. Would you believe I finished the whole dish by myself?
My next stop was the Peri-Peri Charcoal Chicken located at the 2/F Cinema Level Promenade, Greenhills San Juan Metro Manila. They offered a similar dish that I ordered at Sunrise Buckets. The Patatas Bravas are crisp fries served with homemade sauce and melted cheese. This recipe must have been inspired from the Italian’s Bolognese pasta.
Bolognese sauce was poured over a bed of French Fries and basket weave potatoes. Instead of pasta, potatoes served as a substitute. I would have loved the Cilantro which was missing with my order. What I like about their potato dish creation is that the fries did not end up soggy . The flavors were a bit disappointing, as the Bolognese sauce tasted bland . It would have tasted better if they added ground beef with a dash of thyme and oregano.
Recreation of the Potato Dish
The visit to these two restaurants inspired me to recreate the best of their Potato creations. Let me call my version, the Cheezy Beef Patatas. I will combine the flavors of Sunrise Buckets’ Cheezy Beef Poutine Fries and the presentation of the chips and fries from Peri Peri’s Patatas Bravas. I want to avoid the sogginess of the French Fries by mixing part of the brown gravy into the ground beef. The brown gravy will be served separately and added as needed. This will prevent the sogginess. French fries or chips should still be firm when mixed with any sauce.
I bought the frozen French Fries and basketweave at Shopwise. You can also find frozen potatoes at the SM Supermarkets and Pure Gold. Make sure you are buying frozen potatoes from USPB or with partner brands like LambWeston or those stamped as grown in the USA.
200 grams USPB Frozen French Fries
100 grams Basket Weave (or criss cut or waffle cut fries)
1/4 kilo ground beef
1 chopped onions
1 head garlic
Cottage cheese (for topping)
Cilantro (for topping)
For the melted Cheese sauce:
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons flour
1 cup milk (1/2 cup evaporated plus 1/2 cup water)
1 box cheddar cheese (165 grams)
1/4 teaspoons salt
For the brown gravy
¼ cup unsalted butter
¼ cup flour
1 teaspoon onion powder
2 cups water
2 beef cube bouillons
1. Melt the butter over medium-low heat in a saucepan.
2. Whisk in the flour one tablespoon at a time to avoid clumping.
3. Add the milk after the flour has settled. Mix until the sauce has an even consistency.
4. Add the cheese and salt. After the cheese has melted, turn the burner to low, and allow the sauce to simmer for 10 to 15 minutes.
Brown gravy preparation
This simple 5 ingredient recipe for brown gravy was taken from here but you can also buy those gravy mix at the grocery shelves if you want to simplify your cooking.
1. Combine water and bouillon in a glass measuring cup.
2. Heat the beef broth in microwave for 1 minute at a time, until it is steaming hot.
3. Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat, add flour and onion powder and whisk together.
4. Allow to cook for 1 minute, whisking occasionally .
5. Add beef broth to flour mixture and whisk.
6.bBring to boil, reduce to simmer for 1 minute.
B. After the cheese sauce and brown gravy have been cooked, just set it aside .
C. Saute the ground beef with onions and garlic till it is brown. Season with black pepper and salt.
D. Pour a little brown gravy onto the ground beef.
Make sure to leave brown gravy for additional dipping sauce.
E. Bake the French fries and Basket Weave cut fries till desired crispiness.
Make sure they are arranged well on a baking dish for even baking. (Since I have a convection oven, I prefer to bake the French Fries and Basketweave Fries. It is healthier that way. Baking time for the 200 grams potatoes reached 16 minutes. )
G. Arrange baked French Fries and Basket Weave cut fries on a serving dish.
Top with ground beef mixture, melted cheese sauce, cottage cheese , enough brown gravy and spice up the color with the Cilantro leaves.
It’s a dish in itself. You have the protein, carbohydrates and some veggies. Try it.
Other recipe ideas for Pinoy Cooking
Now you wonder, what else can you do with your frozen potatoes other than as a snack. Let me present two dish ideas that uses frozen potatoes.
1. Adobo with Potatoes
There are many ways to cook adobo and it varies with the region. When styling adobo, I usually have a problem making it look attractive. It’s just dull brown unless I arrange the adobo on an attractive platter. Adding garlic to the brown colored dish, gives it a bit of zest. I’ve seen an Adobo variation with the addition of Potato wedges. I think adding Basket Weave cut fries to the Adobo is not only attractive; it brings a well balanced flavor. The potatoes absorb excess salt , and vinegar making it as delicious as the adobo meat.
– Fry eight pieces of Basket Weave fries so it is not fragile when added to the adobo.
– Add fried basket Weave cut fries when the liquid has been reduced. Toss lightly with the Adobo sauce.
2. Pinoy Style Frittata
The Frittata is an Italian dish made with fried beaten eggs, resembling a Spanish omelet. This is the perfect dish to whip up when there are unexpected guests because it can be done in 30 minutes . What I love about Frittata is that it makes use of leftovers like ground beef , sausage or bacon. Adding potatoes will complete the meal that includes carbohydrates, protein and vegetables. The Frittata is a meal in itself with the diced potato (from Frozen French Fries ) as the Carbohydrates.
The recipe will be shared in the next post. Watch out for it
Enjoy experimenting with USPB frozen potatoes in your kitchen. You can buy frozen US Potatoes at the supermarkets of SM Malls, Rustans, Shopwise, Pioneer Center, Duty Free, Puregold Subic, Puregold Clark.
I first ate Korean Beef Stew at the old Kimchi Korean Fastfood in the mid-seventies. My love for Korean beef stew inspired me to make my own version similar to the Kimchi Korean beef Stew. Here is my version that is a hit with my guests.
Korean Beef Stew
1k beef ribs (half kilo is lean and half kilo are beef shanks or short ribs)
1/2 cup sugar
2 tbsp sesame oil
2 tbsp rice wine
3/4 cup soy sauce
1 head crushed garlic
1 onion head
1 Tbsp Ginger, crushed
1 cup green onions, sliced
2 pieces red sili finely chopped (use more if you want it spicy)
Combine the first 8 ingredients
Marinate beef overnight
1. Heat oil and sear marinated beef
2. pour marinade
3. add enough water just to submerge beef
4. simmer over low heat (2 hours) until tender or pressure cook for 35-45 minutes. (Tip: test at 35 minuts if beef is tender)
5. season to taste with sugar, salt, pepper and red sili
6. garnish with green onions, 1 tsp sesame oil, sesame seed.
It is quite tempting to cook kare-kare using the ready-made mix at the grocery , but I like cooking from scratch. My first kare-kare dish came from Nora Daza’s recipe book. That’s the only recipe I know. Fortunately, Alessandra Romulo Squillantini, granddaughter of the late statesman Carlos P. Romulo and her husband Enzo Squillantini graciously shared family recipes that date back several generations at a cooking demonstration at The Maya Kitchen . One of this is Tito Greg’s Kare-Kare (oxtail and tripe stew in a peanut-based sauce served with steamed vegetables and Romulo Café’s house bagoong). Here is the recipe.
1. Wash ox tail very well. Place in a pot with enough water to cover. Boil for 10 minutes and discard the water.
2. Refill the pot with water. Peel and cut the white onions into quarters. Add to the pot along with salt and peppercorns. Bring everything to a boil and immediately reduce heat to simmering temperature (82°C/180°F). Cover and cook for 90 minutes or until the ox tail is tender.
3. Cool in the cooking liquid, cover and refrigerate to bring the fat to the surface. Bring out the ox tail from the cooking liquid and reserve the broth.
4. Toast the glutinous rice in a skillet until golden brown. Once cooled, pulse the glutinous rice in a food processor. Do the same with the roasted peanuts until the peanuts become creamy. Slice the eggplants lengthwise, leaving the stems intact. Cut the string beans into 5-cm long pieces.
5. In another pot, heat the annatto oil over medium heat. Sauté the garlic together with the shrimp paste. Add the ox tail and sauté for a few minutes before adding 4 cups of reserved broth. Lower the flame and simmer until the broth has been reduced by half. Add the toasted ground rice and stir continuously until thick and creamy. Add the peanut paste and keep stirring. Turn off heat but keep the pot covered.
6. In a separate pot, boil the remaining water and add salt. Add the string beans and cook but should still be firm and green. Add the banana blossom and eggplant and boil until cooked.
Servings: Good for 3
Pinoy Cooking, Filipino Food and other Food Recipes