Category Archives: Filipino Recipes

Kulawong Talong1

Kulawong Talong: grilled eggplant with burnt coconut cream

Let me share this unique recipe from Filipino food advocate, author and restaurateur Amy Besa at The Maya Kitchen cooking demo. Amy Besa relates the origins of Kulawong Talong.

Amy Besa of Purple Yam

“My first introduction to the concept of a kulawo was in 2003, when I visited Ugu Bigyan’s home and pottery studio in Tiaong, Quezon. Visitors could call ahead and arrange to have lunch in one of his beautiful gazebos, where they would savor his signature dish, the banana-heart kulawo.

In Laguna, a neighboring province north of Quezon, it is the kulawong talong that stirs many nostalgic food memories among the locals. Both versions are tart because vinegar, instead of water, is used to extract the milk from freshly grated coconut singed with a hot coal. Interestingly, if one travels further south, the Bicolanos’ burnt coconut cream is not vinegary at all, since water is used as the prime medium of extraction.

The use of burnt coconut cream has been one of my most treasured discoveries in Philippine cooking, and I have never stopped wondering why I never encountered this while growing up in Manila, which is just a two-hour drive from Laguna and Quezon.

We would like to thank Nicholetta Labellachitarra, a Filipino chef working in Boston, who shared her memory of this dish —grilled eggplant with burnt coconut cream—with Romy, inspiring him to create a version of his own.”

Kulawong Talong1

Try cooking Kulawong Talong:

Burnt Coconut Cream:

Makes 2 to 3 cups

Two 16-ounce packages frozen grated coconut
1 cup coconut sap or rice vinegar
2 cups canned coconut milk
5 cloves garlic, peeled
One 1-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled and sliced
2 shallots, peeled and sliced
2–3 bird’s-eye chiles (optional)

Grilled Chinese Eggplant:
8 Chinese eggplants
Sea salt, to taste

1. Preheat the oven to 400° F. Defrost the coconut and mix with the coconut sap or rice vinegar, kneading to extract as much cream from the coconut as possible. Wrap the coconut-vinegar mixture in cheesecloth and squeeze the coconut milk into a bowl until all the milk has been extracted (this should yield approximately 21/2 cups of liquid). Set the extracted coconut milk aside.

2. Spread the squeezed, grated coconut evenly on a baking sheet and bake, stirring every 15 minutes, until it is dark brown, about 50 minutes. Turn on the broiler, and place the baking sheet under it for another 5 to 10 minutes to slightly char the coconut—but be careful not to burn it too much.

3. In a saucepan, combine the extracted coconut milk, half of the pan of burnt coconut, the canned coconut milk, garlic, ginger, shallots, and chiles, if using. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and allow the mixture to simmer for 10 minutes. Strain through a very fine-mesh sieve, using the back of a big spoon to squeeze out as much liquid as you can. Return the liquid to the saucepan and keep warm while grilling the eggplant.

4. Place the eggplants on a stovetop grill or under a broiler and cook until the skin is charred and the interior is soft. When just cool enough to handle, peel the eggplants and use a fork to spread and flatten the flesh a little. Season to taste with sea salt.

5. Arrange the eggplants on a dish and pour the warm burnt coconut cream over them.

S e r v e s 8

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Menudo Sulipena1

Menudo Sulipeña (Oxtail Stew)

Menudo Sulipena1

Ever heard of Menudo Sulipeña , a slow simmered dish of oxtail, ham and Chorizo Bilbao with a dash of brandy . Cooking menudo at home is just plain pork, potatos, carrots with a sprinkling of raisins. Yes, Menudo or “little stew” refers to a common, everyday dish of slow-simmered bits of a variety of meats. Some use 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.

Purchase the oxtail from a reputable dealer because strong, undesirable odors are often present in improperly cleaned or processed oxtails.

Chef Gene Gonzalez’ shares one of the culinary Gems from Old Pampanga at a recent demo at the Maya Kitchen.

~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. Add oxtail, ham, chorizo, tomato sauce and tomato paste. Add stock and simmer over low fire about 10 minutes. Add garbanzos and brandy. Season with salt and pepper.

Serves 6

For more information, log on to www.themayakitchen.com or e-mail [email protected]

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Adobo del Diablo or capampangan adobo

Capampangan Adobo or Adobo del Diablo

Chef Gene Gonzalez prepared Adobo del Diablo (Capampangan Adobo) at The Maya Kitchen Culinary Elite Series .

Adobo del Diablo or capampangan adobo

The Capampangan Adobo is produced by constant simmering and deglazing of the pan with stock when a crust is formed. This tasty caramelized stock is brought back to the meats to give the deep reddish brown hue.

Other areas would simply darken their adobo with soy sauce which is a crime in the Capampangan household. Uh-oh, this is what I often do. This tip from Chef Gonzales is such a revelation that I will soon shift to using caramelized stock. Imagine if I lived in Pampanga. In fact, the Sulipan barrio will talk and gossip about the bad homemaker that puts soy sauce in her adobo and pity the hardworking provider of the house.

Here is the recipe

~ 1 ½ cups pork, cut into 1” cubes
~ 1 ½ cups chicken, cut in 3” pieces
~ ½ cup chicken heart
~ ½ cup beef liver, cut into ¼” cubes
~ ½ cup pork kidney, cut into 1” cubes
~ ½ chicken giblets, cleaned
~ ¼ cup chicken blood, cut into 1” cubes
~ ½ cup vinegar
~ 2 tablespoons corn oil
~ 1/2 tablespoon cracked pepper
~ 2 tablespoons garlic
~ ¾ tablespoons salt
~ 6 tablespoons fish sauce
~ 3 tablespoons pork lard
~ 2 cups chicken stock

1) Sauté garlic in corn oil until slightly brown. Add pork cubes, chicken, chicken heart, beef liver, pork kidney, beef liver, chicken giblets and chicken blood.

2) Add vinegar, pepper then fish sauce.

3) Take-out chicken giblets and heart, beef liver and chicken blood. Continue braising. When brown crust forms and meat turn brown douse with a little stock and deglaze. Return brown colored liquid to the meat and continue until crust forms again. Repeat deglazing with stock about 3 our times.

4) Add all variety meats when chicken and pork are tender and sauce turns brown. When stock is added.

5) Simmer for 15 minutes or until dry then separate meats.

6) Deglaze pan with stock. Serve the sauce on the side and meats separately.

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Menudo Sulipena thumb

Menudo Sulipeña (Oxtail Stew)

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 Sulipena thumb

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.

Serves 6

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