• binagoongan full tight image
    Heirloom Recipe,  Ulam | Main Dishes

    Binagoongan | Stewed Pork in Shrimp Paste Recipe

    My husband’s grandparents called this dish “adobong may bagoong,” a description quite apt because that’s what it is—pork adobo cooked in bagoong. Others boil the pork first, then add the bagoong. Other versions of this dish use less bagoong; his mother used more. No matter how it is cooked, one thing is certain: binagoongan is best eaten a day or two after cooking, and always with lots of newly cooked rice to mop up the sauce. When we were building Havenhill in Oct 1987-Apr 1988, my husband and I, with our toddler in tow, spent weekends at the construction site. Lunch was always picnic-style, on a folding picnic table laid…

  • asado de carajay image
    Heirloom Recipe,  Ulam | Main Dishes

    Asado | Beef Stew Recipe

    Old reliables in our everyday cuisine, the so-called do-do-do dishes, include asado, estofado, mechado, menudo (and adobo, if you want to stretch it that far). The predilection for sarciado — dishes with sauce or sarsa — is a common thread that binds my husband’s clan. Asado was the specialty of his grandmother. It has been a family favorite for five generations — from his grandparents all the way down to his grandchildren themselves. For almost 40 years until the US bases In Clark Field and Subic Bay shut down in 1991, USAFFE veterans and their widows enjoyed shopping privileges at the base commissary. Despite currency devaluation, their monthly shopping privilege…

  • Caldereta up close image
    Heirloom Recipe,  Pagkaing Pang-Handaan | Festive Dishes,  Ulam | Main Dishes

    Caldereta | Spicy Beef Stew Recipe

    The word caldereta comes for the Spanish caldero meaning cooking pot. It is a tomato-based stew of pork, chicken, or goat meat. For really festive occasions, caldereta ought to be a whole goat—a throwback to my Ilocano heritage (Ilocanos are the No.1 goat-meat eaters in the Philippines). When my daughter was baptized in November 1971, my father bought a goat, dressed it himself, and cooked it. When we broke ground during the construction of Havenhill, my husband bought a goat for the “pa-dugô,” a folk practice, sort of like an offering to the spirits to forestall on-site accidents — it was indeed fortuitous, we had 0 accident during construction. Caldereta…