Kare Kareng Pata
Kare kare is one of those special dishes served in the Philippines usually prepared with ox tail, ox tripe, ox skin and or pork leg, these cuts are then slowly simmered in long hours in a sauce infused made out of meat stock flavoured and thickened by peanut butter, ground toasted rice and annatto seeds resulting in a very tender meat with a nutty flavour. This dish is then served with vegetables like bok choy, eggplant and long beans where it is blanched then served together as one dish. Comparing to most Filipino dish the flavour of Kare Kare tend to be bland hence it is served with a very salty fermented shrimp paste called bagoong.
I had posted the oxtail version of the recipe before so now we are making the pork leg version, honestly I don’t have a preference over the other as they both tasted amazing. For me not sure if non-Asians would like it because the texture is similar to the tender soft slimy Chinese dishes having said that you don’t know until you tried right? In fact my aunt usually cooks this dish when my step dad (who is not a European) visits her place and based on our conversations this is his favourite Filipino dish of course sans the bagoong.
- 1½ - 2 kg pork leg, cut into 1.5 inch thick pieces
- 1 cup unsalted peanut butter
- ¼ cup ground toasted rice
- 1 large red onions, diced
- 1 whole garlic, minced
- ¼ cup annatto seeds soaked in ½ cup boiling water
- 3 tbsp brown sugar or any natural sweetener of choice
- 4 cups beef stock
- freshly ground black pepper
- bagoong (fermented shrimp paste)
- 3 pieces eggplant, sliced
- 1 bundle string beans, sliced
- 1 bunch Baby Bok Choy
- In a pot add oil and sauté onion and garlic, once onions turn translucent remove then set it aside.
- Now using the same pot add pork leg then brown all sides.
- Add the sauteed garlic and onions back, pour the beef stock and a cup of water into the pot then bring to a boil, cover and simmer for 1.5 hours or until meat is tender (Add water if needed).
- Turn of the heat then remove the pork leg from the pot and leaving all the liquid, set pork leg aside.
- Add sugar, ground toasted rice, peanut butter and water from soaked annatto seeds into the pot then mix thoroughly until it’s even in consistency. Turn on the heat to medium then let it boil
- Once sauce is boiling, turn heat to low then add the pork leg and simmer for 15 minutes. Season with a dash of salt and freshly ground pepper.
- Now cook the vegetables separately by blanching string beans, eggplants and bok choy.
- Pour stew on a deep bowl and add cooked vegetables on the side. Serve with bagoong.