Beef Tinaktak

Have you tried a cuisine that is a fusion of Spanish, Mexican, American, Japanese, and Filipino culture? If not, this dish is a good start. Beef Tinaktak is a Chamorro dish prepared with finely chopped beef, tomatoes, and green beans cooked in coconut milk.

The first time I heard of this dish I thought it was Filipino becuase it sounds like one. After researching about the dish, I was surprised, it was not Filipino but a Chamorro dish. Now where in the world I find this cuisine? In Guam. Now that makes more sense becuase from what I heard there are substantial number of Filipinos in Guam, around a quarter of the population has a Filipino root and it is one of the influences in the making of their cuisine.

Tak-tak-tak for the Chamorros is the sound of knife hitting the board as it’s chopping meat, in Philippines it has the same meaning. This preparation of meat is what it gave Tinaktak its name. The ingredients used on this dish are the usual ingredients seen in the Filipino cuisine, like coconut, ginger, green beans, chillies, onion, and garlic. Basically they are nearly similar to the Filipino ginataan dishes but what makes this uniquely Chamorro is that beef is not a popular meat when it comes to cooking with coconut in the Philippines, we also rarely use tomatoes on dishes cooked with coconut milk, and this two distinct items give this dish a very unique flavour, meaty, tangy, creamy with a bit of kick. Traditionally, it is prepared by roughly chopping meat into small pieces, but newer varieties use ground meat instead.

A common household dish in Guam, certainly one of their comfort dishes. Just imagine dousing that rice with that heavenly creamy sauce, it definitely one of the best tastes the island can offer.

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Beef Tinaktak

  • Author: Raymund
  • Prep Time: 20 mins
  • Cook Time: 20 mins
  • Total Time: 40 mins
  • Yield: 6 1x
  • Category: Main Course
  • Cuisine: Chammoro

Description

Beef Tinaktak is a Chamorro dish prepared with finely chopped beef, tomatoes, and green beans cooked in coconut milk.


Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 800 g rib eye, rump steam or sirloin
  • 300 g green beans, trimmed and sliced into sections
  • 250 g cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • 400 ml coconut milk
  • fresh coriander
  • juice from half lemon
  • 2 pcs red chillies, finely chopped
  • 1 white onion, finely chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 thumb sized ginger, minced
  • fish sauce
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • coconut oil

Instructions

  1. Using a chopping board roughly chop (tinaktak) the beef into small pieces, similar to ground beef but not as fine. Best to have a variety of sizes for texture. Set aside.
  2. In a wok heat coconut oil on high heat and once it starts to smoke add the beef then leave it to brown on one side. Turn to the other side then let it brown.
  3. Once both sides are browned add the onion, garlic, ginger, and chillies. Stir fry then break the meat into smaller pieces as you cook them. Stir fry in high heat for 3-4 minutes.
  4. Pour the coconut milk and cherry tomatoes, set aside a few for garnishing. Bring to a boil then reduce the heat to medium-low, simmer for 5 minutes and let the sauce thicken.
  5. Add the green beans, mix then simmer for 3 more minutes.
  6. Season with fish sauce and freshly ground black pepper, add lemon juice then turn the heat off.
  7. Serve in bowls garnished with reserved cherry tomatoes and coriander then serve with freshly steamed jasmine rice.

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6 Responses

  1. Eha Carr says:

    ‘Guam’ and ‘tinaktak’ ! Different from anything I have made before . . . thus definitely interesting !!! At the same time there is not one ingredient I don’t already have at home . . . and the dish creates appetite from afar !!! Logic – recipe straight > kitchen file = shall come back and tell what ensued . . . thanks !

  2. An interesting way to prepare beef…not really my way to enjoy a ribeye though.

  3. I’ve never heard the name Tinaktak, but the dish looks and sounds absolutely appetizing and comforting; such a simple yet great flavour profile!

  4. Wow – I love the flavors in this. I just sent it to my nephew-in-law, who is Guamanian. We do an occasional zoom dinner together as they live far away – this would be perfect for us!

  5. What a fun way to mix up beef in a meal! I’m all about fusion food, and this one sounds like it’s got a bit of everything going on. Yum!

  6. Hannah says:

    Now that is one incredible melting pot of cuisines! I really want to try making a vegan version now too.

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