Exploring Filipino Cuisine

Learning different foods is always fun. I usually stick to ’safe’ recipes, but this time I decided to venture into the unknown with some very happy results. The biggest venture was cooking with pork belly, which I am not a fan of but my husband is. He was definitely happy with the results.

I hadn’t planned to learn Filipino cuisine, but I had just joined the Saveur’s Cookbook Club, and the book of the month was I am a Filipino. I had initially debated about not buying it as it didn’t look like something I would eat. I am glad I did as I expanded my meal repertoire and learned some new techniques.

The tricky part was learning the new ingredients and trying to locate them. Amazon had a few, but the fresh or frozen I lucked out when I went to my local Asian store, The Fortune Cookie, and after asking, I was able to locate all the ingredients I needed except for pork belly. Our local grocery doesn’t carry pork belly, but I finally discovered it at Whole Foods and later found out Costco now sells it as well.

The classic adobo and the yellow adobo with chicken are now on our menu rotation. The tinola (ginger-chicken soup with pepper leaves) is excellent for fall or when feeling under the weather. The atsara (pickled vegetables) was tedious to make, but oh so delicious and very pretty! I didn’t make the salted eggs, but I bought some just to try, and well, I won’t be making them. The lechon kawali (pork belly) was fun to make, but I was a bit nervous, leaving it for three days to cure.

I have plenty more recipes to try and can’t wait to find some time to try out another recipe.

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