Dinuguan

I decided to cook something a little different from the previous blog entries.  I wanted to introduce Filipino cuisine but was reluctant to do so thinking it might turn away readers.  However, in this global community, it’s difficult not to familiarize oneself with another culture.  So I want to share one of my favorite Filipino dishes that I grew up on.  Keep a really open mind and an empty stomach.  🙂

Growing up, I only knew this as “Chocolate Meat” due to its chocolaty color.  It tasted soooo good on steamed rice I couldn’t stop eating this.  As I grew older, adults would start to tell me that it’s made out of…get ready…pig’s blood.  Yes, that’s right, readers.  It’s pig’s blood stew.  But I promise you it’s really delicious.

Ingredients
1½ lbs. of Pork belly
10 oz. of Edible pork blood
2 Cups of Chicken stock
1 Cup of Vinegar, divided
3 Tbs. Fish Sauce
4 Cloves of garlic, peeled and smashed
1 Medium onion sliced thinly
1 Bay leaf
4 serrano peppers
salt, pepper, and oil

Really, the star ingredients are the pork’s blood and the vinegar.

Start by cutting the pork belly into small bite size cubes.  I decided to trim off the skin and fat on some while leaving them on others.  My recommendations: definitely remove the pork skin (becomes too tough), and remove most fat, but not all.  Need some fat for flavor.

Smash the 4 garlic cloves and slice thinly the onion.

In a pot, heat some oil under medium low heat (3 on my stove) and spread out the pork over the bottom of the pot.  Without stirring, brown the pork for 3 minutes.

After 3 minutes, start to move the pork around.  Remove any excess fat that has rendered out in the pot.

Add garlic and sauté for 1 minute.

Then add the onions, stir for 1 minute.

Add the fish sauce and the bay leaf and stir around for about 3 minutes.

Raise the temperature to medium (6 on my stove) and add ½ cup of vinegar and bring to a boil.  After it starts to boils, bring it back down to medium low (3 on my stove) and simmer for about 3 minutes.

Add the chicken broth and some salt to taste.  Simmer for 5 minutes.

While the stew is simmering, cut into the peppers lengthwise and without its top.

Add in the peppers and the pork’s blood.  Keep stirring until the blood is well distributed.  Cover the pot and simmer for 5 minutes.

Cooked blood will turn black.   At this point, add in the rest of the ½ cup of vinegar.  Cover and simmer again for 5 minutes.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

Serve hot over rice!

Original recipe: http://www.filipino-food-lovers.com/dinuguan

Notes:

  • This recipe is very vinegary and sour.  I’d adjust the vinegar down to ¾ cup, or even ½ cup.
  • Too much onion in this dish.  I’d go with half an onion.
  • Other than that, it tastes pretty good!

– Max

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