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Kriska Cooks: Kare-kare

I celebrated my 27th birthday last January 3 with my loved ones over a simple lunch and dinner at home, since my dad had to go to work and my baby brother had to go to school. I knew that Mark was coming over for lunch and so I asked him what he wanted to have. Without any hesitations, he immediately replied "Kare-kare!". Haha!

Kare-kare is a Philippine stew made from peanut sauce with a variety of vegetables and meat which usually comes from oxtail, beef, and sometimes ox offal or ox tripe. Meat variants may also include goat meat or chicken, but I grew up eating Kare-kare made from beef and pork tenderloins. It is best eaten with shrimp paste (bagoong) over a hot steamed rice.

I first tried to cook Kare-kare back in college (using the recipe that I learned from my dad) when I was the acting chef at home that time since my parents were in the US. And as a first timer, my Kare-kare was a hit!

I already knew that Mark would answer Kare-kare since it's his most favorite dish. It's also my mom's favorite so I decided to cook it for my birthday lunch. :) And on my second time to cook Kare-kare, my family, especially my Mom and Mark, loved it so I decided to share with you guys this simple yet delectable recipe. :D



1 kilo beef tenderloin, chopped into chunks
1/2 kilo pork loin, chopped into chunks

2 medium-sized onions, chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
string beans, cut into 2-inch lengths

2 large-sized eggplants, cut into 1-cm thick slices  
banana blossoms (puso ng saging), cut into 1-cm thick slices

Chinese pechay, cut in half

1/4 kilo ground peanuts

6 Tbsp fish sauce (patis)
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 kilo ground glutinous rice

cooking oil

Preparation and Cooking Procedures:

Wash the pork and beef using running water. In a pressure cooker with water (just enough to submerge the meat) and a dash of salt, cook the meat for 45 minutes.  Be sure to start your timer when the sound of the pressure cooker starts.

Prepare the other ingredients while the meat cooks. Wash the vegetables and cut according to the sizes in the Ingredients section above. Soak the eggplants and banana blossoms (puso ng saging) in water to prevent them from discoloration.

In a clean container, combine the ground peanuts and ground rice and add water. Mix them altogether until free from lumps.  Some opt to use peanut butter but it has the tendency to make the Kare-kare a bit sweet, some even use powdered Kare-kare mix, but I still prefer using fresh ground peanuts which can be bought in markets since it has that fresh peanut taste. :D

In another container, soak atsuete in around around 3-5 Tbsp water and set aside.

After 45 minutes, remove the pressure cooker from heat and drain the meat, making sure to keep the stock in a separate container.

Now we're ready to cook the Kare-kare! :) Using the pressure cooker that we used earlier, pour in cooking oil over medium heat. Sauté garlic until golden brown.

Add in the onions and cook until they become translucent.

Add in the meat then pour in the fish sauce and pepper shortly after. Do not stir and let the fish sauce simmer for couple of seconds until it evaporates. This way we can get rid of the fishy taste and smell and be left with the fish sauce's flavorful taste. :)

Stir everything until well incorporated and pour in the stock that we set aside earlier.

Add in the peanut and rice mixture and stir continuously to prevent lumps from forming.

Add in the atsuete mixture, while stirring continuously, until you achieve your desired orange color. :)

Bring to a boil and add in the vegetables starting with the banana blossoms and eggplants.

Bring to a boil and add in the string beans. Cook for another 3 minutes.

Add in the pechay last and keep stirring until the veggies are cooked.

Transfer Kare-kare in a clean bowl and serve with bagoong.

Pour over steamed rice and enjoy! :D

More recipes HERE :)

kriskamarie   sweetnothings.kriskamarie
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