Friday, May 29, 2009
Each culture has their own way of doing the B-B-Q. Here's a Filipino way of doing it. Filipino barbecue are on skewers and generally use pork butt (fat and all). Kabob style. (I used chicken tenders. Another great way to use up that big bag from Costco.) It makes an easy eat and travel food. We also do ribs and what not, but if you want to make authentic Filipino barbecue it's got to be the skewer version with a slight sweet marinade/sauce.
If you've ever been to a Filipino gathering or party, there will always be the essential food found on the buffet table like lechon (suckling whole roast pig) or lechon kawali (deep-fried pork), pancit (noodle dish), lumpiang shanghai (egg rolls), steamed rice, sinigang and barbecue or adobo. There's also a couple optional items palabok, fried chicken, kare kare, leche flan and a few others. I'll be making some of those in the coming months except the whole roast pig. Don't have room for that. Two things Filipinos are known for are their hospitality and making sure everyone is well-fed, even when the budget is out of their means. You never leave empty handed either. Whether you like it or not, you'll be taking food home.
Here's a hint in pronouncing words in the Philippine language. In tagalog (ta-ga-log), all words are spoken in short vowels. Long vowels are nonexistent and it's a "say it like you see it" language. Take for instance, the word pinoy, it is pronounced pin-oy. Simple. Or kamusta = ka-moo-sta, meaning hello or how are you. Or salamat = sa-la-mat, meaning thank you. There's also spanish words and phrase used in the language as well as the Philippines was colonized by the Spaniards. Then you'll get people speaking taglish. Intermixing of tagalog and english. That's a whole other thing altogether. You'll never know when you'll be invited to a Filipino gathering, so it's good to know these things. Alright, enough of the language lesson. Where was I going with this? Oh, that's right...Pinoy Style BBQ.
Now I don't have an outdoor grill, I'd even be happy with a little hibachi, if I could. Blame it on the landlord. Grr! But then I realized that I had one of those George Foreman grills. Woohoo... Here I was complaining and feeling envious of those being able to grill steaks, fish and veggies when in fact I had a grill all along. LOL. Duh, Jenn! (*slaps forehead*) I only used the thing a few times when it was the "it" thing to have. Since then it's been sitting my my "clutter" closet. So I dusted it off, cleaned and disinfected it from any weird stuff that may have attached itself and prepared my barbecue.
I also grilled some skewered bell peppers and onions. I didn't have pineapple chunks, but they also go great with the bell peps. The Filipino version calls for calamansi juice and banana ketchup. I had seen the ketchup in some of the Asian aisles of supermarkets as well as Asian/Filipino markets. For those unable to find those two ingredients, you can use lemon or lime juice and regular tomato ketchup.
I had briefly written about the calamansi when I first started this blog back in march (Calamansi - Fruit of the Day). Info about this little fruit can be found here via Wikipedia: Calamansi info The banana ketchup is purely made from bananas. No tomato is found in it. It is banana mashed with sugar, vinegar and spices. The red comes a little red food coloring in the mixture. Here's a recipe from recipezaar, if you'd like to try making you own at home (here). I haven't tried it, so I can't tell you if it's the same thing or not. It is also used to make Filipino-style spaghetti. If using pork for the barbecue, add some 7-up to the marinade, completely optional. Yes, the soda. It will add flavor. (edited to add: 7-up also helps tenderize the meat)
This will serve 2-3 people. For larger quantities, adjust marinade/sauce accordingly. What makes this kind of barbecue stand out is definitely the marinade/sauce and the char from the grill. It's one that you'll never forget. Plus, the easy portability of it.
Pinoy Style BBQ
1 lb chicken tenders or 1 lb pork butt (cubes or stripes)
1 yellow bell pepper (cut into 1" squares)
1 red bell pepper (cut into 1" squares)
1 medium sweet onion (quartered and separated)
1 small can pineapple chunks
1 c soy sauce
1 tsp ground pepper
3 garlic cloves (minced)
2 Tbsp brown sugar
2 Tbsp Lemon, Lime or Calamansi juice
1/2 can 7-up (optional, if using pork)
1/2 c Tomato Ketchup or Banana Ketchup
Combine the soy sauce, garlic, lemon or calamansi juice, pepper, brown sugar and the optional sprite. Pour over you meat of choice and marinate for at least 30min to an hour. It's even better if you marinate overnight.
Soak the skewers in water for at least 5 min before skewering the meat. This will keep the wood from burning while cooking. Skew the meat leaving at least 2 inches at the bottom for handling.
Then skewer the bell peppers, onion and pineapple in alternating order, also leaving room at the bottom of the stick.
Do not throw away the marinade from the meat. This will become the sauce for basting. Add in the ketchup and mix well. Set aside until you are ready to grill.
Prepare and heat your grill whether be stove-top or outdoor. Cook the "meat" skewers first for 3-5min then flip and baste really good. Cook for another 2-4 min. Flip and baste again. Get a good char on the meat. (Makes it crispy) Remove from heat and let rest for 2 min to let juices redistribute. Adjust the the timing to get a nice char on both side.
Then grill the bell pepper skewers in the same method as the "meat" skewers.
Note: The marinade/sauce can also be used as a dip.
To BBQ in the oven: Heat the oven 350˚F. For chicken, place on in a baking pan and bake for 20 min. Half way turn and baste. Then baste again before removing.
For pork, do the same as the chicken but for 30-40min. Or until you see a slightly charring of the meat.