Part of the reason why Philippine cuisine looks so diverse is that it is essentially a few main dishes with a variety of versions. One dish will always have a different variation depending on the region, the family, or even depending on the individual cooking. So, it is not surprising that we have Liempo Estofado which is admittedly very similar to the Barebones Adobo.
As the Liempo Estofado recipe already introduces itself, the dish is made up of pork belly, saging na saba and carrots (which are optional) drenched in a mixture of soy sauce, bayleaf, peppercorns and vinegar. A tasty and direct recipe, the preparation involves marinating the pork belly, sauteeing the ingredients, the Liempo and the other ingredients and waiting for everything to simmer in one pot.
Liempo Estofado Preparation Tips
Marinating is the key in this liempo estofado recipe as the pork belly tends to absorb its taste and also because this is that one part of the recipe that you can control. You can choose whether it will be on the sour or the salty side. Another important ingredient in liempo estofado is the banana (plantains) as it is the one that gives the dish its sweetness.
Though liempo estofado is a simple dish, if you want to cook this at a faster rate, then you can cook this dish using a pressure cooker to cut the time in half. If you choose to cook it using a pressure cooker though, be sure that the broth is enough so that you will not end up with a dry resulting dish. However, there is no harm in doing the usual way of just having it simmer, if only to avoid drying the dish up.
After cooking, serve liempo estofado with heaps of warm rice so that the rice will absorb the extra oil from the pork belly.
- 2 lbs. pork belly, sliced
- 4 pieces ripe saba banana, peeled and sliced
- 2 medium carrots, sliced
- 1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
- ½ cup soy sauce
- 3 pieces dried bay leaves
- ¼ cup red wine vinegar or cane vinegar
- 3 cloves garlic, crushed and minced
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1½ cups water
- 2 tablespoons cooking oil
- Salt to taste
- Heat the cooking oil in a cooking pot.
- Sauté the garlic.
- Add the pork and cook for 2 minutes.
- Pour-in the soy sauce and water. Add the bay leaves and ground black pepper. Let boil and then simmer for 30 minutes.
- Add the vinegar and sugar. Cook for 15 minutes. Note: add water if needed
- Put-in the banana and carrots. Cook for 10 minutes.
- Add salt to taste.
- Transfer to a serving bowl. Serve.
- Share and enjoy!