Sunday, January 27, 2019

Kare-Kareng Pata (Filipino Stewed Meat in Peanut Sauce)

Shout out to the following bloggers for featuring my Filipino Fried Spring Rolls: Helen of Whats For Dinner Sunday; Lina of Sew It Cook It Craft It; Leanna of Waste Not Wednesday; Linda of Encouraging Hearts and Home. Thank you Ladies for hosting and sharing 
Kare-kare is a Philippine stew complemented with a thick savory peanut sauce. It is made from a variation base of stewed oxtail, pork hocks, calves feet, pig feet, beef stew meat, and occasionally offal or tripe. Kare-kare can also be made with seafood (prawns, squid, and mussels) or vegetables (sometimes exclusively vegetables, becoming Kare-kareng gulay). Vegetables, which include eggplant, Chinese cabbage, or other greens, daikon, green beans, okra, and asparagus beans are added—usually equaling or exceeding the amount of meat. The stew is flavored with ground roasted peanuts or peanut butter, onions, and garlic. It is colored with annatto and can be thickened with toasted or plain ground rice.
Other flavorings may be added, but the dish is usually quite plain in tastiness, compared to other Filipino dishes. Other seasonings are added at the table. Variants may include goat meat or (rarely) chicken. It is often eaten with bagoong (shrimp paste), sometimes spiced with chili, bagoong guisado (spiced and sautéed shrimp paste), and sprinkled with calamansi juice.Traditionally, any Filipino fiesta (particularly in Pampanga region) is not complete without kare-kare.
There are several stories as to the origins of kare-kare. The first one is that it came from Pampanga. Another has it coming from the regal dishes of the Moro elite who settled in Manila before the Spanish arrival (in Sulu and Tawi-Tawi, kare-kare remains a popular dish). Another is from Sepoy conscripts from Southern India that settled in Philippines during the British occupation of Manila. Homesick, they improvised their own cuisine with available materials. They called it kari-kaari, curry, and now, kare-kare. Kare-kare is a well-known dish in Pampanga, which is often hailed as the culinary capital of the Philippines. Its name derived from the word "kari" from the word "curry". However, kare-kare is far different from Indian curry. Kare-kare has a similar flavor to satay because of the peanuts in the sauce.
Oxtail, with the skin on and cut into 2-inch lengths, and ox tripe are boiled until tender. Sometimes pieces of ox feet or shins are added. When the meat is tender, the soup becomes gelatinous. Ground roasted peanuts (or peanut butter), ground roasted glutinous rice is added to make the soup thicker. Annatto is added to give color. The basic vegetables for kare-kare include young banana flower bud or "heart" (puso ng saging), eggplant, string beans, and Chinese cabbage (pechay). Kare-kare is often served hot with special bagoong alamang (sauteed salted shrimp paste).

Now lets go to my post I admit while reading the history, I am already contemplating how to cook the dish. First, beef and it's parts like tripe is so hard to get in Singapore. I needed to go to a market which is kinda far from our place and from what I've experienced before, communication barrier prevents me from enjoying my market experience. Oh yes, I need to learn Mandarin in simple sense. In the end, I opted to use the pig trotter and of course the ever dependable Mama Sita's Kare-Kare Mix. For migrants like us, we miss our food back home so we will find a way to simplify and adapt.
Printable Recipe
Kare-Kareng Pata ( Pig Trotter )
1 -1.2 kg pig’s trotter
¼ cup rice wine
Some water
1 inch ginger cut into slices
1 bay leaf
¼ cup oil
1 tbsp annato powder
½ cup chopped onion
2 tbsp chopped garlic
2-4 cups of broth
1 bunch pechay
1 bunch snake beans or sitaw cut into 2 inches long
2  eggplant sliced diagonally about 1 inch thick
1 packet of kare kare sauce
2 tbsp peanut butter
1 tsp salt
1 tsp ground black pepper
Rinse well the pig trotter or pata. Pour rice wine all over it, make sure the whole part is wet with rice wine. Place in a big saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil and care to remove the scum as it rises.We do this in order to take out the pungent smell and taste.
Add a piece of bay leaf and ginger slices.Cover and simmer until tender, around 45 minutes to 1 ½ hour. Once the pata is tender, turn off the heat. Separate the tapa from the broth. Set aside 
Next strain the broth and return it back to the saucepan, let it simmer then cooked the vegetables within two minutes interval: snake beans, eggplant, pechay. Scoop the vegetables and set aside. Set aside also the broth, you will need it later.
Prepare a wok or saucepan, in a medium fire, add the oil, followed by annato powder, saute onion and garlic until the smell comes out
Add the pig trotter and the kare-kare sauce in a packet. Mix them all and make sure the pig trotter is well coated with the sauce. Put the peanut butter, ground black pepper and salt. Mix well and add the salt.
Pour the broth into the mixture, 2 cups first and then as it boils in simmering mode, the sauce will thicken. Just add broth according to the consistency of your preference. Cook according to the consistency of your choice. It wont take long because the meat is already cooked.
How to serve: You can actually add the veggies when you are about to turn off the heat. Mix them all together and its done. In my case, I will just put the cooked meat first in serving bowl, followed by veggies and I will pour the sauce on top. This is best eaten with our local sautéed shrimp paste or you can use the bottled one.
Please take note: Ours back home is authentic due to the availability of ingredients. Here in Singapore I just use the ingredients that are available for convenience and obviously to save time.
I do it this way.. as you can see the sauce is just in the right consistency. I will just add the veggies on top and at the back you can see the red bottle or small garapon as we call it in tagalog, inside this garapon is sauteed shrimp or bagoong alamang, the smallest of the shrimp and it is paste like, ready to eat. Caution: the mixture is salty.  Please take note Kare-Kare is always eaten with sauteed shrimp or bagoong alamang. Why? because thats the way it should be. Lol, sorry its like this since I was born.
Wow! This is ready...
This is how I enjoy Kare-Kare, see the sauteed shrimp on top of the meat.
Curious of our Kare-Kare Sauce, see the photo above, you can find it in Asian Store I'm sure
Lastly, above is the photo of ready to eat Sauteed shrimp. There are different varieties actually: regular, spicy, sweet etc. There are other brands but this is the only available in the shelf.

Where's the party?


  1. That's really interesting history of the dish. It looks delicious! Thanks for sharing at Merry Monday

    1. Thank you Jenny for the kind words and for the visit. Have a lovely week

  2. You come up with the most interesting dishes. Love how you tell the history. Hugs and blessings, Cindy

    1. Thank you Cindy, you are such a sunshine! Take care

  3. This sounds and looks amazing! I actually have both goat and oxtail in the freezer waiting to be made into something tasty. Thanks!

    1. Hello Denise, I hope you can try this..just go to Asian store ( if theres any in your place ) for the ingredients. Have a lovely week

  4. This is very interesting. The ingredients in the recipe and on your site are very different from what I find in my markets. Thanks for stopping by What'd You Do This Weekend? I always love new ideas!

    Wishes for tasty dishes,
    Linda at Tumbleweed Contessa

    1. Ha ha ha... Linda, how I wish whats on your market is also available here. Thank you for the kind words. Have a lovely week ahead.

  5. Sounds lovely and looks so tasty. I would love to try this :) Thanks for sharing at Creative Mondays #LinkUp

    1. Thank you Claire for the visit. have a lovely week ahead.

  6. This looks delicious, what great flavors! Hope you are having a great week and thanks so much for sharing your awesome recipe with us at Full Plate Thursday!
    Miz Helen

    1. Thank you so much Miz Helen for coming over. Have a great lovely weekend.

  7. I've never heard of this before. My husband (who is Vietnamese) would probably love to test out this recipe, though! Thanks so much for sharing at Sweet Inspiration!

    1. Hello Amy, I think your husband will be delighted because of the peanut sauce. It reminds us memories from back home. Thanks and have a lovely weekend

  8. Interesting combination of flavors! I'd give it a try. Thanks for sharing with us at Creatively Crafty #ccbg :)

    1. Thank you Lydia and have a lovely weekend too.

  9. One of my favorite Filipino dishes. I always order kare kare at the restaurant. It's usually made with oxtail, yours is interesting with pig trotters. Worth a try! Thanks for linking up! #fiestafriday

    1. Thank you Angie. I wish I could do it with oxtail but that part is so hard to find in Singapore. Have a lovely weekend.


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