Wednesday, June 3, 2015

How to Cook Dinuguan, Ilocano Version

By Lester Taga Capas

We all have our personal preferences when it comes to food, including the way it is served. To some, horses and dogs are delicacies, to others, the mere thought is taboo. 

But whether you're a vegan or a hardcore carnivore, it's always good to try something new or old.  In this article I would like to discuss how I prefer cooking a native dish that takes a strong stomach for other people to stomach. 

This is not dinuguan but a Korean food. I'll post a dinuguan picture soon. Enjoy your dinuguan!

By the way, it has nothing to do with Balut. I'm talking about my favorite dish...Dinuguuan.. Its name meaning "With blood/Full of blood."  This is how I cook it...

Dinuguuan has simple ingredients, you will need.

Green chili (Siling pang sinigang)

Pork, half a kilo is plenty. (Preferrably ribs, or pork tender loin, it's up to you.)

A clove of garlic

2 red onions

Patis (Fish extract/Fish sauce). If none then Apple cider is a good alternative


Black pepper (Whole)

Fresh pig's blood

Pig Intestines

For the Ilocano version called Dinardaraan, a Pack of Chicharon ( Deep fried pork fats with some meat).

Don't let the pig intestines discourage you it's interchangeable with the pork meat. Some people simply prefer that Uric acid rich ,Arthritis inducing but deliciously gross alternative.

On a big wok or deep pot, I prefer the Wok, it is easier to move the contents inside. Place a few tablespoons of oil prefferably three and spread it. Use a low flame in heating. 

Add minced onions and crushed garlic and stir gently. When the garlic starts to smell cooked add the pork and let it cook slowly for half an hour under the low flame. 

Mix it every now and then to spread the juices that come out of the meat.

If you have perfectly healthy joints, love the taste of internal organs and no fear of the adverse side effects, feel free to use Intestines instead. 

Use a few tablespoons of Fish extract or Patis preferably three or whatever suits your taste buds best. And let it cook for a few minutes. 5 is good, then add the pork blood.

Do not..add water. Add a cup of vinegar to the mixture to serve as its soup, if there's a kilo of pork and blood 1 cup and a half will usually be more than enough depending on how you like it.

Dinardaraan is cooked with minimal soup and crushed chicharon is added but dinuguuan has at least half a litre of liquid when cooked for 5 people. 

All of this done under a low to medium flame. The longer it takes to cook the better it usually tastes. Half an hour will be just right. 

Anything less could result in a dry unpalatable dish containing raw pig blood. Add the black peppers a few minutes before it is finally cooked, the green chilli too. 

If you have dried laurel leaves it would be better. Once cooked let it sit in its own heat and serve after 5 minutes. Best served with Puto Calasiao.  

Personally I prefer pig intestines. You won't know the difference if you don't give it a chance.