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The Theoretical Cook

A FOODY IN THE THIRD WORLD

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Sinigang na Corned Beef


Some sensations are difficult to forget - the taste of Sentro's sinigang na corned beef, for example. The distinctive taste, a mellow fusion of the ultimate Pinoy comfort food sinigang and the familiar Irish corned beef stew, leaves an imprint and you find yourself craving for it when sense memory remembers. The problem with Sentro is that it is always crowded, especially after work hours. The taste is not consistent. There are days when their sinigang transports me to neverneverland and times when I never want to set foot on Greenbelt on account of an overly sour sinigang broth. But I would return, again and again, addicted to their (occasionally) sensational sinigang (and galunggong fillet, sizzling tofu, coffee pie, blahblah).
Was on my way home thinking of what to eat when I decided to cook my own version of that corned beef sinigang. Dropped by a grocery and thought of what to buy: of course there had to be gabi right? Sinigang isn't quite sinigang without that slippery, roux-like texture. I love gabi: that nice starchy crumbly texture dissolving in the hot broth inside your mouth. I also bought sampalok, the good student of Chef Belle that I am. I was bent on being a purist on this one: no instant sinigang mix for me. No. Then I took a second glance at the stall nearby and relented: ok, its quite late, I havent had a decent lunch, maybe I can be easy on my self and not do it the traditional way. Theres a reason why they created these mixes: convenience. And tonight I decided I wanted convenience. Just in case I change my mind (like I often do), I grabbed the sampaloc anyway. Without really thinking, I picked up potatoes, cabbages, tomatoes, baguio beans. We already had corned beef in the pantry.
So here is the sinigang. Did it meet the Sentro standards? Not quite, but it was something special. Probably the easiest dish I've ever cooked. You just throw everything into the simmering water in the soup pot (in this case, sauce pan).
Of course, I ate my sinigang with patis and sili :)

Sinigang na Corned Beef
Ingredients:

1 can corned beef (Libby, McNeil, Libbys)
native gabi (yam)
2 pcs potatoes
2 pcs tomatoes
i head of cabbage
baguio beans
water (4 to 5 cups)
Sinigang mix

Procedure:

1) Add gabi, tomatoes and potatoes to the soup pot. Heat for 20 to 25 minutes until tender
2) Take out the vegetables from the stock.
3) Add sinigang mix
3) Add the baguio beans to the stock with the sinigang mix
4) Return the gabi, tomatoes and potatoes to the soup pot
5) Add the corned beef
6) Add the cabbage
7) Let simmer
8) Serve

Lessons learned:
Use some other corned beef brand. The texture of Libby is similar to liver spread. Its not very pretty. The color also leaves the sinigang broth looking very pink.
Dont leave the sinigang simmering. If you want to simmer the broth, take out the vegetables.
Dont use too much sinigang mix. 1/4 of the packet is enough to flavor the broth.
Certain tastes cannot be duplicated.

20 Comments:

Blogger JMom said...

What an interesting idea! I think I will be trying this one. I love corned beef and I love sinigang, so the combination could be nothing but good :-)

8:10 AM  
Blogger The 3rdWorld Stylist said...

i tried this already many times and the best corned beef are not the canned ones. get them por kilo in groceries. the texture and color are way much better. you can feel the beef shred in your tongue. :)

3:39 AM  
Blogger The 3rdWorld Stylist said...

also try sinigang na lechon. same process. drop and simmer. the difference in tastes will depend on the lechon. Those lechons cooked in probinsyas are more fragrant. I don't eat paksiw so this is how the lechon left-overs are turned into. :)

3:44 AM  
Blogger JP said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

1:24 AM  
Blogger JP said...

http://video.enhanced.net/photo.jpg

I used corned beef brisket in this recipe. I also had to simmer for about 4 hours.

1:28 AM  
Blogger Anonimus said...

You should definitely NOT use canned corned beef. You can buy corned beef brisket from Earls Deli (there's one sa Columns, and another one inside the Gaisano supermarket in Market Market). It's whole, not shredded. One big chunk of corned beef at around P350 per kilo. You need to boil it gently for two hours and throw away the water before using it for your sinigang.

2:37 AM  
Anonymous Sinigang said...

Hi!

Your Sinigang looks really delicious!

I'm collecting a list of the best sinigang recipes in my blog, and I included your sinigang recipe (just a link though, hope you don't mind). You can see it at
http://kumain.com/sinigang-recipes/

Keep in touch!

Tanya Regala

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