Only in the Philippines
June 27, 2012 § 6 Comments
Or is it? This is about a dish I recently made and instantly fell in love with.
When I saw mustard greens (mustasa in my part of the world) in my favorite Saturday market last week, I dropped everything, went for it and got myself a bundle. I love that peppery tasting vegetable to pieces. Excited, I stormed my little library of ideas on what I can do with it… then I stumbled on Mr. MM’s recipe.
I first tasted this vegetable when I was a teenager. My grandmother used to make a Chinese version of the pickled mustasa, the name of which I loosely translate as “salty vegetable” – not exactly love at first bite but more of an acquired taste. I have yet to get my hands on that recipe, for now let me share this with you.
This month’s Kulinarya challenge (hosted by Cherrie and Tina) was a daunting “Only in the Philippines” theme, featuring uniquely Filipino dishes. I wasn’t planning on joining this month until this beautiful recipe came along. Why do I think it daunting? Because the dish that came to mind was Kare-Kare and that to me is a major production and can’t consider making in the near future with my busy schedule. Anywhow, I am posting albeit late, a dish for this challenge. I figured that this could be uniquely Filipino because the ingredients used are “very” Filipino. I call it Esaladang Mustasa at Lechon sa Bagoong. Stay with me here because this is one heck of a side salad. Ingredients and flavors scream Pinoy through and through.
Mustard Salads are not as popular in Manila as it is in the province, often eaten with fried dishes. If you like strong flavors then this dish is definitely worth a try.
Ensaladang Mustasa at Lechon sa Bagoong
What You’ll Need:
- Mustard Greens
- Lechon, shredded and fried till crisp
For the Dressing:
- 10-15 Calamansi (in this recipe, I used 4-5 pieces of dayap)
- A dallop of Bagoong Alamang or Fine Shrimp Paste
- Chili flakes
- Patis or Fish sauce
- Freshly ground pepper
What You Do:
- Wash mustard greens carefully; wrap in paper-towel to dry and store in the ref for 2-3 hours to keep crispness and freshness.
- Chop them about 1/3 of an inch and put in a salad bowl.
- Make the dressing by squeezing the calamansi; strain out seeds.
- Add bagoong, siling labuyo, a dew dash of patis.
- Top with shredded lechon meat and season with freshly ground pepper.
For more inspiring recipes, visit other KCC members listed below: