Beyond The Books – Favorite Food or Recipe

Posted September 17, 2015 by Kathy in Discussion / 2 Comments

Beyond the Books is a weekly meme hosted by which gives bloggers topics (mostly non-bookish) to discuss about. This is a fun way of learning more about each other. Check out her blog for the schedule of topics.


This week’s topic is:

Favorite food or share a recipe


I LOVE food so this can be a long post, but here are some of my favorites:


Desserts – anything chocolate and ice cream (I’ll even eat during winter)


Candy – Reese’s mini peanut butter cups. I don’t like eating the normal size of this candy because it’s too much peanut butter at one time so I prefer eating the mini versions.


International Cuisine – Filipino, Chinese, Japanese, Thai, Vietnamese, Indian, Greek, Mexican and Italian. At work a group of us started an International club where tried different food each month. It was a lot of fun and I was surprised to find a variety of restaurants in our area.


I’m Filipino (I was born and raised in California) and one of my favorite Filipino dishes is called Kare Kare. This is a stew with a peanut sauce and vegetables. Traditionally it is made with oxtail, but I don’t like how greasy it makes the sauce and also there isn’t a lot of meat on the bone. So we use beef stew meat instead. I love eating the left over sauce with the vegetables and rice. Here is the recipe & photo from Tartine and Apron Strings.



Kare-Kare Oxtail


Prep time 20 mins

Cook time 3 hours 30 mins

Total time 3 hours 50 mins

Recipe Type: Meat, Savoury, Peanut

Cuisine: Filipino

Serves: 4 servings


  • 3 pounds oxtail, cut into pieces of approximately 2 inches (5 cm), ideally from the middle portion
  • 5 garlic cloves, smashed
  • 1 large yellow onion, quartered
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 250 grams (your choice of) baby bok choy or pechay or string beans, cut in bite-size pieces
  • 2 large Japanese eggplants, sliced diagonally
  • 2 tablespoons annatto oil (find the recipe link at the bottom of the post body before the recipe)
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 125 grams (a heaping 1 cup) toasted rice flour
  • 250 grams (approximately 1 cup) unsalted, all-natural peanut butter
  • ¼ cup shrimp paste


  1. Place the oxtail in a large pot filled with water and boil over high heat. Once the water is boiling and some sediment or impurities start to form on top, drain the oxtail and throw away the water. Wipe the pot clean and return to stove top.
  2. Transfer the oxtail back into the clean pot, add garlic, onion, peppercorns, and bay leaves, and add sufficient water to cover. Bring to a hard boil and then lower heat to medium or medium-low and cook until meat is tender, about 3-4 hours.
  3. When meat is tender, strain the liquid into a fresh container, discarding the herbs. Set aside.
  4. Heat the annatto oil in a casserole or a (traditional) clay pot over medium heat. Sauté diced onion and minced garlic until fragrant, about 1 minute.
  5. Add the reserved liquid and bring to a boil over high heat. Add your choice of green vegetables and cook until bright green, about 2-3 minutes. Optional: place on ice bath to stop cooking and maintain bright colour. Next, add the eggplant and cook until tended but purple skin is still bright, about 3-4 minutes. Set aside with the rest of the vegetables.
  6. Eyeball or estimate your liquid – there should be enough to cover at least half way up your oxtails. When there is sufficient liquid, add the toasted rice flour and peanut butter to the casserole or pot and stir until smooth. Use a whisk if you can.
  7. Bring the casserole to a quick boil and stir continuously until the sauce thickens to your desired consistency. It should have a little body to it, not watery. Immediately lower the heat when ideal consistency is reached, then add the shrimp paste and stir until combined.
  8. Return the oxtails in the casserole, along with the reserved vegetables, and warm in low heat. Serve warm with a side of shrimp paste (bagoong) or fish sauce (patis).

Now it is your turn. What is your favorite food or recipe?


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2 responses to “Beyond The Books – Favorite Food or Recipe