Pork Menudo

20 Feb

Who is your first crush?

And what dish reminds you of said person?

That is this month’s Kulinarya Cooking Club Challenge.

Kulinarya was started by a group of Filipino foodies living in Sydney, who are passionate about the Filipino culture and it’s colourful cuisine.  Each month we will showcase a new dish along with their family recipes.  By sharing these recipes we hope you find the same passion and love for Filipino food as we do.

Instantly, I had visions of the 80’s – acid washed jeans, mile-high bangs, flouro shirts and *big pause* MENUDO!

Yes, I am not ashamed to admit that my first ever ever crush was Ricky Martin of Menudo. I remember, he was 12 and I was 6, he was a member of the biggest boyband at that time and I can’t even carry a tune (even now… really shames me when people ask me if I’m a good singer coz I’m Filipino.. anyhoo!), he was travelling all over the world promoting his album while my furthest destination was my school via the school service… but despite those differences we still found ourselves madly in love with each other – okay so it was a one-sided relationship which is (obviously) mainly from my end.

Once my brother caught me watching their music video (with Lea Salonga, I think that was) on TV wide-eyed (and probably with my mouth hanging open and a bit of drool on the side) and being the big brother that he was proceeded to tease me. I remember crying and walking out, but quickly coming back once I saw that the coast was clear.

Years later our paths crossed again… this time I was already in College and he a solo star. Although the love was still there, unfortunately, it wasn’t as strong as when we were younger. This, however, didn’t stop me from taking Spanish as an elective so I can impress him with my linguistic skills (if and) when we meet. Completely ignoring the fact that he speaks perfect English but whatever!

So now I present you my dish, one that I never made until now. See I’m not a big fan of tomato based stews so my poor husband has to wait until we go home for Christmas so that he can eat his (according to him) one of his favourite dishes (top three he said) menudo.

Having never made this dish, I dialled (or texted) a friend – otherwise known as my mom. She quickly replied with her basic instructions, so again all the measurements on this dish were just done by feel.

I started by browning pork belly cubes in a bit of oil, once they’re done I sauteed chopped onions and then added the minced garlic once the onions were soft and transparent (segue to.. I once heard Kris Aquino – man I hate her – say that she learned that when sauteing you should start with onions as the garlic burns and becomes bitter, so much as I hate her, this tip actually made sense and I’ve been using it since then). Then I added quarter pieces of tomatoes. Once everything was nice and mushy, I added some sliced chorizo (in replacement of hotdogs as we don’t have tender juicy or tender meaty here and the red hotdogs aren’t really that good.. so I thought it’s a Spanish dish might as well add a Spanish hotdog eeer sausage) I placed the pork back and added strips of red bell pepper, green peas, cubed potatoes and cubed carrots and covered everything with just enough tomato sauce. Simmer until nice and bubbly and then added raisins (or sultanas as we call them here) and strips of pork liver. Just leave it simmering for a few minutes more until the liver is cooked. Of course, season season season as all those TV chefs would say.

Above is my attempt at plating (needs more practice I think!)

Husband was really happy that I made menudo and knowing that I never really liked this particular dish was extra curious as to why I cooked it. I didn’t tell him the truth as it might hurt his feelings (he thinks he’s my first love.. haha!) but was happy to eat it nonetheless.

Some little points re : making this dish – chorizo is actually a good replacement for hotdogs, but since most of the chorizo sold here is fresh (i.e soft and not smoked) I would drop it in last minute along with the liver next time as some disappeared into the sauce. Also, my mom mentioned garbanzos (or chickpeas) but I didn’t include it as I’m not a fan. And another thing, I know that I said menudo is a Spanish dish, but then I remember eating Mexican menudo in the US – different though as it had offal and wasn’t sweet-ish like the Filipino version.


15 Responses to “Pork Menudo”

  1. Boyet of Reel and Grill February 20, 2012 at 10:17 PM #

    Menudo mania is back, lol. The dish is as beautiful as ….. ooops that would be the people who followed Menudo in Manila. 🙂

  2. skip to malou February 21, 2012 at 3:37 AM #

    oh i remember menudo too and ricky martin haha. no need to be ashamed of..we all go through that face haha.
    menudo is one of our classic filipino favorite dishes. and just like your hubs my hubs enjoys too as much.
    good job on the plating too!

  3. Day Salonga February 21, 2012 at 12:28 PM #

    I remember them, I was 6 yrs old or 8… my sister (Ate) was a fan too ! Great recipe there ! Menudo will always be part of Pinoy table =)

  4. iskaIska February 21, 2012 at 5:27 PM #

    Hehehe I must admit I sang to Menudo songs, too, as a kid but never really liked anyone from them in particular. But I was swept away by Ricky Martin’s tushy shakes during the 90s hahaha!
    Congrats on your first Menudo!

  5. Adora's Box February 22, 2012 at 5:29 AM #

    I really enjoyed reading this. Funny! I remember menudo though I was not at all young then. I can’t blame you for not cooking menudo if there’s parts of it you didn’t like. Good job though and I agree on the chorizo part. Thanks from the tip you learned from Kris 🙂

  6. thehungrygiant February 22, 2012 at 11:42 AM #

    I once heard Kris Aquino – man I hate her – say that she learned that when sauteing you should start with onions as the garlic burns and becomes bitter, so much as I hate her, this tip actually made sense and I’ve been using it since then). – hahaha this made me laugh!

    We never put hotdogs in our menudo or estofado! It’ll always be chorizo bilbao so what you did makes perfect sense. 😀 This post made me hungry!

  7. Isabel of My Expat Mommy February 22, 2012 at 4:30 PM #

    to me, pork menudo = fiesta! one of my favorites together with pork asado, specially when they’re leftover and eaten the day after with sinangag at kape. sarap!

  8. peachkins February 22, 2012 at 4:39 PM #

    hay crsuh din yan ng sis ko..LOL! Love your entry!

  9. dudut @mytwistedrecipe February 22, 2012 at 5:28 PM #

    I remember menudo, though just one song i guess 🙂 i felt your fascination with Ricky Martin in that story, Funny how we recall these stories and just laugh about it 🙂

    thanks for sharing 🙂

  10. abigail-mynappytales February 22, 2012 at 5:37 PM #

    One of my cousin had a super crush over Menudo as well.

    We have this dish monthly it’s my boys favorite as well.

  11. Jun Belen February 23, 2012 at 11:24 AM #

    Nicely done! Love the story behind the dish. Menudo is one of my go-to comfort food.

    • Grace March 13, 2012 at 12:08 AM #

      Wonderful blog! I was looking for pictures of hototay soup and I stumbled upon your little inter-webs space here. Keep it up, you just got another follower. Cheers! 😉

  12. Pearl February 24, 2012 at 11:49 PM #

    That’s pretty cool, though I don’t remember their band and I got a crush on Ricky Martin as I remember him with his enticing videos haha. I got a laugh at your story, it’s pretty cute and I don’t think your hubby will mind if you tell him. 🙂


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