My alarm clock was set to buzz 3:40 am but mom was already knocking at the door at 3:15. I stood up with an aching head and barely had my coffee. We drove to public market after few minutes. We bought few kilograms of pork for town fiesta and christening of our baby girl. The two occasions merged into one.
The old fiesta tradition was to buy a big live pig. Slaughter it at someone’s backyard and divide it to individuals who shared the cost. Today’s practice has changed. Anyone planning to go big on town fiesta just go at any public market very early in the morning and buy all the meat he wants.
If you feel too lazy and rich, just contract a catering service or host the event in any decent restaurant.
Time for the set of hard works:
Slicing the meat. According to my father and grandfather, veteran Pinoy cooks never argue with the dish taste. The thing that was worth discussing is how the meat is sliced.
The good and easy way to cut / slice meat are: 1) Use a razor sharp knife, and 2) partially freeze it. Because I had no enough time and freezer space to do the partial freezing, the razor sharp bolo did the job pretty well. Though it would have been faster if frozen partially.
Peeling ingredients, the rekados. I peeled all the garlic heads and avoided the onions. Doing the onion thing will sure make my eyes achy and teary. Peeling others (carrots, potato) was done in a jiffy with the use of dedicated peeler. My wife did peel all the onions.
I ate lunch and took a short nap. The ingredients we prepared earlier were already mixed and divided into two groups, the malalapad na gayat and the menudo. Father was the one who sliced the malalapad na gayat. My meat cutting skills was too crappy to do the job.
Cooking. Just put the mixture in vessel. Place on medium gas stove flame. Stir occasionally. Put off the flame when the meat is tender. Any necessary adjustment will be done the next day. Reheat the meat, make adjust the flavor and serve.
1) Clean and dry the storage basin well before transferring the cooked meat.
2) Never scoop it with wet spoon or ladle.
3) Use a white enamel coated basin. Stainless steel basin is believe to cause deterioration.
4) Never cover while hot.
Marvin is the lead chocolate maker of Ben and Lyn Chocolate Inc. Has strong background in food research and development. Occasionally conducts training and lectures. Lecturer of Cocoa Foundation of the Philippines. Do coaching and consultancy services on his free time.