Thanks to a generation of talented Filipino-American chefs and food writers, Filipino food is finally trending. Among those working hard to push our beloved Filipino cuisine to new heights are Amy Besa and Romy Dorotan, owners and chefs of New York’s Purple Yam Restaurant and whose award-winning book, Memories of Philippine Kitchens was recently revised and updated.
From adobo to pancit, lumpia to kinilaw, the authors traced the origins of native Filipino foods and the impact of foreign cultures on Filipino cuisine. It has more than 100 recipes from private kitchens and the acclaimed Purple Yam menu, classic dishes as well as contemporary Filipino food. Filled with hundreds of sumptuous photographs and stories from the authors, this book is a joy to peruse in and out of the kitchen.
Here’s a copy of the most popular and beloved recipe in the book that Nick Fox, Deputy Food Editor of the New York Times wrote about last Christmas as his go-to dish for Noche Buena.
Beef Short Ribs Adobo
This thick, rich, dark brown, almost chocolaty sauce becomes even richer if you replace half the stock with coconut milk.
3 tablespoons canola oil
3 pounds beef Short ribs, cut into 4 equal pieces
1/2 teaspoon sea salt or Kosher salt (Rock salt)
1 1/4 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
2 cups chicken stock or 1 cup Chicken stock and 1 cup Coconut milk
1 cup sherry vinegar or apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup soy sauce
1 head garlic cloves, separated and peeled
3 pieces bay leaves
3 whole bird’s eye chilies, optional
1. In a large saucepan over medium-high heat, warm the oil until very hot, but not smoking. Season the ribs with the salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Add the ribs to the pan, in batches if necessary, and brown well on all sides, about 3 minutes total.
2. Transfer the ribs to a plate, pour off the oil, and return the ribs to the pan.
3. Add the chicken stock (and coconut milk, if using), vinegar, soy sauce, garlic, bay leaves, remaining 1 teaspoon black pepper and whole chilies, if using.
4. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer, partially covered, until the meat is tender and falling off the bone, about 1 hour and 20 minutes, skimming off excess fat as you cook.
5. Transfer the ribs to a plate, increase the heat, and reduce the sauce until thickened, 10 to 15 minutes. Discard the bay leaves and chilies. Return the ribs to the sauce or arrange the ribs on a platter and pour the sauce on top. Serve hot.