I prepared lunch for some friends recently, and caldereta was on the menu. I remember always eating this at our nearest neighbour’s house during the annual town fiesta, and at all the other houses—and they all taste the same—call it community standard 🙂 Now you’re thinking why I never got to eat this at our house. Well, for many reasons: a) we don’t celebrate fiesta; b) my folks hail from a different part of the country; c) it was decided that we kids would grow up eating more fish than any other meat.
I made a search on the internet on which caldereta resembles best what’s made in my town (which, of course, I think is the best). Fortunately someone posted on YouTube Chef Boy Logro’s ‘Beefy Caldereta’. Chef Boy is a Filipino celebrity chef.
I made modifications to the recipe (mostly the order of things!). The chef also didn’t mention anything about measurements, and I also just made estimates, i.e.—I just thought that each serving should have a medium-size cut of meat, 3 halves of potatoes, a few cubes of capsicum, etc. Your call. Traditionally, caldereta is made from mutton or goat meat, but beef will do.
Lemon (or calamansi if you have any)
Medium-size cut beef/mutton
Chopped tomatoes or tinned tomatoes
Chopped red chillies
Chicken stock / stock cube
Liver spread/pate (I substitute the 75g beef spread in jars)
Cubed capsicum (red and green)
Sliced or cubed white onion
Grated cheese (any kind of cheese)
1. Marinate the beef in lemon, salt, pepper, bay leaf and garlic for a couple of hours or more
2. Sear the beef
3. Add chopped red chillies
4. Add tomato puree (this is to brown the meat further)
5. When beef starts to get tender, add potatoes
6. Then tomatoes
7. When the tomato juice starts running, add chicken stock (I just throw in a stock cube into the stew and make sure it completely melts–I prefer a thick sauce)
8. When the potates turn soft, add liver spread
9. Then white onion
10. When the onion starts to wilt, add the green and red capsicum
11. When the capsicum turns soft, add the grated cheese, stir to melt and turn off the stove.
My friend had a “take-away” and this is what she said:
“Hi… thank u for the delightful lunch yesterday. Thoroughly enjoyed it! My children loved the beef gravy very much….”
Then she made it herself using the recipe I’ve just given you and sent a picture too:
“The caldereta dish was a hit! _____ said it was quite close to your preparation. Thank u for sharing.”