I didn’t grow up eating this dish, nor have tasted it until I searched for a recipe and tried it myself. It’s a sweet meat recipe, which Filipinos love–whether it be their fiesta ham, humba, tocino or barbeque! This dish actually started resembling tocino after re-heating, leaving the fat to render and the sugar to caramelise.
I took inspiration from two recipes followed by Vanjo Merano, author of the blog Panlasang Pinoy. He has his standard recipe, and a simple version too. I also threw in a star anise in the stew–that just makes it festive!
750g pork belly (cut into 2-inch strips)
3 tbsp soy sauce
5 tbsp demerara sugar
vegeteable oil for sauteing
3 cloves garlic (minced)
1 white onion (julienned)
1 cup pineapple juice
1 cube of beef broth
1 star anise
salt & pepper to taste
1 cup pineapple chunks
1. Marinate the pork in soy sauce, sugar and pineapple juice for a few hours or overnight in the fridge.
2. Saute garlic and onion.
3. Add the pork, stir and cover skillet/pot. Leave meat to cook in its own juice until dry and rendering.
4. Add pineapple juice. Cover and leave to boil. Drop the beef cube and make sure it dissolves completely. Add the star anise. Season with salt and pepper.
5. Add the pineappple chunks. Cover and let boil, then allow to simmer for 10-15 minutes.