Archive for the ‘veggies’ Category

>An Ilocano Dish on a Rainy Night

It has been raining all week in Shizuoka. Kinda reminds me of typhoon season in the Philippines, in Ilocos, which, by the way, was just ravaged by the recent typhoon. At home, while the patter of the rain lulls everyone to sleep, our stomachs automatically churn and get ready for the traditional Ilocano rainy day dinner or lunch — monggo inabraw – that`s mungbean cooked in bagoong (fish paste) soup base. It is the Ilocano version of stew.

Inabraw Ingredients:
  • about 4-5 handfuls of monggo/mung beans (whole or ground)
  • bagoong or fish paste (katsuo shokara – かつお塩辛)
  • garlic
  • onion
  • vegetable oil
  • some veggies or greens (spinach, sliced eggplant, etc.)
  • shrimp cubes

Soak the mung beans for at least an hour to loosen the seed coat. Soaking will reduce the length of time of boiling the beans to rid of their seed coats. Removing the seed coat is basically just straining the seeds off the mixture since they will automatically float. You can opt not to soak but you have to boil it for a long time (perhaps more than 45 minutes) then remove the seed coats while it boils.

Once the seed coat is removed, boil the beans till they are soft or till they practically disintegrates (you won`t see whole beans). Then add 3-4 teaspoon of fishpaste, depending on how salty you`d like it to be. The Japanese fish paste is less salty. If you use the true-blue Iluko Bagoong a tablespoon is enough. Boil further till the taste of the fish paste has sank in. I like to put 1 Knorr shrimp cube into the mix for added flavor.

In a separate skillet, put oil, saute garlic and onion till the onion is golden but not burned. If you want to put in some meat or fish, this would be the best time to mix them. then ladle the boiled beans into the skillet. Stir. Put the vegetables last making sure that they are not overcooked.

Instead of mixing fried fish into the stew, we just had our fried milkfish as it is.

And although it was raining, Rad requested for some milk shake.
Avocado Milk Shake Ingredients:
  • 2 small avocados
  • 2-3 brown sugar (depends on taste)
  • about 1 glass of milk
  • ice

Put all ingredients in a blender and blend till frothy.
And so, Mangantayon!

>Spinach with Katsuobushi


We love to eat meat and when we do, I always try to balance it with some veggies. This is our favorite side salad. It`s spinach (ほうれん草) with bonito shavings or katsuobushi (鰹節).


  • Spinach
  • Katsuobushi
  • 1-3 tsp Soy sauce


Cut and wash the leaves then steam or boil the. Take care not to overcook the leaves. They must still have the bright green color in them. Drain and pour a bit of soysauce then top it with the katsuobushi. You can also add sesame seeds if you want.

I am always on the lookout for some “kamote” (Ipomoea batatas) tops or “kangkong” (Ipomoea aquatica), sometimes called “swamp cabbage” at the supermarket for my side salad but this is not Ilocos or the Philippines so, we make do with the spinach. Mangantayon!