Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Beef Caldereta

ABUNDANT in livestock source such as cattle, Batangas remains to be the undisputed province in the Philippines when it comes to anything beef. Helmed as the Cattle Trading Capital of the country, the province is also known as home to the best bulalo (beef bone marrow soup), savory tapa (fried thin beef strips), and the bistek (beef steak).

Taking pride on being the best cooks in dishes that have beef as the main element, the Batangueños also love to cook the kalderetang baka (beef stew). The Spanish-influenced kaldereta is usually cooked with tomato sauce, liver spread, onions, and garlic, peas, bell peppers, potatoes, and mushroom. The Batangueños, however, like to put a little twist to it by skipping the use of tomato sauce and replacing it with a generous amount of creamy melted cheese as the sauce instead. Prior to making the sauce, the natives marinate the beef in a soy sauce and vinegar mixture and sautée it with butter or margarine. Goat or chicken or duck meat is also used as a substitute to beef.

Not to be confused with other tomato-based dishes like the mechado and afritada,  the kaldereta is one of the most sought-after Philippine delicacies that is present in any table fares of festivals or social gatherings; not only in Batangas, but in many parts of the country as well. Local restaurants along the roads of Batangas readily serve the kaldereta to foreign and local tourists who would want to experience dishes that are distinctively Batangas made.

Usually partnered with a steaming cup of rice, kaldereta is also preferred as a pulutan or an accompaniment to hard drinks.


2 cups and 2 tbsp unsweetened pineapple juice
1 kg. beef ribs
2 pieces small onions, sliced
2 8g. MAGGI Magic Sarap
2 tbsp. cooking oil
2 tbsp. minced garlic
¼ cup chopped onions
1 tbsp. pickle relish
1 250ml. tomato sauce
1 85g. can liver spread
¼ cup grated cheddar cheese
salt and pepper to taste
2 pieces medium potatoes, cubed and fried
1 piece medium carrots, cubed and fried

1. Combine beef, pineapple juice, onions and MAGGI Magic Sarap in a pan. Boil briskly then lower heat. Continue simmering until beef is tender or about 2 hours. Set aside.

2. Using a different pan, heat oil then sauté garlic and onions until limp. Add back  tenderized beef and broth, bring to a boil.

3. Add pickle relish, tomato sauce, liver spread and cheese. Continue simmering until sauce slightly thickens. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

4. Add fried potatoes and carrots and cook for another 5 minutes.

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