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.