My favorite Filipino dish is Kare Kare. Its a peanut butter-based oxtail stew that I never knew how to make from scratch. For years, I've always been using the powdered stuff, and so has my dad. My grandmother, however, made it from scratch. But, again, I never got the recipe. Hubby took a liking to Kare Kare, too, when I started making it for him. But he's only had the powdered version. My cousin, Jhune, is a great cook who told me that making Kare Kare from scratch required the use of grounded toasted rice. So I found this recipe that calls for the toasted rice. Surprisingly, it was pretty easy. The hardest part was grounding up the toasted rice. My food processor didn't ground it up finely, so I had to finish it off with my mortar and pestle. Otherwise this dish came out really well.
3-5 lbs. oxtail
5 Tbsp. cooking oil
5 cloves garlic, crushed
1 medium onion, sliced
1/4 cup annato seed water
1/4 lb. Chinese Long Beans, cut into 2-inch slices
1/2 lb. bok choy, stemmed
1/3 cup uncooked rice, toasted brown and ground to a powder
1/2 cup peanut butter, dissolved in 3/4 cup water
salt & pepper to taste
1) In a large pot, place oxtail and enough water to cover the meat. Boil for an hour. Discard water and rinse cooked meat. Place meat back in the pot and fill again with water enough to cover meat. Boil until tender.
2) In a sautee pan, heat oil and add onion and garlic. Cook until onion is softened. Add annatto water, garlic and onion to meat and return to boil. Add vegetables, powdered rice, and peanut butter mixture. Season with salt and pepper. Continue to boil until sauce slightly thickens. Serve with rice.
***You can also cook this dish in a crockpot by mixing all the ingredients together (except the vegetables) after the first boil of the meat. Place the whole mixture in a crockpot and cook it for 10 hours.