Wednesday, September 3, 2008

All-Filipino Beef Tapa, just like mother used to make

Beef Tapa is one of my favorite default meals on days when I can't decide what to eat. A lot of restaurants have their own versions of the Beef Tapa in their menus (flashback to Rodic's where they serve the most delightful Beef Tapa shredded to smithereens which brightened my lunch and dinners at the UP Shopping Center during my college years). Hardly the premium or rare food item, it is quite uncanny that some restaurants mark the Beef Tapa off as a specialty and priced it accordingly. A couple of restaurants, like Don Galo's and Tapa King, even go so far as building their entire food repertoire around this lowly meal. But the best Beef Tapa I've ever had in my life is the one my mom makes at home.

She takes a kilo of good beef sirloin and then soaks it for a good 24-hours in a marinade of crushed cloves of garlic (lots of it), crushed ginger (a big chunk of it), ground black pepper, sea salt, soy sauce, vinegar, and calamansi. The marinated beef is then pan-fried in vegetable oil until brown. You won't believe how amazing this smells when cooking. It's one of those smells of home that I will carry for the rest of my life. Unfortunately, my mom, probably much like most great chefs actually, is never a disciple of the exact cooking measurements school of thought, making sharing this recipe of the Beef Tapa quite tricky to do. But I've promised myself to make this my next cooking mission (and perhaps, a follow-up blog entry)- to quantify (or at least make a passable approximation of) the ingredients in my mother's Beef Tapa Recipe.


Crossmyheart said...

thanks for posting this. I am craving for tapsilog today, I'm going to try this today.

rj said...

i remember reinventing tocino back in the middle east. a friend taught me how to use slices of veal instead of the rare if not expensive pork- soaked in pineapple juice, salt, pepper, crushed garlic, soy sauce and oil. after 5 days or so, cook with the sauce until dry.

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