Wednesday, May 6, 2015

The Heart of a Coconut Tree

Ubod is the fleshy edible heart of a coconut tree. Flavor and texture-wise, it kind of reminds me of singkamas. When it is available in the market, my mom would get a sizable chunk of it and we would have Lumpiang Ubod at home. It is usually the fresh version that makes an appearance on the dining table but it is also delicious fried. Fried, in fact, is my favorite version.


Below is the the recipe for Fresh Lumpiang Ubod. To make the fried version, you'd need the same ingredients for the lumpia, except take out the lettuce leaves. Then fold both top and bottom ends and roll  it tighter than you would a fresh lumpia and seal the end side with water. After that, fry fry away and serve with a soy sauce-vinegar-garlic dipping instead of sweet lumpia sauce.

Lumpiang Ubod

Ingredients

1 tablespoon oil
1 small onion, peeled and chopped
2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
1/2 kilo shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 tablespoon patis (fish sauce)
½ cup water
4 cups ubod, julienned
salt and pepper to taste
leaf lettuce leaves
spring roll wrappers

Sweet lumpia sauce:
2-3/4 cups water
¼ cup soy sauce
¾ cup brown sugar
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup unsalted peanuts, minced
1 head garlic, minced
3 tablespoons corn starch

Instructions

In a saucepan, combine 2-1/2 cups of the water, soy sauce, brown sugar and salt. Bring to a boil. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Add garlic and peanuts. Let simmer for about 3 minutes.

In a bowl, combine corn starch and the remaining ¼ cup water. Stir until there are no lumps.

Whisk corn starch mixture into soy sauce mixture. Cook and continue whisking until thickened. Transfer sauce to a bowl and set aside.

Heat oil in a pan over medium heat. Saute onions and garlic. Add shrimp and cook until pink. Stir in patis.

Add water and simmer for about 3 minutes. Add ubod. Lower heat, cover and cook for another 15 minutes or until ubod is tender. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove from pan.

Lay a wrapper on a flat surface and place a lettuce leaf on top. Spoon about 4 tablespoons of the filling vertically in middle of the lettuce. Fold the bottom first then the sides of the wrapper to cover the filling.

Serve with lumpia sauce.

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