food icons and their favorite recipes
By Vangie Baga-Reyes

over and over again because we know very well that their hard work has already given the country recognition and honor here and abroad. As part of the INQUIRER silver anniversary, we’ve asked them to share with us their dearest recipes, which readers can cut, compile and try at home, if they wish to. These recipes, say some of them, have been staples on the family dining table while they were growing up. A few have eventually become signature dishes of these icons.


O DOUBT these men and women have helped shape, elevate and advance Philippine cuisine to its finest. In their immense and ingenious ways, they have made impacts on the culinary scene in the last 25 years—much like the Philippine Daily

Inquirer which has dared to make a difference in the Pinoy’s daily life. Some are chefs, others not; some are true-blooded Filipino, others not, but have, nevertheless, proven to be passionate advocates of Filipino gastronomy. Some are still alive and visible, some have gone ahead—all the same, each has championed local cooking. They are the icons we admire and respect for their dedication and passion. We don’t need to enumerate and emphasize their numerous achievements and contributions

Glenda Barretto
The doyenne of Philippine cuisine, no less. Founder of the fine-dining Filipino restaurant Via Mare (now a cafe chain), and chef and caterer of various momentous events, including those of Malacañang. By putting up the Via Mare restaurants, she has raised cooking and catering to a first-class art. She’s the driving force behind the best-selling book “Kulinarya,” which contains standardized recipes for Filipino dishes.

Humba (Braised Pork Belly)
4 c water, enough to cover pork 2 k whole pork belly (liempo) 8 cloves garlic ¾ tsp ground black pepper ¼ c soy sauce ¾ c vinegar (white, sugar, or cane coconut) 2 tbsp salted black beans (tausi) overnight in the chiller. An hour before 2 tsp soybean paste (tajure) cooking, remove the bowl with the mari¾ c brown sugar nated pork and the reserved broth from the 2 bay leaves chiller. Remove the layer of fat that has 2 star anise formed on top of the reserved broth. ½ c peanuts, skin on Place pork with the marinade in a pot. This involves overnight marination. In a Add the reserved broth and bring to a pot, bring water to a boil. Add pork and boil. Reduce heat to a bare simmer and parboil for 10 minutes. Reserve the broth cook for two to three hours or until forkand let cool before placing in the chiller. tender. The pork should be very tender afTrim the sides of the pork and remove the ter cooking so that the fat or top jiggles. portions with thick layers of fat. Cut the When ready to serve, remove pork pork into 7.5 x 7.5-cm or 3 x 3-inch from the pot. Slice pork into 1-cm or ¼squares. With a sharp knife, carefully score the skin side of each portion, making criss- inch thick pieces across the grain. Place these on a platter and pour sauce over. cross slits measuring approximately 1-cm, Serve very hot with steamed greens. ¼-inch apart and ½-cm or 1/8-inch deep. Crash, peel and mince garlic. In a big bowl, combine the garlic, ground black pepper, soy sauce, vinegar, salted black beans, soybean paste, brown sugar, bay leaves, star anise, and peanuts. Mix well until the sugar has dissolved. Place the pork into the mixBARRETTO’S ture and marinate Humba RICHARD REYES

Nora Daza
The epitome of Filipino gastronomy! She’s a best-selling cookbook author and restaurateur who took the risk of opening a Filipino restaurant in Paris, Aux Iles Philippines, and a French restaurant in Manila, Au Bon Vivant in the ’70s. Her first cookbook, “Let’s Cook with Nora,” has become a household bible for millions of housewives, across generations, eager to prepare easy but delicious meals for their families. Her culinary fans still swear by her recipes and techniques, collect her books, and pass them on to their children’s children. ground rice. Bring to a boil then put in the meats. Dust before removing from the fire, add the vegetables. Serve with bagoong guisado. Bagoong Guisado: ¼ c cooking oil 1 head garlic, chopped 1 onion, chopped ¼ k boiled pork, diced 1 ½ c bagoong alamang 1 tsp sugar ¼ c native vinegar 14 c broth from ox tail and leg Sauté garlic and onion in cooking oil. Add pork, bagoong and sugar. Blend well, add vinegar and broth. Boil until quite dry. Serve with Kare-Kare.

DAZA’S Kare-Kare


1 ox tail 1 ox leg 6 c water 1 big onion, quartered 1 stalk celery with leaves, cut up Salt and peppercorns ½ c achuete seeds for coloring (annatto seeds) ½ c water 4 pcs eggplants 1 big bundle sitao (string beans) 1 banana heart 1 head garlic, chopped 2 onions, sliced ¼ c cooking oil ½ c bagoong alamang (salted fermented small shrimps)

1 c ground peanuts 1 c roasted ground rice Salt and MSG to taste Boil ox tail and leg in six cups of water with onions, celery, salt and peppercorns until tender. Cut into desired pieces and set aside. Soak achuete seeds in water (one-half cup); rub to bring out color. Set aside. Cut vegetables into desired pieces. Boil enough water and drop string beans and parboil. Do likewise with eggplants and banana heart. Sauté garlic and onions in cooking oil. Add bagoong and achuete water. Let boil for five minutes. Blend in ground peanuts and