ANOTHER week, another chance to enjoy the world through food. We are in dire times. But we can bring in a little sunshine into our homes by making most of the food ingredients we have.
This week, I will share with you a simple hack using fried pork chop that I turned into something healthier. If I have the space, I will also share my grandmother’s recipe for longaniza.
PORKY SALAD. Last Thursday, I had two pieces of fried pork chop. It was also that day my nephew Polonggoy craved salad that included bulb onions. Here’s what to do: Remove the fatty portions of fried pork chop. Dice the meat and set aside. The next ingredients were what I had at home. You can follow my lead or go ahead and choose what vegetables you want to add.
Now peel a small cucumber, creating green stripes.
Cut into four, lengthwise, remove the seeds, dice and set aside.
Steam four pieces of okra to minimize its slimy texture when cooked. Allow to cool before slicing them into four or five pieces. Add to the diced cucumber without mixing yet.
Peel a small- or medium-size white or yellow onion. You can also use red or purple onion which has a sharper taste. I chose the white variety for its sweeter flavor.
Cut the onion into small dice and add to the other vegetables in a big bowl. At this point, add the diced pork chop.
If you have a favorite vinaigrette recipe, use it. For my porky salad, I made do with what I had. The amount of the ingredients depends on you.
In a small bowl, mix oyster sauce, coconut vinegar (also apple cider or any organic vinegar), sugar to tie the flavors, and black pepper. You may add minced finger chili if you like. Substitute lemon or lemonsito for vinegar if you want. Mix and adjust the taste for balance.
Lightly toss the ingredients to mix, then add the vinaigrette little by little making sure the vegetables and diced meat are coated with the dressing.
You can do this just before serving to prevent a watery salad or chill the salad in a covered bowl before mealtime. But because cucumber tends to become watery and steamed okra slimy on standing, it is better to serve the dish on a bed of crushed ice if you want a chilled salad.
Not us. We ate the porky salad at room temperature. It was so good paired with corn and malunggay soup, and adobong talong.
For dessert, we had sliced bananas and a wedged apple drizzled with peanut butter thinned with a bit of water and evaporated milk.
The family washed down the meal with cold glasses of sweet lemonsito juice mixed with ginger juice.
Sounds sumptuous? Leftover pork and stray vegetables can create that impression. Yum!