I like ginataan dishes. It refers to any dish that is cooked in coconut milk or coconut cream. This Ginataang Langka with Tinapa flakes is no exception. I want to give a shout out to my mom who prepared this dish. This time, I am the food taster — which was my role back then when I was still a kid. Since mother’s day is only a few weeks away, I intend to share with you the dishes that my beloved mom makes for us everyday during her stay here in the US. I am doing this to honor her and to let everyone know how great of a cook she is. She does most of the cooking these days because she enjoys doing it. I finally got some time-off.
She went here in Chicago a month ago to visit and see her grand children. It was a big relief for me because she is doing the kitchen work.There is a new sheriff in town! I do not mind giving her that role. As a form of appreciation, I am featuring her yummy recipes starting today until mother’s day — or even past that day.
This is her ginataang langka recipe. This dish makes use of unripe jackfruit and it is best when eaten with warm rice. This dish is top notch (I am not saying this because she my mom. Well, she is an excellent cook — no doubt about it — and I learned a lot from her). I think that using smoked fish flakes (this is known as tinapa flakes in Filipino) for ginataang langka is a good idea. It provided an amazing flavor to the dish and it reminded me of my childhood days.
She mentioned that ginataan (or utan as she calls it) is better when cooked with a leaf called “lumbay”. Sounds like sadness in Filipino, but I can assure you that it is not the case with the dish. I think that this magical leaf really made a difference. My mom said that this is how they do ginataan in her hometown. Since we don’t have this leaf here, she used malunggay instead.
She grew-up in Romblon, Romblon (this is not a typo — it is similar to Bulacan, Bulacan where in the name of the town is similar to the province). Romblon is a province in Luzon (yes it is in Luzon, but very close to Visayas) and it belongs to a group of islands called MiMaRoPa , which are southern tagalog islands. If I am not mistaken, it means Mindoro, Marinduque, Romblon, and Palawan. This is basically in Region IV B. I have been in Romblon a couple of times and I was able to enjoy my stay. The tuba’ is awesome and I enjoyed eating fresh seafood everyday.
As you can see, this dish is not ordinary. It has a history and it is also part of our family’s heritage. It might be simple, but the person who made this will always be special to me.
Try this yummy ginataang langka with tinapa flakes recipe. Let me know what you think.
- 3 pounds unripe jackfruit (equivalent to to 3 pounds), chopped and seeds removed
- 4 cups coconut milk
- 8 pieces hot chili pepper
- 4 ounces tinapa flakes
- 1½ cups malunggay leaves
- 5 cloves garlic, crushed and chopped
- 1 large yellow onion, minced
- 2 tablespoons shrimp paste (bagoong)
- 2 teaspoons vinegar
- 3 tablespoons canola oil
- ⅛ teaspoon ground black pepper
- salt to taste
- Heat oil in a pan. Saute garlic and onion until the onion gets soft.
- Add the chopped unripe jackfruit. Cook for 3 to 5 minutes.
- Put-in the tinapa flakes (smoked fish flakes). Stir and cook for 1 minute.
- Add the ground black pepper and chili peppers.
- Pour-in the coconut milk. Let boil. Add the shrimp paste and vinegar. Stir. Cover and cook in medium heat for 15 minutes while stirring occasionally.
- Add the malunggay leaves. Stir and continue to cook for 5 to10 minutes.
- Sprinkle some salt only if needed. Stir.
- Transfer to a serving bowl.
- Serve with a cup of warm steamed white rice.