Pork Bicol Express has the entire characteristic that I enjoy in a pork dish. It is tender, creamy, and tasty. In addition, it has that good amount of heat that can awaken my taste buds. This recipe that I am sharing today will give you a delicious and spicy Bicol Express that is worthy for that extra cup or so of rice that you will be having.
The secret to a good Pork Bicol Express dish has something to do with the balance of flavor. The level of spiciness is also a factor. However, this will depend on the amount of chili pepper that you can tolerate. This means that you can modify the quantity of chili pepper stated in the recipe below by either adding more or using less. I also think that the creaminess of the dish helps make your Bicol Express a success.
This is one of the dishes that I only started to enjoy on my teenage years. I was trying to increase my tolerance to spicy food while growing up and I made this dish a benchmark to see how well I am improving. The very first time I tried this dish was from a local eatery that sells home cooked meals. I liked it right away, but the spice level was more than I can handle. From that day forward, I challenged myself to get accustomed to spicy food by having it on a regular basis. It started with mildly spicy dishes, which have the right amount of heat that I can handle. It gradually increased to a point where the challenge became a pleasure.
If you are not a fan of spicy food, do not be intimidated. You can always try to use little to no chili pepper on your Pork Bicol Express. Do not force yourself to eat spicy food if you are not ready. I am just probably crazy and adventurous when I was younger (and it goes on until today). You might want to first cook this without the chili to taste the outcome. Decide whether you want to add a piece or two of either long green pepper or Thai chili. If it gets to spicy, you can always balance it with more rice. Enjoy!
Try this Pork Bicol Express Recipe. Let me know what you think.
- 1 lb. pork shoulder, sliced into cubes
- 3 pieces long green pepper (siling pansigang), sliced into thin pieces
- 2 to 8 pieces bird’s eye chili (siling labuyo) or Thai chili, sliced into small pieces
- 1 medium onion, sliced
- 4 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1 (45g) pack Knorr Ginataang Gulay mix
- 1 tablespoon shrimp paste (bagoong alamang)
- 3 tablespoons cooking oil
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 ¼ cups water
- Salt to taste (optional)
- Heat oil in a cooking pot
- Sauté garlic and onion until the onions get soft.
- Add the ground black pepper and pork. Sauté until the color turns light brown.
- Pour 1½ cups water. Let boil. Cover and continue to cook in medium heat until the pork gets tender and the water almost evaporates completely.
- Prepare the gata by combining ¾ cup lukewarm water and Knorr Ginataang Gulay mix. Stir until the powder dissolves completely. Set aside.
- Add the long green pepper, chili pepper, and shrimp paste into the cooking pot. Stir.
- Pour the gata mixture into the pot. Let boil. Cover and cook in medium heat until the liquid reduces to half. Make sure to stir once in a while.
- Add salt to taste. Transfer to a serving bowl.
- Serve with rice. Share and enjoy!