Sitaw is one of the many varieties of string beans. They are usually about 18 inches in length. Another variety of string beans is what is known locally as baguio beans (french green beans in western cuisine).
Adobo is a very popular Filipino dish. It can be cooked with chicken, pork, a mixture of chicken and pork, with or without liver. A successful adobo depends largely on the cooked texture of the meat, and the flavor and texture of the sauce. To achieve a good texture for the meat, whether using chicken or pork, it has to be browned before simmering. Some cooks add cooking oil after the meat has absorbed the vinegar, then discard the oil afterwards.
A good adobo sauce is naturally thick. The cooked dish is almost dry. Because the meat is made to absorb the flavors of both the vinegar and the soy sauce, spiked with peppercorns and garlic, all the flavor is really in the meat. There are some cooks, though, who prefer to cook adobo with more liquid. Matter of preference, I suppose. Personally, I don’t find soupy adobo too appetizing. By adding thick coconut cream a few minutes before cooking time is up, the dish acquires a subtly sweet taste and turns incredibly creamy.
- 150 grams coarsely ground fatty pork
- 1 bunch sitaw (yard-long beans), cut into two-inch lengths, about 3 c. after cutting
- 4 to 6 garlic minced
- 3 to 4 tablespoons cane vinegar
- 4 to 6 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 bay leaf
- freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup coconut cream
Heat a frying pan and add the ground pork. Pour in the vinegar, add the garlic, bay leaf and pepper. Cook, stirring often, until the liquid has evaporated and the pork starts to render fat. Add the cut sitaw and and the soy sauce, and cook until tender but still a little crisp (if your sitaw is already mature, you may need to add a bit of water as it will need a longer cooking time).
When the sitaw is done and the mixture is quite dry, pour in the coconut cream. Stir well. Cook until the coconut cream is heated through and the mixture acquires a uniform texture.
Serve hot with rice.