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Recipes for Philippine Kare Kare – Special Filipino Peanut Stew

Updated on September 28, 2012
Kare Kare with Bagoong or Shrimp Paste
Kare Kare with Bagoong or Shrimp Paste | Source
Kare Kare with Broccoli
Kare Kare with Broccoli | Source

Philippine Seafood Kare Kare Recipe

Kare kare is a Philippine dish that Filipinos love eating for their main course.

This Filipino food is so special that no religious feast in the Philippines is ever complete without a good serving of homemade kare-kare.

Kare kare is basically a stew but made extra special by its signature peanut sauce.

It has meat – beef, oxtail, offal or tripe.

It also has a medley of vegetables – onion, garlic, pechay or Filipino bokchoy, young banana flower bud or puso ng saging, sitaw or yardlong beans, and eggplants.

Some variations of kare kare include vegetarian kare kare, seafood kare kare, and chicken kare kare.

How and When to Serve Kare Kare

A serving of kare kare is somewhat incomplete with bagoong alamang or sautéed salted shrimp paste, which is sometimes spiced up with chili and made a little tangy with calamansi extract.

Cooking kare kare can take time, roughly two hours.

Thus, it is cooked and served mostly only during special occasions in the Philippines like fiestas, Christmas parties, birthdays, graduation parties, or family reunions.

Also, the peanut sauce – regarded as the most important part of the dish – needs to be really gelatinous and loaded with flavors before it is served.

Its color needs to be brownish gold with the help of annatto or atsuete.

Many families in the Philippines have their own time-held “secrets” on how to make the sauce.

This secret is passed on from one generation to another without being shared to other families.

From Where Kare Kare Comes

Stories have it that kare kare is a purely Filipino dish.

It is believed to have been first cooked in either Pampanga in central Luzon island or the provinces in the southernmost part of the Mindanao island in the Philippines.

Whichever it is, kare kare has remained to be one of the lasting favorites of Filipinos across ages for many generations now.

Recipe for Philippine Beef Kare Kare

Ingredients for Beef Kare Kare

  • annatto oil – 4 tablespoons
  • beef – either round or sirloin; ½ kilogram; cut into cubes
  • calamansi
  • chili
  • cooking oil – ½ cup
  • eggplant – 4 pieces; cut into 2-inch length
  • Filipino bokchoy – 1 bundle; separated per leaf
  • garlic – 2 heads; minced
  • onion – 2 pieces; large-sized; diced
  • oxtail – ½ kilogram; cut into 2-inch length
  • peanut butter – 3 cups
  • rice – grounded and toasted; ¼ cup
  • salt
  • shrimp paste – ½ cup; cooked
  • water – 6 cups
  • yardlong beans – 1 bundle; cut into 2-inch length
  • young banana flower bud – 1 piece; cut into 2-inch length

Steps for Cooking Kare Kare

  1. In a pot set over medium heat, pour in water.
  2. Add in beef and oxtail.
  3. Boil for 1 hour or until the beef becomes tender.
  4. Strain the beef and oxtail.
  5. Keep the stock aside.
  6. In a pan set on medium heat, pour in cooking oil.
  7. Add in annatto oil.
  8. Sauté garlic until toasted.
  9. Add in onion and cook until transparent.
  10. Pour in stock.
  11. Add in rice, beef, oxtail, and peanut butter.
  12. Mix everything thoroughly.
  13. Bring to a boil.
  14. Once boiling, simmer everything for another 30 minutes.
  15. Sprinkle with salt.
  16. Add in the vegetables – Filipino bokchoy, yardlong beans, young banana flower bud, and eggplant, taking care not to overcook them.
  17. Turn off heat.
  18. Serve your kare kare with shrimp paste.
  19. Optionally, add in chili and calamansi extract to the shrimp paste

Ta-da-da! Your homemade Philippine kare kare in now ready! Now, have a Filipino feast!

Copyright © 2012 Kerlyn Bautista

All Rights Reserved

Philippine Vegetarian Kare Kare Recipe

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    • Chin chin profile image

      Chin chin 

      8 years ago from Philippines

      Hi Kerlyn. I like kare-kare. But I have never tried cooking it. Maybe one day soon. Definitely, the secret to really enjoying kare-kare is to partner it with really good tasting bagoong. Yummy!

    • nuchime profile image


      8 years ago from philippines

      Great recipe kerlynb...:)


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