If you want something savory and yet refreshing to your palates–well–there is no other option for that, so here’s the Pork Hamonado or Hamonadong Baboy!
This is a popular dish that is originally made during special occasions such as Christmas, but nowadays, it can be a perfect dinner for a regular weeknight, since the ingredients are now more available and cheaper compared to the olden days.
So learn this delicious recipe today, and read on below for more tips and tricks packed with some trivia about the delicious pork hamonado.
What is Pork Hamonado?
Pork hamonado is a Filipino dish which consists of pork that is smothered in rich and thick pineapple-based sauce, partnered usually with sugar and soy sauce, among other varieties of seasonings.
The term hamonado comes from the spanish word jamonado which means “like hamon,” and it is not to be confused with the other food named hamon.
Traditionally, pork hamonado includes marinating the pork overnight with the said ingredients, but other methods in making this dish–such as in this recipe–includes slow cooking the pork with the ingredients.
How to Cook Pork Hamonado?
Cooking pork hamonado is not that hard. You will be surprised how easy this is going to be, even though it seems like you’re doing some kind of extravagant meal.
All you have to do is to prepare the ingredients, and then you’re going to just think about tossing in the ingredients into a cooking pot one-by-one. There are no secret tricks to making this a successful dish.
When preparing the ingredients, it is recommended to cut the pork meat into small cubes and into even pieces as possible, about 2 inches per side.
This is to ensure that the meat will be cooked thoroughly inside and will all be cooked at the same time, so that there are no raw meats within the dish.
Pork Hamonado Cuts and Tips
- Any kind of pork cut you buy is acceptable, as long as there are fats present in the pork. This is because the dish has an important step which involves slow cooking, extracting the fat juices of the pork which brings out more flavor to it.
- If you go for lean cuts, the sauce wouldn’t be as thick and wouldn’t be as tasty.
- Choosing what kind of soy sauce you need for this recipe can be confusing, especially when you’re in a different country because of the variety of this kind of sauce. But the typical Filipino soy sauce are the ones that are usually darker and saltier, so try to go for that when picking soy sauce.
- It is recommended to use brown sugar instead of white sugar, because white sugar tends to be super sweet especially once it is dissolved within the dish. The brown sugar has the right amount of sweetness which can improve the overall experience and taste of the pork hamonado.
Notes on Ingredients
In this recipe, we added vinegar as an optional ingredient. This is because vinegar can help with the overall tangy flavor of the pineapple juice, and it can improve the taste of the dish itself.
Any regular vinegar you use can be added into the recipe, but it is preferred if you have vinegars which are generally sweeter to complement the taste of this pineapple dish, such as an apple cider vinegar.
If you also want more ‘meaty’ flavor for the dish, you have the option to use a meat broth–usually pork or beef is good–instead of water. This is if you feel like it’s lacking that savory taste and you feel like the dish is too sweet for your liking, especially if you use a sweetened pineapple juice.
For a quick reference about this recipe, see the recipe table below:
Pork Hamonado (Hamonadong Baboy) Recipe
- Cooking Pot
- 1 kg pork belly, cut into cubes
- 1 pc onion, chopped
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 cups pineapple juice
- 1 cup pineapple, made into chunks
- ½ cup soy sauce
- ¼ cup vinegar, optional
- 1 cup water, or meat broth
- 2 tbsp sugar
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 3 tbsp cooking oil
- In a cooking pot, pour-in and heat oil over medium heat.
- Add-in the chopped onions, and minced garlic. Saute for 1 to 2 minutes or until soft and aromatic.
- Add-in the sliced pork belly cubes. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes per side or until lightly browned.
- Pour-in the pineapple juice, and vinegar. Stir, then add-in soy sauce, and water. Simmer for 40 to 60 minutes or until pork is tender and liquid is reduced.
- Add-in the pineapple chunks, sugar, and season with salt and pepper as desired. Cook for 5 to 7 minutes or until the sauce thickens.
- Transfer to a serving plate or serving tray. Serve and enjoy!
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