Meal of the Week: Filipino barbeque

This was a Filipino dish I hadn’t made before, sourced from a cookbook given to me by my mother to expand my horizons past traditional family recipes. It turned out wonderfully, and the basic idea would work for almost any kind of meat or vegetable.

The sauce was made from garlic, green onions, vinegar, honey, soy sauce, mustard, hot pepper, and five-spice powder. This being our kitchen, the garlic, onions, and peppers were ours. The mustard was our home-scratch-made version, which I try to keep a small jar of at all times. The five-spice was a custom fresh-ground blend of fennel, anise, black pepper, cloves, and cinnamon. The honey was local, and everything else was of decent provenance. All was mixed together and poured over…

The meat, which was a quantity of our farm-butchered goat rib strips. Now, these aren’t quite the meaty, fat-dripping pork ribs most folks are familiar with, but they’re what we have. We strip them from the bone fresh and freeze them as packets of strips, to be thawed and marinated for such dishes as this. After several days tenderizing and absorbing the flavor of the marinade, they were ready for…

The grilling, which was a quite basic hot charcoal fire with the strips turned once and basted thoroughly with marinade. Finished, they were not quite the mouth-melting tenderness of pork but had absorbed the marinade wonderfully and were good, mildly chewy strips of spicy Asian barbequed goodness. Goat has its own flavor which I think goes really well with Filipino cooking, whose liberal use of vinegar helps soften the meat and imbue it with flavor. Plus, it’s plenty authentic. We finished with…

The salad

which was an utterly simple mix of fresh spinach and various lettuces topped with sliced fresh radishes, all gathered from the garden a few minutes before dinner. The dressing to the left is a home invention of rice vinegar, soy sauce, chopped fresh scallion, minced elephant garlic, grated ginger, sesame oil, and olive oil. It turned out very well and complemented the ribs nicely.
A good, reasonably quick (other than the grill) spring dinner sourced reasonably from the farm.

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