I think we can all agree that I can be a bit melodramatic, getting overly excited about each and every recipe I post here at Kawaling Pinoy. But let me tell you, I am excited now for good reason. Just take a look at those succulent pork morsels and smoky eggplant pieces swimming in all that glorious sauce! I am sure you understand.
If there is no other recipe here you’ll try, let it be this ginataang talong. Trust me, it’s pure indulgence. Eggplant pieces are first briefly pan-fried and then thrown together with fatty pork belly strips to finish in a thick, slightly spicy coconut sauce. The resulting dish is rich, creamy and sure to please the whole family. Serve with generous heaps of rice and enjoy!
- 4 to 5 large eggplants, stems removed and cut into 1-inch pieces
- 1 onion, peeled and sliced thinly
- 3 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
- 1 pound pork belly, cut into ½-inch strips
- 1 tablespoon fish
- 1 (19 ounces) can coconut cream (kakang gata)
- 1 cup water
- 3 Thai chili peppers, stemmed and minced
- salt and pepper to taste
- In a wide pan over medium heat, heat about 2 tablespoons of oil. Add eggplant and cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned. Eggplant absorbs plenty of oil, you may need to add more oil a tablespoon at a time during the brief pan-frying. With a slotted spoon, remove from pan and drain on paper towels.
- In the pan, add about 1 tablespoon oil. Add onions and garlic and cook until softened. Add pork belly and cook, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned. Add fish sauce and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 1 to 2 minutes.
- Add coconut milk and water and stir to combine. Bring to a simmer. Add chili peppers. Lower heat, cover and cook for about 15 to 20 minutes or until pork is tender and sauce is reduced.
- Add eggplant and gently stir to combine. Continue to cook for about 3 to 5 minutes or until eggplants are tender and sauce begins to thicken and render fat. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve hot.