Spanish-Style Sardines with a Twist

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LiTraTos ni IskaI’ve been busy playing around with my new gallery that I’m not done yet on checking out LP15‘s recipes about recycled food. (Oh please do check it out when you have time; will upload more Beijing photos.)

I’ve been thinking about cooking Spanish-style sardines but ended up making my own experiment. I didn’t have pickles and carrots at that time and chili isn’t always a good idea with my boy, so I concocted a recipe with ginger and pork fat. The ginger gives it a kick but may be omitted if undesired; chili I think is still the best. The addition of pork fat and the procedure itself are inspired by sinaing na tulingan. Served it with steamed spinach.

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I am not a professional cook. My only claim to having a culinary background is a short stint as my dad’s teen ‘sous chef’ in his carinderia ages ago. Dad ran small eateries since I was a young kid - serving standard ‘turo-turo’ food ranging from the likes of menudo, adobo, pritong isda, dinuguan, binagoongan, bopis, munggo, pinakbet and giniling to merienda fares like goto, ginataan, pancit bihon, halu-halo and saging con yelo.

My father, a farmer in his hometown before working his way to becoming an accountant, definitely influenced my cooking in a lot of ways than I thought. My siblings and I were raised in a backyard full of fruit trees and vegetable garden. We spent weekends and the summer breaks running around with ducks, chickens, goats and pigs. I had wonderful memories of gathering eggs, butchering chickens, selling vegetables and the sweet aroma of preserved fruits. But my love for art led me to a degree in Architecture. Just few months after getting my license, I went abroad and lived independently at age 23. Definitely no maid, no cook, and a totally different food culture. Along the way I met lots of friends and spent what seemed a lifetime learning new tricks and recipes.

Now living in Auckland, I am a work-from-home mum who juggles time between work, fun and family - in pursuit of work-life balance. No matter how busy I am, I love the idea of cooking for my family. My blog chronicles home cooking greatly influenced by life outside my home country from Southeast Asia to Beijing and Auckland. And most of the time, being busy also means easy (sometimes quick), affordable meals.

3 thoughts on “Spanish-Style Sardines with a Twist

  1. Hi Mae! Yup, tulingan is tuna. Frigate tuna yata not so sure ang hirap talaga inglisin ng nakasanayang tagalog hahahaha. I surfed and based on the photos I’ve seen the one above is Frigate mackerel. I’m a bit confused on the names as well especially when everything here is being sold in Mandarin. Oh my. :) Anyways, here’s a link.

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