How to Cook Kare-Kare, A Filipino Dish!

Kare Kare

This is a unique Filipino food, and my family loves this dish so much! It is also very easy to prepare, although a little expensive for an ordinary everyday viand.

This is an excellent dish for family gatherings and parties.

I learned this from my Dad who is an excellent cook! I have introduced some innovations though, to fit my personal taste, and to please my family. For example, they love the puso ng saging, so I add more puso and reduce the  eggplant. They don’t like eggplant that much!

This is our Number 2 Favorite!


1 kilo Ox tail

1 Banana heart (puso ng saging)
1 bunch of String beans
1 bunch Petchay
2 pcs Talong
1 Onion, cut into tiny cubes
5 cloves of Garlic, crushed

Rice  (about 1/2 to 1 cup – roasted until slightly golden brown)
Peanuts (1/2 to 1 cup – roasted, preferably without the skin)
Atsuwete seeds (1 tablespoon, soaked in lukewarm water)

MSG (optional)

Bagoong alamang
¼ kilo Pork, sliced small
4 cloves of Garlic
1 Onion


Step 1: Prepare the Ox tail
• Clean and cut the oxtail into serving pieces/slices
• Place in a kettle
• Put enough water to cover
• Bring to a boil and then simmer

While waiting for the meat to be tender, do the following:

Step 2: Vegetables
• Prepare all the vegetables (string beans should be cut in half; eggplant into three; for the petchay, just cut the part near the roots; the banana bud into serving slices)
• Blanch the string beans, eggplant, and petchay
• Set aside

Step 3: Rice and Peanut Paste
• Place in a liquefier or blender the roasted peanuts and rice
• Strain the atsuwete seeds and pour the liquid into the liquefier/blender
• Pour additional water to cover the rice and peanuts
• Liquefy into paste
• Set aside

Step 4: Bagoong Alamang
• Sauté garlic, onion, pork, and alamang
• Season to taste
• Set aside

When the Ox tail is ready

Step 5: to continue
• When the meat is already tender (but not very tender), pour into the kettle the rice-peanut-atsuwete paste
• Gently stir to mix the paste with the meat mixture
• Continue to simmer, stirring occasionally to prevent the rice and peanut paste from sticking at the bottom of the kettle
• Add the Banana Bud/heart (puso ng saging)
• Season to taste (but be sure its not very salty since we have the ginisang Bagoong Alamang to compliment the dish)
• Cover to cook

Step 6: Serving Suggestion
• In a Pyrex dish, arrange the meat
• Top with the blanched vegetable
• Pour the sauce or sabaw
• Serve with cooked/steamed white rice and Bagoong Alamang

My Tip!

I know a lot of people who use peanut butter in this recipe. Maybe because they hate to go through the process of grinding the roasted peanut and the roasted rice? I used to grind these two before myself, using a bottle (in the absence of a rolling pin) and a “nigo”. Salamat sa modern technology, with a blender or a liquefier, turning the roasted peanut and roasted rice into paste is now very easy.


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